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Male Circumcision
Written by Matt B

Circumcision involves surgical removal or most or all of the penile foreskin, which greatly reduces the pleasure felt during sex or masturbation. The procedure is usually carried out shortly after birth, although it may be done later in life for a variety of reasons. It is indeed a controversial subject in many parts of the world and has many religious implications, but this guide's intention is to serve as a source of information about circumcision and assist those who want to inform themselves about what it involves. We'll attempt to cover both sides of the story, however to any objective intelligent mind there really are very few legitimate reasons for this act of genital mutilation in modern times.

History of Circumcision
It seems as long as there has been civilizations, there have been those in power who would use whatever means necessary to control the masses. Many times in history, anything good or pleasurable has been seen by ambitious political and religious leaders as a tool of the devil. People succumbed to pleasure, and turned away from the supposed rewards offered by a humble spiritual life and afterlife in heaven, or so the leaders believed. Forsaking heaven for sinful humanly pleasure was not acceptable. As such, they devised ways of limiting or barring certain means of pleasure, and circumcision was undoubtedly one of them. The first known accounts of circumcision seem to have originated from eastern Africa, long before the Biblical account of Abraham in Genesis chapter 17. Most creationists and evolutionists both agree that human life is believed to have originated from this region. Thus, it is entirely possible that genital mutilation as a means of suppressing pleasure and "maintaining the holy life that God intended" has been around as long as human beings themselves.

The Jews adopted circumcision in prehistoric times, and have preserved it as a modern religious tradition. It is interesting to note that the ancient Greeks and Romans placed a high value on the foreskin and passed laws to prohibit circumcision. There have been many instances in history where various political and religious groups have held opposing viewpoints about circumcision, and this controversy continues today worldwide.

Instance of infant male circumcision as a medical practice began in about 1870 in the United States and reached a peak in the early 1970's, declining to about 60% by the late 1990's. In other developed countries current circumcision rates are much lower still. The United Kingdom is faring far better with a current rate of around 4%. These statistics are derived from the most recent data from the National Center for Health Statistics.

Why is it still being done?
Even in our modern age, there is a lot of sexual misinformation and ignorance that stems from traditions of sexual matters as shameful and inappropriate beyond the bedroom door. This tradition of ignorance still perforates the medical bureaucracy, and the fact that physicians profit greatly from performing this quick and simple procedure is probably why even today circumcision rates in the United States remain so high. Of course, most of these physicians still recommend it and being the trusting citizens that we are, most parents who don't have it done for religious reasons do it out of complacence. Traditions, no matter how unfounded, are hard to break and this guide is our attempt to curb this ignorance even if just a little.

All modern studies that indicate circumcision is medically beneficial are flawed or contain inconsistencies that seem to coincide with unfounded personal bias towards circumcision. In fact, almost all recent claims in support of circumcision are illogical and based on ignorant and far-fetched beliefs of the past. All unbiased and well supported studies in developed countries in the past 30 years either state that possible benefits of circumcision are inconclusive or they downright refused to recommend it. The bottom line is the fact that the foreskin was created by nature. Nature's mysterious and wonderful innovation of all aspects of life should trusted long before humankind's often unfounded and selfish motivations.

Another reason for modern circumcision is the simple fact that some parents believe it looks better- a sad side effect of generations of conditioning to believe that a mutilated penis is desirable.

Legitimate reasons for circumcision
These are very few and far between. Certain types of infant penile infection may facilitate circumcision as a legitimate treatment option, but always get a second opinion. And a third...

Religious types may claim their cultural and spiritual beliefs in this ghastly act are legitimate. However, there is nothing right at all about using a clamp to force the foreskin from the glans of the penis to stretch it apart so that the foreskin may be cut off the end with no anesthesia on a baby who has no say in the matter. Why not wait until the child turns 18 and can legally make the decision for himself? This question is about as preposterous as the procedure itself.

The negative effects of circumcision
The first obvious downside is excruciating pain. Anesthesia is rarely used on infants for this procedure because of the risk of breathing problems and other side effects. The old adage that what is not remembered is not real is false; many recent studies indicate there are many lifelong psychological implications of infant circumcision. This goes for everything a child experiences in its first few years, for it is during this time that the its basic personality and sexuality are formed. Increased sensitivity to pain, and alteration of the very fabric of the person's sexuality are just a couple. These alone should be enough.

The typical circumcision removes two-thirds of the sensitivity of the penis. This statement speaks for itself and it's implications upon adults are rather obvious.

Adult circumcision
Very rarely, adult circumcision may be required as a radical procedure for preventing the advance of penile disease, cancer, or correction of a rare deformity. In this case, the patient should always seek a second and even third opinion and make sure they are completely informed about their decision. Some adults even choose to be circumcised for cosmetic reasons, however very few of these are actually legitimate and there is a good chance that many of these involve a great deal of ignorance and misinformation.

Foreskin restoration
Almost all circumcised men had no say in the matter as an infant, and many of them who learn the hard facts about circumcision later in life become angry and resentful about having been mutilated. Fortunately, there is a relatively simple way to have your manhood restored to at least a facimilie of it's original glory. For more information, please check out http://www.cirp.org/pages/restore.html.

Sources
Most of the information within this guide has been drudged up from the seemingly endless vaults of random facts and tidbits in my own brain that I've picked up over the years. However, at times using a reference was necessary for confirmation of accuracy. The Circumcision Information and Resources Pages, http://www.cirp.org/, was the primary source of this confirmation.

To contribute information to this section, please contact the author.
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