About the author

alli

94 Comments

  • Alli, can we play the game where pictures of bloody screaming circumcised infants are never shown on Jewlicious again? Pretty please? With metzitzah b’peh on top?

  • Sorry Michael. Alli’s too edgy for us – she’s a Tel Avivian after all. We Jerusalemites are provincial bumpkins in comparison. but please… someone, anyone, put up a post so that unfortunate child is not the first thing I see.

    Oh and circumcision rules. Down with smegma.

  • I’ve been to many circumcisions (including one yesterday and my two sons’ a few years ago) and I’ve NEVER seen a baby strapped down like in that picture nor all bloodied up. That picture looks like torture and simply does not represent the reality I’ve seen.

    The bris yesterday was a doctor’s son — a specialist in infectious diseases — and the mohel was the baby’s grandfather, also a doctor (pediatric oncologist). Metzitzah was NOT done by mouth.

  • in the words of jules winnfield,

    “that is some f***ed up, repugnant sh*t!”

    seriously. apropos of my complaints to mobius about his pr0n postings… this photo has a similar, mmm, how you say, utterly gross inappropriateness.

    sure, metzitza b’peh is evil, outdated, whateva. showing some strapped down, screaming, bloody baby from a horror dream doesn’t really drive home your point — it just freaks me out.

  • I don’t know where you dug up that picture, but it seems wrong. I have been to many brisim and i’ve never seen something that loks similar to that. maybe the baby was older, like 2 or 3 months old thats why he needed to be srapped down. But the blood seems out of place, i cant even imagine what happened in this pic.

  • Hello! That picture is clearly an image of a hospital circumcision. Yes, that’s what they do. At my son’s brit, a non-Jewish guest who is an OB-GYN (they often perform that type of circumcision) commented that she had never seen such a harmless, calm, relatively cry-free circumcision. When you are used to the board, the screaming, the clamp, etc., the ultra-quick, simple Jewish form of a brit milah seems quite pleasant.

  • One more thing…

    I was so thankful that the AP started this article with the outdoorsmen and snake-bite comment. It took something that could have just seemed freaky and vampirish and made it sound a little more like the simple medical procedure (albeit a misguided one by today’s standards) it was supposed to be, not unlike what Billy Joe and Bobby James had to do when that copperhead surprised them while out shootin’ deer.

  • I really like this Alli chick!

    Last Man Standing wrote,

    “But the blood seems out of place, i cant even imagine what happened in this pic.”

    Oh, no. Genital cutting is blood and pain free. For boys and girls.

    Gil Student said,

    “That picture looks like torture and simply does not represent the reality I’ve seen.”

    Look harder.

  • Absolutely criminal behavior…that is what they are doing to that child strapped in a typical non-halachic bris. What in the world is this doing up? Is this advocating the anti-circumcision movement? Oy Vey!

  • Infant male circumcision became widespread among people for whom it had no religious significance because of the experience of the soldiers in the trenches in World War I. The uncircumcised men, in primitive, non-hygienic conditions, were a mess; infected, in pain, and out of commision. The circumcised men were fine. Even here in the US, among the wealthy, I have known of two cases needing emergency circumcision later in life because of infection, with a lot of pain. One was a one-year old and one was a nine-year old boy. A minute of pain in infancy seems like a small price to pay to avoid this.

    I can’t prove this but I have heard that male circumcision is healthier for women. Less cervical cancer. You know, later. After marriage. Cleaner.

    Nobody can know he will always, always have access to running water and soap. What if you want to, or have to, go off-road? Into the bush?

    The picture above is wierd; that baby is at least four months old and maybe more. The size of the genitals should tell you that. No way is he a new-born. Look at his barrel chest and large head. It should be done at eight days.

    I happen to be religious. But even if all religions completely vanished from the world, all of them, I would still advocate infant male circumcision for health reasons. And I am not usually in favor of tampering with nature much. But nature didn’t get it right this time.

  • I don’t think that’s blood on him….. I think it’s Betadine an iodine based antimicorbial.

  • Like outdoorsmen treating a snake bite, they sucked blood from the cut and spit it out.

    yeah, lke outdoorsman treating a snake bite that someone mysterious managed to get on their cock…

  • Jewish Mother, you said,

    “I happen to be religious. But even if all religions completely vanished from the world, all of them, I would still advocate infant male circumcision for health reasons.”

    No, you would not — not if you hadn’t already a formed a religious and cultural bias for male genital cutting. Like far too many Jews, you are advocating circumcision for everyone for “health” reasons because of your own ritual and cultural very big bias. If you hadn’t grown up in a religious culture that demanded this as a foundation mitzvah, you would never ever ever dream of subjecting your child or anyone elses to it.

    It is past time for Jews to stop advocating circumcision with “health” as our motivation.

    We are lying to the world; we are lying to ourselves.

  • JM,

    You wrote,

    “I can’t prove this but I have heard that male circumcision is healthier for women.”

    Damned straight you can’t prove it.

  • I, too, vote that this sort of image never appears on the front page again. Not that I’m big on censorship, but come on… behind a “not safe at work/school/public places” cut at least, please.

  • DUDE!
    Can you pretty please take this picture down???
    It is really, really disturbing and gross and tasteless!
    And, as everyone has already pointed out, it has nothing to do with the subject of the post.
    Thank you in advance…

  • DK…
    Man do we share similar feelings on both the motivation and content of Jewish Mother’s post.

    “It is past time for Jews to stop advocating circumcision with “health” as our motivation.
    We are lying to the world; we are lying to ourselves. ”

    Jewish Mother…I’ve been to many brit. And it always seems barbaric to me. The kid fucking feels the pain…enough already. He’s not screaming his fucking head off because of the wine-high. It’s a sick and twisted way to be introduced to Judaism, but that’s what God required. And if I have a son, he’ll have a brit. But I don’t have to sprinkle it with icing sugar and cover it in perfume to state the obvious. I know quite a few doctors who’d take your “health reasons” and make you look like a medieval freak.

  • Wow, DK. You are quite detached if you think that most Jews explain circumcision for health reasons. Frankly, it is only those who are trying to be apologetic for a practice they don’t much believe in. I’ve been to quite a few britot, and yes, the boy cries a bit. But, as a parent, I can reassure you that you’re baby boy will scream much more when he’s hungry…every night…a lot. Oh, and when he’s cold. And tired. So, don’t pretend that it’s a few moments of pain that you are worried about.

  • I am not indifferent to pain. But what about the pain of an infection which requires emergency circumcision later? That must have been some nasty psychological trauma for the older children I personally knew of. Yes, it hurts the 8-day old infant. But for half a minute. It’s very definitely not nothing. But then he is safe for the rest of his life from the agonies of an infection. The two cases I knew of were not deprived people. One family was quite rich and the other very clean and middle class. But it happened to them anyway.

    I became religious in late middle age, but I grew up totally, totally secular. My whole family is totally secular.

    Of course it’s got to be cleaner for women. Use your sense.

    To each his own, but there are valid reasons for this.

  • I am signing off about this. I had to think this out, too, when I had children, and I was not religious then. I think about as clearly as anyone else and I decided to do it. I have never had reason to be sorry. I am comfortable with the decision.

    I have been to one bris. I didn’t like to hear him cry, but then I thought of the two infected boys I personally knew the families of. And I don’t know a lot of people either.

    With this, a man can face harsh conditions without one fear.

    Oh, Shabbat Shalom already.

  • The kid’s foreskin is still intact; he hasn’t been cut yet. The “blood” is disinfectant, I presume, as someone upthread mentioned.

    Most brissim I have been at are over literally in the blink of an eye, the cutting is just that fast. I do not presume to say that the baby feels no pain, but I have been at a few where the child almost seemed not to notice; I have also been at others where it took a while for the child to quiet down.

    I was also at a bris of the son of a secular friend of mine; he used a regular MD who used a bell clamp. It went on for what seemed like hours; the poor kid just wouldn’t stop screaming. I cannot imagine why he didn’t hire a good mohel.

    As I have previously mentioned, my wife is a Japanese giyoret. The Japanese do not circumcise. My wife is a nurse and she had to advise her sister-in-law how to keep her young son clean by retracting the foreskin and cleaning it regularly. On at least two occasions he developed a painful urinary tract infection as a result of poor hygiene. Once my wife advised his mother about what to do (she was astonished that it was necessary to clean under the foreskin), he no longer had any problem. But this is apparently a more common thing than us circumcised people realize.

    While I was living in Japan, I saw a TV show about a doctor whose entire practice consisted of nothing but circumsisions of adult men who were afflicted by phimosis, a condition where the forsekin does not retract properly, or whose foreskins were so voluminous that they interfered with their sex lives. All he did all day was cut. He was quite pro-circumcision, praising the Jews for having the sense to do it as a matter of course, and wondering why the Japanese didn’t adopt the practice.

    While this is of course anecdotal, I know three men who were circumcised in adulthood (two of these men were gerim; the other guy said that he was tired of his dick being a “cheese factory”). In response to my inevitable “before and after” question, two said that sex felt exactly the same and one said it felt better, since his orgasm was less genital-centric and more diffuse and felt throughout his entire body.

    So there.

    Anyway, although I have no frame of reference, I don’t know exactly what I would do if sex felt any better than it does.

    And, finally, what ck said. Down with smegma.

  • Jewish Mother,

    We should also amputate the breast of Ashkenzaic women who have an increased risk of breast cancer, don’t you think? I know this occurs even in well to do families, and it’s all about prevention.

    Since we are very sensitive to the health benefits of circumcision, and are confident that nothing valuable is taken away, and that’s why we continue to do it, I am sure we will be equally as concerned and sensitive in the oh so unlikely events that this country (and the rest of the Western world) continues to become increasingly anti-circ, and militantly so, and if the A.M.A. eventually decides on an unambivalent “don’t circ” recommendation. At least as sensitive as the Chassidim are to the evidence contrary to the Talmud that uprotected sucking up of the blood of the penis is a danger to the child. Wait for a “meaningful link” between circumcision and trauma, as well as loss of sensitivity.

    We couldn’t wait to jump on the FGM bill, and show how pro-woman we Jews are, and so respectful of female genital integrity. Get ready for a continued and ever-growing MGM bill.

    Pot calling the kettle black, Rabosai. We should have shut the fuck up back then. But we just can’t stop pretending we’re progressives.

  • Seriously.

    Dude, if you hate it so much, there is a small but growing Jewish anti-circ movement. If you think it’s so horrible, why would you give your son one?

    I agree, however, that Jews should not atempt to push routine infant circumcision on gentiles who do not want it. While it may have health advantages, that is not the reason for it, and Jews should stop pretending that it is.

    The millah is a statement that the Jewish man does not have sexual autonomy. It attests to the fact that the Jewish man’s penis is not really his: it belongs to Hashem and is subject to the mitzvot that serve to control his sexuality and channel it into a holy direction.

    People have been rebelling against this basic idea from the very beginning. It is natural to do so. Every person wants to be completely free of anything that impedes his desire for gratification, especially sexual gratification, the desire for which is the strongest urge we have. That is the yetzer.

    I believe that gentiles insticntively understand this. Especially today, the prevailing zeitgeist holds that it is precisely the attempt to control “natural” desires that lies at the heart of so much spiritual malaise, which is then visited on society in various destructive ways. Just free the sexual yetzer and everything will be fine. Opposition to circumcision says, essentially “Hands off my dick, G-d!”.

    We should just face up to it.

  • Ephraim said (probably truly):

    The kid’s foreskin is still intact; he hasn’t been cut yet. The “blood” is disinfectant, I presume, as someone upthread mentioned.

    Ephraim was staring at a li’l kid’s penis!!!

  • themiddle…you’re missing the point. One of the things I like about DK is his push for consistency and non-apologetics regarding what we believe/do as Jews. And while I don’t always agree with his views, he’s the kind of guy I’d like to have on shul exec boards and federation mtgs.

    Jewish Mother perpetuates myths about Judaism that encourages Jews to meditate in ashrams.

  • “…A 1999 study by the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) Task Force on Circumcision concluded that circumcision, although of potential medical benefit, should not be recommended as a routine procedure for newborn males.”

    – Taken from webmd.com

    I have no problem with “And God said…”. I have a problem with Jews who, when uncomfortable with what the Torah stands for, try to massage the message into something more digestable for modern folk.

    Personally, if our entire enterprise was proven to be a huge hoax, I’d drop 85% of rabbinic influenced Judaism.

  • “With this, a man can face harsh conditions without one fear.”

    By this reasoning, I’d say that female genital mutilation should instill the same courage in young girls, no?

  • OK, let’s take a poll:

    “Is removing a boy’s foreskin the same as removing a girl’s clitoris and/or her labia minora and/or sewing up her vagina?”

    All you Jewish men who are incapable of feeling any sexual pleasure or achieving orgasm since you no longer have a foreskin, raise your hands (or some other part of your anatomy).

    Nobody there? I figured.

    All of you who agree with this proposition, go to the back of the class.

    And, Muffti: come on. Can’t you tell without staring that the kid still has his foreskin?

  • Oh boy. Again. Here’s an idea which makes me think that maybe I’m posessed by someone else, because Esther would never think of this: if DK is so against circumcision, maybe he should have his reversed.

  • Ephraim! You waited until now to throw a bogus parallel from male circumcision to female INFIBULATION and CLITORIDECTOMY instead of the proper parallel to compare and contrast, female circumcision, and the least radical form of FGM (and it is still considered FGM) Type I, FGM where in its mildest form, the clitoris itself is not cut, just the protective covering is excised.

    I expected that bullshit game to be pulled much earlier.

  • Esther, there is no truly reversing most of the permanent affects of circumcision. Nerve endings and many other aspects that the natural foreskin have are gone forever when severed.

    Reversal is mostly cosmetic.

  • I only brought it up because you did.

    If you think brit millah is the same as FGM, how could you possibly think that Jews should continue to do it?

    Or do you think we should stop?

  • For the same reason that propnents of FGM who understand what it is are willing to continue it.

    I am perfectly willing to allow for the fact that it is core mitzvah to the religion and still mutilation on a real, and not just symbolic level. See Rambam and the Ibn Ezra on this issue . I would never have been on the side to outlaw type 1 FGM like so many Jewish Feminists were, because I would see where this would lead when you decide to promote your own secular values over another group’s religious ones. That has a way of biting you in the ass. Like this law will eventually do.

    Having said that, I don’t necessarily see the need for the Rabbinic add-ons on this issue. I’m not that big a believer. That seems to me like an additional day of Yom Kippur.

    I think that both priah — the more radical step of circumcision with extra cutting which is NOT outlined in the Torah– and Metziza, the penis sucking step of circ also not outlined in the Torah, need to be revisited, and should be understood as acceptable to revisit for those of us who do not see this as a ritual to be taken to creative extremes.

    In this last century, it became more radical again. Every last bit of the priah is usually cut off, as opposed to the older way, where it was cut back, but not off. Ironically the chassidim are the lenient ones today in this regard.

  • I’d like some sources on the supposed radicalization of the procedure above and beyond what the Torah mandates. Anyway, all the written Torah “outlines” is that the “surplusage” is to be removed. There’s no way to understand what this really means without what you call “rabbinical add-ons”. So you may perhaps think that the Torah says one thing and the mesorah may see it completely differently.

    I had heard about this and I asked one of the local rabbis, a strictly Orthodox FFB in the local kollel, and he looked at me like I was crazy.

  • I think that both priah — the more radical step of circumcision with extra cutting which is NOT outlined in the Torah– and Metziza, the penis sucking step of circ also not outlined in the Torah, need to be revisited,

    Okay, with this I can agree. Otherwise, I have to say that as a circumcized man I do not feel mutilated at all. Sorry.

  • No kidding! An FFB Kollel guy thought you sounded crazy when you questioned a Rabbinic add on? Hey, that’s good enough for me. That usually doesn’t happen with FFB kollel guys. They are usually so open minded on these issues. It must be the emes if the FFB Kollel guy gave you a funny look.

    Look in to Metziza itself. The Talmud gives the reason of health for the baby-penis sucking, not as a part of the mitzvah. That is proof enough that this is not m’Sinai, otherwise they would have stated it was. They do not. Please see hirhurim for a whole explanation.

    Additionally, it would be quite difficult for Abraham to give himelf a metziza b’peh, and we are not usually to believe that there was anything particularly unique about the Avos physically. Rather, they are considered spiritual heroes, so he could not have performed metziza on himself, so therefore it wasn’t required.

    Additionally, Priah is called brit Priah in the Talmud, a separate name from milah. This shows it is a different thing by its very name. The mitzvah was for milah,the removal of some part of the outer forsekin, not priah, the cutting (but not off) and pullback of the inner foreskin.

  • Middle,

    I can’t believe you are agreeing with me on both these issues, not just meziza. I am truly in shock.

    I gotta go to shabbes dinner.

    Peace out.

  • Why are you shocked? Truthfully, I had never seen or even heard of metzitza until the herpes case came out – and I know a ton of people who have had their kids circumcized. Maybe once upon a time many centuries ago it made medical sense, but it does not today regardless of tradition.

    However, Kelsey, you are attacking the entire practice of circumcision and I’ve heard you say in the past that Jews have forced it upon the gentiles. I strongly disagree with those views. Fortunately, as always, there is a MIDDLE ground where we can meet. 😉

  • Every year male babies have contracted the herpes virus as a result of the mohel sucking the blood while he has a cold sore and have gotten very ill and even died. All groups except for the extreme most haradi fringe advocate that the mohel suck the blook thru a sterilzed straw rather than having lip to penis contact. Any mother who allows a mohel to suck her babies penis with his mouth is putting her child at serious medical risk.

  • Cultures that perform female genital mutilation do it in non-sterile environments with instruments like tin can lids and only the very wealthy have their daughters put in the hospital for the procedure. Women suffer life-threatening infections and scar damage.

    My son came thru his bris with no pain, but 7 years ago I didn’t know to ask the mohel to use the straw…I shudder to think how I would have felt if he had gotten an infection as the result.

  • here’s the link to just one of hundreds of articles on the topic:
    http://www.forward.com/articles/2778

    This might be a good time for me to once again tell my favorite jewish joke: What is the difference between a Get ceremony and a bris? Nothing, with both you are getting rid of a little dick!

  • A nice veb site vouldn’t put such a picha of such a ting. Vere’s d’LeChaim? – veres d’Shnops? – D’roogaloch?, – d’Loch n Kup? – D’ FARKOCHTA HERRINK??? VAT KINDA BRIS IS DIS????

  • long dong silver… have you ever heard of one Ron Jeremy? probably the most mainstream porn star ever.

  • Precisely Ofri, and this is why Kelsey keeps accusing Jews of manipulating the gentiles – they watch those darned Ron Jeremy flicks and think that all penii are supposed to look like that.

  • TM, did I ever say anything like that? That’s rediculous! Affecting circumcision rates through porn! What a joke. I can’t imagine…how would that possibly be true?

    I mean, sure, it may be that unlike with most of Hollywood, the porn industry is dominated by Jews.

    http://www.villagevoice.com/news/9909,bunn,4271,8.html

    And it is also a possiblity (in theory) that most Jewish men are circumcised themselves, and might theoretically see the status of their own penis as the preferred state. But that’s unlikely. That would mean these men (in the porn industry) would have to be really aware of their penis, and I don’t think most men are even aware of their penis, particularly men (Jewish or otherwise) in the porn industry of all places. What’s the big deal? Who would notice these things?

    And so it may also be true that circ’ed men just happen to be preferred for roles in these movies.

    http://sugarbank.com/2005/06/15/a-mans-guide-to-getting-into-the-porn-industry/

    But even if there is a pro-circ bias of some sort for who knows what reasons, I can’t imagine that would help bolster a general preference for a circumcised penis, nevermind create a demand for it when there wasn’t one previously.

    http://www.circlist.com/rites/hungary.html

  • Oh shit! Look what I just found, and it is so bookmarked. Alternatives to female circumcision (thanks to Islam Online!) to get rid of the odors and complications that occur in so many uncircumcised women. Turns out, they can clean (to some degree anyway) those areas even without female circumcision! At least most of the time. Seriously! Let’s take a look:

    “Hygienic motivations: It is believed that the secretions produced by the glands in the labia minora and majora are foul smelling, unhygienic and so make the female body unclean. However, in noncircumcised women, it is very easy to clean the external genitalia. It is only in the rare cases where there is a stricture of the prepuce of the clitoris (phimosis) or elongation of the prepuce (foreskin) that is difficult to clean; in such cases a properly done surgical circumcision without encroaching on the clitoris may be required.”

    I mean, obviously an uncircumcised woman is still pretty gross, but there are alternatives, ck.

    http://www.islamonline.net/iol-english/dowalia/techng-2000-August-22/techng9.asp

  • I recall that we had this discussion before. To sum up:

    1. Jewish circumcision is radically different from hospital circumcision in both technique and results. In particular:

    – Jewish circumcision is less drastic and leaves the erogenic inner layer of the forekin intact. Hospital circumcisions remove all the foreskin, including responsive tissue.

    – Jewish circumcisions are done by carefully trained mohels, are over very quickly, and (at least in North America and Israel) make use of topical or injected anasthetic. Hospital circs are usually conducted by untrained interns using clamp-type contraptions that cause pain, and take a long time. No anesthetic is administered.

    2. Because of the above, most of the “scientific” claims of the anti-circ movement, even if they were true, would not be relevant to Jewish practice of circumcision. in particular:

    – there is much less trauma to the child.
    – there is a much lower rate of complications (and here is the point to mention that only a handful of mohels still insist on oral metzizah, the overwhelming majority now use a standard medical suction tube).
    – there is a much less credible claim to decreased sensitivity: all sexually responsive skin is preserved, there is sufficient skin to accommodate erection, and once erect, a Jewish organ looks and behaves much as the average uncircumcised penis.

    3. In the wake of the recent influx of Soviet Jews, an Israeli urologist sent out a follow-up questionnaire to men circumcised as adults (Jewish technique). Responses to the question on sexual performance divided evenly: 1/3 said “sex is better now” 1/3 said “no change” and 1/3 said
    “sex is worse now”.

    The pro and anti-circ forces immediately laid conflicting claims to the “no change” group, each trying to prove their own point. So another researcher went back and correlated the responses on sexual satisfaction with the question about why men opted for circumcision. It turns out that the vast majority of men who were circumcised “due to pressure from my girlfriend” or “due to peer pressure” were the ones who were dissatisfied – surprise, surprise – while those who chose circumcision out of self-motivation made up most of the “no change” and “sex is better” groups.

    So what’s between the ears is at least as important as what’s between the legs…

  • its absurd. I wonder if “Aish” tells people about this? Maybe that was gawker boys prblem, too much “aish”.

  • I have had to adblock this image. Please refrain from posting pics like this on the main page. It’s only for shock value.

  • Yeah, Ephraim, Muffti guesses you can tell that without staring. But you can’t like, in a quick glance tell. So let Muffti soften the charge:

    Ephraim took a longer-than-brief look at an infant’s Penis!!!

    Jes’ kidding of course. You’re welcome around Muffti’s kids, if there ever are any, anytime.

  • Ben-Dovid,

    1) Most (pretty much everyone) felt that the Soviet Jews had a cultural bias towards a positive perception.

    2)The full effects of Keratinization take years, even decades. http://www.noharmm.org/IDcirc.htm#keratinization

    3) Jewish circ is the most radical ritual type of male circ practiced in the world, and the one the U.S. hospitals copied (I wonder how they settled on that?) Thank G-d the Rabbis didn’t know about subincision. I would be fighting you guys over its health benefits right now.

  • Still not one laugh for my favorite joke?

    New taglines for RCA safe-bris awareness campaign:

    Jewish mothers of the world: don’t let your babies mohel be a cocksucker, make him use a sterilized tube!

    The same mouth that was on a prostitute last night could be the one on your baby’s penis today…
    don’t allow metziztah b’peh!

  • Kelsey, are you not getting laid because of your circumcision? You seem fairly angry, whereas most circumcized men I know disagree with your POV. So do many of their wives and girlfriends for that matter. Anyway, I’m asking because you are way out in left field again. Do you really want to reopen the preposterous assertion you obliquely try to make in point #3? Also, point #2 seems terrible but I have a feeling it takes decades BECA– USE THE PERSON GETS OLD AND HIS SKIN GETS DRY AND WRINKLED. It’s a good thing your source doesn’t post comparison photos of a man in his 20s and a man in his 60s because I bet they’ll blame baldness on circumcision as well.

    You see, you went from opposing metzitzah to opposing circumcision in general – and blaming Jews for it, of course.

  • ck, I just went to see Brokeback Mountain yesterday and I absolutely refuse to get a room with Kelsey. It’ll fuck up his life.

  • Just for the fun of it – let’s respond to Kelsey’s points:

    1. There is no evidence that the Soviets were predisposed to circumcision. The vast majority of them are intermarried, and many have just one Jewish grandparent. And all of them – even those of solidly Jewish background – were raised in a very anti-religious environment in which circumcision was presented as thoroughly backward.

    2. Keratinization (hardening/thickening of skin due to exposure to air and the elements) doesn’t take more than a month – as anyone who’s taken up manual labor, done a lot of dish-washing, or gone on an extended hike or sailing trip can tell you. Noharmm is an anti-circ organization that invites people to document their “victimization” by circumcision – it’s hardly a scientific source.

    3. Jewish circ is not much different from most ritual circumcision rituals – except for aboriginal subincision, in which the entire penis is split open on its underside. Radical body mods, anyone?

    Jewish circumcision is NOT the model for modern hospital practice. The most common hospital techniques begin by forcing penile skin over a bell-shaped “guard” – often catching and cutting way too much skin. The Jewish technique begins by slipping a shield-shaped, uh, shield between just the “overhang” and the rest of the organ – limiting the extent of the cut, and retaining sexually responsive skin. The results are dramatically different in both appearance and function.

    (How do I know this? No, muffti, I’m not a pervert – I have 3 sons and several doctors in my extended family)

  • The military found out in World War I what ancient leaders of the Jews found out(and wrote into religious ritual to be sure this unpleasant task always got done on male children) long ago. That is, circumcision prevents disease for both males and their mates in circumstances that do not allow for regular bathing.

    JM got it right guys and she isn’t even a male. The foreskin, for any male that has one (or mother of a male child that has had to clean one) knows it is a collector and warm incubator for dirt and disease.

    Is it so important in a modern running water society? No, but still a reasonable thing to do for a male child. An added social benefit of circumcision is it is so prevalent now that an adolescent male that is not makes him look odd and different from his buddies.

  • Ben-David,

    You wrote,

    “There is no evidence that the Soviets were predisposed to circumcision. The vast majority of them are intermarried, and many have just one Jewish grandparent. And all of them – even those of solidly Jewish background – were raised in a very anti-religious environment in which circumcision was presented as thoroughly backward”

    These were not just Soviets — they were Soviet Jews who wanted the procedure because they were Jews, not because they had one Jewish grandparent. The State of Israel is a Middle Eastern country, but they don’t force immigrants to be circumcised. Well, not the Russian ones, anyway.

    2. ‘just the overhang’? You are deny brit priah even exists! That is nonsense. Brit Priah is done after cutting “the overhang.”

    Jewish circ was certainly the model for the U.S. Yes, they used different methods, but then again, they didn’t make a blessing or have a festive meal afterwards either.

    And now things are changing. The push to gain a sponsor for the MGM bill is today. Let’s not fool ourselves about how modern and forward thinking this procedure is Jim R.

  • Wait a minute. Wasn’t the kid’s chest visible before, at the start of this discussion on Friday last?

    The people here are only advocating a very early circumcision. Later, yes, it gets worse. At eight days it can be dealt with and you are clean for life.

    I mean, get married, have a kid, then tell others how to live. Do the hard stuff. Activism can be an escape from harder tasks. Indignation is earier than positivism.

    Just saying.

    Did somebody change the photo?

    Did somebody add a white cloth to cover his chest during this discussion?

    I mentioned his “barrel chest” indicating his age as being much older than eight days; more like four months or more.

  • sigh…

    Kelsey:
    It’s clear from the follow-up I described that many of the men in the survey – at least a third! – got cut for totally non-religious reasons. You cannot assume they all had strong Jewish connections.

    ‘periah’ means ‘peeling’ or ‘revealing’.

    Not cutting.

    The foreskin is like the sleeve of a lined jacket.

    Jewish circumcision: the mohel pulls the outer layer BEYOND the head of the organ, cuts off some of it, preserves the (sensitive) inner layer. Periah is when the mohel folds back the inner layer to meet the outer skin, and bandages them. This “reveals” the head of the organ.

    Hospital circumcision: a bell-shaped guard is forced under the foreskin. A clamp is applied, and both inner and outer skin are cut off BELOW the head of the organ.

    I have home videos if you want – at least, from my two youngest sons….

    Please consider how pathetic it is to be so ego-invested in a few millimeters of skin… how absurd it is to ascribe so many problems to this… an exact mirror image of the Victorian absurdity that masturbation solved everything from schizophrenia to betwetting…

  • I just want to go on the record saying, “Please, Ben-David, no circumcision home videos.”

    Although, are you going to show those when your sons bring home girlfriends? That would be hilarious.

  • I don’t know, Ben-David. All those prayers that contrast Israel with “Those with foreskins.” Seems like maybe we are the ones whose identity as a civilication is so invested with a few millimeters of skin.

  • Regardless of the obvious anti-semetism on that site, infants have died of herpes from mohels and it is a very serious concern. Use of sterilzed tube is necessary in brit. No child’s health should be put at risk for fear of insulting a Rabbi. As my grandmother would say “their shit stinks the same as everyone elses”.

  • Kelsey, I’m getting a little confused about your stand on the issue of millah. As far as I can tell, you are viscerally opposed to the practice and you have posted a number of links to virulently anti-circumcision websites to support your position.

    So, anyway, I checked out one of the links, which I suppose you posted to prove your point that the stupid goyim have been duped into mutilating themselves by watching Jewish porn or something.

    One of the links takes you directly to a page about circumcision in Hungary, where the practice has been virtually non-existent up until quite recently. I was expecting more “circumcision is the root of all evil” rants; instead, the page was filled with nothing but personal testimonials from both men and women who couldn’t contain their wild enthusiasm for circumcision, gushing about how much better the sex was now that that messy forskin was out of the way. What was striking was how esctatic the women were, saying that sex was wildly better when the man was circumcised, how much more beautiful and studly the organ looked, how they were going to make sure that their male children were all circumcised, etc. One woman even went so far as to say how much she envied Jewish women now that she knew how much better sex was with a circumcised man.

    So, what gives? Are we sexual cripples who conspire to deprive the unsuspecting goyim of their natural manliness by forcing our barbaric emasculating practices on them, or are we super studs who drive women so crazy with our improved organs that all of the gentile women want to make their men look like us?

  • This issue of infants getting a type of herpes through metzitzah b’peh is new to me even though I have seen many Bris done. What I have heard is the fear of aids, lo alaynu. Even the Satmar Mohel I have seen didn’t do metzitzah b’peh, although he may have given the familys the option, I don’t know. The spectre of Aids seems a lot more menacing then then cold sores. For some time, awhile back, the only Mohel in town, LA, that people trusted it seemed was a Satmar. Even Lubavatchers I heard were using him. I don’t know what the issues were that people prefered to use the Satmar, I doubt that metzitzah b’peh had anything to do with that.
    I did have the privelage to shlep around a Mohel who was a Rav with Litvak background. I flew him around actually. He needed someone with a light plane that was able to get into little airfields near his customers in across state jobs. As it turns out going by airline is often more time consuming in going from one smaller town to another, if he got more then one job in the State, California, in one day. Going by car may take even longer or is impossible. So often for this Rabbi-Mohel, he would hire somebody with a small plane. His Cut, pun intended, would be something like $500. If he got more then 2 cuts a day in far out towns it would be worth paying the pilot some of that.
    The Lubavitchers didn’t like this Rabbi to do thier Bris jobs for some reason. He does or doesn’t do something that is a different in some way. However, they certainly let the Litvok Rabbi perform the Bris he does in thier Chabad Houses and participate in the following simcha. When I find out those technical stuff is maybe I will post it, but for now I don’t know.
    One thing I know that this Litvok did that that alot of the Lubavithers I know didn’t approve of was doing a bris for a baby that whose mother wasn’t jewish. One time I flew the Litvok Mohel to a town in Central California. The father of the boy is Jewish, but not the mother. The Mother wasn’t into doing conversion, but she let the kid be circumcised by a Mohel. The Rabbi told me he needs me to sign the document as a kosher witness that says this baby was circumsized properly. The idea being that once this boy decides to convert, he wont have to go through any form of circumcision.

  • Yes, totally right.

    But it is still not cool to alter a photograph. He did not used to have that white cloth on his chest, when the photo was first posted. His large, well developed chest gave away that this is no 8-day-old baby. He is older than that by months.

    So now the chest is covered up. Hmm.

  • So I went to a bris on Monday, my first cousin’s son, and I walk in and practically attack the mohel with “do you have a sterilized tube????!!!” because I was not about to let any Rabbi put his mouth on my new little cousin. He looked at me and smiled and said “no tube”, at which point my father pulled me out of the kitchen and said “if you don’t mind you own business I am going to throw you in the car and drive you home until this is over.” Well, I got highly upset but decided to keep my mouth shut and I watched the procedure. It took all of two minutes, the baby cried a little bit. He had analgesic cream put on his penis one hour before the ceremony. He was given sugar water through the hole thing. He was fine afterward. The mohel used a “mogen clamp” and he did not squeeze with his mouth or a tube. Turns out he was a lBoard Certified Urologist who trained at Mt. Sinai Hospital. I don’t know if Orthodox consider this a valid bris, but my cousin has a bris certificate she paid him $700.00 for. He had a multi-colored tallis on, so I guess the Orthodox don’t recognize this, but it’s good to no there was no cock-sucking done on my new little relative.

  • Multi colored Tallis is fine, this is a non-important item what the color is. Multi colored robes are worn on Shabbos by men and women.

    So what is the name of the cute baby, where is the pics?

  • Actually many mohelim are more drastic in priah in that they tear the inner skin down toits roots under the corona and then continue to tear away the inner skin from all round the corona of the glans and thus strip it away entirely.

    Adam

  • Rare Circumcision Ritual Carries Herpes Risk

    Traditional Jewish Practice May Put Babies at Risk for Genital Herpes Infection
    By Jennifer Warner

    WebMD Health News
    Reviewed by Ngozi A. Osondu, MD
    Aug. 2, 2004 —

    A rare Jewish circumcision practice may put young infants at risk for genital herpes with potentially severe complications, according to a new study.

    Researchers in Israel have documented eight cases in which male infants became infected with the herpes simplex virus type 1 (HSV-1) after undergoing circumcision that included direct oral-genital contact between the infant and the circumciser (mohel). One of the infants suffered brain damage as the result of his infection.

    Male circumcision is the removal of the foreskin (prepuce), which is a fold of skin that covers and protects the tip of the penis.

    According to Jewish custom and traditions, newborn Jewish boys are ritually circumcised at eight days of age, and complications are generally very rare.

    However, a small number of Orthodox rabbis advocate an ancient practice in which the circumciser sucks the blood from the infant’s circumcision wound until the bleeding stops, a ritual known as metzitzah.

    Researchers say the vast majority of ritual circumcisions are currently performed with a sterile suctioning device and not oral suction by the mohel.

    Rare Circumcision Ritual Puts Infants at Risk
    In their study, published in the August issue of Pediatrics, researchers describe eight cases in which Jewish infants developed genital herpes an average of a week after circumcision. None of the infant’s mothers had evidence of oral or genital herpes, the most frequent modes of transmission to newborns.

    In all cases, the traditional circumciser had performed the metzitzah custom involving direct oral contact with the infants’ genitals.

    Six of the infants required treatment with intravenous antibiotics, and four had recurrent genital herpes infections. In addition, one infant suffered brain damage and seizures as a result of complications caused by his infection.

    Four of the mohels were available for testing, and all of them tested positive for antibodies for HSV-1, which indicated that they were carriers of the virus. Yet none had tested positive for the virus in their mouth.

    Researchers say that after the initial cases of herpes in circumcised infants were reported, the Chief Rabbinate of Israel pronounced in 2002 the legitimacy of using instrumental suction in cases in which there is a risk of infection.

    “We support ritual circumcision but without oral metzitzah, which might endanger the newborns and is not part of the religious procedure,” write researcher Benjamin Gesundheit, MD, of Ben Gurion University in Israel, and colleagues.

    SOURCE: Gesundheit, B. Pediatrics, August 2004; vol 114: pp 259-263.

  • This is SICK and BARBARIC and there is NO reason for it.
    If and when i have kids, there will only be 1 condition–
    NO Circumcision Period.

    This Barbaric practice is right out of Religion..
    According to Genesis, God told Abraham to circumcise himself, his household and his slaves as an everlasting covenant in their flesh. Those who were not circumcised were to be ‘cut off’ from their people (Genesis 17:10-14).

    So God told Men if they weren’t Circumcised they would ALL be Banished.

    For centuries, the only reason for circumcision was a religious one. Non-faith based circumcision began with the Victorians during the mid-to-late 1800s. They believed that removing the foreskin would reduce the male’s urge to masturbate.

    Funny, i’m Butchered Up and i still have the urge.

    Here’s a Question to all of you Religious people…

    If God and the Bible said…

    ALL Girls upon their 16th B-day had to have 1 of their Breasts Removed, and if it wasn’t done, God would remove their Reproductive Organs, would you do it to them?

    Answer…No
    Why…Because it would be Sick, Twisted and Barbaric
    And the Bible would then be called the book of the Devil

    99% of parents LIE to their New Born Sons the second they are Born by saying…”We will never let anyone EVER hurt you.” This is usually right before they hand him to Dr. Freddie Krueger.

  • I am a student practicle nurse in Ontario, Canada…I recently attended a circumcision in hospital. The baby was allowed to suckle on sugar water from a nurses gloved finger and a local anaesthetic was administered. I closely watched the baby’s face and he didn’t even flinch when the need to anaesticise was given. He contently suckled and slept. The disadvantages of circumcision include infection and hemorrhage (a posibility with surgical procedure). The advantages include less urinary infections and possible prevention of cancer.

  • let religious people do to them selves what they want in rituals. Healthy or unhealthy is questionable. Some say sex is better, some say worst. But since many feel that the circumsitions are painless now a days, why not allow the child to grow up a little older and decide for themselves. I love that freedom of choice thing.

    Someone mentioned that jews push non-jews (goyim? just learned what that means=me) into circumsition. thats rediculous, those parents chose it, because they were convinced it was in their childs best interest.

    Just because one doesnt agree, doesnt mean one needs to impose their views on others. that cuts both ways.

Leave a Comment