Ok ok ok, first things first. We have two new contributors to the blog, and a part time author. One contributor will be working with me on the issues with intactivism specifically, with occasional commentary on other topics of woo, and the other will give us a weekly blog about various topics of woo interest, sure to piss off those in the homebirth movement, anti-vaccination movement and the uber boobers.
Unfortunately, most of my comments are coming from the same people or same kinds of people. People who, when I look up their email address, are active in assaulting virtually any web page, article or blog post that has anything remotely to do with circumcision. I honestly wish I would hear more from other people, but perhaps it’s because I’m not writing in a way that seems inviting to parents who are questioning this issue.
With the new statement out from the AAP, I think it’s more clear than ever that the decision to circumcise or not circumcise is really up to the parents. There are risks and benefits to either decision, and while for me, I don’t find the procedure necessary and therefore decline it, I’ve been moving further and further away from the idea that circumcision causes harm (other than the immediate harm of the procedure).
I know that intactivists are really banking on the coming-of-age of the boys circumcised after the anti-FGM legislation, but I really don’t think that equal protection can or would be applied in that way. They’re very very convinced of this, but I think that’s a product of their echo chamber. When you choose to surround yourself only with those of a like mind and a like opinion, who’ve accepted the same assertions as facts, then those assertions start to look more and more rock solid, as though they’re indisputable, widely known facts. The truth is that this is an illusion, caused by limiting yourself to those sources of information. As you become more and more involved, it becomes harder and harder to to accept any outside or dissenting source of information. The fact is that the only people who consider FGM and RIC comparable ARE intactivists. Virtually everyone else sees this for the nonsensical gross over-reaction that it is. They’re hardly comparable, except on levels that enormous mental gymnastics are required to reach. I’ll write a new blog post about this tomorrow, cross my heart and hope to die.
I also recently saw a post in STFUParents with a woman whose husband said he was thankful for all the babies who still had their foreskins left. I think, to me, this is so absurdly representative of the movement and how it’s just really missing the mark. Though again, it goes back to the echo chamber environment, and the almost religious zeal it causes. Are children who are kidnapped and sold into slavery EVEN MORE victimized if they were subject to RIC? Should they be thankful all they have to deal with is daily rape, and not the horror that their most intimate parts were hacked away at birth by a doctor who only cared about the paycheck (rhetoric of the movement, not my opinion).
I recognize this blog post is sort of all over the place, there’s not much of a unifying theme to it, other than my belief that the online communities of intactivism are innately crippling. If you were truly interested in the truth and empirical, evidence-based information, then you absolutely would not dismiss EVERYTHING that doesn’t bolster your viewpoint. The only intellectually honest position is one that recognizes that there are pros and cons, or at the least that there is compelling information in the decision to circumcise; after all, if there wasn’t, why would anyone choose to?