Labor Day 2018
PO Box 8516
Tarrytown, NY 10591
Re: American Circumcision
This weekend I purchased and watched “American Circumcision” through my Amazon account.
This film is orchestrated extremely well. It is highly informative, offering a whole host of insights and facts into male (and, female) circumcision.
Other than the two male doctors, the one from Australia and the one with the bow tie, the people in this film are quite likeable. Those two doctors should be taken out and horse whipped for their arrogance, ignorance and dismissive indifference toward circumcised men who have come to regret it. My Power of Attorney/Executor is a very longtime friend and a Jew who has never forgiven being circumcised. He considers it an outrage that his penis was “mutilated” without his having any say in it.
My father was vehement about keeping his sons “natural” and actually resented the very concept of circumcision. When I was age 13 I expressed a desire to be circumcised “to look like most of the other boys”. Wow! That was huge mistake. Needless to say, my wish was not answered and today I am very pleased by that fact.
Now, some thoughts on circumcision that I may have shared with you in earlier writings:
Scripture and circumcision: I seriously doubt that “God” told Abraham to circumcise himself and all the males within his tribe. The Ancient Israelites hated the gentiles, considering us unclean and barbaric (as if they weren’t!). I believe early circumcision was done to assure Israelite males were “different” from the gentiles. That thought is borne out with the post-Hellenic extreme and excessive form of circumcision, initiated so that the Israelite boys could not perform foreskin restoration.
Circumcision and HIV/AIDS: The assertion that there is a greater risk of contracting HIV/AIDS if one is not circumcised has no basis of proof. Every friend I lost to AIDS, including my first partner, was circumcised. I have no STDs or STIs. The hyperbole created by misinformation about HIV/AIDS as it relates to circumcision versus non-circumcision is intentionally driven to promote circumcision.
The America Academy of Pediatrics: It is time – past time, actually – the Academy relent on its promotion of circumcision and focus on keeping males “whole” from their point of birth. As medical “professionals” (said tongue in cheek), their persistence and insistence on male circumcision is unethical.
The increased presence of uncircumcised men: In erotic film, over the last decade there has been a growing presence of uncircumcised male performers. The idea that uncircumcised penises were some-how “dirty” and “unattractive” has given way to more openness and understanding. After all, foreskin – as you and I know – is natural. Many circumcised penises look as though they have been butchered. Some of my circumcised friends have remarked that reaching orgasm can become so tedious it almost is not worth the effort.
While watching “American Circumcision” my emotions ran the gamut from full-on rage to welling up with tears. The flippant insolence of the two doctors who are so supportive of circumcision left me in a state of rage. The story of the mother whose son suffers from a botched circumcision left me speechless and feeling very sad. I also note the number of women involved; and that a woman, Marilyn Milos, initiated this conversation decades ago. (I once remarked to a lady friend that the penis is to the man what breasts are to the woman. Her response: “Wow, I never thought of it that way.”)
Through Facebook I have joined numerous Intact groups throughout the country. The work you are doing and what you have done already is beyond praiseworthy. This topic deserves and demands a far wider audience. Men have been diminished not by their own intentions, but by parents and doctors who are either ill-informed or stuck in a mythical belief pattern wrongly directed. In either case, that must change. Perhaps my voice and participation will help to bring that change about. I have a gut sense there are certain organizations at work that simply want to punish the penis. How sad is that!
As I prepared to complete this letter, the latest issue of “The Advocate” appeared in my Email. Jonathan Conte and your film are featured, generating heated discussion. Sadly, many men who posted remarks are poorly informed; some defensive or hyperbolic in their posts. I suspect this “touched a nerve” among some of those men. Some readers conclude, erroneously, that this is / was a topic limited to gays (probably the result of “The Advocate” featuring Conte in their article). Some responses are immature and obviously defensive. I suggested they view the film; then, comment.
Over this last decade I have become increasingly dismayed, discouraged and demoralized from wit-nessing the level of ignorance and stupidity in America – on myriad subjects. Circumcision is just one.
With warm regards,
(The Reverend) M. Vincent Turner