Online(Zoom) Leadership Training

“Leaders in Boys Protection” Project

A training program to unleash leaders in the worldwide push to eliminate male genital mutilation.
Start Date: Tuesday, January 11, 2022
Course Completion Date: Tuesday, March 15, 2022
Time: 7:00 to 8:30 p.m. (Pacific Standard)

This 10-week online training will be headed by Gloria Lemay, a midwifery educator, member of Nurses for the Rights of the Child, and Advisory Board member of Intact America. Gloria has led online courses for midwives and doulas for over 12 years. She is a passionate advocate for baby boys and their right to bodily integrity. She is active on social media as a spokesperson for the “intactivist” movement.

Who should be in this training?: If you have a desire to make a difference in child protection you are welcome to join this online training. You must be able to make a commitment to attend all 10 classes on Zoom once the course begins. If you have been stopped by societal pressure, embarrassment, sadness, anger, overwhelm, or other barriers to expressing your commitment to ending MGM, this will be a safe space to free yourself up and get in action again.

Bonus feature: We will have some special guest presenters who have had years of “on the ground” experience in advocating for baby boys.

What is the cost? There is no charge for the training.

What must I do to participate? Each participant will be asked to create a project of their own that will unleash their contribution to ending male genital mutilation. There will be homework in the course that will be posted on Google Classroom. At some point in the 10-week training, each participant will have an opportunity to present a talk on some aspect of their experience with speaking up for baby boys.

Intended Outcome of the Project

To unleash the expression of people in the intactivist movement at all levels of experience.
Expect unexpected results from coming together with other intactivists to inspire, collaborate and embrace the leadership in all of us!

Please contact me for more information on this project. waterbirthinwoman@gmail.com
Time of class: 7:00 to 8:30 p.m. Pacific Standard Time

Q & A: Caring for my son’s intact penis

    Question from a mother:

Obviously our little guy is not getting circumcised (unless he decides he wants to when he’s older and can make that decision independently) but I was wondering how to go about cleaning him, moreso when he is a bit bigger, but like I have heard you are not supposed to pull the foreskin back, but surely at some point that will need to happen to clean in there right? I don’t want to hurt/harm him, but i want to make sure that area doesn’t get full of bacteria. What is your advice on this?

    Answer from Gloria:

Oh, so glad you asked, Karin. Right now, and until he is about 4 years old, his foreskin is actually attached to the glans just as the fingernails are attached to the nail beds. You only clean what is seen. Never retract the foreskin or you could damage that natural attachment and don’t let any medical professionals do it either.

When he’s about 4, he’ll reach into his pants and find that “toy” and then he will start playing with it. (They continue that till about age 80). That is the only way that the foreskin should come back—the boy doing it himself. Most boys/men simply retract their own foreskin in the shower and rinse with plain water and replace the foreskin. That is all the cleaning that is needed. It’s very easy.

This is a link to the brochure that I give out to mother’s of boys as a pdf. http://www.nocirc.org/publish/4pam.pdf Congratulations on your new little son. Love, Gloria

sonandmom

Additional comment, June 12,2015 Bodies are designed for pleasure. Only a big meanie would deprive anyone of having fun with their own body. Part of my education on boys having fun with their toy came from my brothers. When we were little, my mom would plunk all 5 of us kids (we were 18 months apart in age) in the bathtub. My brothers would do very impressive tricks with their toys,– popping out the shiny purple surprise from inside the foreskin. There was no need for my mom to clean anything, All that bathtub play took care of things. Gloria

The Foreskin–it’s there to protect a boy

foreskinaap

This graphic was posted on Facebook by Chase’s Guardians on April 6, 2015

This news story of a baby boy screaming in an operation for three hours and being discharged without a penis really brings home the point, KEEP OUR BOYS INTACT.

    MEMPHIS, Tenn. (FOX13) –

Nov. 7, 2013

It doesn’t happen often, but when a doctor botches a child’s circumcision, it’s heart-breaking.

Maggie Rhodes is dealing with that heartbreak right now, after a catastrophic mistake on the operating table.

Removal of the foreskin from a child’s penis is rooted in concerns about health, hygiene and religion. But some question the necessity of the procedure.

Rhodes is sorry she ever took her young son to get circumcised.

“After I went home and I discovered that my son’s penis was not there, I immediately froze, like, oh my God,” Rhodes recalls.

The mother said she couldn’t believe what happened when she took her three-month-old son Ashton to Christ Community Health Center on Broad Avenue for a circumcision in August. She says doctors told her the procedure would take about 20 minutes.

But after a couple hours, Ashton was still in surgery.

“It took them about three hours to do the circumcision and so my baby screamed the whole three hours, like the whole process,” Rhodes said. “Then even when she gave him back to us, he was still screaming.”

Rhodes said the doctor performing the surgery obviously botched the procedure. But when it was over, she says they simply returned her screaming son to her, never telling her about the devastating mistake that had happened in the operating room.

“I should have been notified that something went wrong in this room with your baby,” she said. “I wasn’t notified. They gave me back my baby like nothing was wrong. They said, ‘here go your son.’ Yeah, something went wrong in that room.”

It’s something Rhodes said she didn’t find out about until she went home with a still screaming son, and a diaper filled with blood.

She said her curious sister finally discovered Ashton’s mutilated penis.

“When my sister pulled the cloth back, it was covered in blood and it was no penis there,” Rhodes said.

All that was left was a partial penis and his tiny testicles. Rhodes said Ashton urinates through a hole in his penis. She says she can’t imagine what she’ll say to her son, when he’s old enough to understand what happened to him.

“Like, ‘Momma like, how could this happen to me? How could this happen to me?,'” she said. “How could you explain that to your child that you don’t have a penis that they have to reconstruct one or you probably have might not never be able to have kids? That don’t sit well with me at all.”

Rhodes has hired an attorney and is pursuing a medical malpractice suit against Christ Community Health Centers.

As for little Ashton, a reconstructive surgery planned for October has been rescheduled for early next year.

FOX13 News contacted Christ Community Health Centers for a comment. We’re told the CEO is aware of our request, but so far has not returned our repeated calls.
http://www.myfoxmemphis.com/story/23912521/mother-upset-over-botched-circumcision

“Birth with Gloria Lemay” the film

This is the kind of delightful feedback I receive about the DVD. Gloria

From Donna Reicks:
“Gloria, I just have to tell you…..I loaned out your DVD “Birth with Gloria Lemay” as I do to any “English” ladies I serve. These are 1st time parents (after 7 years of trying!) and she loved your DVD and commented her favorite part was the extra features on circumcision!! They were on the fence if they had a boy. Now, their decision is made. Thanks Gloria!! Keep up the good work! Much love to you!”

From Gloria Lemay: “When I made the DVD, it was easy to add a few “extras” besides the footage of 9 home water births. One of the “extras” is a Director’s Cut-type film with me explaining what is going on in the film. The strange thing for me is how many women say, “After watching the version with you explaining what’s going on, my husband is now comfortable with the idea of birthing at home and he feels confident.” The conclusion I’ve come to is that I must have been talking to the back of the sound technician (a man) and that’s why the words seem to affect men. Completely inadvertent but I like it.

Then, there were 2 really good videos that really taught me a lot about the importance of the male foreskin so I requested the use of them from the owners. They were both thrilled to give me their material. Again, so much of the feedback that I get is that those two features have such an impact on people. Both of those intact penis features are available for anyone to watch online but, it seems, a couple sitting on their couch watching a DVD will keep going right to the end of the DVD and THAT has put the information in a lot of people’s hands. It’s so gratifying to know that those DVDs are all over the world. If you have one, don’t leave it on your shelf—get it out and show it or lend it to pregnant families!”

“Birth with Gloria Lemay”

To order the film and download to a thumb drive go to this link
https://birthwithglorialemay.vhx.tv/products/birth-with-gloria-lemay

Q & A on the healthy foreskin

sonandmom

Many people write to me with their concerns about retracting the foreskin. This is an exchange that I had with a midwife on my email.

Hi Gloria,
My son, David, is 10 and intact but we have always been curious about the fact that his foreskin seemed attached on the under-side. We thought he may outgrow it but a recent checkup by our D.O. suggested that he may need to be circumcised. The foreskin cannot be retracted due to this adhesion of the skin. We are against circumcision unless it’s absolutely-medically-necessary. Is there any way to correct this problem without a full circumcision? We are afraid a trip to the urologist will only advocate for that. Any advice you can provide would be so appreciated!
Thank you, Gloria!
C. V., Midwife

Dear C.,
Some boys don’t fully retract until in their late teens. His underside attachment is perfectly normal at 10 years old. Leave it all alone. It’s not “adhesion”, it’s a process his body is slowly but surely going through to separate the glans and the foreskin. It’s the same for boys as for girls; some girls start their menstrual cycles at 9 years old and some at 19. . .there is lots of variation. I would not let any medical person touch my son, if I were you. Have faith that his body is doing just fine. Love Gloria
p.s. if you’d like other opinions on this (I know they are the same as mine because I’ve had this query from other women) you could contact Marilyn Milos R. N. at www.nocirc.org or Doctors Opposing Circumcision in Seattle.
p.p.s. I’m very glad that you wrote.

Thank you, Gloria, for the amazingly quick response! I cannot tell you how much that means to me. This makes us feel so much better. We truly felt sickened at the thought of possibly circumcising him-especially after all this time. His twin brother seems to have a similar problem, but simply tight foreskin which is uncomfortable for him to retract. The doctor’s advice was to just continue to pull back gently every time he showers, in hopes of stretching the skin gradually. Would you agree?
Warm Regards,
C. V.

Dear C., this is a subject that is clouded in misinformation for the public and medical profession. Even the American Academy of Pediatrics (which has been known to give out bad advice on child health) cautions physicians to get rid of this advice to retract the foreskin. Pulling back on the foreskin should only be done at the boy’s initiation and, then, it should be a pleasurable act. The same advice applies to both of your boys. . . . if it isn’t broken, don’t fix it. An intact penis that is functioning well for urination is a healthy body part. Your concerns arise because you live in a culture that lost for decades the information about what is normal about male genitalia and, now, we are regaining the knowledge that retraction is harmful and the foreskin separates from the glans at different times in the maturing process. As in birth, be patient. Gloria in Vancouver.

(Names and initials changed for confidentiality)

Paul M. Fleiss, M.D., M.P.T.

In Loving Memory
Paul M. Fleiss, MD, MPT
Sept. 18, 1933 to July 19, 2014

Paul Fleiss 1933 - 2014

Paul Fleiss 1933 – 2014

Dr. Fleiss was a father of 6 children and a much-loved and respected Pediatrician for 50 years in the Los Angeles, CA area.
He spoke up for babies and was a voice of reason about the importance of breastfeeding, attachment parenting and keeping boys intact. He genuinely loved babies and wanted them to have the best health possible. In 1997, Dr. Fleiss wrote an article for Mothering Magazine called “The Case Against Circumcision”. Peggy O’Mara, the founder of the magazine adopted that title for the forum on her website on the subject of ending circumcision. Peggy would not permit any discussion that endorsed male genital cutting and the name of the forum was self-explanatory. To read Dr. Fleiss’ article go to this reprint. http://www.mothersagainstcirc.org/fleiss.html

I met Dr. Fleiss when we both attended the International Symposium for Genital Integrity in Seattle, Washington; August 24–26, 2006. I was thrilled to meet him and be able to thank him for all his efforts to make life better and healthier for children.

Dr. Paul Fleiss, Gloria Lemay, Gillian Longley, Jenn Beaman and other intactivists in Seattle.

Dr. Paul Fleiss, Gloria Lemay, Gillian Longley, Jenn Beaman and other intactivists in Seattle.

Carla Hartley of Ancient Art Midwifery Institute brought us together again at a Trust Birth Conference in 2008 in California. I will remember him as a warm and happy man who made a big difference in the lives of those who were fortunate enough to read his books/articles, meet him professionally or use his services. He provided leadership to many physicians who have joined him in urging the abolition of male genital mutilation.

Jay Gordon, M.D. wrote about his memories of training with Paul Fleiss at http://drjaygordon.com/in-the-news/paul-fleiss-md-1933-2014.html

I offer deepest condolences to the family and close friends of Paul Fleiss. This fine man will be remembered with love and appreciation by doulas, midwives, lactation consultants, nurses and parents who will benefit from his work for a long time into the future. Gloria Lemay, Vancouver, BC Canada

Professor of Pediatrics cautions about the dangers of male genital mutilation

Letter to the ed Globe and Mail, April 26, 2014

Circumcision carries risks

Re Circumcision, HIV (letters, April 25):

While circumcision may have value in combatting HIV transmission in Africa, where rates are high, it’s unwise to adopt that strategy in developed countries with low rates, as there is a mortality risk associated with this procedure.
In Canada, there were at least two deaths in normal newborns from complications related to circumcision in the past 10 years. More are reported in other countries. The most important risk for acquiring HIV rests with behaviour, not the presence or absence of the foreskin.

Paul Thiessen, MD, Vancouver, BC Canada
Source: http://www.theglobeandmail.com/globe-debate/letters/talking-point/article18231799/ this letter is at the very bottom of the page.

Dr. Paul Thiessen is a Clinical Professor in the Department of Pediatrics at the University of British Columbia. He graduated of the University of Alberta in 1974, and completed his residency training at the University of BC as well as the Hospital for Sick Children in Toronto. He is the Medical Director of Intermediate Nursery, BC Women’s Hospital since 1996, and the Medical Director of the Spinal Cord Clinic at BC Children’s Hospital since 1994. He has a longstanding interest in medical education, and was chair of the Annual Meetings Committee of the Canadian Pediatric Society from 2003 to 2009. He is a general pediatric consultant in a group practice of 6 pediatricians involved extensively in neonatal medicine. He has a longstanding interest in international health, and over the past 20 years has been involved in health care projects in Ukraine, India and Uganda.
Source: http://thischangedmypractice.com/bios/ the bios are in alphabetical order.
***********************************************************************************************************************************************

Art by Amy Haderer of Mandala Journey

Art by Amy Haderer of Mandala Journey

Comment from Gloria Lemay: The South African Medical Assoc has rejected amputation of the foreskin as a method of reducing the transmission of HIV/AIDS. This is an article explaining why http://www.samj.org.za/index.php/samj/article/viewFile/5384/3636

Facebook favourite Updates

I’ve been on Facebook for five years, apparently. These are the most popular updates that I’ve posted there:

They are not “unvaccinated”. . . they have a natural immune system. Women are not “unmastectomized” . . .they have their breasts. Boys are not “uncircumcised”, they are intact. Every word creates a hallucination. When we hallucinate wholeness, wholeness will show up as normal.

Gloria Lemay

October 2013 393 likes

What do I want for my birthday? I want everyone who reads this to take 30 seconds to get up, walk through your place and turn off any lights or appliances that don’t need to be on, OFF. We make the difference in having our Mother Earth work. Thank you.

Gloria Lemay

October 2012 270 likes

If you’re hiring a doula to “enforce your birth plan”, “keep you home as long as possible”, and “protect you”, wake up and plan a home birth with an attendant you trust.

Gloria Lemay

July 2012 359 likes

I don’t know who wrote this but I found it very funny 🙂

If you love something, set it free. If it comes back, it will always be yours. If it doesn’t come back, it was never yours to begin with. But, if it just sits in your living room, messes up your stuff, eats your food, uses your telephone, takes your money, and doesn’t appear to realize that you had set it free……. you either married it or gave birth to it.

July 2011 213 likes

www.pinterest.com

Pediatric Response by Petrina Fadel

Part 1 : Dear AAP Board Members and AAP Task Force on Circumcision:

I am writing to you to request that you withdraw or rescind the newest
2012 AAP Circumcision Policy Statement. Below I have critiqued for you some of the serious problems with this new statement.

The Abstract states on page 585 that “health benefits are not great enough to recommend routine circumcision for all male newborns”, but this is not repeated even once in the long text on pages 758-785.
Other long columns favoring circumcision are repeated over and over again, on pages 761-762, 770, 775-776, and 778. The 1999 AAP Statement was 8 pages long (pages 686-693), but this diatribe against living with a foreskin goes on for 28 pages. There is almost the feeling that AAP physicians hope that if they repeat something over and over again, eventually it might become true.

The AAP concludes on page 778 that “the health benefits of newborn male circumcision outweigh the risks”, and yet on page 772 the AAP admits that “the true incidence of complications after newborn circumcision is unknown”. If one doesn’t know how often complications occur, then one can’t make the judgment that the benefits outweigh the risks! The AAP lacks the evidence it needs to make such a claim.

The 1999 Statement studied 40 years’ worth of research, and the 2012 studied only selective research since 1999. Only 1031 of 1388 studies were accepted to look at. Balance might have been found in the 357 studies that were omitted, but the AAP was not seeking balance. The AAP statement goes on ad nauseum about alleged “benefits”, to the point of fear-mongering that something will go wrong if an infant isn’t circumcised. It’s a high pressure sales pitch to try to get the American public to buy the circumcisions that AAP and ACOG doctors are selling. This is in direct contrast to Europe, where circumcision is uncommon and the health of European children equals or surpasses that of American children.

No studies on ethics were included in this statement, and it is clear that the rights of the child and how a grown man might feel about HIS foreskin being stripped from him were never given any consideration at all by the AAP. These are major issues, and even more important than many of the other minor issues the AAP discusses. Material was provided to the AAP to study this aspect of circumcision, but it was ignored. With one bioethicist on the panel, you would have thought that the AAP might at least have given the ethics of circumcision a cursory examination, considering that they were provided with many sources showing the emotional distress many men feel. Ethics and mental health, however, nowhere enter the picture for the AAP. Respect for the bodily integrity of another person were not included, and medical ethics were thrown out the window as infants were thrown under the bus.

Financing studies weren’t included in the studies, but the AAP did its best to push financing repeatedly for third-party reimbursement of non-therapeutic circumcision, at the expense of taxpayers during a time of budget crises. Those with private insurance would see premiums and medical costs rise. The cost for circumcision on page 777 ranges from
$216 to $601 per circumcision in the U.S. In 2010, the in-hospital U.S. circumcision rate was 54.7%. Thus, 45.3% of newborn males left
the hospital genitally intact. If the AAP were to convince parents of
these 45.3% to circumcise (as they are attempting to do in this 2012 statement), then there would be 45.3% of roughly 2.1 million baby boys that could be an additional income source for physicians. (Remember, don’t consider the ethics!) This would be an additional 951,300 male infants to profit from. At prices the AAP quotes, this could mean an additional $205,480,800 to $571,731,300 for doctors who circumcise.
This is no small sum, and as Thomas Wiswell, M.D. stated on June 22,
1987 in the Boston Globe, “I have some good friends who are obstetricians outside the military, and they look at a foreskin and almost see a $125 price tag on it. Each one is that much money. Heck, if you do 10 a week, that’s over $1,000 a week, and they don’t take
that much time. “(Lehman 1987) Money like that would certainly help
doctors make their mortgage payments and their car payments, pay for vacations, etc. – a “benefit” that the AAP failed to mention. Under Literature Search Overview, it is understandable why AAP physicians might consider it important to investigate “What are the trends in financing and payment for elective circumcision?”

No studies on the anatomy and functions of the foreskin were included.
This is surprising, since it would seem like common sense to consider what the functions of any healthy body part are before amputating it.
Probably since the male AAP Task Force members are all circumcised, this idea was difficult for them to grasp. Only one study on the sexual impact of circumcision was included, and this from Africa.
Other studies were ignored or discounted. “The effect of male circumcision on the sexual enjoyment of the female partner”, which appeared in BJU INTERNATIONAL, Volume 83, Supplement 1, Pages 79-84, January 1, 1999, is not mentioned. Nor is the newest Danish study that was publicized on November 14, 2011 – “Male circumcision leads to a bad sex life” – “Circumcised men have more difficulties reaching orgasm, and their female partners experience more vaginal pains and an inferior sex life, a new study shows.” See:
http://sciencenordic.com/male-circumcision-leads-bad-sex-life The AAP had time to include this study, but it was ignored. Others sent material to the AAP about CIRCUMserum, Senslip, foreskin restoration that men are undergoing to undo some of the damages of circumcision and how this improves the sexual experience for both men and women. It didn’t fit the AAP’s pro-circumcision agenda, so it was ignored. The Policy Statement is totally lacking in ethics, anatomy, and foreskin functions. Instead, the Task Force is more concerned with how to train more doctors to circumcise, and how to do so with different devices and various forms of anesthesia.

The physical and sexual harms from circumcision are minimized or dismissed outright. Deaths from circumcision and botched circumcisions are considered “case studies”, and the children horribly damaged from circumcision don’t merit the AAP’s consideration, even though the AAP’s alleged mission is that it is “Dedicated to the Health of All Children”. When cribs are faulty or car seats aren’t safe, the AAP becomes concerned and warns the public. When physicians botch circumcisions and are at fault, children don’t matter. After one botched circumcision lawsuit and a large settlement, the company that manufactured the Mogen clamp went out of business. The AAP report should have advised physicians to NOT use the Mogen clamp because of the botched circumcisions that have resulted with this device. If still in use, no doubt there will be future tragedies with the Mogen clamp, but parents will only be able to sue the doctor and hospital and not the manufacturer.

There was so much reliance on studies from Africa in this statement, that it seemed like the AAP should change its name to the African Academy of Pediatrics. In contrast to the AAP, the American Association of Family Physicians (AAFP) has stated: “…the association between having a sexually transmitted disease (STD) – excluding human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) and being circumcised are inconclusive…
most of the studies [of the effect of circumcision on HIV] …have been conducted in developing countries, particularly those in Africa.
Because of the challenges with maintaining good hygiene and access to condoms, these results are probably not generalizable to the U.S.
population”. But generalize the AAP did! In addition, the AAP listed page after page of STDs that allegedly circumcision would prevent, and wrote conflicting statements about syphilis. A recent study in Puerto Rico found that circumcised men have HIGHER rates of STDs and HIV. The 60% reduced risk of HIV following circumcision is the relative risk reduction, not the absolute risk reduction. There’s a huge difference.
Across all three female-to-male trials, of the 5,411 men subjected to male circumcision, 64 (1.18%) became HIV-positive. Among the 5,497 controls, 137 (2.49%) became HIV-positive”, so the absolute decrease in HIV infection was only 1.31%, which is not statistically significant.”
(Boyle GJ, Hill G. Sub-Saharan African randomised clinical trials into male circumcision and HIV transmission: Methodological, ethical and legal concerns. J Law Med 2011; 19:316-34.)

Infants are not at risk of STDs or HIV through sexual contact, so this speculation about their future risk is foolhardy. Infants can also be at risk for many other diseases, but surgical amputation of healthy body parts is a foolhardy approach for prevention and treatment of disease. If an infant is at risk of an STD, then it is probably safe to say that an adult is perpetrating a crime against the child and needs to be arrested and charged.

Judaism and Islam are mentioned as religions that practice religious circumcisions. Once again, the statement ignores Christianity, which teaches that circumcision is unnecessary. Christianity is the largest religion in the U.S., but its teachings don’t even get a mention by the AAP, which is rather insulting! With an over-representation of members on the Task Force who have a religious bias favoring circumcision, this is not surprising.

The AAP promotes parents choosing medically unnecessary circumcision for their male children, completely contradicting what it said in PEDIATRICS, Volume 95 Number 2, Pages 314-317, February 1995. It said then, “Thus “proxy consent” poses serious problems for pediatric health care providers. Such providers have legal and ethical duties to their child patients to render competent medical care based on what the patient needs, not what someone else expresses. . . the pediatrician’s responsibilities to his or her patient exist independent of parental desires or proxy consent.”

Parents deserve factual information about circumcision, but they won’t find it in the new AAP Statement. In fact, the AAP wrongly advises parents of intact baby boys to retract the foreskin and wash it with soap and water. (page 763) Soap can alter the good bacteria under the foreskin, potentially causing infections that should then be treated with liquid acidophilus to restore the good bacteria. Water is sufficient for cleansing. Circumcised doctors with circumcised sons probably don’t know this.

On page 764, the AAP speculates that the foreskin contains a high density of Langerhans cells, “which facilitates HIV infection of host cells.” Actually, the exact opposite is true. “Langerin is a natural barrier to HIV-1 transmission by Langerhans cells” (Nature Medicine- 4 March 2007). This study states, “Langerhans cells (LCs) specifically express Langerin . . . LCs reside in the epidermis of the skin and in most mucosal epithelia, such as the ectocervix, vagina and foreskin.”

UTIs can be prevented through breastfeeding, which the AAP allegedly supports. This is nowhere mentioned under “Male Circumcision and UTIs”
on page 767. HPV can be prevented with a vaccine for both boys and girls, but it is not mentioned on that same page. A recent study reporting on the large number of re-circumcisions done following infant
circumcisions is also not even mentioned. On page 770, EMLA is
mentioned as a possible anesthetic, but EMLA is not supposed to be used on infants. The fact remains that unnecessary surgery performed with anesthesia is still unnecessary surgery.

There is so much wrong with this new statement that it should immediately be withdrawn before it is presented on Monday. The AAP should either start all over again (with new, unbiased Task Force members), or renew its 1999 statement which attempted to at least give a more balanced view of circumcision. The 1999 circumcision statement certainly had its flaws by ignoring ethics and the anatomy and functions of the foreskin, but it wasn’t as atrocious as this new statement is.

If the AAP wants to be regarded as a credible organization, it will look to the judgment of other foreign medical associations who recognize that circumcision is medically unnecessary and has serious ethical problems underlying its practice. American parents should look to these foreign medical associations for good advice, since the AAP is not providing it in its new statement.

Sincerely,
Petrina Fadel, Director
Catholics Against Circumcision

Part 2 : Sent to the AAP Board of Directors and the AAP Task Force Members on Aug 24, 2012 :

After rereading the AAP’s new Circumcision Statement, several more problems have emerged with this statement. This statement needs to be rescinded and withdrawn immediately! Others are becoming aware of this matter as well.

Under “Ethical Issues” (pages 758-759), two of the references for this opinion come from Dr. Douglas Diekema (AAP’s bioethicist), who signed his name to this statement. The rights of the child are totally ignored in this section, from an organization that claims to be concerned with the welfare of children but in this case isn’t. This is Diekema’s own personal opinion that the Task Force has bought into, based on what he wrote before. References are also taken from M.
Benatar and D. Benatar (both Jewish circumcision supporters), as well as from AR Fleishman (whom I suspect has a religious bias favoring circumcision). Under “Ethical Issues” (page 759), there’s an interesting choice of words by the AAP. “In cases, such as the decision to perform a circumcision in the newborn period, … and where the procedure is not essential to the child’s immediate well-being …” , the AAP admits here that circumcision “is not essential”. It even calls circumcision “elective” in several other places, but it then proceeds to do a massive sales pitch for this unnecessary surgery.

Under Ethics, Reference #14 comes from the British Medical Association- “The law and ethics of male circumcision: guidance for doctors: J. Med Ethics 2004. The BMA did not print a favorable piece on circumcision, but the AAP cherry-picked something from it on page 760. Medical associations in other countries, like the British Medical Association, do not promote circumcision as the AAP has so foolishly chosen to do.

On page 760, the AAP states, “The Task Force’s evidence review was supplemented by an independent, AAP-contracted physician and doctoral-level epidemiologist who was also part of the entire evidence review process.” Who was this? The AAP should reveal the name of this physician.

Several times in the report, the AAP states (page 762), “For parents to receive nonbiased information about male circumcision in time to inform their decisions…clinicians need to provide this information at least before conception, and/or early in the pregnancy, probably as a
curriculum item in childbirth classes.” There is absolutely no way
doctors can do this before conception, and “Inform their decisions” is code for brainwashing parents as early as possible. This is mind control at its worst, supported by the AAP!

The AAP on page 763 uses the term “Uncircumcised” under “Care of the Circumcised Versus Uncircumcised Penis”, and later the term “non-circumcised” when saying, “The non-circumcised penis should be washed with soap and water.” The correct terminology is intact penis, or normal or natural penis. We don’t say “uncircumcised” female or “non-circumcised” female.

The APP on page 764 states, “Mathematical modeling by the CDC shows that, taking an average efficacy of 60% from the African trials, [Note:
This is the relative risk, not absolute risk, which is 1.31%.) and assuming that protective effect of circumcision applies only to heterosexually acquired HIV” …” The AAP states here that they are assuming, which means to “suppose to be the case, without proof.”
There’s a saying that if you “assume” anything, it makes an ass out of u and me. Assumptions are not evidence, and since when should the AAP be relying upon or making assumptions? “Sexual Satisfaction and Sensitivity” (page 769) never once mentions or considers how circumcision impacts the sexual experience for females. The AAP gets it totally wrong about males, while then totally ignoring females! A Danish study by Morten Frisch (whom the AAP uses as a reference in
#118) revealed late last year that circumcised men have more difficulties reaching orgasm, and their female partners experience more vaginal pains and an inferior sex life.

“Analgesia and Anesthesia for a Circumcision After the Newborn Period”
(page 771) states, “Additional concerns associated with surgical circumcision in older infants include time lost by parents and patients from work and/or school.” The AAP is promoting newborn circumcision so parents don’t have to miss work? Parents miss work all the time when their kids get sick as toddlers or later on as young children. Now, all of a sudden, the AAP is concerned about parents missing work, but not concerned about the rights of the child.

Under “Complications and Adverse Events” (page 772), the AAP twice mentions how circumcision risks are lower in hospitals with trained personnel than those performed by untrained practitioners in developing countries. U.S. parents don’t live in a developing country, and this doesn’t even belong in an AAP statement!

“The true incidence of complications after newborn circumcision is unknown …” (page 772) “Two large US hospital-based studies with good evidence estimate the risk of significant acute circumcision complications … ” “(T)here are no adequate studies of late complications in boys undergoing circumcision in the post-newborn
period; this area requires more study.” (page 773) “There are not
adequate analytic studies of late complications in boys undergoing circumcision in the post-newborn period.” (page 774) Under “Stratification of Risks” the AAP says, “Based on the data reviewed, it is difficult, if not impossible, to adequately assess the total impact of complications, because the data are scant and inconsistent regarding the severity of complications.” After admitting that the true incidence of complications is unknown (i.e. the risks), the AAP then has the audacity to state that “the health benefits of newborn male circumcision outweigh the risks”. (page 756). Under “Task Force Recommendations” (page 775), the AAP says, “Physicians counseling families about elective male circumcision should assist parents by explaining, in a nonbiased manner, the potential benefits and risks …” The AAP doesn’t know the incidence of risks, so how do they expect physicians to know that?

The AAP sings its own praises under “Medical Versus Traditional Providers”. “Physicians in a hospital setting generally have fewer complications than traditional providers in the community setting.”
Was this the AAP saying that doctors are safer than mohels? I don’t think they’ll like that!

In 2009, ten years after the AAP did not recommend circumcision (and still doesn’t apparently, doesn’t on its words on page 585, but which one would never know after wading through this rubbish), their own survey of AAP members found that “18% responded recommending to all or most of their patients’ parents that circumcision be performed.” (page
776) I don’t find that surprising that AAP doctors would recommend a surgery that means more money for them. On pages 777-778 the AAP wants to know about the effectiveness of their new 2012 statement to mislead parents. “The Task Force recommends additional studies to better understand … The impact of the AAP Male Circumcision policy on newborn male circumcision practices in the United States and elsewhere.” In other words, how effective are we in deceiving American parents and people in other countries?

The AAP wants to work with the ACOG, AAFP, American Society of Anesthesiologists, and American College of Nurse Midwives to develop a plan about which groups are best suited to perform newborn male circumcisions. (page 777) In other words, how is the AAP going to divvy up the money it so eagerly wants?

The AAP targets blacks and Hispanics in the U.S. for unnecessary circumcisions. “African-American and Hispanic males in the United States are disproportionately affected by HIV and other STIs, and thus would derive the greatest benefit from circumcision.” (page 777) But then, under Areas for Future Research, the AAP says, “The Task Force recommends additional studies to better understand … The impact of male circumcision on transmission of HIV and other STDS in the United States because key studies to date have been performed in African populations with HIV burdens that are epidemiologically different from HIV in the United States.” The AAP just spent several pages before this promoting newborn circumcision to allegedly prevent STDs and HIV based on African studies, but now it’s admitting that more studies are needed because the results could be different in the U.S. Was this put in to help with the solicitation for more funding for pro-circumcision researchers at Johns Hopkins and elsewhere, to keep them going? Maybe these researchers are tired of Africa and want to come home?

The AAP did actually say ONE good thing, but only ONE good thing in this whole statement. On page 760 the AAP says, “The Task Force advises against the practice of mouth-to-penis contact during circumcision, which is part of some religious practices, because it poses serious infectious risk to the child.” If I were to guess, I’d say that perhaps Dr. Susan Blank put that in. While working for the New York City Health Department, Dr. Blank has done nothing to ban metzitah b’peh, so as not to offend the Orthodox Jews who practice it.
Babies have died of herpes from metzitzah b’peh under her watch.

This atrocious AAP Statement needs to be rescinded immediately. I suggest that the AAP use good judgment and do precisely that.

Sincerely,
Petrina Fadel, Director
Catholics Against Circumcision

Male genital mutilation is ending