Friday, January 25, 2013

PERTH: Couple charged with taking daughter to Bali for cutting

WAtoday (Western Australia)
January 25, 2013

Genital mutilation parents appear in court

by Aleisha Orr

The Perth mother and father alleged to have organised the illegal circumcision of their baby girl in Bali have made a brief appearance in court.

The 44-year-old father and 42-year-old mother, who cannot be named for legal reasons, appeared in Perth Magistrates Court on Wednesday charged with female genital mutilation offences.

Police allege the parents went to Perth Airport in August with the intention of taking the girl to Bali for the procedure.

The matter was adjourned until February 27 to allow further consultation with the treating doctor in the case.

Female circumcision is performed in some cultures and religions, but is illegal in Australia.

It is also illegal to perform, arrange or take a child out of the state for such a procedure.

Earlier story

SOUTH AFRICA: Youth's throat cut, foreskin stolen

January 23, 2013

His foreskin was cut off!

An 18-year-old boy was found in Kutlwanong with his throat slit and his foreskin removed from his genitals, Free State police said

Sgt Puleng Motsoeneng said the body was found on Saturday by a passerby walking near Tshepong mine.

“When he saw traces of blood, he became curious and followed the blood traces.

“To his dismay he made the gruesome discovery and found a teenage boy lying in a pool of his own blood, still in his school uniform.”

She said the principal of JC Motume High School identified him as Lerato Samuel Nyama.

No arrests have been made.
[Comments suggest the young man was murdered either to use his foreskin for witchcraft, or because he had seen boys during their initiation school.]

One Direction singer flicks girlfriend who nagged him to get cut

Yes, a foreskin is a good airhead repellent...

Showbiz Spy
January , 2013

Harry Styles told to get circumcised

by Adam

HARRY Styles dumped Taylor Swift because she wanted him to get circumcised.

The One Direction star apparently hated that Taylor kept nagging him about clipping his manhood.

“Taylor didn’t like the fact that English-born Harry was not circumcised – she even suggested he undergo surgery!” a source said.

“Harry made it clear he had no intention of changing anything. He asked her not to mention it again. But Taylor never missed the chance to poke fun or make a comment.

“At first, Harry just rolled his eyes and tried to ignore her, but the final straw came when she suggested once again that he get…snipped!”

NEW YORK: Metzitzah: Parental consent form

NYC 311
(January 22, 2013)

Circumcision Consent Form

Ritual Jewish circumcision with direct oral suctioning (metzitzah b'peh) can only be performed after a parent has given written permission.

The consent form needs to be signed by both the mohel and at least one parent.

Download the Circumcision Consent Form.

Consent to perform oral suction during circumcision

Printed first and last name of individual performing circumcision:________________________________
Date of infant's birth (month/day/year): _________________________
I understand that direct oral suction will be performed on my child and that the New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene advises parents that direct oral suction should not be performed because it exposes an infant to the risk of transmission of herpes simplex virus infection, which may result in brain damage or death.
Printed first and last name of parent: __________________________________________
Signature of parent:________________________________________
Date of signature (month/day/year): ____________________________
A copy of this signed consent form shall be provided to the parent or legal guardian of the infant.

[logo] NYC

[The mohel does not need to sign the form, or give any contact details. Only one parent needs to sign it, even if the other bitterly disagrees with metzitzah or even circumcision. The form is not kept on file anywhere. There is no mechanism for ensuring that either parent sees it or signs it.]

Earlier story

JAKARTA: Muslim group pushes against FGC ban

The Jakarta Post
January 22, 2013

Muslim body pushes Indonesian govt to circumcise girls

The Indonesian Ulema Council (MUI) is bucking a United Nation's campaign to ban female circumcision, demanding that the government keep the practice legal.

MUI deputy secretary-general Amirsyah Tambunan told reporters at a press conference on Monday that the government should continue to allow female circumcision, calling it a constitutional right.

"Circumcision is a part of the Islamic teachings that were recommended for Muslims, both male and female," Amrisyah said at MUI headquarters as quoted by Antara news agency. "The MUI and Islamic organisations in the country firmly stand against any efforts to ban female circumcision."

Female circumcision performed by licensed doctors, nurses or midwives was legalised by a Health Ministry regulation issued in 2010 that defined the practice as "incising the skin that covers the front part of clitoris, without harming the clitoris".

Last month, the UN approved a non-binding resolution urging its 193 member states to enforce legislation prohibiting female genital mutilation.

According to the World Health Organisation, female genital mutilation can cause urination problems, severe bleeding and complications during childbirth.

In Indonesia the practice ranges from the symbolic - a small tap with a bamboo stick - to slicing the clitoris off with scissors.

The National Commission on Violence against Women (Komnas Perempuan) has consistently urged that the 2010 ministerial regulation be revoked, claiming it violated women's reproductive rights.

Meanwhile, Huzaemah, a member of MUI's fatwa commission, said that female circumcision was a religious obligation that should be done to control women's sexual desire.

Separately, the executive director of the Wahid Institute, Ahmad Suaedy, disagreed, saying that the practice was based on fiqih (Islamic jurisprudence) that could be interpreted differently by different ulemas.

"Female circumcision is not in the sharia. Maybe, the MUI drew their conclusions from a fiqih that was applied in a particular context and region," he told The Jakarta Post.

Meanwhile, Enrico Renaldi, a physician from the Indonesian General Practitioners Association, said that local medical schools did not teach female circumcision procedures.

"I also have never heard of female circumcision training for doctors. Traditionally, this practice is only performed by midwives," he told the Post.

Earlier story

JAKARTA: Women's rights groups push for FGC ban

Jakarta Globe
January 21, 2013

Rights Groups Push for Female Circumcision Ban

The National Commission on Violence Against Women (Komnas Perempuan) spoke out against the Ministry of Health’s refusal to ban female circumcision on Monday, calling the practice, which is tolerated in some communities, a form of gender discrimination. [How is that, when male genital cutting is allowed?]

Rural Indonesian Muslims have historically tolerated a form of female circumcision where a small cut is made to the clitoris of a young girl by a dukun (shaman) shortly after birth.

The Ministry of Health banned health workers from performing female genital cutting in a 2006 decree. But in 2010, Health Minister Endang Rahayu Sedyaningsih issued guidelines that instructed health workers to “scrape the skin covering the clitoris, without injuring the clitoris” in an effort to provide a measure of safety in the widely unregulated industry.

Women's rights groups criticized the decree, arguing that the regulation was a tacit approval of female circumcision. Now, three years later, women’s rights groups are pushing for Health Minister Nafsiah Mboi to ban the practice.

“Strange the Ministry of Health, as an institution, can be directed by the MUI [the Indonesian Ulema of Council],” Komnas Perempuan commissioner Ninik Rahayu, told the Indonesian newspaper Tempo.

Nafsiah said the ministry approved of health workers performing female circumcision under the existing guidelines.

“If [women] would like to get circumcised please make an inquiry to a health agency so a medical officer can handle [the procedure],” Nafsiah told Tempo. “Do not go to a dukun [shaman] because [circumcisions done by shamans] are prone to infection.”

Nafsiah said that female circumcision did not cause any negative side effects if the clitoris isn’t cut.

Komnas Perempuan questioned the ministry’s decision.

“What standards?” Ninik said. “Our medical officers have never been trained to perform female circumcision.”

The MUI rejected any efforts to ban the practice on Monday. MUI chairman Ma’ruf Amin instead urged all hospitals and health centers in Indonesia to service those who want their daughters circumcised.

“What we reject is the ban. If there is a request [to perform a female circumcision], don’t turn [the parents] away,” Ma’ruf said.

The MUI considers circumcision an act of religious devotion. The MUI issued a fatwa five years ago, saying that female circumcision is a religious service.

But Ninik argued that, under Islamic law, female circumcision is considered a tradition, not a religious order.

Earlier story

Friday, January 18, 2013

SHEFFIELD, UK: Circumcision funding cut sparks "backstreet" fears

January 17, 2013

Sheffield circumcision cuts spark backstreet op fear

Funding for male circumcision for non-medical reasons in Sheffield is to be cut, sparking concerns there will be a rise in backstreet operations.

About 200 circumcisions are carried out for religious reasons in Sheffield each year, at a cost of £200,000.

NHS Sheffield's Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) is looking to make savings and has proposed making families pay for the procedure.

Members of the city's Islamic community have complained about the decision.

Community worker Wahid Nazir said Muslim and Jewish communities would be affected.

"If these proposals go ahead these people that are doing these circumcisions in the backstreets, people that are not medically qualified, are going to become more prominent... and there's going to be more problems and young children are going to be put at risk.

"In Sheffield it was advertised and people were encouraged to go to the NHS and get things done properly and it was very successful. So we're taking a backward step."

The move would bring Sheffield in line with national guidelines from the Department of Health, which say circumcisions should not be funded when they are requested for non-medical reasons.

In a statement, the CCG said: "Nationally, the NHS does not fund routine or religious circumcisions but despite this, Sheffield continues to spend £200,000 a year on these operations.

"As a CCG, we have to review what is the best use of funding for the half a million people who live in our city and as we only carry out around 200 circumcisions a year, we can assume that many parents are already using non-NHS funded services.

"As a CCG we are keen to ensure that all services we fund are medically necessary and appropriate whilst also providing the best value for money for all."

Earlier story

Circumcision in the UK
  • Most circumcisions in the UK are done for non-therapeutic reasons (religious)
  • Currently no formal qualifications are required to perform the operation
  • Jewish boys are circumcised when they are eight-days-old by a Mohel - a Jewish person trained in the practice of brit milah, the covenant of circumcision [So the NHS is not involved.]
  • Most Muslim boys and some Christians are also circumcised as babies. [Circumcision has no place in Christianity] There is no equivalent of a Jewish Mohel in Islam or Christianity with procedures usually carried out by doctors
  • Some medical experts have called for religious circumcision to be offered on the NHS to minimise the risk of post-operative complications

USA: Renewed push for circumcision age-restriction

January 15, 2013

American Effort to Ban Circumcision of Minors Kicks into High Gear

Genital integrity activists from across the country are demanding that lawmakers ban the practice of circumcising boys. Popularly known as “intactivists”, these children’s rights advocates submitted the Male Genital Mutilation (MGM) Bill proposal to more than 2,000 legislators this week in an effort to require gender neutrality in federal and state laws that regulate genital cutting.

As director of’s Indiana state office in Indianapolis, Jeff Cowsert wants all boys to be able to grow up with their genitals left intact. “When I was eight years old, my religious friends told me about circumcision,” said Cowsert. “I was silently outraged, and for the remainder of my childhood I mourned the fact that I didn't have a complete body. I would not have chosen to be cut if given the choice, and I strongly feel that infant circumcision needs to be banned so that men can make their own choices about their own bodies when they are mature adults.”

Ending male circumcision is a goal shared by many women, as well. Shelley Wright-Estevam is a mother and business owner who serves as the group’s state office director in Selbyville, Delaware. “You shouldn’t have to be born female to be protected from genital cutting,” said Wright-Estevam, who has frequently been spotted spreading her message of intactivism on the boardwalk in nearby Rehoboth Beach. “I have heard some people argue that parents should be the ones to make that decision, but violence against a child is not a private matter. Circumcision is not just unnecessary; it also removes a male’s most sensitive body part. It's unethical, painful, harmful, and occasionally even fatal.”

Male circumcision was one of the top issues for lawmakers around the world in 2012. It started in January when a Helsinki district court convicted a man of assault and battery for circumcising two Muslim boys. The following month, the Swedish Pediatric Society issued a statement calling circumcision an “assault” that should be banned. Then, in June, the Centre Party in Norway called on the Red-Green coalition government to grant boys legal protection from circumcision.

Two months later in August, the Tasmanian Law Reform Institute recommended that the state impose a general prohibition on circumcision while Denmark opened an investigation to determine if circumcision violates its health code. And in October, Finland’s largest opposition party promised to introduce a bill that would criminalize circumcision of boys.

But the biggest news came out of Germany over the summer, when a Cologne district court ruled that circumcision of male children is a crime. Although Germany’s parliament later overrode the decision by passing a new law, the German Pediatric Association called for that law to be rejected, stating that boys have “the same basic constitutional legal rights to physical integrity as girls”.

Circumcision was a hot topic in America, as well, when children’s rights groups slammed an American Academy of Pediatrics policy statement that sanctioned parental access to newborn circumcision. New York City also implemented disclosure and consent rules regarding the practice of ritual circumcision after two baby boys died from contracting herpes during the procedure. And with H.R. 2400 (the “Religious and Parental Rights Defense Act of 2011”) failing to get past the House Energy and Commerce Committee, the path is now clear for state governments to prohibit circumcision of male minors within their own borders.

Matthew Hess, president of, said lawmakers can’t hide from the issue forever. “There are too many people speaking out against circumcision now,” said Hess. “What once was a trickle of condemnation has now become a tidal wave. Modern parents are armed with information on the harmful effects of foreskin amputation, and circumcised men are much more willing to speak out against what was done to them as infants. I think the days of legalized childhood circumcision in this country are numbered.”

In addition to submitting the MGM Bill proposal to every member of the 113th Congress, the group’s representatives submitted similar bills to every state lawmaker in California, Delaware, Florida, Indiana, Minnesota, New Jersey, New York, Oregon, Virginia, and Washington.

Earlier story

NEW YORK: Metzitzah: Judge rules parental consent may be required

the New York Times
January 10, 2013

Consent Rule May Proceed for a Circumcision Ritual

by Sharon Otterman

New York City health officials may proceed temporarily with a plan to require parental consent before an infant may undergo a particular Jewish circumcision ritual, a federal judge ruled Thursday.

City officials say 12 cases of herpes simplex virus have likely resulted from the procedure, known as metzitzah b’peh, since 2000, including one Brooklyn case reported this week. Two infants died, and two suffered permanent brain damage. Most Jews no longer practice metzitzah b’peh, in which the circumciser uses his mouth to suck blood from the wound, but it remains common among some ultra-Orthodox communities.

Citing the risk of infection, health officials in September introduced a regulation that would require parents to provide written consent stating that they were aware of the health risks.

But the Central Rabbinical Congress of the United States and Canada, Agudath Israel of America, and the International Bris Association sued in October to stop the rule from taking effect, calling it an infringement of their constitutional rights. They also denied the procedure posed a risk and asked a federal court to put the rule on hold while the litigation proceeded.

In denying the request for a preliminary injunction, Judge Naomi Reice Buchwald of the United States District Court for the Southern District wrote that the risks were clear.

“In light of the quality of the evidence presented in support of the regulation, we conclude that a continued injunction against enforcement of the regulation would not serve the public interest,” she wrote.

City lawyers said they were gratified by the ruling, but Andrew Moesel, a spokesman for the plaintiffs, said the groups would appeal. “We continue to believe that this case is a wrongful and unnecessary intrusion into the rights of freedom of religion and speech,” he said.

Earlier story

Sunday, January 13, 2013

SHEFFIELD, UK: Hospitals plan to charge for circumcision

National Secular Society
January 10, 2013

Sheffield hospitals plan to charge for non-medical circumcision

Hospitals in Sheffield carry out about 200 non-medical male circumcisions a year, costing the Health Authority in the region of £170,000. Now, in an attempt to save money, the NHS Sheffield's Clinical Commissioning Group has proposed to make families who want their sons circumcised pay for the procedure. Each operation costs about £1,000.

But Coun Shaffaq Mohammed, who is a director at the Pakistan Muslim Centre in Sheffield, is worried about the potential knock-on effects.

He told Postcode Gazette: "I'm very concerned. Whilst it may seem like an easy saving, this could lead to a serious increase in backstreet operations. This is a dangerous path to tread and as a result may actually lead to parents seeking emergency treatment and actually increase burden on the NHS."
[This argument is never used to justify state funding of female genital cutting.]

Dr Margaret Ainger, a GP from Page Hall medical practice on Owler Lane and lead for children's services in the NHS Sheffield Clinical Commissioning Group, said: "We understand that for some, circumcisions are an important part of their religion and therefore our doctors are working with our key community groups on how best we could make advice and guidance available to those who need it. Conversations with these groups are planned and we are keen to get people involved in tailoring this advice."

The cut is set to come into force in the 2013/14 financial year. The commissioning group has been in discussions with Sheffield Children's Hospital about the possibility of instead providing a private service at the hospital.

A report to be presented at a council meeting next week states: "(The team is) exploring the potential to develop a service which will provide care under local anaesthetic on a private basis and paid for by the children's parents."

Dr Ainger added: "No decision has been made as of yet but we are exploring what options would be available to the Sheffield public by working in partnership with both the Children's Hospital and local authority to make sure that any family wishing to circumcise their sons have the best possible advice and guidance available."

Male circumcision, which is the surgical removal of the foreskin, is often carried out for non-medical reasons such as religious beliefs or personal preferences. It is common in both the Muslim and Jewish communities.

According to national guidelines from the Department of Health, circumcisions should not be funded when they are requested for non-medical reasons. The proposals bring Sheffield into line with this national guidance.

Dr Ainger said: "Non-therapeutic circumcisions are not clinical interventions and as a group, we would not want anybody to undergo a medical procedure if there was no specific clinical need."

Terry Sanderson, President of the National Secular Society, commented: "This is yet another example of public money being used for religious purposes. There is absolutely no need for children to be subjected to such a procedure – in fact there are plenty of arguments why they shouldn't be. The idea that scarce NHS funding is being used for something that has only religious and no medical significance is scandalous.

"There is however a real danger that those seeking circumcisions will turn to practitioners without medical qualifications. We call on the Government to amend Child protection legislation to make it unlawful for anyone other than qualified medical staff to circumcise minors for any reason. This is just a first step, though. We believe that non-therapeutic circumcision should not be permitted until the boy is old enough to give informed consent.

"Non-therapeutic infant circumcision is a breach of children's rights and it's time legislators reconsidered the current carte blanche afforded to infant circumcision on the basis that the parents' freedom of religion is the only consideration. This approach has already been taken by a Cologne Court and is backed by reputable medical bodies including the Royal Dutch Medical Association."

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

WASHINGTON DC: Federal "Boxcutter" circumcision bill dies

Govtrack US
January 2, 2013

"Boxcutter circumcision" Bill dies

A bill that would have prohibited banning infant male circumcision in the United States, has died without being enacted

In fact, H.R. 2400 (112th): Religious and Parental Rights Defense Act of 2011, would have allowed anyone, trained or not, to circumcise any male up to the age of 18, so long as one parent consented.
The bill was proposed by Rep. Brad Sherman (D-CA) in June 2012 and co-sponsored by nine others. It was referred to the Senate's Energy and Commerce Committee, but lapsed in the new year.

WASHINGTON DC: Taking girls outside USA for genital cutting now illegal

H R 4310
January 2, 2013

Taking girls outside US for genital cutting now illegal

A federal amendment to criminalize transporting girls out of the country for circumcision was signed into law on Wednesday as part of the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2013.
The new statute, introduced by Mary Bono Mack (), reads:
SEC. 1088. TRANSPORT FOR FEMALE GENITAL MUTILATION. Section 116 of title 18, United States Code, is amended by adding at the end the following:
"(d) Whoever knowingly transports from the United States and its territories a person in foreign commerce for the purpose of conduct with regard to that person that would be a violation of subsection (a) if the conduct occurred within the United States, or attempts to do so, shall be fined under this title or imprisoned not more than 5 years, or both."
Earlier story

UGANDA: Museveni still opposes circumcision

Africa Review
January 2, 2013

Museveni sticks to position on circumcision

by Agatha Ayebazibwe
Uganda's President Museveni has reaffirmed his earlier stand against safe male circumcision in eliminating HIV, saying the campaigns in favour of the method are misleading Ugandans into unchecked sexual behaviour. [He's right.]

In his end of year message to the nation on Sunday, the President said there was need to revisit the earlier strategy of Abstinence, Being faithful and Condom use (ABC) strategy if the current trend of HIV is to be reversed.

The 2011 Uganda Aids Indicator Survey figures show that the prevalence of HIV among adults has increased from 6.4 per cent in 2005 to 7.3 per cent in 2011. Ministry of Health figures also indicate that new infections increased by 11.5 per cent between 2007/8 and 2010/11.

The President said Ugandans should return to morality and sexual discipline if HIV\Aids is to be fought effectively, adding that HIV/Aids is not a medical but a moral problem that should be treated as such.

Mr Museveni had made the same call in Rakai during the World Aids Day celebrations on December 1, 2012.

The President’s call is in disagreement with that of [some] scientists who advocate for safe male circumcision as another preventive measure which offers [only men] up to 60 per cent protection from the HIV virus that is yet to have a cure.

Officials of the Aids Control Programme (ACP) at the Ministry of Health received the news with criticism, saying HIV is a big problem in Uganda that cannot be tackled with a single strategy but rather a combination of all scientifically-proven preventive measures, including circumcision.

“Currently, the scourge is on the rise despite the fact that the ABC campaign has existed for several years now,” said Dr Alex Ario, the ACP programme manager. Dr Ario added: “Other methods cannot be excluded at a time when we have to ensure that the rate of infection is brought down.”

He, however, said the government should acknowledge that there is a problem so it can adopt all the available preventive measures. “We are not telling people to go on rampage because they are circumcised. [They can do that without being told.] We will continue to use a combination of preventive measures until that time when we will get one method that offers 100 per cent protection against HIV.”

The UNAIDS Country Representative, Mr Musa Bungundu, said the ABC strategy is not enough to reduce the increasing HIV infection rate and therefore should be used alongside other measures.

He said if the President thinks that circumcision is not effective, the government should ensure that policies against mother-to-child transmission of HIV are implemented beyond paper to check the more than 15,000 children who are born infected every year.

Sunday, January 6, 2013

TURKEY: Boy loses penis in circumcision

Hurriyet Daily News (Turkey)
January 2, 2013

Child's penis cut off in circumcision feast, family claims two million TL compensation

The family of a 3-year-old child whose penis was cut off during a collective circumcision feast in the southeastern province of Batman has demanded 2 million Turkish Liras [$US 1,120,000] in compensation from the Ministry of Health by applying to the Council of State.

The family of the boy sued the ministry in Batman's administrative court after the incident two years ago, with the local court awarding 600,000 Turkish Liras [$US 337,000] in damages.

However, not satisfied with this amount, the family is claiming that the boy may require further treatment, including treatment abroad. It is also claimed that the circumcision was not performed by a qualified doctor, but rather an unqualified member of hospital personnel.

Saturday, January 5, 2013

LOUISVILLE, KY: Court finds for doctor who amputated penis during circumcision

NBC News
December 21, 2012

Court backs doctor in penis amputation case

by Brett Barrouquere
LOUISVILLE, Ky. — A Kentucky man lost his bid Friday to force a doctor to pay damages for removing a cancer-riddled section of his penis during what was scheduled to be a simple circumcision.

The Kentucky Court of Appeals found that a jury correctly concluded that 66-year-old Phillip Seaton of Waddy consented to allow Dr. John Patterson to perform any procedure deemed necessary during the Oct. 19, 2007, surgery.

Patterson, a Kentucky-based urologist, maintains he found cancer in the man's penis during surgery and that it had to be removed. The patient claims the surgery was supposed to be a circumcision and he never authorized the amputation, nor was he given a chance to seek a second opinion.
[Why was the cancer not found well before the circumcision had begun? Did nobody look under his foreskin earlier?]

"Additionally, there is uncontroverted testimony in the record that if Mr. Seaton were not treated for the penile cancer, it would prove fatal in the future," Judge Janet Stumbo wrote for the court.

Judge Michael Caperton dissented, but did not issue a written opinion.

Clay Robinson, a Lexington-based attorney for Patterson, said the opinion was "very well-reasoned" and fact-based. [Would the attorney for the doctor have been so laudatory if the decision had gone the other way?]

"You always appreciate when you see judges at any level go into that amount of detail," Robinson said.

Seaton and his wife, Deborah, sued Patterson, a Kentucky-based urologist, in Shelby County Circuit Court in 2008. Seaton was having the procedure to better treat inflammation. The Seatons also sued Jewish Hospital, where the surgery took place. The hospital settled with the couple for an undisclosed amount.
Both sides agree that Seaton had squamous cell carcinoma, a type of skin cancer, in his penis. Patterson concluded that a tumor had overtaken much of the top of the organ, which made it impossible to insert a catheter.

"He also opined that serious complications and additional surgery could result if he did not insert the catheter," Stumbo wrote.

The main point of contention is whether Patterson acted reasonably in removing the organ immediately or if amputation could have been delayed to let Seaton seek other medical options.

Stumbo and Judge Donna Dixon concluded that, even though Seaton had limited ability to read and write, he never informed the doctor of that fact and signed the consent form in the presence of a witness. The Seatons claimed that the waiver didn't give Patterson authority to conduct an amputation without further consent.

"They maintain that no harm would have resulted if Dr. Patterson has consulted with either of them before proceeding, or if he had allowed them to consult with another physician to get a second opinion or other treatment options," Stumbo wrote.

Stumbo wrote that Patterson acted properly because the tumor had consumed such a large section of the organ.

Thursday, January 3, 2013

BERLIN: Green candidate stood down for anti-circumcision poems

December 31, 2012

German Green candidate quits over criticisms of Jews, Muslims

Ulf Dunkel had come under fire from the national Jewish spokesman over two anti-circumcision poems he published.
Germany's Green Party said Monday that a candidate who had described Jews and Muslims as "arseholes" because they practice male circumcision was withdrawing from a state poll.

Ulf Dunkel had come under fire from the national Jewish spokesman over two anti-circumcision poems he published.

One termed those who circumcise their sons "arseholes" and "blind fanatics." The other included the line: "Sharpen the knife, sing a hymn, cut off the member's foreskin."

Male circumcision, which is rarely practiced in Germany on medical grounds, triggered fierce controversy in the run-up to federal legislation, introduced in mid-December, which confirmed that it is legal for parents to arrange for religiously mandated circumcision. [The law does not mention religion.]

Michael Jaeger, of the Cloppenburg chapter of the Green Party, said that while Dunkel's name would remain on the ballot in a January 20 election for the Lower Saxony state parliament, the candidate would decline to take up his seat if elected. Dunkel could not be reached for comment.

Jaeger said it was too late to take his name off the ballot because postal voting in the state had already begun.

Dieter Graumann, chairman of the Central Council of Jews, earlier appealed to the Greens to withdraw Dunkel's candidacy. "His works radiate hate-filled arrogance towards Jews and Muslims," Graumann said.