News: German Ruling Puts Stop to Circumcising Baby Boys

A discussion has been brewing over the last few days about a German court which ruled circumcising baby boys to be unlawful. There are several articles out covering the topic, NY Times and Babble both have their take. While the ruling won’t make circumcising illegal in all of Germany, it made me wonder what you all think about this topic.

I know this is a sensitive subject, so please share your own thoughts and opinions. Here’s my opinion.

Before I had kids or met my husband I always just assumed we’d circumcise our children. It wasn’t even a real decision, it was just the way it was. Then one day I was visiting with a friend who had a few day old baby boy and while changing his diaper I saw what a newly circumcised penis looks like — that right there changed my mind. I would not circumcise my son.

When my husband and I found out we were pregnant I told him if we were having a boy I didn’t want to circumcise him. I felt he was perfect as God made him, why cut off something that was meant to be there? (We have no religious beliefs that would tell us otherwise) Why would we want our son’s first “sexual experience” to be painful? (They have to get the penis hard to remove the foreskin) Luckily my husband agreed and shared a story about a visual arts teacher he had in college who shared a video documentary about the emotional and physical pain he has over a circumcision that went wrong as a baby. So the decision was easy for us: leave our son uncircumcised. One concern we had was that he wouldn’t match his Dad. We decided it was an easy story to tell him one day when he’s older and asks why he looks different: God made him perfect, God just forgot to wrap Dad’s. We’ll see how that really goes in 5+ years.

The German ruling looked at circumcision for what it is, not for the tradition or how widely it’s accepted, but just looked at what is being done to baby boys and decided it wasn’t ok.  If we ask ourselves similar questions what would the answer be? Would we be ok if something similar happened to baby girls? Is it ok for people to practice other types of genital “cutting” on babies? If not, then why is it ok to circumcise? I am interested to hear what you think! Please comment and share your thoughts.

Of the friends I talk to who circumcise, most do it for religious tradition or they do it so that their son will look like their Dad. Take the poll below to share why you did or didn’t circumcise your baby boy.

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