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This is a topic I have very strong feelings about because I happen to be a victim of the cruel and unnecessary procedure called routine infant circumcision. Thankfully it’s not so “routine” anymore and is no longer covered under Canadian health care. I personally feel it should be banned without true medical necessity.

I could easily go into this topic with great depth and length, but I’ll try to be concise.  As to its history, It’s enough to say that it primarily arose from religious and/or cultural traditions and eventually bastardized its way into the medical field when very insignificant studies that suggested mild preventative effects on certain conditions like penile cancer were used as an excuse for the anti-masturbation advocates to push for it. Then it was supposedly ‘cleaner’ and everybody looked that way so you wouldn’t want to look different then your dad or the boys in the locker room, would you? A very slippery slope down to a terribly common and horribly invasive procedure.

You could compare it to tattooing your child or removing their toenails so they won’t get fungal infections. It’s idiocy.

Let’s get to the ‘meat’ of the matter shall we?  Why keep the foreskin? Here is the best study to date that actually tested the differences between an intact male and one circumcised.

The Conclusion reads: “The glans of the circumcised penis is less sensitive to fine touch than the glans of the uncircumcised penis. The transitional region from the external to the internal prepuce is the most sensitive region of the uncircumcised penis and more sensitive than the most sensitive region of the circumcised penis. Circumcision ablates the most sensitive parts of the penis.”

Other studies have been done & were shamelessly misleading; asking questions about “sexual satisfaction” and ability to get erections and orgasms. All completely irrelevant to head to head comparisons..No pun intended.  Even a study done by McGill University in Montreal made a colossal error.  They concluded, “The study found no difference in sensitivity to touch or pain between the two groups, debunking the widely-held belief that uncircumcised men experience greater sexual pleasure.

“This study suggests that preconceptions of penile sensory differences between circumcised and uncircumcised men may be unfounded,” said Kimberley Payne, a principal author of the study, in a release. So what was the problem? Here is a comparison of the two studies:

“For instance, the recent Payne et al. study in the Journal of Sexual Medicine says penile sensitivity is no different between intact and circumcised men. This is the opposite of the Penile Touch-Test Sensitivity Evaluation study by Sorrells et al. published in the British Journal of Urology International, saying intact men have four times the penile sensitivity of circumcised men. Sorrells says circumcision removes the most sensitive parts of the penis, while Payne chose to ignore the hyper-sensitive foreskin altogether, as well as failing to reference the earlier Sorrells study.

Both studies employed the same testing method using a standard monofilament skin sensitivity-measuring device. The Sorrells study tested 161 men at 17 locations (2157 tests) along the penis, including the circumcision scar, and inner and outer parts of the foreskin. The Payne study tested 20 men at 2 locations (40 tests), but inexplicably did not measure foreskin sensitivity.

The foreskin has long been identified as the most sensitive portion of the penis, and Payne admitted that, “it is possible that the uncircumcised penis is more sensitive due to the presence of additional sensory receptors on the prepuce and frenulum.” And, yet, omitted testing any part of the foreskin because, “this cannot be compared with the absence of such structures in the circumcised penis.”

People like me can never get back what we lost and many feel very bitter about that.  Don’t make a choice for someone that isn’t yours to make.

Now we have clear scientific evidence showing the superiority of an intact penis. So now we move on to whose body is it anyway? Taking a young infant, or even a child and forcing him to undergo an irreversible, unnecessary procedure that is usually very painful and until recently rarely given anesthesia for is just wrong! Period!  You could compare it to tattooing your child or removing their toenails so they won’t get fungal infections. It’s idiocy.

On top of this, you are removing the potential for greater sexual satisfaction and ultimately a decline in sensitivity overall as the circumcised penis keratinizes and becomes thicker skinned with age.  It’s not meant to be exposed to the air and is covered by a mucous membrane that is designed to keep it moist and sensitive. It’s similar to the eyeball.  Lastly the recent studies suggesting a minor protective effect against HIV and possibly other STI’s are just as silly an argument. Does it mean condom use is unnecessary? Absolutely not! So what does it matter? Just so you can have better chances whenever you might ‘take a risk’? If anything it might give a false sense of security. Work on getting rid of the diseases and properly protecting yourself fully against them, not removing parts of your body for an extremely mild resistance effect.

This is barely scratching the surface of the argument but let’s just finish off by reminding everyone that this can ALWAYS be chosen as an elective procedure if you wish to be circumcised later in life. But the people like me can never get back what we lost and many feel very bitter about that.  Don’t make a choice for someone that isn’t yours to make.

Read the full study here.

photo credit: Sundve

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  1. Very nice article, thank you for providing the study! I wish more people would question concepts such as circumcision more often than simply accepting it as part of societal customs.

  2. There’s no right or wrong to circumcision when it comes to a religion which demands we wipe out any witches in our family, stone your own gay children to death, and risk one’s own penises to please a deity who is neither a god nor a goddess but neither in the Torah. Anyway, his or her obsessions with with the penis border on phallomania — or would only a goddess admit to that?

    We cut infants’ nails to prevent them from scratching themselves, but why, thus, cut off the protective shield of the glans penis? It’s really too young after a week to do any serious or permanent damage in the world.

    Talk about “child abuse” … and fail to mention infant cirucmcision? In legislation, we actually leave out penis mutilatoin as a common form of child abuse!

    Why would a patriarchy allow the mutilation of its manhood — or permit its overworked single moms to make a masculine decision affecting their sons for the remainders of their lives. Well, the answer, obviouly, is that none of the Abrahamic religions are rally patriarchal; they have none of hte fratriarchal culture of the celts, the Germans, the Greeks or Rromans; underneath, they’re matriarchal, account their descent by females, and provide women with what they prefer.

    Notwithstanding, that doesn’t mean we don’t have a right to stay clear of religions with that kind of chutzpah. Judaism claims that only 27 sq in of (I can tell you) sensitive issue is removed, but this doesn’t seem to account for other men who have a lot more to lose than that

    Whatever its obsolete origins, circumcision has to stop, just like hanging homosexuals (as Muslims still do), hanging witches, and wizards, and circumcizing children without their understanding, permission, or consent. If we can’t ban circumcision altogether, at least we can restrict it to males who have reached their majority of, say, ae 13 when any reasonable boy will say ‘get away from me with that knife! I want a 2nd opinion!’ A 2nd opinion is exactly what Judaism and Islam do not want.

    Meanwhile, we should insist that Moyls who were thus circumcized, finish the job on themselves by removing the entire glans — just lopping off the head of the penis with a carving knife (or Muslims can use a scimitar, Blacks a machete, and Yankees a wood saw). That way they could be even more modest before God and everybody else.

    Wait a bris …! Why not encourage these relentless circumcisers (always hungry for business) to go whole hog, refound the lost art of self-castration, and dedicate themselves to the Momgod? That is where this ridiculous holiness came from originally, isn’t it? Wasn’t it her priestess, the farmer’s wife, who went after those mices and their tails …?

    • AA Boston gynecologist recently told the story of a single mom giving birth to a son. She asked if circumcision was covered by her welfare insurance. She wanted “my penis” circumcised. “I went to all the trouble to have one. I want it circumcised.” Apparently, we are all implicated in this barbarism. We’re paying not for his preference, but hers!

  3. Uncut here, I clean mine as often as anyone should clean and no issues. I am glad it is more common, I was bullied a fair bit in public school because of it, they called me “SockBoy” and physically harmed me (until I started realizing I was a big guy and could kick their asses).


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