Iceland Seeking to Ban Male Circumcision

fountainhall
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#1 Iceland Seeking to Ban Male Circumcision

Postby fountainhall » Sun Feb 18, 2018 12:36 pm

This bill to ban circumcision has at its heart the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child. It will not prohibit circumcision, only delay a decision until a child is old enough to make a decision for himself. It basically follows the many discussions on the abhorrent rite of female circumcision which most agree is a vile practice.

Not unnaturally this proposal to ban circumcision has Jewish and Muslim leaders rising in opposition. Yet, whilst Jewish babies tend to be circumcised soon after birth, my understanding of Islam is that boys are almost at puberty before the deed is done.

Personally I have never seen any need for a male to be subjected to circumcision unless it is for very good medical reasons - e.g. phimosis. Billions of males around the world get on perfectly well without circumcision. It's just a silly, unnecessary convention that western doctors and parents in ages past thought would prevent boys indulging in too much masturbation. They sure got that wrong! :o :o

Iceland is poised to become the first European country to outlaw male circumcision amid signs that the ritual common to both Judaism and Islam may be a new battleground over religious freedom.

A bill currently before the Icelandic parliament proposes a penalty of up to six years in prison for anyone carrying out a circumcision other than for medical reasons. Critics say the move, which has sparked alarm among religious leaders across Europe, would make life for Jews and Muslims in Iceland unsustainable.

One in three men globally is thought to be circumcised, the vast majority for religious or cultural reasons. Many Jews and Muslims fear the issue of circumcision could become a proxy for antisemitism and Islamophobia, pointing to similar tensions over religious dress and the ritual slaughter of animals for meat.

Muslim and Jewish leaders attacked the proposal, while Cardinal Reinhard Marx, president of the Catholic Church in the European Union, said the bill was a “dangerous attack” on religious freedom. “The criminalisation of circumcision is a very grave measure that raises deep concern.”

The Icelandic bill says the circumcision of young boys violates their rights and is incompatible with the United Nations convention on the rights of the child. It draws a parallel with female genital mutilation, already outlawed in most European countries.

The bill says circumcisions are performed without anaesthesia, and claims the procedure is often carried out “in homes that are not sterile, and not by doctors but by religious leaders. There is a high risk of infections under such conditions that may lead to death.”

It acknowledges that while parents have the right to give religious guidance to their children, “such a right can never exceed the rights of the child”. Boys who wish to be circumcised for religious or cultural reasons can do so when they reach an age at which they “understand what is involved in such an action”, it suggests . . .

The Icelandic bill on circumcision has cross-party backing and wide public support

https://www.theguardian.com/society/201 ... an-country

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#2 Re: Iceland Seeking to Ban Male Circumcision

Postby Jun » Sun Feb 18, 2018 2:27 pm

That would be an excellent law. Ban circumcision of under 18s & jail any parent responsible for forcing it on their offspring.

Over 18s can do what they like.

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#3 Re: Iceland Seeking to Ban Male Circumcision

Postby fountainhall » Sun Feb 18, 2018 3:47 pm

I totally fail to understand why two religions make circumcision virtually mandatory, Jewish boys having to undergo the ritual around 8 days old. If God had decided that part of our anatomy was not necessary, presumably He would not have boys endowed with foreskins at birth. So how Jewish leaders can proclaim that it is a "non-negotiable" part of the Jewish identity completely escapes me!

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#4 Re: Iceland Seeking to Ban Male Circumcision

Postby Jun » Mon Feb 19, 2018 4:14 am

I don't see much logic applied to religions. Furthermore, if the followers did apply logic & independent reasoning, the number following religions would decline markedly.

As for the circumcision bill, waiting until people are over 18 and can decide for themselves is not religious discrimination. It's just ensuring the individual has freedom of choice.

However, whilst I hope this bill succeeds in Iceland, it's going to be more difficult to see this happening in the larger European countries. Too many followers of affected religions will scream loudly, whilst the people like me who tend to support such legislation have higher priority issues to consider.

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#5 Re: Iceland Seeking to Ban Male Circumcision

Postby fountainhall » Mon Feb 19, 2018 5:38 pm

No doubt the reason for the Jewish practice of circumcision is the alleged commandment of God to Abraham. By why would God make such a commandment? Obviously we have no idea, but I can see no reason unless it was to separate the Jews from the many other tribes which existed around that time. In which case, presumably there is no reason to continue it today. Indeed, some religious critics say that the Torah actually forbids the cutting of flesh. Quite a number of others claim that it is now done far more for social than religious reasons. So, all the more reason to hold off and give the male child the option later in his teens.

Although Islam accepts Abraham as a prophet, nowhere in the Qu'ran is circumcision mentioned. It is suggested it was a commandment from the Prophet Muhammed because of the need for ritual cleansing prior to prayer. That was at a time when bathing the whole body in the deserts was not a regular occurrence. So given the changed circumstances of today, it seems the practice continues merely because it has always been done rather than for specific reasons of cleanliness. Once again I believe it should be a matter of the individual's own choice.

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#6 Re: Iceland Seeking to Ban Male Circumcision

Postby deanagam » Mon Feb 19, 2018 6:48 pm

:roll: In Islam circumcision is a "sunnah", meaning not obligatory. If you do it you'll get your merits. However, not doing it is not considered sinful.
In a desert surrounding where water is a precious commodity, circumcision is a hygienic option. :roll:

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#7 Re: Iceland Seeking to Ban Male Circumcision

Postby fountainhall » Mon Feb 19, 2018 9:01 pm

Interesting, thanks! I don't think I have ever met an uncircumcised Muslim.


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