January 21st, 2007

Orangutan

Circumcision in Real Life and in Slash

thelastgoodname had an interesting post a while back about circumcision (or not) as depicted in fanfic and fan art. She wondered how authors and artists decided whether or not their subjects were circumcised, given that in most of the source texts we deal with in fandom, the issue is never discussed and the characters’ genitals are not described. It segued into a bit of a discussion of circumcision in general, and I toyed with the idea of giving my views in a separate post. I was reluctant, though, because of the really hyperbolic and downright abusive anti-circumcision comments one tends to find on the ‘net.

Anyone who has ever tried to discuss this issue online knows that there's a lot of very strong anti-circumcision sentiment on the 'net. I don't think it's such a pressing issue in real life, where it's generally considered a valid parental choice either way. However, saying one circ'ed one's son is likely to get a parent called "abusive" in much of cyberspace and googling circumcision is bound to find a plethora of what I would consider quite extreme and unsupported claims of harm. There are (in my opinion, after careful research into these claims) some crazy ideas out there about damage to men physically and psychically, due to neonatal circumcision. I think it's pretty scary to prospective parents because the cybervoices are so loud they drown out the voices of reason and real research. So, having been down this road before I was reluctant to open myself up to crazy accusations again.

I decided, though, that it’s my journal and I can control comments. I’m not going to screen but will delete any comments that are not written respectfully (and, as the owner of the journal, I alone get to decide what’s respectful). I recognize that some people – including some people I admire greatly – are unable to discuss this issue with any respect for those of us who choose neonatal circumcision, and I just ask that if that’s you, please don’t comment. You might do better not to read at all.

What is Neonatal Circumcision?
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Circumcision in Judaism
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Deciding on Neonatal Circumcision (or not)
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Circumcision in Fanfic
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