When we posted on the proposed circumcision ban in San Francisco, 1,000+ of you, our readers, were very invested in the circumcision debate. You voted, you debated and you left comments – all about circumcision. Most readers expressed passionate dedication either for or against circumcision. Still, some readers noted that more information about the pros and cons of circumcision would be useful, so now let’s take a look at both sides of the circumcision debate.
What Families Say About Circumcision
Circumcision is a highly personal issue and some families base their decision to circumcise or not to circumcise on personal conviction or opinion versus research. You hear many arguments both for and against circumcision from all kinds of families. Some of the non-research based reasons why people do or don’t choose to circumcise include:
- Parents want their son to look like dad. For example, if dad was circumcised, a family might also circumcise their son.
- Some families believe that circumcised penises are easier to clean.
- Many families don’t circumcise simply because it’s “Not natural” – basically, why cut any body part off if you were born with it?
- In the United States, the practice of female genital cutting (FGC) on anyone younger than 18 years of age is illegal, mandated by federal law. FGC is a felony punishable by fines or up to a 5-year prison term. Many argue that if this is the law for females, why isn’t male genital cutting also against the law.
- Some families still circumcise for religious reasons, although, this is a sub-debate among circumcision supporters and non-supporters. Still, circumcision is common enough within the Jewish and Islamic faith, and some families do choose circumcision because they feel it’s aligned with their religious views.
- Sometimes families hear that circumcision will enhance or detract from sexual pleasure for men and/or their partners. This is a mostly non-evidence based reason to circumcise or not, because quantifying sexual happiness, for any reason, circumcision included, is sketchy at best.