The first intensive exploration of the unrecognized psychological and social aspects of this increasingly controversial American cultural practice. Endorsed by dozens of professionals in psychology, psychiatry, child development, pediatrics, obstetrics, childbirth education, sociology and anthropology.
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"What's done to children, they will do to society."
"Parents do not know what they are choosing, and physicians do not feel what they are doing."
"In response to circumcision, the baby cries a helpless, panicky, breathless, high-pitched cry!...[or] lapses into a semi-coma. Both of these states...are abnormal states in the newborn."
"Doctors who circumcise are the most resistant to change. They will not admit that they made a critical mistake by amputating an important part of the penis."
"In this case, the old dictum 'If it ain't broke, don't fix it' seems to make good sense."
"A whole life can be shaped by an old trauma, remembered or not."
"If we are to have real peace, we must begin with the children."
"We are interconnected. When a baby boy's sexuality is not safe, no one's sexuality is safe."
"The grandest privilege of those who have the means is to alleviate suffering."
The Israeli mother was ordered by a rabbinical court in November to circumcise her son. She resisted the order and appealed the case to the Israeli Supreme Court, a civil court. The hearing is scheduled for Feb. 25. The matter is part of an ongoing divorce case. In Israel, religious courts have authority over various family matters like marriage, divorce, and child welfare. Circumcision is viewed as a requirement among religious Jews. Israel has struggled for generations to reconcile its religious and secular traditions.
The woman has said that she does not wish to harm her son. Circumcision has been shown to result in physical, sexual, and psychological harm. Ronald Goldman, Ph.D., JCRC Executive Director, stated, "We do not think any parent should be compelled to circumcise a son, and we are pleased about the wide global support for this petition."
As the caretaker and mother, she wants to avoid circumcision like thousands of other Israeli parents. No civil law requires circumcision in Israel. When parents disagree, as in this instance, the default position is to let the child decide about circumcision when he is older.
Another purpose is to gather and disseminate information about the experiences of those who choose not to circumcise and add to the growing understanding and acceptance of alternatives to circumcision in the Jewish community. The Jewish Circumcision Resource Center is a section of the Circumcision Resource Center, a non-profit educational organization.
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