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San Francisco's anti-circumcision initiative faces court challenge
June 22nd, 2011
05:58 PM ET

San Francisco's anti-circumcision initiative faces court challenge

By the CNN Wire Staff

(CNN) - The Anti-Defamation League and a number of individuals have filed a lawsuit challenging a San Francisco ballot initiative that would criminalize the circumcision of males under age 18.

The lawsuit asks the Department of Elections to remove the proposal from the ballot for the November election on the grounds that San Francisco would not be able to enforce the ordinance even if it was approved. The petition asks that a judge intervene so the city and its residents will be spared from "wasting resources debating and voting on an ordinance that cannot become law."

"Existing California law is clear," said Nancy Appel, Anti-Defamation League associate director in San Francisco, in a statement. "Only the state can make rules about medical procedures and this initiative violates that law. Not only does this initiative waste time, energy and expense, but it also offends the notions of parental rights and freedom of religion. It is unconstitutional and, as we allege in this lawsuit, contrary to California law."

The San Francisco-based advocacy group known as Male Genital Mutilation Bill collected enough signatures on a petition to guarantee the anti-circumcision proposal will appear on the ballot for the November 11 election.

It would make circumcision a misdemeanor if performed on boys under age 18. It could be punishable by a fine of $1.000 and up to a year in jail.

Opponents of circumcision argue the procedure can cause damage that ranges from nerve destruction and loss of normal tissue to infection, disfigurement and sometimes death. Matthew Hess, founder and leader of Male Genital Mutilation Bill, has said, "Freedom of religion stops at another person's body."

But opponents of the bill say it violates the First Amendment's protection of the exercise of religion and that putting the matter to a popular vote goes against the Constitution's protections of the rights of individuals and minorities.

The Anti-Defamation League is joined in the lawsuit by the Jewish Community Relations Council of San Francisco and Jewish and Muslim individuals who feel their rights would be adversely affected if the bill were to go into effect.

Circumcision is an important element of religious practice for Muslims and Jews, a significant ritual that affirms membership in the group.

U.S. law has long allowed people to follow their religion in refusing medical care for themselves and their children in all but the most extreme situations, when the life of a child is directly endangered.

- CNN Belief Blog

Filed under: California • Courts • Faith & Health • United States

soundoff (409 Responses)
  1. memeplex

    All of my best comments are awaiting moderation... kinda hard to talk about this subject candidly without using a few flag-raising terms... (so frustrating CNN!)

    June 23, 2011 at 1:52 am |
    • The Many Loves of Edna Pimples

      Well don't wait for the awaiting, because nobody ever comes to moderate. It's just a canned response from a program. You probably already know this, but all it is looking for is naughty words, which are usually inside legitimate word. You cannot use Consti-tution without a dash or space to make the program stop seeing a ti-t. You cannot discuss circu-mcision because you came in the middle. Va-gue? Not without the dash. There are a few other naughty words out there.

      Just be like a pubescent boy and look for cu-m and ti-ts everywhere, put in a dash or a space, and you will eventually get your comment posted.

      At least you weren't one of those idiots who scream about how CNN is actively conspiring to oppress their opinions because they got the awaiting moderation" message.

      June 23, 2011 at 2:14 am |
    • anphetameme

      All of my best rebuttals to your best comments are awaiting moderation.

      June 23, 2011 at 9:51 am |
  2. Chuckie

    This whole story is a joke isn't it? Please tell me it is-someone??

    June 23, 2011 at 1:35 am |
    • Steve

      Familiar – see that's the thing. You and i cant discuss this because you wont allow me my beliefs. whereas I say my reasons are about eternal life, faith, our nations founding principles; you do not have a valid concern (cut kids grow up to be axe murders or cut people grow up to be crazy). If you did we could discuss. but your whole basis is you hate religion and fight it whenever you get the chance.
      Oh... that and you want the best "O" for us all. See ya familar.

      June 23, 2011 at 6:21 pm |
    • Steve

      oops!

      June 23, 2011 at 6:22 pm |
    • Matt Banasiak

      What is it with the population of San Francisco? Such a nice town, beautiful buldings and scenery, wonderful views and plenty to do for almost anyone. Yet the population, the people who live work and vote there are meatheads of the most sophisticated kind. I try not to judge, but I am not perfect. Acceptance seems better than judging anyways. However, with acceptance comes compromise and just like the far right religious nut jobs i.e Westboro and others the far Left seems just as unable to think rationally. Since most of you (far lefties) Spawn from the Bay Area I group you all together. Is it right probably not. Here's what you need to do. Stop talking to the idiots at the other far side and join the conversation with the rest of us in the middle. I think you will find that most of us, Aethist, Christian, Jew, Muslim, Gay, Straight or Midget can all come to an acceptable agreement and move on to bigger and better things. Like voting the Muslim, Christian, Jewish, Liberal, Conservative, illegall/legal citizen Obama out of office in 2012 and elect a consortium of leaders from the most impoverished countries in the world to make our decisions for us. Half with foreskin half without.

      June 23, 2011 at 7:03 pm |
  3. ejs

    How about a clef pallete. Is it the parents right or duty to correct that. should it wait till 18th birthday. Would it be an injustice for a parent to make that decision. I wonder if Obamma chidren would rather have 2 moms or 2 dads. he should ask them.
    I need to hear a good reqason for this and I haven't yet.

    June 23, 2011 at 1:30 am |
    • ThinkHarder

      Your argument is foolish.

      Nothing about foreskin needs corrected. Thus any similarity you implied has fallen short.

      June 23, 2011 at 1:57 am |
    • The Many Loves of Edna Pimples

      A cleft palate is a defect; an uncircu-mcised penis is not at all defective.

      Surgery to fix a cleft palate spares the child a great deal of misery from loss of self-esteem. Cleft may cause problems with feeding, ear disease, speech and socialization. Cleft is most easily treated at very early ages.

      The kind of circu-mcision discussed here is not done to treat any defect or medical condition. Totally different scenario.

      So, as you can clearly see, there is no parallel between circu-mcision and surgery to fix a cleft palate.

      June 23, 2011 at 2:04 am |
  4. CF

    The most unkindest cut of all.

    June 23, 2011 at 1:24 am |
  5. jar73

    It is ridiculous and offensive to suggest that branding your child’s genitals with your religion is protected under the freedom of speech and religion.

    June 23, 2011 at 1:16 am |
    • sharky

      Then by your argument no one should have freedom of religion.

      June 23, 2011 at 1:21 am |
    • Matt Banasiak

      @jar73, I will conceed I can agree with your point as long as you are against abortion.

      June 23, 2011 at 1:22 am |
    • Steve

      $10 bucks says jar cant do that because he also believes in the magical woman private parts that magically make fetuses into human beings.

      June 23, 2011 at 1:48 am |
    • fimeilleur

      @ Matt, what does one have to do with the other? Let's assume that your religion is based mostly on where you were born... to think you'd be a Xtian born in a Hindu family in India is ridiculous, agreed? Leads to think that you are a product of your upbringing. So let's remove religion from the equation. What medical reason could be given for the removal of the forskin? Keeping religion out of the equation, what medical reasons could be given for abortion? Oh, how the scales are tipped in favour of abortion. Be honest with yourself, you'll see that I'm right.

      June 23, 2011 at 5:12 am |
    • Steve

      fimeilleur – nah, uh, ah! You just equated someones place of birth with their faith. that's faulty. One is much more important than the other. All in an attempt to say that religion does not matter here. Wow – atheists are so pushy!
      I am perfectly fine with admitting that, if there were no religion, that I'd be against circ-umcision as a strictly cosmetic operation.

      But we're not deatlig with a cosmetic operation are we?
      Since we're dealing with the rights of american citizens, the burden of proof is on you. No one has a right to their foreskin. A parent does have the right to practice their religion. Please share with us all your proof of where a child has a right to its foreskin.

      I repeat – it is NOT a cosmetic operation. I'll simply state that the benefits have to do with eternal life. Those are pretty good reasons on my part, right? This is too small a forum to explain to you why I feel that is true. But I assume you understand where theists are coming from.

      Now, please explain where your assertion comes from. Why does a baby have a right to its foreskin?

      June 23, 2011 at 9:45 am |
    • Time Flies

      in his June 23, 2011 at 9:45am comment Steve said: "... No one has a right to their foreskin. ... Please share with us all your proof of where a child has a right to its foreskin. "

      Steve, buddy, actually yes, it's a very basic principle nowadays that people DO have rights to their body parts.

      Wake up my friend, time is passing you by, and you don't even know it.

      June 23, 2011 at 10:37 am |
    • Time Flies

      in his June 23, 2011 at 9:45am comment Steve said: "... No one has a right to their foreskin. ... Please share with us all your proof of where a child has a right to its foreskin. "

      Steve, buddy, actually yes, it's a very basic principle nowadays that people DO have rights to their body parts.

      Wake up my friend, time is passing you by, and you don't even know it.

      June 23, 2011 at 10:41 am |
    • Steve

      time flies – oh, cool. So you shoudn't have a problem showing evidence of that.
      We're all waiting.

      June 23, 2011 at 12:17 pm |
    • fimeilleur

      @ Steve, You fricken MORON. That child grows up to be an adult. I AM THAT ADULT! I WANT MY FORESKIN BACK. It has nerve endings that would have allowed me to experience s3x in a way that I can't imagine today because of my parents religious beliefs... and for what? To satisfy an imaginary, perverted sky daddy desire for foreskins? Your rights as a parent end where my rights began. Parental rights should be re-named Parental RESPONSIBILITIES. As in you are responsible to provide a safe, secure environment to raise the child, and provide an education to the child that will allow him to SURPASS your knowledge and experience.

      June 23, 2011 at 4:01 pm |
    • Steve

      familiar – I see. So it's not that you want to force your beliefs on me, it's that you want to enter my home and enforce your beliefs on my son... isn't that right?

      I dont feel as you do. i rather enjoy s-ex quite enough. I am glad that i was cut at an early age and didn't have to do it at a later age when it would be MUCH MORE MEMORABLE (duh). Is that really what your so upset about... that someone took your foreskin? Kinda petty to wisk away other peoples freedoms (and yours) over some flesh.

      Again, the libtard in you comes out and you show your true desires here in this topic... maximum o-rgasm sensation for all!!!! How noble.

      the hate you have for believers is oozing out of you. You are driven by hate. Let go of your hate and stay out of other people's business. You are completely disregarding the bond between a parent and their child. That is a sacred thing if your religious or not.

      June 23, 2011 at 5:27 pm |
    • fimeilleur

      @ Religitard Steve, You are incredible, you are so diluted into your religious fantasy that you think the child BELONGS to you, that he is your PROPERTY. Got news for you son, you belong to HIM. He relies on YOU. I don't push my beliefs on you, I categorically REJECT your beliefs. Do you think you have the right to tattoo your child's body? If your sky daddy demanded it, would you do it? You are a sick individual. Unless you can prove the existence of your god, shove your bible up your A$$.

      June 23, 2011 at 6:00 pm |
    • Steve

      Steve

      Familiar – see that's the thing. You and i cant discuss this because you wont allow me my beliefs. whereas I say my reasons are about eternal life, faith, our nations founding principles; you do not have a valid concern (cut kids grow up to be axe murders or cut people grow up to be crazy). If you did we could discuss. but your whole basis is you hate religion and fight it whenever you get the chance.
      Oh... that and you want the best "O" for us all. See ya familar.

      June 23, 2011 at 6:21 pm |
    • fimeilleur

      @ Steve, Here's where you are wrong... I'll let YOU believe whatever YOU want. Will you let your child believe what HE wants? Obviously not... you have taken that choice away from him. Your nations founding principals are mutually exclusive of eternal life and faith. My concern isn't about what cut kids grow up to be... I have never stated that. My concern is about YOU overstepping YOUR bounds and choosing FOR YOUR SON something that HE might not hold as dear to YOUR heart. Damned right I'll fight religion where ever and when ever I get the chance... when your bible is removed from our court house and gouvernment offices, I will fight. Your God can do NOTHING TO ME... He is weak and irrelevent... proof is that I still breath...

      June 23, 2011 at 11:32 pm |
  6. Prometheus

    My right to dictate the cleanliness of my child's penis is my own as a parent. If that male infant wants to disagree he can say so. Until he is 18 or above...his @ss is mine....literally and figuratively.

    June 23, 2011 at 1:11 am |
    • Steve

      Baloney!

      June 23, 2011 at 1:12 am |
    • Why Do I Respond To Idiots?

      Well, by that logic you can chop off his little arm if you like. Go for it! You can even kill him – heck, the Old Testament give you lots of nice examples of when you are supposed to kill you wife or child. Yeah, he's not 18 yet, so you can mutillate him and beat him all you want. Law and decency are certainly behind you on that.

      June 23, 2011 at 1:19 am |
  7. NewBeginning

    Any religion should just learn to 'Get Over It' if mutilation they practiced thousands of years ago is found no longer humane at some point. Enought is enough, what is this, the Dark Ages?

    If you think your kids would consent to this, then ask them AFTER THE AGE OF CONSENT!

    June 23, 2011 at 1:08 am |
  8. SFsux

    I hope the next terrorist attack targets San Francisco. Or a large earthquake flattens the city. Either will do.

    June 23, 2011 at 1:05 am |
    • ThinkHarder

      I hope you're not religious, or even pretend-religious. If you are though, you should crack open a bible and aim for compassion instead of wishing for disaster on others.

      June 23, 2011 at 1:11 am |
    • Why Do I Respond To Idiots?

      God is really busy at the moment bashing the Bible Belt with tornados and fires and hurricanes and poverty. He has instead left San Francisco prosperous in a time of economic chaos.

      Maybe Christians who use your logic should ask why God has been kicking ass on the Christians but in general has been leaving the non-religious alone.

      June 23, 2011 at 1:23 am |
  9. mike

    Can a child who had his genitals mutilated in a non-essential surgery sue his parents and doctors?

    June 23, 2011 at 12:48 am |
    • DP

      Is it OK for a child to sue when the parent has the child mutilated during an abortion? I guess not since the child is no longer alive.

      June 23, 2011 at 1:03 am |
    • Matt Banasiak

      @ mike. Whats mutilated about them? they still work. For the purpose they were intended, to procreate. Not search for feces in a foreign anus. By your logic kids shouldn't be urged by the parents to stay in shape and eat healthy before they turn 18 in case they wanted to grow up and be a lzy piece of sh$t.

      June 23, 2011 at 1:05 am |
    • ThinkHarder

      Matt,
      I want to pat you on the head. Stop posting while you're ahea...

      June 23, 2011 at 1:08 am |
    • Steve

      Matt – thanks again for a good giggle. I agree with you. You just have a funnier way of saying it.
      thanks for the smiles!

      June 23, 2011 at 2:59 am |
  10. Matt Banasiak

    while we are on the topic of un-natural things we do to the human body with or without consent, religion or not, how about we stop sticking our penis' in anus'???

    June 23, 2011 at 12:46 am |
    • ThinkHarder

      i'd tell that to all the congressmen and religious leaders who's wives have woken up to surprise anal intercourse.

      June 23, 2011 at 1:04 am |
    • Why Do I Respond To Idiots?

      The words "we" and "our" include the speaker, so you are saying that you stick your penis into anuses.

      June 23, 2011 at 1:28 am |
    • Bob

      Nothing is better than penis in anus my friend.

      June 23, 2011 at 1:33 am |
    • Steve

      haha! I love it. So simple. that's standup material right there.

      June 23, 2011 at 1:49 am |
    • fimeilleur

      Oh Matt, when I read your post, I'm reading the "royal" we... you know... inclusive... You do what you want, but if my wife asks me to, my trouser snake is going deep. (yup. some women like it too)

      June 23, 2011 at 6:48 am |
  11. annette

    Ohhh. What's next? Illegal for a girl to pierce her ears before 18? That doesn't even have the slightest medical benefit but I don't see a Society to Prevent Earlobe Mutiilation forming up. Amazing how these people think it's OK to kill a baby boy as long as he hasn't taken a breathe outside the womb, but once it's out you can't do something that has medical, hygiene and cultural benefits. How about you can't immunize them either because your crazy medical ideas can't be forced on your child? Maybe it should be illegal to make a child do anything. They should all be these little all powerful beings who shouldn't be made to have a 1st Communion or Baptism or be a party to any religious teachings or ceremony or eat any particular food or celebrate any holiday or do anything they don't want to do until they are 18.

    June 23, 2011 at 12:46 am |
    • fimeilleur

      You know, some of your ideas aren't that bad... we SHOULD protect the children from religious endoctrination until the age of 18... I'm glad you mentionned it. Imagine how many fewer Xtians, Muslims, ect there would be if they were 1st introduced to the concept of a magical sky daddy if they were taught critical thinking for 18 years instead of "mommy and daddy believe this, you should too". Now for the challenge: name the hygenic benefit (keep in mind that it is easier to keep short hair clean, than longer hair... so your easier argument would have to include manditory crew cuts). Name one medical benefit. Name one cultural benefit (remember, we're supposed to keep our willy in our pants so no one is supposed to see it except your wife... and by that time, it's too late)

      June 23, 2011 at 6:58 am |
  12. mike

    As a believer in self-ownership and the non-aggression principle, I find genital mutilation atrocious. Your right to swing your fist end at the other person's face, and your right to practice religion ends when you mutilate a baby's genitals. I suggest you google the "non-aggression principle".

    June 23, 2011 at 12:42 am |
    • Chris

      @Mike
      Yawn, you're arguments, though seemingly based in some sort of intelligent thought, are actually emotional and irrational. You end up coming off like a fly that keeps trying to land on my lunch, just annoying.

      June 23, 2011 at 12:55 am |
    • Missing something

      I am sorry, Mike, but by what definition are you using to call the removal of foreskin an act of mutilation? An act of mutilation means there is disfigurement to the body. Whether removing foreskin actually disfigures the penis is clearly a subjective opinion as plenty of people prefer the appearance. I suggest you keep an open mind.

      June 23, 2011 at 1:14 am |
    • sharky

      @mike–

      Well great next time I get pregnant, YOU can have my baby and raise it till it is 18 since you do not believe in parental rights. Please look at the definition of mutilation in the meantime.

      June 23, 2011 at 1:25 am |
    • ThinkHarder

      "Preferred look" is irrelevant.

      Mutilation is a disfigurement. The penis has a natural look. If the look of your penis deviates from that natural look, and you have a hefty visible scar where two different skin tones were put together, then your penis is disfigured.

      If you have happened to become accustomed to that look, good for you. That does not change the fact that you were/are disfigured. (And btw, you'd have liked your penis the other way too.)

      June 23, 2011 at 2:10 am |
    • fimeilleur

      @ Sharky, be carefull what you wish for, he may just do a BETTER job at it than you.

      June 23, 2011 at 7:01 am |
  13. zeroza

    Father should have the right to decide what to do with his own son, take this right away is the same as stealing the son from the father and that is not right, the law maker must respect others decicions, if keeps like this freedom will be destroyed by laws and war for freedon will aways be necessary every so often, that's to me is just an excuse to dictate, many lawmakers also can dictate as mean as Saddan Hussen or Kaddafi, then what's the point to judge them, if we do the same???

    June 23, 2011 at 12:39 am |
    • NewBeginning

      Son/daughter are not 'property', ok? Any time you think about mutilating them, just remind yourself of that. You have absolutely no 'rights' to mutilate anybody.

      June 23, 2011 at 12:48 am |
    • mike

      One day, when your son asks why you mutilated his genitals, what will you say to him?

      June 23, 2011 at 12:50 am |
    • RW

      and believe me, he may just ask that question...I asked my parents why they did it to me...their answer... 'to be like your dad' ... wow ... what compelling evidence ... mine was in no way religious, but simply to be like my dad ... who I now have no real contact with.

      as for the religious side of it ... religious folks are trained to believe God is all-knowing and all-perfect. He made man in his image ... and guess what...man is born with foreskin

      June 23, 2011 at 12:10 pm |
  14. Ber

    Wow! This has MESS written all over it! San Francisco is nothing but a 21st Century Sodom and Gomorrah! Personally, I'll be glad when Jesus comes and sets the record straight once and for all. At least, the ones who are suffering here on this earth watching this disgusting, tragic, sad, pitiful, disgraceful world fall apart can finally have some PEACE!!!

    June 23, 2011 at 12:35 am |
    • ThinkHarder

      You should get a real education in the Torah.

      June 23, 2011 at 12:50 am |
    • Ber

      Not necessary!

      June 23, 2011 at 12:58 am |
    • ThinkHarder

      yah ok. Christianity IS Jewish, if you've listening to too many quacks to realize. Are you just one of those Jesus-groupies I've heard about?

      June 23, 2011 at 1:15 am |
    • Mort

      ThinkHarder.........read the New Testament instead of the Talmud.

      June 23, 2011 at 1:27 am |
    • ThinkHarder

      Mort, I've never read the Talmud, you viper.

      Torah = Old Testament. If you have any objection to the Old Testament, then you question God and also Jesus, as the Old Testament affirms the New. Jesus himself followed the Old Testament to a tee, and knew every word by heart. So when I say that you and anyone else need an education in the Old Testament, stop putting your finger up your butt while trying to come up with 'clever' distractions like the Talmud.

      June 23, 2011 at 2:17 am |
  15. liveleak

    Infant ear piercings have a higher risk of developing complications than this.

    June 23, 2011 at 12:30 am |
    • memeplex

      ...and should also be banned. No removing parts for religion, and no poking holes for aesthetics. Let the kid grow up and decide.

      June 23, 2011 at 12:35 am |
    • sharky

      @memeplex–

      So then you would be against abortion.

      June 23, 2011 at 1:32 am |
    • Steve

      sharky, no. memeplex believes that a womans genetalia have magical powers that transofrm a lifeless fetus into a human being.

      June 23, 2011 at 1:51 am |
    • Saying Stuff

      The female se-xual organ has "magical" powers in that it can cause rational people to act like se-x-starved maniacs.
      Ever wonder how our brains got that way? Evolution.
      You don't have control over your brain as much as you might like to boast. You can be controlled very easily.
      That's why religion is so criminal. It makes otherwise rational people act like wild-eyed cultists over the most ridiculous things.
      The se-xual mutilation of children is about control. Se-xual control.
      In that respect it has more in common with ra-pe than abortion.
      Abortion is legal when there is no infant to speak of, when the cells are still just an offgrowth of budding cells within the reproductive system.
      They are not a "being", or a "person" without a brain, right? Or where do you draw the line?

      There's a lot of grey, but it's not at the beginning, it's somwhere between a fetus and a preemie-viable baby, otherwise menstruation is murder or sin or something. Oh, don't tell me you have that in your religion too? *shakes head*
      .
      So let's quite trying to tie abortion with circu-mcision, shall we?
      They are completely different sorts of surgical procedures with extremely different ethical considerations involved.
      When you bring religion into it, there is certainly a religious aspect to both procedures, but not in the same way.

      The religious aspects are different between thinking life begins at conception ( and it sort of does but only in a cellular way, imho) and thinking the cutting of a foreskin has religious and / or aesthetic importance that supersedes the rights of the child -who happens to be a separate human being from you, even while developing in the womb.

      If you are just producing children so they can pop out right into your campfire, where's the sense in that? Or the good?
      So many religions focus on suffering, violence, se-x, and guilt.

      That speaks volumes about the people who made this stuff up in the old days, doesn't it? And about those who are bound over as slaves before they can even walk. Slaves to the religion, the dogma, the distraction, and to the religious culture.
      Bound over, branded and mutilated before they can speak, their mutilated bodies placed on the altars of their mad gods, these children have no freedom, no rights, no equality. They are made to speak as slaves, waiting for a dread master to appear with violence and blood, exterminating the "outsiders" and bringing a new active level of slavery.
      Strange se-xual rituals filled with sadism, domination, masochism, and bondage abound in every religion.
      It is one of the worst legacies of our primitive forebears, this need for se-xual control, dominance, slavery, pain and degradation, violence, and so on, that religion brings out of the past.
      Why not burn your children alive to Molech or Ba'al? They had religious freedom to do what they liked to their children, too.

      June 23, 2011 at 2:53 am |
    • Steve

      sayin stuff... wow... just, wow.
      I'm not going to read that.

      There should be a minimum character allowance.

      I'll just assume that you actually do believe that woman gentalia are, in fact, magial.

      Okay.

      June 23, 2011 at 3:03 am |
    • fimeilleur

      @ Steve, two points for you: 1) there is a minimal character allowance... it is ONE. you must type something for it to be posted. (you probably wanted to say maximum but I don't want to put words in your mouth). 2) refusing to read the other side's arguement is just another example of how you stay willfully ignorant. Therefore, you contribute nothing to the conversation and society as a whole. Keep being stupid... it's your right... but for the sake of humanity, give your kids a chance to be educated... if you can't do that, (and if it's not too late) please don't reproduce.

      June 23, 2011 at 7:10 am |
    • Steve

      fimeilleur – did you read it?

      June 23, 2011 at 9:48 am |
    • Saying Stuff

      Steve, if you can't argue intelligently, why don't you just go do something else?

      June 23, 2011 at 11:08 am |
    • fimeilleur

      @ Steve, Yes. Your turn.

      June 23, 2011 at 4:03 pm |
    • Steve

      familiar – was there anything good? Help a brother out who' s kinda busy but loves discussing these issues but doesn't have time to read a novel to have a converstation.

      Am I right, Sayin Stuff does believe a womans genetalia are magical, right?

      I see a nice F U coming up from Sayin Stuff further down so, dont feel to sorry for him/her.
      how did THAT get through moderation! Sayin Stuff do you work for CNN?

      June 23, 2011 at 5:30 pm |
    • fimeilleur

      Religitard, for your reading enjoyment:

      The female se-xual organ has "magical" powers in that it can cause rational people to act like se-x-starved maniacs.
      Ever wonder how our brains got that way? Evolution.
      You don't have control over your brain as much as you might like to boast. You can be controlled very easily.
      That's why religion is so criminal. It makes otherwise rational people act like wild-eyed cultists over the most ridiculous things.
      The se-xual mutilation of children is about control. Se-xual control.
      In that respect it has more in common with ra-pe than abortion.
      Abortion is legal when there is no infant to speak of, when the cells are still just an offgrowth of budding cells within the reproductive system.
      They are not a "being", or a "person" without a brain, right? Or where do you draw the line?

      There's a lot of grey, but it's not at the beginning, it's somwhere between a fetus and a preemie-viable baby, otherwise menstruation is murder or sin or something. Oh, don't tell me you have that in your religion too? *shakes head*
      .
      So let's quite trying to tie abortion with circu-mcision, shall we?
      They are completely different sorts of surgical procedures with extremely different ethical considerations involved.
      When you bring religion into it, there is certainly a religious aspect to both procedures, but not in the same way.

      The religious aspects are different between thinking life begins at conception ( and it sort of does but only in a cellular way, imho) and thinking the cutting of a foreskin has religious and / or aesthetic importance that supersedes the rights of the child -who happens to be a separate human being from you, even while developing in the womb.

      If you are just producing children so they can pop out right into your campfire, where's the sense in that? Or the good?
      So many religions focus on suffering, violence, se-x, and guilt.

      That speaks volumes about the people who made this stuff up in the old days, doesn't it? And about those who are bound over as slaves before they can even walk. Slaves to the religion, the dogma, the distraction, and to the religious culture.
      Bound over, branded and mutilated before they can speak, their mutilated bodies placed on the altars of their mad gods, these children have no freedom, no rights, no equality. They are made to speak as slaves, waiting for a dread master to appear with violence and blood, exterminating the "outsiders" and bringing a new active level of slavery.
      Strange se-xual rituals filled with sadism, domination, masochism, and bondage abound in every religion.
      It is one of the worst legacies of our primitive forebears, this need for se-xual control, dominance, slavery, pain and degradation, violence, and so on, that religion brings out of the past.
      Why not burn your children alive to Molech or Ba'al? They had religious freedom to do what they liked to their children, too.

      June 23, 2011 at 6:02 pm |
  16. Guest

    Any religion should just learn to 'Get Over It' if mutilation they practiced thousands of years ago is found no longer humane at some point. Enought is enough, what is this, the Dark ages?

    If you think your kids would consent to this, then ask them AFTER THE AGE OF CONSENT!

    June 23, 2011 at 12:28 am |
  17. ThinkHarder

    if people want to remove their own foreskin for cosmetic reasons, more power to them.

    but like all cosmetic surgery, it should be done when the individual is old enough to make a sound choice.

    June 23, 2011 at 12:27 am |
    • tmm77625

      I concur. So let's make it illegal to pierce the ears of anyone under the age of 18 as well.

      June 23, 2011 at 12:36 am |
    • mike

      Not necessarily 18. I mean, I was 17 when I joined the military. Kids apply to colleges before that. People mature differently. But I agree, the child should consent and be old enough to understand, so he should at least be a teen.

      June 23, 2011 at 12:46 am |
    • Michael

      I think 18 is overly arbitrary, but I agree with you in principal. Certainly a 5 year old cannot consent to have their ears pierced. I would argue a 14 year old could understand the consequences.

      June 23, 2011 at 12:47 am |
    • Matt Banasiak

      Right. since abortion is the most extreme cosmetic surgery I can think of. Have the baby wait until it's a teenager, if it answer I hate my life when you ask it how it feels about it's life then kill it. Nuff said.

      June 23, 2011 at 1:17 am |
    • ThinkHarder

      Matty, Matty. Stop posting. Your replies are not even worthy of popcorn.

      June 23, 2011 at 2:19 am |
    • fimeilleur

      @ Matt, Abortions are cosmetic? How much of a low life are you? What about terminating the pregnancy of a fetus created by incest or r ape? You are cruel to believe that the mother should bare to term. What about terminating the pregnancy of a fetus where the mother (and child) WILL die if the pregnancy goes to term? What about terminating the pregnancy of a fetus that is developing substancial defects and the probability of survival is minimal? Keep in mind that I don't believe in your god, and that I could give two sh1ts about what you think he wants... now try to convince me.

      June 23, 2011 at 7:18 am |
    • Steve

      fimeilleur – stop it. Just stop it! You libtards are so predictable. You take a fraction of the cases to try to represent the masses. Honestly – just how many abortions do you think are due to the reasons you state? LIBTARD!

      Get real – the VAST majority of abortions are "cosmetic". The human life is just inconvenient so it's trashed.

      June 23, 2011 at 9:52 am |
    • fimeilleur

      @ Steve, site your statistics.

      June 23, 2011 at 4:04 pm |
    • Steve

      familiar – really! cmon man. you serious? How can this end well for you? How many abortions for reasons that could have been avoided by simply not having s-ex would it take to persuade you? I bet if I told that 99.9% of all abortions were for "cosmetic" reasons (meaning, you could have avoided getting pregnant by not having s-ex... or wear a dang rubr! if you cant control yourself!!!) you would still deny all I've suggested.

      but here you go... go to wikipedia. You libtards seem to enjoy that site.
      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Abortion_in_the_United_States#Reasons_for_abortions. Just search for "reasons".

      I see that, saddeningly, roughly 92% are avoidable with self control.... big shock there since its LEGAL!
      Is that enough for you to agree that you chose a bad means of arguing?

      June 23, 2011 at 5:40 pm |
    • fimeilleur

      @ Religitard Steve. Here you reveal your real agenda. You want to control the one thing that you have ZERO control over: someone ELSE's s3xuality. Just because you've resorted to the five-knuckle-shuffle, it doesn't mean everyone else has to. The world population is already pressing 7 BILLION, but YOU think we should restrict methods of population control. You've turned the topic of genital mutilation into a debate that your kind has lost LONG AGO. I suspect that it because you don't have a leg to stand on. I will not debate abortion with you, Roe vs Rae settled the issue. It is no longer up for debate, you lost. If you want to discuss genital mutilation, bring it on. You religitards make us sick, but we still allow you to have the right to as semble and congregate, we allow you the religious "freedom" to corrupt young children's minds, even though it is the most vile form of child abuse imaginable, but IF your sky daddy wants this religiously motivated attack on the human genitals, then LET THE CHILD DECIDE FOR HIMSELF WHEN HE IS AN ADULT... see how willing they would all be when THEY have to make the conscious decision to cut off part of their anatomy. YOU HAVE NO RIGHT! I'm done with you.

      June 23, 2011 at 5:53 pm |
    • fimeilleur

      One last point about your statistic, you dishonest puke: try differentiating between early, mid and late term. The first two, the fetus is considered a parasite, as it is NOT a viable life form.

      June 23, 2011 at 6:07 pm |
    • Steve

      yes. I know familar. Wikipedia told you it's parasite. So it must be. Now, run along and tell the world the wonderful knowledge you've gained.

      June 23, 2011 at 6:40 pm |
    • HotAirAce

      The vast majority of abortions (70%) are had by believers. Why aren't believer's beliefs strong enough to hold them to the stated values and rules of their cult? Why don't believers worry about stopping abortions within their own community before they try to change the laws for all?

      June 23, 2011 at 6:53 pm |
    • Steve

      believers make up much more of the worlds population (let alone the US) than 70% (if that number is valid).
      so, I'd say as a group we're doing our part to limit them.

      besides your point isnt' much of one. believers make mistakes too. we're all human.

      June 23, 2011 at 7:17 pm |
    • HotAirAce

      Sorry, I should have typed "70% of the abortions in the USA are had by believers.". If believers really believed and truly lived up to their own standards, no believer would have an abortion, and the number of abortions in the USA would be drastically reduced, with no change in any law required.

      June 23, 2011 at 7:44 pm |
    • Steve

      hotAir – i understood what you meant. I think my point was missed by you.
      believers make up 90% of the nation. non-believers 10% (for arguments sake).
      One would think that if belief had no impact that the number of abortions would break down similarly (90/10).
      but it doesn't. the 70% of abortions being had by believers means that believers are having fewer abortions (as a percentage) than non-believers.

      See?

      June 23, 2011 at 7:50 pm |
    • HotAirAce

      Trust me – I understand the math! What I don't understand is why so many believers ignore their own beliefs. You call it mistakes – I call it hypocrisy!

      June 23, 2011 at 8:00 pm |
    • Steve

      HotAir – okay so you agree on the numbers that believers have fewer abortions "per capita". right?
      As for your view that it is hypocrisy if a believer sins; this shows you do not understand the faith. We have the faith because we are sinners.

      We all sin. We just dont go around glorifying our sins. We first recognize them as sins and then seek forgiveness for them. Very, very few can eliminate sin. Creating laws against sin has worked out pretty well as I see it.

      June 23, 2011 at 8:22 pm |
    • HotAirAce

      @Steve

      I remain surprised that believers believe prohibiting abortion by changing laws (for everyone including their own cult members) will have a greater effect on behaviour than belief in and adherence to their own beliefs...

      And while you seem to think believers are doing better than non-believers at not having abortions, I don't think the expectations are the same. Non-believers are "expected" to make use of abortion, believers are not, so again I think it's astounding that so many people belonging to a group that wants to control others behave as if they don't believe.

      June 23, 2011 at 8:39 pm |
    • fimeilleur

      Hello you willfully ignorant religitard, AKA Steve,

      Get off your bloody high horse and research ACTUAL crime statistics, you know, the rules you've supposedly created to "effectively reduce crime" as you see it. As you claim 90/10 split believers vs non believers per capita... the numbers in the prison system is what?... come on... do the research... post your answer in responce and as usual... site your source.

      June 23, 2011 at 8:44 pm |
    • Steve

      hotAir – Cool, there is a "yes" in there that you agree they're having less abortions.
      Also, you call it "control others". We call it "save others". You see we cannot have this discussion while you and I disagree on the mythical powers of a womans gentalia. I dont believe that anything magical happens when you pass through them. Do you? We reallly have to start there. Its a long discussion so I understand if you're done (leaving work now). If you don't believe in magical gentalia when what does make a human human? when is a human human?

      Also, if you do believe that a baby that is inside a womb in one minute is just as human as the baby that is on the other side in the next the you are against some forms of abortion... are you?
      or do you believe it's the womans decision all to herself so long as the baby is connected via cord?

      familiar – 90/10 was just a number for argument sake – read my comment again. And, crime stats? what does that have to do with this anyway? We've already jumped from foreskin to abortion, but why crime?

      June 23, 2011 at 9:00 pm |
    • HotAirAce

      @Steve

      Nice try! At deflection and putting words into my mouth. This is not about the numbers per se, nor is it about the definition of the beginning of life, or the power of women This is about the behavior of a group that likes to tell others that we need to live according to their rules, a higher standard than we would otherwise hold ourselves to, when they do not appear to live up to their values. If I was a believer, I'd be a lot more worried about my own tribe's behavior and saving them before trying to save others.

      June 23, 2011 at 9:43 pm |
    • fimeilleur

      @ Steve,
      I was continuing your flawed logic: "believers make up 90% of the nation. non-believers 10% (for arguments sake).
      One would think that if belief had no impact that the number of abortions would break down similarly (90/10).
      but it doesn't. the 70% of abortions being had by believers means that believers are having fewer abortions (as a percentage) than non-believers" You are attempting to attribute a lower breakdown in abortions due to religious belief. IF it were remotely true, the same should be said for crime in general. But it's not.

      June 23, 2011 at 10:30 pm |
    • fimeilleur

      @ Steve, Oh, and You're the one who took the debate to abortion... many times... you can't seem to stay on topic so I thought I'd beat you to the punch.

      June 23, 2011 at 10:32 pm |
  18. Tim

    If they want freedom of religion, then they should fight equally hard for Mormons to resume the practice of polygamy. Fair is fair. You can't argue the principle of "freedom of religion" and then turn around and deny those same freedoms to others. Walk the walk, or shut up.

    June 23, 2011 at 12:27 am |
    • ThinkHarder

      well stated.

      June 23, 2011 at 12:28 am |
    • liveleak

      I agree.

      June 23, 2011 at 12:32 am |
    • Jim Chapman

      You are aware that the Mormons are not allowed to practice polygamy as part of their religion aren't you. It was a practice outlawed by the leadership of the church in the late 1800's. Those who still practice it are not doing so under the church and are doing it on their own.

      June 23, 2011 at 12:48 am |
    • ThinkHarder

      does their church have that kind of authority? or is the right to polygamy guaranteed by God in their religion?

      June 23, 2011 at 12:55 am |
    • rick

      For the record (and as a complete aside to this conversation), Mormons don't even want to practice polygamy any more. They (we) gave it up by choice well over a century ago. It's in most religions' history and religious texts (Abraham, Jacob, etc.), and I don't think any of them want it back either. Please, keep the ban polygamy. And prosecute it. Because those child-abusing men practicing it are confused for Mormons (they are not) and make us look bad. In fact, they are probably hated more by Mormons than any other group, for that exact reason.

      June 23, 2011 at 12:58 am |
    • Michael

      Jim, there are sects who disagree with the rest of the Mormans. Why should they not be allowed to practice their beliefs?

      The answer of course is because the other spouse (the wife in this case) entered an exclusive legal contract that the husband is breaking. That's why it is illegal. But what if she consents? The law never really addresses that.

      But anyway the point here is that the law should protect people who do not or cannot consent to a life decision. That's what this potential law is trying to address.

      June 23, 2011 at 1:06 am |
    • Bairkus

      An interesting idea, Tim, but We Can, and WE DO, don't we.
      In practice, prohibitions of religious practices are based upon a wide array of competing concerns. We prohibit, for example, the use of live rattlesnake bites in religious ceremonies as a test of faith. We also prohibit the use of illegal substances in religious ceremonies. Yet we DO indeed PROTECT many other religious ceremonial practices.

      Your criticism is bogus. The issue of protection of religious practices IS one of the issues that stands at the core of this debate. – IS the practice protected or prohibited? It IS protected. It WILL remain protected practice as long as it is not prohibited. That IS a competing concern. And that point is still alive and well – in spite of you telling us to shut up.

      So YOU want to change the law? I think you should take your best shot at that. However, You might find efficiency in giving up telling others how to opine & when to shut up, and sticking to your guns instead.

      June 23, 2011 at 1:55 am |
    • Saying Stuff

      Coercion is grounds for nullifying any contract.

      Religion removes your ability to choose for yourself in an objective and free manner.
      Religion is coercion.
      There is no such thing as religious freedom when the religions are nothing more than mental slavery in a fantasy world with rules over every part of your lives.
      Therefore the right to practice religion can only be done after the age of consent.
      Mental children who are slaves to a religious mantra are not able to choose freely.
      Being indoctrinated before they had a chance to think for themselves is child abuse.
      If your religions are so great, why don't you let everyone choose for themselves instead of forcing them into it before they can speak?
      A slave cannot speak other than as ordered. That is coercion.
      We will never be a free country until we are free of mental slavery.
      For a slave to argue his master's case is understandable, yet they have no standing in this case. They are not free citizens.
      Slavery is illegal. Religious slavery is still slavery.
      Religion should be illegal where children are concerned. They have a right to make their own free choice.
      But who would choose slavery? Those who cannot think of any other way of existing.
      That is truly sad and pathetic. Yet those slaves have rights, too. But the "right" to be a slave is not a right, but an illegality.
      Slaves can murder for their masters, providing "full deniability" to those who control them using their mental chains.
      They can also mutilate their children and turn them into horrible caricatures of humanity. They can enslave their children.
      That is clearly wrong to me, but those who are mental slaves are programmed to seek their slavery with every ounce of energy, such is the power of delusional thinking.

      June 23, 2011 at 3:17 am |
    • sharky

      Saying Stuff–

      I honestly cannot stop laughing with that post. LOL. Slavery has been outlawed, banned legally, was done so back in the late 1800's. Get over it. Secondly sure go right ahead go to the Supreme Court and tell them you want to file a lawsuit against the US Government over the First Amendment saying it is wrong and destructive. Let's see how far ya really get. Or you could always move to North Korea or some other Communist country where religion is NOT a factor in society.

      June 23, 2011 at 3:23 pm |
  19. Brooklyn

    Most men mutilate their genitals several times a day...just sayin'

    June 23, 2011 at 12:25 am |
  20. memeplex

    Everyone who keeps bringing up the the first amendment and the right to freely practice any religion:

    BABIES HAVE NO RELIGION. They can't consent to having parts of their bodies excised in order to identify with their parents' religion. What if my religion tells me to pin you down and cut some little non-essential bit of skin off of you? It's my religion! You can't violate my rights by telling me I'm not allowed to do that! HOLD STILL!

    Are you getting it now? At all?

    June 23, 2011 at 12:08 am |
    • Steve

      you are a knucklehead.
      How can you just ignore the bond between parent and child.
      comparing the two scenarios you just did is really rather ignorant.
      You MUST be young and never had children

      June 23, 2011 at 12:18 am |
    • Michael

      No, they aren't. All they have to do is say cutting off a piece of their child's penis is more akin to choosing what school they go to than chopping off their ear lobes. Then they can claim "parental rights". Some even compare the child's foreskin to a birth defect or a medical ailment to defend their cause.

      June 23, 2011 at 12:32 am |
    • ThinkHarder

      Steve, if you're one of those dads that want his sons to "look like Daddy", then why don't you just rip the foreskin off with your teeth. That'll be a great story to "bond" over when your sons are older.

      June 23, 2011 at 12:32 am |
    • Steve

      Nice, thinkharder. Really nice. Do you have anything meaningful to add?
      If you think this has to do with looks, then you are ignorant of the topic.

      June 23, 2011 at 12:34 am |
    • memeplex

      I'm not ignoring the bond between parent and child. I'm trying to illustrate the absurdity of the argument that one person who has a religious belief can impose his belief on another who is utterly innocent and helpless, and not yet competent to share the belief or consent to having parts of his body permanently removed.

      Why not respond to the real meat of my argument, which is that the child does not have a religion, may someday wish not to by physically identify with the parents' religion, and has a right to his own bodily integrity. That or just call me names again. I suppose that's what I might do if I didn't really have an argument. No on second thought I'd just shut up.

      June 23, 2011 at 12:44 am |
    • Michael

      Seriously Steve, if you are incapable of creating a bond with your child unless you have an opportunity to remove a piece of his penis, you have some serious issues which make you unfit to be a parent. "Creating a parental bond" is about the worst excuse I have ever heard on this subject.

      June 23, 2011 at 12:54 am |
    • ThinkHarder

      enlighten me then?
      if the "bond" is not looks, what are you talking about?

      June 23, 2011 at 12:56 am |
    • Steve

      Okay memeplex. There you go again with lefty mindset thinking everying is about your body. let it go dude. it will be gone some day.
      So you say the parents are "taking something away". I say they are giving something to the child. A faith. This is not a cosmetic task. one more time... this is not a cosmetic task.

      If you acknowledge how the bond between a parent and a child is something special and sacred (whether you have faith or not), then you cant deny a parent the right to do this. In this case, it is demanded in the Bible. Both jews and christians feel this is required for our faith.

      I think you're just clinging to the lefty mindeset that a child shoudl not be influenced by the parents. I can force my child to become a plumber when they really wanted to be a street artist.... will you next be calling for laws to not allwo parents to direct their childs lives? Or is this just about body parts for you?
      Ear piercings? Allergy shots? Dental care? this is silly memeples. stop and think about why you are arguing a silly point.

      June 23, 2011 at 12:57 am |
    • Steve

      thinkharder – okay. Simply, the creator tells us so, so we do. It's an act of faith. If i did and my child didn't they would ask one day why they did not. and the faith that I've been teaching my child all those years comes into question. "do my parents really believe that nonsense?" and so on and so on.
      I have a right to teach my religion to my child. No gov has any right to stop me from doing that. Ask anyone who's had it done... they dont remember. Can you describe any mass psychosis that "cut" people share? Are we violent? unproductive? twisted? why are you fighting this so much?

      Are you sincerely that concerned about some other dudes junk 20 years later?
      cmon, whats all the fuss really about?

      June 23, 2011 at 1:12 am |
    • Saying Stuff

      @Steve – What if my fake god (not your fake god) demands your death? And what if you're my kid? Shall I go ahead and kill you? But I'm the parent and somehow that makes murder okay. Besides, you're just a dumb kid who needs "fatal" direction forced upon you because you're too stupid to know any better.
      I'm the parent. You're the kid. I can kill you if I interpret my fake god's words that way and no one can say I don't have that right – that's what you're saying as far as I can see.
      As a parent I have the right to murder, mutilate, terrorize, abuse, molest, and anything else I can think of to my kids...according to you, because "I'm the parent".
      Newsflash, Steve, you are morally bankrupt and ethically corrupt. You wouldn't happen to be a Republican, would you?
      'cause that would explain quite a bit of your inability to think clearly about the underlying issues here.

      June 23, 2011 at 1:13 am |
    • Mnemosyne

      Steve, you are lying when you say they don't remember.
      I remember.
      They held me down and then the pain began.
      I won't go into the gory details, but I remember being held down as a baby when they mangled my body.
      I remember being in the hospital. Mostly just bits and pieces, but I remember that when I was younger, the memories were very fresh, very detailed. A lot of that is fuzzy now as I near death. I am very old.
      But I remember. And I remember a time when the memories were clearer.
      I also remember afterwards, the pain of the wound. Whenever I peed in my diaper it was like extreme fire.
      It got so bad I refused to pee until the diaper was off. I remember that very clearly. That god-damned circu-mcision was a horrible and painful thing that was done to me, I found out much later, to be for no good reason at all.
      I remember the pain and the terror of being forcibly hurt as a tiny baby.
      So your "they don't remember" is ALL BULLSHlT.
      I remember getting the mumps at six months, too. Because of the pain.
      It was like having a knife of fire shoved through my neck. I could barely breath without severe pain. It was hard to swallow anything. I wanted it to stop. If death would have stopped it, I would have said, "go for it", but I was just a baby.
      I remember.
      Therefore, you are full of crap.
      Trauma damages the brain. Real physical damage. But the brain can usually heal in a half-assed way, so people like you think that makes it "all okay".
      But it's not.
      I have other traumatic experiences that were much worse. I am not going to talk about them here.
      But for the children's sake, they need protection from sick violent religions, especially the religious beliefs of their parents, who have no more business cutting off pieces of a newly formed body than a total stranger who jabs a knife into a baby in a supermarket because he thinks he's Abraham or something.
      You have no business harming children whether they are "yours" or not. They are not "yours" to abuse, mistreat, mutilate, molest, or murder.
      Ever.

      June 23, 2011 at 1:32 am |
    • ThinkHarder

      "Are you sincerely that concerned about some other dudes junk 20 years later?
      cmon, whats all the fuss really about?"

      Do you not realize that you are also making a fuss?

      We are namely concerned for the principle of the matter. The individual should have the right to choose.
      But yes, we are concerned for some other dude's junk. (Not only 20 years later, but at birth as well.)

      June 23, 2011 at 1:43 am |
    • Steve

      Mnemosyne – for some reason I seriously doubt most of what you've said. I've never met anyone who can remember things from such an early time. If you're that old, what the heck are you doing up? When were you born?

      bAH, I'll take your word for it. So...
      Did you ever thing that you are NOT the norm. Did you ever thing it would be silly to use your case as the norm or even REMOTELY the norm?

      lastly, if a child does not "belong" to it's parents... to whom or what does it belong? Someone must be responsible, right? Your gonna lose this one dude. I'm a Dad and your not (pst... I can tell).

      June 23, 2011 at 1:57 am |
    • Steve

      Think – I am making a fuss because my 1ST AMENDMENT RIGHTS are under attck. As a fellow american I trust you agree that's a pretty good reason to make a fuss isn't? Now, let's look at your reason.... my babys foreskin that he wont remember being taken away.... that he wont miss AT ALL when he's older... that will contribute to a healthy faith later in life (more important in MY VIEW... the view that matters most at this juncture)

      So you're just here on the priciple of it all, eh? You sure it's not because you hate believers? Or because your just mad in general?

      You keep referring to my child as "an individual". He's not entirely. You are failing to understand the bond. Do you have children? Can you appreciate that I want the BEST for my child? And that I think this minor practice is a key part of that "BEST" that I want for him? You should know, my son is a VERY happy, lively boy. Just like 99.9% of all others who have this done to them (just my guess, but I'm guessing that's pretty close).

      Why would you agree to such an invasion of privacy? I think you truly dont understand.

      June 23, 2011 at 2:06 am |
    • ThinkHarder

      Steve,
      No, I love believers. Faith is truly beautiful on some people.
      I would agree that 1st amendment rights are a good reason to make a fuss. But in this situation, I don't feel the parent's rights are the focus. The child's rights are what is important. He should have the right to decide one day if he wants to part with a part of his own body.

      You can lop off the foreskin of your son, and put it in the ground never to be thought of again easily. One reason it's so easy is because you've never had foreskin that you can remember. You don't know what it's like to have foreskin. So parting with it is an easy decision. Foreskin means nothing to you because you don't know what it's like to have any. Your son won't miss his foreskin because you will teach him not to miss it. He will never think, "I wonder what it'd be like to have foreskin," because you will teach him not to think about those things.

      But I tell you the truth, people who have foreskin also have a hard time parting with it. (Still, that is no reason to take away the decision.)

      As for you wanting the BEST for your child? I believe you do want the BEST for your child, based on what you were taught was the BEST for you by your parents. However, to an outside observer, you'd have a hard time JUSTIFYING why cosmetic surgery is BEST for an infant.

      June 23, 2011 at 2:34 am |
    • Steve

      Think – thanks for the honest admissions. I am beggining to believe that underneath, you do see this as a silly move by SF.
      As for your last paragraph, I'll try one more time then I gotta get to bed (I think).

      IT'S NOT COSMETIC!

      ...continued in next post... cant fitureout what CNN thinks is offense... sheesh.

      June 23, 2011 at 2:51 am |
    • Steve

      I have been commanded by the creator to do it as people have for THOUSANDS of years. How would you say the jews have done over the years... pretty good, eh? yes, there was the whole germany behind wooping they got, but that was because they were feared to be taking over the country, right?

      Even setting the religions importance aside... Circ-umcision is not hurting anyone. Cant you just say that?

      Oh... one last thign. I was not taught my faith. I found my faith at 19. In some ways I wish I did have parents that would have shared it with me sooner. Our faith is not "taught". It is found.

      June 23, 2011 at 2:54 am |
    • ThinkHarder

      Steve,
      I probably will not be back any more. But, take care. And thanks for your civility ^.^

      June 23, 2011 at 3:12 am |
    • Saying Stuff

      Steve
      Our brains are "wired" to a body-image that is genetically determined.
      Doctors who work with amputees know this. Phantom pain exists because of this hard-wired body-image.
      By body-image, I mean that certain parts of the brain deal with certain parts of the body in terms of nerve induction.
      That is the way our brains grow along with the rest of our nervous system.
      The density of nerves in our skin is denser in certain places. Like our se-xual organs. Just the way it turned out for humans.
      We also have a lot of hard-wired stuff in regards to reproductive issues, including psychological ones.
      What happens to that part of the brain that was in charge of the foreskin?
      Well, to judge from the way religious people act, it probably isn't a good thing.
      Now if religious people were something to look up to, why then...we might consider the unused part of the brain to be put to good use.
      But it really doesn't appear that way to me. I see no good result to cutting foreskins. All we get is irrational behavior and bad decision-making based on fantasy material.
      So the brain is partially disabled and likely damaged by foreskin removal no matter how painless.
      Otherwise religious people would act better. They don't. You don't. You want it your way regardless of who gets hurt and regardless of who's rights are violated. Only your rights matter, eh? Well, piss off, then. We don't need your input when you are so blind and predictable due to your mental slavery.
      Piss off, slave. Tell your master to piss off as well.
      Oh, wait, you can't. He doesn't exist. No good reason for religious freedom exists.
      Religious fantasy is not a rational argument for child abuse and never will be.

      June 23, 2011 at 3:46 am |
    • Steve

      sayin stuff – thanks for the reply. this is the first real attempt to express a legitimate reason to not cut. But it's not a good one.
      Essentially you are basing your stance on your opinion that removing a childs foreskin will result in poor behavior. Do you have any real evidence of this? Or can you admit that you are just stating your opinion?

      Maybe my "mean" posts here are evidence of that? Maybe all the "evil" that jews and christians have inflicted upon the world?

      June 23, 2011 at 9:59 am |
    • Saying Stuff

      Steve – 1. The foreskin is a part of the whole body.
      2. When you cut off the foreskin, you are removing a part that was integrated with the whole in many ways.
      3. Beyond the gross physical scarring, there are smaller scars as well. The brain is left with a part that no longer can function as it had evolved to do.

      I said the brain IS partially disabled (literally!) and that I thought it was likely damaged as well, using the Christian tendency to act irrationally as part of the hyperbole to drive home my point.
      I am not basing my argument on my hyperbole. I am basing it on the facts of the physiological damage, both the immediate damage of foreskin removal and the now-useless wiring that had evolved to manage the now-missing part of the body.
      There is real damage, both seen and unseen, along with a literal dis-ability and loss of full functioning.
      That was my main argument. The hyperbole was included as bait to see if anyone was even reading my posts and to make them respond to my mixture of argument and opinion.
      You responded. Here is my clarification. There is no justification for mutilating a defenseless baby in the name of some fraudulent belief. Fraud is not an acceptable reason for mutilating a child.

      June 23, 2011 at 11:23 am |
    • Steve

      Stuff – points one and two... so what?
      Point 3 – so you are either an expert or can provide a link to some study?

      I offer only the billions of fully functiona, happy, productive good citizens who have been cut. There are billions who've had this done, so you must be able to point to some mass psychosis right? But you haven't yet. Why not?

      You again have just listed what sound like your "thoughts". Thats fine, but you share as if they were facts. That it's a fact that this tradition is damaging poeple.

      also, yet again your hate for religion has bubbled up.

      Lastly, you must answer this... if not for a fraudulent belief, would you be okay with the procedure if it was for a non-fraudulent belief?
      So, we should only allow procedures for beliefs that are not faulty? Who decides that?

      June 23, 2011 at 12:26 pm |
    • Saying Stuff

      @Steve
      You say "so what?"

      Well, fuck you too.

      June 23, 2011 at 1:24 pm |
    • Steve

      stuff – dont get so upset. I wasnt being a smartypants.

      What I meant was your 1 and 2 points were really kinda fluffy. You have to explain further why 1 and 2 are so important. They really sound kinda wacky/granola/mother gaia kinda logic.

      Tell me what the "impact" is to the persons life. Yes, I get that you want anything that was originally htere to always be there, but please explain why that must be?
      If you just repeat... "because its a part of the whole" then Im done.

      Please share some "evidence" that proves it bad for society.

      June 23, 2011 at 5:45 pm |
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About this blog

The CNN Belief Blog covers the faith angles of the day's biggest stories, from breaking news to politics to entertainment, fostering a global conversation about the role of religion and belief in readers' lives. It's edited by CNN's Daniel Burke with contributions from Eric Marrapodi and CNN's worldwide news gathering team.