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Dec-07-2007 10:06TweetFollow @OregonNews
Oregon Courts Have No Right to Force CircumcisionCommentary by Van Lewis Special to Salem-News.com
What would the Oregon Supreme Court say to any adult who wanted to cut out any child's healthy eyes, inner ears, or tongue?
(PANACEA, Florida) - I was extremely distressed to read a quote in a recent AP article by William McCall attributed to Oregon Supreme Court Justice W. Michael Gillette. It says he asked in a hearing, concerning the partial genital amputation desired by a boy's father for his twelve-year-old son, "what would happen if the noncustodial parent of a child objected to allowing participation in a risky sport, such as football", and then that he gave his own preposterous answer:
"'The answer to that is that's preposterous,' Gillette said. 'In fact more people get hurt playing football than from having a circumcision - a lot more, and a lot more seriously.'"
Dead wrong on both counts, Justice Gillette. There is a great deal of confusion in the USA on sex, sex organs and circumcision, and Gillette's question/answer illustrates a number of the serious ones.
First, children are killed by circumcising them, just as they are killed by playing football. I don't think one can harm a child more seriously than by killing him, but at least the child killed by football probably had a choice about whether to play.
Second, every child circumcised is seriously harmed, permanently. That's over a million children seriously and permanently harmed every year in the USA, many times the number harmed by playing football.
Study the modern scientific anatomy including the neuroanatomy of the human male foreskin at research.cirp.org, cirp.org/library/anatomy/taylor/, and cirp.org/library/anatomy/cold-taylor/. Very few people in the USA know that circumcising always cuts off and destroys forever a recently discovered, highly complex, highly vascularized, highly innervated human sense organ.
What would the Oregon Supreme Court say - what would Justice Gillette say - to any adult who wanted to cut out any child's healthy eyes, inner ears, or tongue?
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Astoundingly, what the Oregon Supreme Court is now actually debating - and deciding - is whether to permit adults to commit a permanently genitally mutilative, potentially lethal sex crime against a child. This case is considered "progress" in America, because it IS!
Third, some children lose their glans and some their entire penis to circumcising. I have heard of and read about a number of them, including David Reimer. I never have heard of a child losing his glans or penis from playing football. Other serious injuries and even deaths do occur in football, of course. I am not denying that football is a risky sport, but it doesn't harm all who play it. Not nearly. Circumcising does.
That our genital mutilating culture is deliberately ignorant of the many inevitable serious harms and additional serious risks of circumcising does not reduce to non-existence those harms and risks in reality, only in the "minds" (to use the term loosely) of adults insisting on remaining inexcusably ignorant of the many serious harms and risks of circumcising healthy children.
Fourth, a noncustodial parent objecting to their child's participation in football would most likely be opposing the child's wishes, not the custodial parent's. A child wishing to play football voluntarily is a very different thing from an adult wanting to cut off part of a child's healthy sex organs involuntarily.
Fifth, children have a choice about playing football. Usually adults aren't forcing football on them, and when they are, we recognize it as serious adult misbehavior. If Boldt were a custodial parent trying to force "his" (as we say) child to play football or any other risky sport against the child's will, the noncustodial parent, the child's coach, the legal system and the whole society would have an obvious obligation and duty to object to and prevent this unnecessary and dangerous, abusive imposition on the child.
Whose penis is it anyway? Not Michael Boldt's. Not Justice Gillette's. Not the Oregon Supreme Court's.
The bodies, including all their normal, healthy parts, belong to the children. Chopping healthy, living parts off of children's bodies because you want to isn't a good enough reason. In fact, there isn't any reason good enough to chop off any normal, healthy, living body part from any normal, healthy child. Doing so is always child abuse, serious child abuse. In this case, it's permanently genitally mutilative child abuse and sometimes lethal child abuse. It is impermissible child abuse, as all child abuse is impermissible. It is a heinous sex crime and human rights violation.
What are adults trying to achieve by circumcising healthy children that is worth the risk of killing them?
Mr. Boldt's "religious freedom" excuse doesn't fly. It has been established law in this country for decades that we have complete freedom of religious BELIEF, but that religious PRACTICE must meet the tests of not violating other people's civil and human rights.
For example, in this still-great country I am free to believe that God wants me to burn down the Oregon Supreme Court building. Nobody can do squat about it, not even Judge Gillette. If, however, I start placing gasoline under the building and lighting matches it's no longer a matter of my private religious beliefs to which I have an absolute Constitutional and inalienable human right. It's criminal activity, for which I need arresting, prosecuting, convicting and jailing, my so-called "God" be damned, as far as the U.S. legal system is concerned.
The same goes for Mr. Boldt. He can believe all he wants to that "his God" (his attempted justifier for his sick wish to injure for life "his child's" sex organs and thereby sex life) wants him to chop off his son's foreskin, penis, arms, legs, head and belly button and it's not anyone else's business. When he takes out his knife and threatens or violates the child's physical integrity with it he's violating long established laws against inflicting injury on other people, or even threatening to. His religious freedom of action stops at his son's skin. The rights inside the skin, and TO the skin, belong to the boy, not to his ignorant, arrogant, sick father.
We recognize in this country that adults who hold a religious belief in circumcising girls do not thereby acquire the right to mutilate girls' genital organs. Do boys and intersex children have equal protection of our anti-genital mutilation laws or not?
The Oregon Supreme Court simply cannot allow deliberate, medically unnecessary, premeditated injury to this or any child's healthy sex (or any other healthy) organs. What sex the child happens to have been born is 100% irrelevant. A child's sex organs are strictly private property belonging to the child. That's why we call them "privates". If sex organs are not private there is no such thing as private. Boldt's son, like all children, has a right to his privacy.
He cannot even legally consent to the destruction of any part of his own body, even if he wants it done, which has not been established in this case anyway. No one, not even the Oregon or United States Supreme Courts, can consent on his behalf to medically unnecessary injury and permanent mutilation of his body. He has a human right to it. His body is what makes him human. Chopping it up without medical necessity is a crime. I think it's usually called "mayhem". The Oregon Supreme Court does not need to be in the business of committing genital mayhem against children and THEIR sex organs.
The Oregon Supreme Court needs to be NOT in that criminal business.
So, to the Oregon Supreme Court, I say, leave the boy whole, as you found him. You are not Gods. You are not entitled to redesign other people's bodies, including their sex organs, according to your or anyone else's sick whims.
This is not football you're playing. Football is not a game played with knives by adults, chopping up the healthy, living sex organs of children. That game is called "human vivisection". Nuremburg had something to say about it.
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