Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Are You Fully Informed?




To make a fully informed decision. That is what should happen among parents who still have the legal choice to decide whether or not to circumcise their newborn baby. However, studies have shown that all too often parents are simply posed with this question and nothing more:

Would you like to circumcise your son?

Now, there are many inherent problems with this question as it is stated. One is that it would be much more appropriate to ask, "Would you like to keep your son intact?" as this is the natural, normal way human beings (and all mammals), be they male or female, enter the world. To alter or modify a baby's body at birth is not the 'norm' and the question should not be stated as though it is. There is simply nothing typical or natural about cutting off 1/3 to 3/4 (depending on the size of the prepuce organ) of a tiny baby's sensitive genitals immediately upon entrance into the world.

However, these same studies demonstrate that most of the medical personnel posing this question to parents know no more about the prepuce (the organ amputated in U.S. style circumcision) or the surgery of circumcision than the mothers and fathers who are making the decision.

Rarely is a fully informed choice made. And in the case of a newborn baby, this choice is never a fully informed consented choice.

In fact, I have yet to see a parent who is fully informed on the purposes of the prepuce and circumcision elect to cut their baby. It just doesn't happen. The more you know, the worse it is. Period.

I have, however, witnessed those who say they 'researched' the subject by going to Google and hitting up Brian Morris' sponsored sites, by reading MSN news media, Edgar Schoen quotes, or Yahoo reports... by opening headlines from The New York Times or Washington Post.

Sorry, folks, pop media or skewed info from the circumfetish cutting kings doesn't count as 'research' to being fully informed - especially not on this subject. Not when it directly deals with the health, development, bonding and well-being of YOUR BABY. Your child. Who will grow up to be an adult, with a body that was designed perfectly for him - or one that was modified without his consent.

In an effort to stamp out a fraction of the ignorance that resounds throughout pop culture on any given day in North America, there are a number of articles and informative pieces presented here at peaceful parenting. I spent the better portion of my graduate years studying this subject. But you don't have to take 8 years of your life, or hundreds of thousands of dollars, to complete your own quick course on the subject.

If you'd really like to be fully informed in this matter -- one that certainly becomes more urgent, more severe, more horrifying, the more you know -- please don't stop at this site. Dig deeper. Learn more. Open books. Pour over medical journals. Dive into discussions with scholars who are in-the-know; doctors who do study the prepuce and circumcision; historians who know the literature inside and out.

By simply reading the articles and links provided on this site alone, you will be more informed than the vast majority of the rest of the U.S. population on the prepuce organ and circumcision. Yet, I encourage you, if you feel so inclined, to keep going. Check it out for yourself. Don't just take my word for it. And if, while you are out there researching and writing and questioning and building your own mental library of data on this subject, you feel so inclined to come back and write for us here at peaceful parenting - we'd love to have your fresh voice of insight and experience in the matter.

The following is a listing of books, websites, and articles to start with. There are thousands of empirical, peer-reviewed, research journal articles out there on the subject -- those that have been written for the past 100 years on the prepuce and circumcision -- and unfortunately we cannot reasonably list them all here. But these sources will get you off to a great start at being FULLY INFORMED.


BOOKS


What Your Doctor May Not Tell You About Circumcision

Circumcision: What Every Parent Should Know

Marked in Your Flesh: Circumcision from Ancient Judea to Modern America

Circumcision: The Hidden Trauma

Circumcision: The Rest of the Story

Doctors Re-examine Circumcision

Circumcision: An American Health Fallacy

Circumcision: The Painful Dilemma

A Surgical Temptation: The Demonization of the Foreskin and the Rise of Circumcision in Britain

Circumcision: A History of the World's Most Controversial Surgery

Questioning Circumcision: A Jewish Perspective

Covenant of Blood: Circumcision and Gender in Rabbinic Judaism

Circumcision Exposed: Rethinking a Medical and Cultural Tradition

In the Name of Humanity: Speaking Out Against Circumcision

40 Compelling Reasons Why You Should Respect His Birthright and Keep Your Son Whole


Children's Genitals Under the Knife

As Nature Made Him: The Boy Who Was Raised As A Girl [1 detailed example of the consequences of botched circumcision]

Sex as Nature Intended It

A Mind of Its Own: A Cultural History of the Penis

The Joy of Uncircumcising *also found as downloadable book here

Crystallized Pathology: The Clitoris, the Penis and Women's Sexual Health *currently limited and ordered by request SavingSons@gmail.com

Circumcision *Mothering reprint of articles

Prepuce, Circumcision, Intact Info Pack (includes 8 articles, 3 DVDs) from Saving Our Sons. Request here.


WEBSITES

http://www.circumcision.org

http://www.doctorsopposingcircumcision.org

http://www.drmomma.org

http://www.savingsons.org



http://www.circumstitions.com

http://www.cirp.org

http://www.noharmm.org

http://www.nocirc.org

http://www.mothersagainstcirc.org

http://www.mgmbill.org

http://www.coloradonocirc.org

http://www.circinfosite.com

http://www.circumcisionandhiv.com

http://www.studentsforgenitalintegrity.org

http://www.historyofcircumcision.net/

http://www.circinfo.org/

http://www.thewholenetwork.org 

http://www.intactamerica.org

http://stopthecut.org


http://www.oknocirc.com

http://circumcisiondecisionmaker.com

http://www.asnatureintended.info

http://www.icgi.org

http://www.theridgedband.info

http://www.notjustskin.org

http://www.stopinfantcircumcision.org

http://www.sexasnatureintendedit.com

http://www.sexuallymutilatedchild.org

http://www.infocirc.org

http://circumcisionquotes.com

http://www.sicsociety.org

http://www.4eric.org/

http://www.arclaw.org

http://www.norm.org

http://www.tlctugger.com

http://www.mothering.com

http://www.quranicpath.com/misconceptions/circumcision.html [Islam]

http://www.quran.org/khatne.htm [Islam]

http://www.jewsagainstcircumcision.org [Judaism]

http://www.catholicsagainstcircumcision.org [Catholicism]



ARTICLES
pertaining to circumcision and cataloged here at Saving Our Sons




The Phony Phimosis Diagnosis













































































The Circumcision Decision with Dr. Dean Edell







The Appendix: Useful & Promising [much like the prepuce...]
















MA MGM Bill Hearing

Georganne Chapin on Fox News


Fox News Report on MA MGM Bill

MA MGM Bill Public Testimonies

Until the Violence Stops!

McGill University Study on Male Body Image & Genital Self Esteem

Circumcision: The Uncut Version (Kate Holt's site)

Cervical Cancer: A Reason for Circumcision?

Male Circumcision & Cervical Cancer

Cervical Cancer & Circumcision


Sandra Bullock Cuts Newly Adopted Son

Article Asks, "Are Infant Foreskins the New Botox?"


My Son is Circumcised, and I Support the MGM Bill


Turtle Heads


Stepping Away From Friendship in the Name of Human Rights

American Baby Intactivist in Scotland

A Strategic Approach to End Infant Circumcision in Canada






To request a prepuce and circumcision information pack (8 articles, 3 DVDs) request via ($13) PayPal donation with a note included, or find more info here. A waiting list is available for those who cannot afford the cost of materials. No one will be turned away. Write to us at SavingSons@gmail.com.






To request via mail, write to: 


Saving Our Sons
P.O. Box 1302
Virginia Beach, VA 23451




Info packs are mailed out within 48 hours of request.




~~~~

Sunday, January 24, 2010

You Made a Difference For That One

By Danelle Frisbie


He who passively accepts evil
is as much involved in it as he who helps to perpetrate it.
He who accepts evil without protesting against it
is really cooperating with it.
~ Martin Luther King, Jr.

Any time we speak out about the atrocities facing babies around us, we may face some backlash from those who refuse to acknowledge the damage they do to little ones by parenting in a detached, unprotective, or unloving manner. This may come in many forms - genital cutting being one, or simple refusal to learn why love matters. We cannot save all the babies and children (and future adults and society) out there from the pains and heartache and developmental problems that result from non-peaceful parenting. But whenever we share accurate information, whenever we speak up, whenever we defend those who do not yet have a voice for themselves and cannot yet defend themselves, we DO empower and equip and enable parents to make wise, conscious choices. And it is for this *one* who listens and invests in their innate mothering or fathering instincts that we continue to do the work we do.

Today, as I have been unable to save a newborn baby from the trauma that is genital mutilation in the United States, I encourage you to not become discouraged in your own work toward a healthier, happier, wiser, more peaceful world. Every single one makes a difference. And through each of YOU lives are changed every moment, of every day.

So don't be silent. And don't be discouraged.

Be brave. Be bold. Be smart. Be gentle.

And go love your little ones like you've never loved before! Because each one matters.



From
The Star Thrower by anthropologist and writer, Loren Eiseley (1907-1977)

Once upon a time, there was a wise man who used to go to the ocean to do his writing. He had a habit of walking on the beach before he began his work.

One day, as he was walking along the shore, he looked down the beach and saw a human figure moving like a dancer. He smiled to himself at the thought of someone who would dance to the day, and so, he walked faster to catch up.

As he got closer, he noticed that the figure was that of a young man, and that what he was doing was not dancing at all. The young man was reaching down to the shore, picking up small objects, and throwing them into the ocean.

He came closer still and called out, "Good morning! May I ask what it is that you are doing?"

The young man paused, looked up, and replied, "Throwing starfish into the ocean."

"I must ask, then, why are you throwing starfish into the ocean?" asked the somewhat startled wise man.

To this, the young man replied, "The sun is up and the tide is going out. If I don't throw them in, they will die."

Upon hearing this, the wise man commented, "But, young man, do you not realize that there are miles and miles of beach and there are starfish all along every mile? You can't possibly make a difference!"

At this, the young man bent down, picked up yet another starfish, and threw it into the ocean. As it met the water, he said, "It made a difference for that one."



Note: This is a true story that Eiseley wrote about. He was the 'wise man' walking the beach before his morning writing session. He encountered this young man throwing starfish back into the ocean and was forever impacted by the experience. His story is told in many forms, in many places - but rarely is credit given to Eiseley as the original author and subject of the narrative.

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