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BBC News: 'Debate circumcision ethics call'Salem-News.com Staff Report
"irreversible, clinically unnecessary surgery on the genitalia of non-consenting minors" - Dr Antony Lempert, a GP and chairman of the British Secular Medical Forum
(LONDON BBC) - The British Medical Association conference this week will include testimony from circumcised men who are calling on doctors in Great Britain to debate the ethics of this controversial procedure.
NORM-UK is an active support group for men who believe being circumcised was a negative event in their lives. They have been lobbying delegates in Cardiff.
As The BBC wrote, "They want British doctors to recognise circumcision as major, irreversible surgery that should not be carried out on new-born babies."
One member of the group named "Dan", was circumcised 3 years ago. He said, "it's totally different; imagine having your tongue and not being able to taste. You'd still be able to use your tongue, still be able to talk, but if you couldn't taste certain foods or taste anything at all... I liken it to that".
Dan goes on to explain how members of the medical profession played down the potential effects of circumcision in order to persuade him to undergo the procedure.
You can listen to his appearance on Broadcasting House online until 10:02 a.m. Sun, 3 Jul 2011 BST (+0100). The piece on circumcision begins at 46:18.
While accurate statistics don't exist in the UK documenting who is and who is not put under the penile knife, it is estimated that around 30,000 boys are circumcised every year in Great Britain. Estimates in the U.S. are that 55-65% of all males born here are circumcised. That equates to millions.
The most disturbing statistical trend I am aware of, is the fact that more than 100 American babies die every year from circumcision, an unnecessary procedure. (see: Circumcision is a Real Killer in America - Tim King Salem-News.com.)
The majority of these serious procedures take place as a result of the male child's parents' religious faith. Islamic, Jewish and some Christian communities circumcise male children as a matter of course. That aspect is not regional.
Salem-News.com readers know that a Jewish inactivist support group now exists, we carried the first article from Rebecca Wald this week. (see: Jewish Circumcision Opponents Grow More Vocal - Rebecca Wald for Salem-News.com.)
Many experts, like Dr Antony Lempert, a GP and chairman of the British Secular Medical Forum, believe circumcision should simply stop, calling it an, "irreversible, clinically unnecessary surgery on the genitalia of non-consenting minors."
There is also an article about the Cardiff BMA protest by NORM-UK members, mentioned in the report, on the BBC News Online website: Debate circumcision ethics call
NORM-UK would like to thank the members who showed great courage in taking part in this programme.
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