I highly commend Cosmopolitan for reporting today on the dramatic decline of circumcision surgery in the United States, and for highlighting the fact that the U.S. (and some parts of Israel for Judaic and Islamic reasons) are the only two nations in the world that needlessly cut healthy newborn babies.
[Note that in 2006, 2% of the United States' population was Jewish and many of the most outspoken intactivists today are Jewish men, women, physicians, rabbis, historians, film makers, etc. (1, 2) Many Jews today opt for a Brit Shalom in place of cutting their sons. We therefore cannot assume that any specific portion of the 32.5% of boys cut in 2009 in the U.S. are within the Jewish community. In addition, even if all Jewish parents circumcised their sons in the U.S., this would represent a circumcision rate of less than 2%.]
It's slightly amusing that it may just be pop media women's sex magazines making intact men look all the rage for parents to finally wake up before the birth of their sons and end the needless cutting. Maybe it is a result of my own naivety that I expect [most] parents to make educated, informed decisions - especially when it comes to the surgical amputation of their newborn baby's genitals. But, I guess whatever it takes to reach the remaining 32%... Those 1 in 3 boys deserve to keep their whole penis too.
I'd also encourage pop culture journalists to start using correct terminology -- intact instead of 'uncut' or 'uncircumcised'... after all, we do not say a woman is 'unclitoridectomised' or 'unmastectomised.' All men and women (like all mammals) are born into this world with a prepuce organ (nicknamed 'foreskin' or 'clitoral hood'). It is normal for them to remain intact and atypical for them to have this organ cut off.
Read and comment on Zoë Ruderman's full article in Cosmo here (pasted below).
For additional information on the prepuce, intact care, and circumcision, see: Are You Fully Informed?
1) Ira M. Sheskin and Arnold Dashefsky, Jewish Population of the United States, 2006.
2) American Jewish Year Book 2006, Volume 106, Eds: David Singer and Lawrence Grossman. NY: American Jewish Committee, 2006.
Circumcision Is on the Decline
by Zoë Ruderman for Cosmopolitan
Just a few generations ago, pretty much every baby boy in the U.S. was circumcised—aka, had the foreskin of his penis removed.
Now, new statistics presented at the International AIDS Conference in Vienna last month suggest a steep drop in the number of males getting this, uh, unkind cut. Last year, 33 percent of infant males were circumcised, a big drop compared to 2006, when 56 percent underwent this surgical procedure, according to stats reported in the New York Times today.
If the trend continues, uncut guys will soon outnumber circumcised ones, and a dude with a foreskin won’t seem weird or odd at all. And really, why should it? Sex feels just as good for a man with a foreskin as it does for one without. Same goes for the woman hooking up with him. And condoms work equally well on both types of penises.
It’s also important to note that the United States and Israel are the only two countries where baby boys are routinely circumcised. And while many urologists recommend it because it can cut down on STD transmission risk, the American Academy of Pediatrics does not recommend it. Part of the reason why: it causes a whole hell of a lot of pain to newborn baby boys.