10 Reasons to Circumcise Your Baby Boy
1. Because from a medical point of view it has been proven that infant male circumcision has many medical benefits that outweigh the minor risks by 100 to 1. The American Academy of Pediatrics released an affirmative policy statement in 2012 in which it found current scientific evidence shows benefits exceed risks.
At the end of 2014 the Center of Disease Control (CDC) also came out in favor of circumcision. For a full statement,
=> The medical scientific evidence is overwhelming.
2. The foreskin can potentially harbor many harmful bacteria and viruses. Scientific research on HI/AIDS done during the past 10 years or so has conclusively shown that the foreskin is the entry point for HIV/AIDS infection during sexual intercourse. The foreskin is a perfect environment for viruses and bacteria due to its moist and warm environment.
3. Male circumcision is not the same as female circumcision. There is no comparison between female circumcision (also known as female genital mutilation (FGM)) and male circumcision. Female circumcision has no medical benefits and is done for purely traditional regions in some Muslim countries, mostly in Africa (e.g. Egypt and Somalia) and the equivalent in the male would be amputation of the entire penis. It is also important to note that FGM is not condoned by Islam and is done for traditional reasons. In almost all Muslim countries FGM is actually illegal.
4. Because by circumcising your baby boy you are acting in his best long term interest.
Circumcision done as infant has many proven benefits. The procedure takes a few minutes, the healing is also fast,
and the procedure only costs a few hundred dollars. Compare that to a life time of benefits, many of which like cancer
cannot be measured in monetary terms. Adult circumcision is more complicated since stiches are required. Hence the healing
process takes longer, a person needs to take time off work, and sometimes a day or two of hospital stay is required, which
in turn means that it can cost anything up to a few thousand dollars depending on the circumstances.
From a legal point of view circumcision is permitted because parents are acting in their child’s interests. Parents have to make decisions on a daily basis that influence their children, and they should always try to make decisions which are in their childs’s best interest. This is no different with the circumcision decision.
5. Because removing the foreskin under local anesthesia is not painful or harmful, and has minimal risk. Circumcision when done with anesthesia and post-operative analgesia (which in the US is the case in almost all circumcisions) is not painful. The operation itself takes only a few minutes in infants, and the healing process takes only a week or two. More than a million circumcisions are performed in the US every year – it is the most common surgical procedure in the world - and it is easy to find a medical practitioner who is experienced to do it. If the person who does this is experienced, there is a minimal risk that something will go wrong. In addition, just to make sure, parents can insist and confirm that the person who does the procedure uses a suitable pain killer. Hence there is no reason why pain should be an issue!
6. Because the attitude towards circumcision has changed only marginally during the past decades. The anti-circumcision lobby likes to proclaim that the circumcision rate in the United States has fallen substantially. However, a recent detailed analysis (for an abstract, see here, for a pdf version, see here) that the overall circumcision rate in the US fell from 83% in the 1960s to around 79% in the 2010s. The main reason for the decrease from 83% has been influenced by the large number of immigrants from countries where circumcision is not commonly practiced. However, experience has shown that many second and third generation babies of these immigrants are circumcised once the parents have been made aware of the benefits.
7. Because even though most European and Asian nations do not circumcise baby boys, Americans would be unwise to follow their tradition. Even though circumcision is not as common in parts of the world such as Europe and Asia (excluding Muslim countries, but see below), the reasons for this are not that they are more "advanced", but in most cases there is a lot of ignorance about the procedure, and unfortunately often also a negative association with being Jewish or Muslim. In Nazi controlled areas during the Second World War being circumcised was an almost certain death sentence.
In Africa there have always been countries where circumcision is common, and some countries or areas where it is not part of tradition and tribal customs. For example, in South Africa, circumcision is almost universal amongst the Xhosa people (Nelson Mandela was a Xhosa, and he described his circumcision and how important it was to him in his autobiography), while the Zulu people traditionally did not circumcise. But due to the effect of the AIDs epidemic in Southern Africa, even the Zulus are now embracing circumcision. This is also true in many parts of Africa and the United Nations and other Non-Governmental Organizations (NGO’s) such as UNICEF are actively supporting the circumcision drive in all parts of Africa in order to fight HIV/AIDs.
As a result of the influence of the American soldiers and their families living in Asia, the circumcision rate in South Korea and the Philippines is very high, especially amongst younger men. The rate is over 60%. Circumcision is also becoming more popular in China. Hence the claim that circumcision is very rare in Asia (excluding Muslim countries like Indonesia and Malaysia) is untrue.
8. Because keeping the foreskin clean and odor free for longer periods during the day is not possible or easy. Even though anti-circumcision activists like to claim that the foreskin can easily be cleaned, keeping it clean for longer periods after showering or bathing is almost impossible. You cannot go to the washroom to clean under your foreskin every hour or so. Bacteria and smegma collect almost immediately after cleaning. Also, as most moms will attest, young boys are difficult to convince to keep themselves clean and bath regularly, not to mention the cleaning of a foreskin.
9. Because circumcision has been scientifically proven to have many medical benefits. The medical benefits based on scientific studies are well documented – for further information please see the section on this site "Medical Infos - Medical Benefits".
10. Because circumcision has a very strong religious connection. Christianity, Islam and Judaism all share a strong common connection to the procedure of male circumcision, and many American families follow the teachings of the Bible as well was the example of Jesus of Nazareth who in line with Jewish tradition was circumcised on the 8th day, and whose teachings in the New Testament they follow.