The issue is often too emotional for a rational discussion, she laments. "It's very surprising to me how uninformed people are about circumcision — even men who have been circumcised. I don't like to use the word ignorant, but it's amazing how uninformed they are — and how willing they are to be uninformed."

In Miami, protesters rallied in September 2010 outside South Miami Hospital to support "Baby Mario" after he was circumcised against his mother's wishes. Vera Delgado filed a lawsuit over the incident, with her attorney, Spencer Aronfeld, accusing the doctor of battery. The hospital admitted that a consent form was misread. The case was settled, but terms were not disclosed.

Afterward, Aronfeld proposed a "Mario's Law" that would prevent hospitals from circumcising newborn boys unless medically necessary, thus creating a waiting period so parents would not feel pressure to circumcise. No politician would sponsor it.

Four of Michael Dulin's devices used for foreskin restoration. The one in the foreground was made from the mouthpiece of a tuba.
Deirdra Funcheon
Four of Michael Dulin's devices used for foreskin restoration. The one in the foreground was made from the mouthpiece of a tuba.

Around the country, scores of patients have sued over botched circumcisions. The company that manufactured the Mogen clamp went out of business after the FDA received hundreds of complaints about it, and the company lost three multimillion-dollar lawsuits, including a $10.8 million judgment for a Florida boy who lost the head of his penis when it became trapped in the clamp. Mogens, however, are still available on eBay for less than $20.

Aronfeld suggests the anti-circumcision movement suffers from a perception that it's a fringe movement of hippies and weirdos. "They sort of need a national spokesperson," he says. So far, no celebrity has stepped up to be the anti-circumcision poster boy or girl, although it has gained occasional national attention. Penn and Teller dedicated an episode of their Showtime series Bullshit to debunking circumcision myths. The lead singer of Blood, Sweat & Tears recorded a song about his botched circumcision. And Howard Stern frequently tells his radio listeners that he thinks the practice should be outlawed.

Even though Aronfeld is Jewish, he says he was swayed by the Baby Mario case. "There are a lot of compelling arguments to be made that circumcisions are not appropriate in this day and age. I'm open to that, and there is a lot of credibility to it."

On a Sunday afternoon in December, guests pass through two sets of heavy gates to reach the tony community of Williams Island, near Aventura. They park their Mercedes-Benzes and BMWs by a mailbox decorated with blue balloons. Inside the waterfront home, Michael Andron, dressed in a yarmulke and shawl, prepares to perform a bris, also called a brit milah. He puts on surgical gloves and places an anesthetic spray on a table. He sets aside an empty chair, a nod to the prophet Elijah, who, because of his zeal in upholding the ritual of circumcision, is said to be present in angel form at every bris.

About 50 people stand in a living room, chitchatting and sipping drinks from the open bar. When he's ready, Andron leads a singing prayer in Hebrew. In a short processional, a baby boy, bundled in blankets and wearing a crocheted yarmulke, is carried into the room. He is passed to his seated grandfather and laid on a fluffy white pillow, to which he is then strapped with a soft leather belt. He sucks contentedly on his pacifier.

After a brief welcome, Andron gets down to business. He warns that the baby has many reasons to cry but says he'll be fine. "I'm worried about all of you." He instructs, "Talk quietly — and try to stay vertical." Guests oblige, and a hum of party chatter picks up. Some people turn their heads away. Some make nervous faces and tightly grip their wineglasses. At least three hold their iPads high in the air to film the action. Andron picks up his Mogen clamp and bends over the baby.

Andron's combination of religious gravitas and personal warmth make him a highly in-demand mohel. He's also a karate master, an energy healer, and a theater director. "I'm a Jewish Renaissance man," he says. "The stuff I do is pretty odd."

Expectant families usually book him through his website. The bris must occur on the baby's eighth day, and owing to the uncertainty of the birth date, Andron is almost always on call. Some weeks, he performs just a few procedures; other weeks, he'll do 20. "Considering how extreme this commandment is," he says, even barely observant Jews usually have a bris. Andron does not charge a fee; rather, families make a donation to him. He doesn't like to talk about money but says that on average, he gets $500. Today he has performed five of them, thus earning about $2,500.

Andron was raised Modern Orthodox in New York. Initially, his professional interests were in holistic healing, but while living in North Carolina, he witnessed a bris by a talented mohel. "The surgery was elegant, fast, clean, professional, and artistic," he says. He apprenticed and learned to do them himself. Mohels do not need to be licensed by the state; they are regulated only by local rabbinical boards. Andron says he can do in a few seconds what it takes surgeons 20 minutes to do.

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180 comments
glharryman
glharryman

The specialized nerve endings in the Ridged Band at the tip of the male foreskin contain 50% of the sensory capacity of the penis.  Only a sick pervert would destroy that sensory capacity.  People who sexually mutilate babies belong in prison.

benself
benself

Cutting the genitals of children should be punishable by death.

Nigel
Nigel

The photo you include with your article is obviously an attempt at being clever. It isn't because it is an erroneous perception of male genitalia, which often attracts skewed humour. If you were writing about female genital cutting would you depict it a steak of salmon and a knife? Also, scissors aren't used in the very backward procedure. You have also skewed this to infer age old tradition. Theft, rape, murder, and assault have been around longer, does that make them okay? In fact these are exactly the descriptions that can be applied to "circumcision," the euphemism for genital mutilation. Anyone who performs them is not a doctor or mohel, but a quack, and they deserve every bad thing they have coming their way. Helen Salsbury is especially a quack because she is also a woman who is under the impression that boys are objects to be manipulated for profit. Jews who perform it aren't following the Torah which asks that we do no harm to any living thing, which is exactly what genital mutilation does. Eighty five percent of men internationally are intact and living proof that "circumcision" is a lie. Any reference to disease prevention is also dissipated as the human race would have died out long ago if the HIV/cancer scares were true. "Circumcision" is the cycle of male sexual abuse, and those who want to repeat the cycle for profit are in denial, otherwise they wouldn't get so angry or defensive every time they are questioned.

Laura Prowicz
Laura Prowicz

what kind of a normal person has gone out of his way to "see a lot of circumcisions"? hidden agenda much? wow. scary.

J
J

No one that is at all credible claims there are no functions to the parts cut off. However, the sexual function and pleasure are ignored or downplayed by the penis parts removal pushers. The long term harm to the man the baby becomes is huge, with nerve damage and harm to the sensory system. A whole range of sensation and sexual and protective function are lost. The lips, nipples and fingertips have similar touch sense. To take this away from another person without their consent is heinous. To remove these parts from a baby is way creepy.

Troy
Troy

The best type of circumcision to perform on a boy is the one using the Mogen which can snip the foreskin in only 30 seconds. I have seen a lot of circumcisions, and I think the best ones are those done in the Jewish style with the Mogen or similar instrument. Mohels circumcise thousands of boys and if I have my boys circumcised, although I am not Jewish, I would have them done by a mohel.

andrea
andrea

I'm relatively certain that the 'intactivists' are asking that the common place/automatic circumcision route taken be revisited: No one is arguing religious rite

Bradley
Bradley

Anti-circumcision idiots need to get a life and stop interferring with everyone else's. I was circumcized as a baby, am not jewish and dont remember it or any pain...it left no scar on my penis or my ego. Circumcisions serve a purpose especially cleanliness...my wife is a urologist and you dont want to hear the stories she has regarding uncircumcized patients.

Dom2please
Dom2please

ANYTHING that has a religious significance is automatically condemned by the socialist politically correct idiots. What is it that scares them to death? Could it be their lifestyle?

Christie
Christie

So cool you wrote this article!! Thank you Deirdra Funcheon, I appreciate you taking the time to bring this to your audience. I am not for male or female circumcision and look forward to the day that it is common place to have intact boys and men.

Marc
Marc

Lewis is another genius! A mohel is the best at what he does and many do more than doctors. They do not prey on baby boys but called upon to do the ritual that is a necessity for a Jewish boy. You don't like it, tough! To a believing Jew or Muslim, it must be done and complications are extremely rare if done by an experienced mohel. My neighbor, a non-Jewish pediatrician had his son done because he claims that is in fact healthier. Go argue with him.

Craig
Craig

Is Emilio a Latino boy? Seems like more Latino boys are getting their foreskins snipped these days.

Donkey Hotay
Donkey Hotay

Forced Genital Mutilation of Babies and Infants = Child Abuse !

Period.

Oscar
Oscar

I was circumcised when I was 10 because my foreskin had closed and I count not put it back and clean the gland.It would have been a place for infection.If my parents were against the procedure I would have died from and infection in the penis that would probably have moved to the lower abdomen.I am the most happy person and my libido is fine,thank you.

lmrg78
lmrg78

ultimately is the parent's decision. activists have no say in this...go back to work or study!

;)
;)

uncut = more to play with ;)

Joy
Joy

Haven't found in the heart of NO. 1?Let you in here,stdster.,.c0mfind the one with you for life to love each other.

Troy
Troy

If Dr. Salsbury is only doing five circumcisions a month, that is not enough to be a proficient practitioner of circumcision. If you are going to circumcise boys, you cannot simply do it as a part-time job - you need to be doing it every day. This is why the best practitioners to circumcise boys are mohels (or doctors) who do them daily. Mohels circumcise thousands of boys over the course of a career and they are chosen not just by Jews but by non-Jews, British Royalty and celebrities because they have the most expertise. This is why Sandra Bullock, had her boy circumcised by a mohel. I would not choose someone who does so few circumcisions a month as the best person to have my boys circumcised. I would choose someone who does them daily.

Marc
Marc

Van Lewis did admit, I am told, that he did like the way it tasted after it was circumcised. People get a life! There are so many other more urgent issues to deal with in our world. People are still sold into slavery! Our water and air are polluted, our meats are loaded with hormones. Little girls are developing breasts and they are having their periods at age 10!We have a president who is destroying our country and you are tackling a 2400 year old practice that is an integral part of two of the world's major religions? Wake up and rid yourself of the hate you have for these religions and do something constructive.

myoleman
myoleman

"For in Christ Jesus neither circumcision nor uncircumcision has any value. The only thing that counts is faith expressing itself through love." Gal. 5:6

runrandrand
runrandrand

I WISH MINE HAD BEEN CARVED WITH A ROADRUNNER'S HEAD AND BEAK---"BEEP-BEEP"!!!!pshhhhhhhuuuuuuuuuuuu!!!!

Bebep
Bebep

Parents get to decide what they want to do with their children. Get over it.

Go crusade for a useful cause instead of wasting your time over fucking foreskin.

Hmghosthost
Hmghosthost

"Circumcision is a brutal surgery. If you treated an animal the way we treat babies, you would be arrested for animal cruelty."

Doctor Salsbury, you couldn't have described your crimes against children any clearer!

To those who quote the law given to Abraham as an excuse for sexual assault on children, perhaps you should read what the Apostles wrote in the book of Acts - saying that circumcision IS NOT NECESSARY before God; and the Apostle Paul himself warns against those who continue this vulgar and heinous act, calling them "the Concision" - a Greek term meaning "THE MUTILATORS".

Children are sexually abused all the time and the nation goes up in arms against it, branding the perpetrators for life - but the nation falls silent to child sexual assault when it comes to slicing off part of the child's genitals!! THIS NATION IS SICK AND DUPLICIOUS.

I would NEVER knowingly allow someone near my child who supports such sick child abuse.

I highly recommend severe criminal penalties to such evil people as Dr. Salsbury. Culture or religion is not a valid reason to allow ANYONE to be maimed and mutilated. Those who promote child genital mutilation ought to be locked!!! away.

Hmghosthost
Hmghosthost

"Circumcision is a brutal surgery. If you treated an animal the way we treat babies, you would be arrested for animal cruelty."

Doctor Salsbury, you couldn't have described your crimes against children any clearer!To those who quote the law given to Abraham as an excuse for sexual assault on children, perhaps you should read what the Apostles wrote in the book of Acts - saying that circumcision IS NOT NECESSARY before God; and the Apostle Paul himself warns against those who continue this vulgar and heinous act, calling them "the Concision" - a Grek term meaning "THE MUTILATORS".

Child are sexually abused all the time and the nation goes up in arms against them, branding the perpetrators for life - but the nation falls silent to child sexual assault when it comes to slicing off part of the child's genitals!! THIS NATION IS SICK AND DUPLICIOUS.

I would NEVER knowing allow someone near my child who supports such sick child abuse. I highly recommend severe criminal penalties to such evil people as Dr. Salsbury. Culture is not a valid reason to allow ANYONE to be maimed and mutilated. Those who promote child genital mutilation ought to be lock away.

HUMAN RIGHTS ACTIVIST
HUMAN RIGHTS ACTIVIST

JOKES AND SCRIPTURE. DEEP

IF YOU BELIEVE IN ANY KIND OF HUMAN RIGHTS.YOU WOULD LET THE CHILD MAKE THEIR OWN DECISIONWHEN THEY ARE OLD ENOUGH TO GRASP THE TOPIC FULLY.

Joy
Joy

More and more sexy girls guys join the dating site→ stdster.,.c0m to look for sex partner.

Reneé Kazmar
Reneé Kazmar

In Genesis 12: 1-2 God tells Abram "I will make of thee a great nation." In Genesis 12: 6-7 Abram goes into Sichem, at the plain of Moreh. God comes and tells him "Unto thy seed I will give this land." Abram built him an altar. No mention of circumcision.

In Genesis 13: 14-17 God tells Abram to look as far as he can in every direction and that all that land that he sees belongs to him and his descendants forever. Again there is no mention of circumcision.

In Genesis 15: 18 God makes a covenant with Abram that his descendants shall own the land from the river in Egypt to the river Euphrates. Once again there was no mention of circumcision.

Finally, Genesis 17: 4-11 is the part that everyone is familiar with. This is where God tells Abram to change his name to Abraham, and that he will be a father of many nations, he gives Abraham the land of Canaan and tells Abraham that males are expected to have their foreskins amputated as a token of the covenant.

To summarize, three out of the four times God came to Abram and promised him vast land for his numerous descendants he didn't mention circumcision. Yet, the circumcision covenant is the only one anyone cares to mention. My guess is because it's typical human nature for the most gruesome example to be the most memorable. God saying "You can just have all this land" doesn't quite strike the same chord with people as God saying, "You can have all this land in exchange for some penis tissue."

Nigel
Nigel

You speak about boys as though they are objects. Could it be that someone objectified your existence and ignored your rights as a child by placing a scar on you and subjecting you to a minority group of men from which you can never be removed? By enabling this, it would be the repetition of abuse that was perpetrated on you, and any boys you have are counting on you to be smarter than that.

Barefoot Intactivist
Barefoot Intactivist

Mogen clamp went bankrupt due to the large number of horrific botch jobs, including severing the head, caused by the (torture) device. They lost an $11 million judgement in 2010.

Why would you allow anybody to amputate major parts of your son's penis. Seriously?!?!

Nigel
Nigel

Oh yes we are my dear. Religion is no excuse to abuse children as it is the cycle of sexual abuse. The only ones who are desiring to keep male genital mutilation legal are the ones with the scars, which can include quacks, mohels, and misguided muslims who think it is a part of their religions. In fact, the koran mentions nothing about it, and it isn't exclusively jewish, therefore it doesn't make a muslim also a jew and visa versa. Moses, leader of the jews, didn't practice this ritual. If the mythical Abraham had done to himself what is done to boys today, he'd have bled to death before he could show anyone what he had supposedly done. Genital mutilation is rooted in superstitious myth and is only a viscous, abusive cycle.

Elena Karplus
Elena Karplus

I don't need to argue with your pediatrian. The American Academy of Pediatrics can do that quite well when they state that it is a not a necessary medical procedure.

watersisland
watersisland

Oscar you seem to have a mental disconnect to the issue here. Your situation is akin to presenting evidence for ALL children having their tonsils removed at birth as a profilactic measure.....because YOU had inflamed tonsils and had to have them removed. Although it may not have affected your libido (bear in mind that no-one is arguing a libido effect)....you have no way of knowing it's affect on yours or your lovers sexual pleasure----you've never had a foreskin to compare. I'm thinking it MAY have affected your mentality though as your response is so far out in left field that either you're a poser.....or terribly mentally deficient.

Joseph Lewis
Joseph Lewis

Oscar, I'm afraid you were circumcised for no good reason. WERE you suffering an infection?

What if there were a better solution to your (iffy) problem? Wouldn't you have wanted that instead?

Read up; unfortunately, doctors don't understand the foreskin, when it retracts etc. You most likely would have been fine. Check it.

watersisland
watersisland

Uhm....you also seemed to have missed the whole point of the issue. It SHOULDN'T be the parents decision.....except in cases of medical necessity. It shouldn't be the parents decision to do an unnecessary surgical procedure on a males penis any more than it should be a parents decision to have their little girls circumsized. Its a shame that people who believe as you do are permitted to have children in this country. I hear Afghanistan and many countries in that region are filled with people of your mentality and you may just fit right in there.

Joseph Lewis
Joseph Lewis

Without medical or clinical indication, how can any doctor be performing surgery on a healthy child? Much less be giving parents any kind of a "choice?"

What other operation can a parent simply command a doctor to do without clinical indication?

DESURRECTION
DESURRECTION

Why is it the parent's decision? Why must a child be scarred for the rest of his life for an archaic, barbaric practice that the parents forced onto their child?

One could argue that you have no say in this as well so you should go back to work or study ;)

Joseph Lewis
Joseph Lewis

And mohels screw up too. Are you aware of the recent million dollar lawsuits against mohels that cut off the glans?

More to the point, shouldn't there actually be a medical necessity for a surgery before it's performed?

Without medical or clinical indication, how is it any doctor can be performing surgery on a healthy, non-consenting child? Much less be giving his parents any kind of a "choice?"

And what are mohels doing circumcising goyim? Sounds to me like they're trying to forcibly and permanently evangelize others...

Joseph Lewis
Joseph Lewis

Marc, if you are worried about said things, why are you here?

If you think there are better things to worry about, you'd be off worrying about said things.

Apprehension always, always betrays apathy.

Circumcision concerns you more than you'd like others to believe.

TellitLikeitIs
TellitLikeitIs

Bebep You are obviously a MORON!! I suppose if a parent wants to Rape his/ child it's alright by you then, you friggen imbicile!!! This is what the debate is about dipsh-t!!! Whether or not parents should have the right to abuse & perform genital mutilation on their children. If you don't know already, this practice has been outlawed for little girls in most countries, however it is still widely practiced in many countries today. Therefore similar to female circumcision, it is an issue that deserves to be argued on the basis of it's medical benifit or not, rather than archaic superstitious cultures & their ancient beliefs.

Hmghosthost
Hmghosthost

Really, you sick f*ck?! How about if your parents cut off ALL of your genitals?You don't think the protection of sexually assaulted children is a useful cause. YOU DO NOT DESERVE TO LIVE.

Bebep
Bebep

You strike me as the type of person that owns a bunker for the apocalypse.

Rphl
Rphl

leave your imaginary friend out of it. it's just barbaric, and by the way, when the Canaanite's land was "given" away, where were the Canaanites expected to go?

Joseph Lewis
Joseph Lewis

Actually, are you familiar with the earlier versions of the Torah? There are the books of J, E, D, and P.

The circumcision "covenant" as it appears in Genesis (the first book of the Torah) today, does not appear in the books of J, E, or D.

Finally, as if it were suddenly grafted there, as if it had always been there, it appears in the book of P.

It is very strange that Jews insist they "never change," when here you can clearly see that rabbis of the time changed the book to fit their needs.

Additionally, the "milah" was different then. Stages were added LATER. For example, the original "milah" was cutting off JUST the tip of the foreskin (AKA, the acroposthion). Later, when Jewish men wanted to restore to resemble their Helenistic counterparts, rabbis started getting pissed off that anyone would want to "erase the mark of the covenant," so they implemented a new stage called "peri ah," which removes all of the foreskin up to the corona glandis.

They finally added a third stage called "metzitzah b'peh," wherein the rabbi sucks on the bloody child's penis. This got a New York rabbi in trouble when he infected three boys with herpes. What happened to him? Only a slap on the wrist, and an order that he must rinse with Listerine before he sucks on another boy. What would have been his sentence if he were sucking baby girls?

The point being, it's not the same. It was added.

Finally, the New Testament compels Christians to not circumcise. Galatians 5 couldn't be any clearer:

Behold, I Paul say unto you, that if ye be circumcised, Christ shall profit you nothing. For I testify again to every man that is circumcised, that he is a debtor to do the whole law. Christ is become of no effect unto you, whosoever of you are justified by the law; ye are fallen from grace. For we through the Spirit wait for the hope of righteousness by faith.

TheTruth
TheTruth

I think the cheesy smegma underneath your foreskin has overflowed into your smart ass lil brain and affected your manners.

watersisland
watersisland

Yeah,one's small toe has less of an overall affect on a childs ability to function as a whole....but child welfare advocates would have parents put in jail if they arbitrairily had that surgically removed on their infants for any reason other than absolute medical necessity.

Bebep
Bebep

Wow you people really reach for an argument here...

I like that you insult with 'MORON' after writing such incredibly stupid shit.

I'm talking about circumcision not raping your child you freaking lunatic.

Female circumcision was outlawed because they removed the whole clitoris not just the hood, and in some cases even the labia. It actually brought health risks and problems AFTER it was performed. It is not similar to male circumcision in one bit.

So back to my point, if a parent wishes to circumcise THEIR child - then they will. So deal with it.

Oh yeah... MORON! <--- This means I win right?

Marc
Marc

You obviously are a genius! What a stupid response.

Bebep
Bebep

Yes, lets compare removing foreskin to castrating someone. Great argument genius.

Circumcision is not sexual assault, what the hell are you even talking about?

YOU DO NOT DESERVE TO POST ON THE INTERNET.

Bebep
Bebep

People like you should not be allowed on the internet posting random stupid things.

I clearly state how terrible female circumcision is, yet in your blinded rage from the foreskin in your face you can't make that out.

Keep up the good work.

watersisland
watersisland

So sounds to me that "Bebep" is in favor or removing the clitoral HOOD of females at birth. Bebep.....people like you belong in 1.Jail 2. Mental institutions. or 3.Afghanistan. Either way, you're not fit to live among a civilized society.

Ontell Babbitt
Ontell Babbitt

wth is wrong with you ....total nutjob ...no pun intended LOL

matchrestore
matchrestore

Murder is certainly worse than assault. By your reasoning assault should be legal.

 
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