Posts Tagged Nile

Circumcision Ballot Question Makes the Cut

parents and eight day old son at the brisA proposal to ban circumcision in San Francisco will appear on the November ballot in that city.  This will be the nation’s  first public vote on what has long been considered a private religious matter.  If passed, it would undoubtedly be challenged in the courts as a blatant violation of the constitutional rights of Jews and Muslims, yet this ballot initiative received more than 7,700 signatures.

If the measure passes, circumcision would be prohibited, with no religious exemptions.  The bris — the sacred rite that launches the partnership between Jews and God —  would become a misdemeanor offense punishable by a fine of up to $1,000; or up to one year in jail.  In a city that’s renowned for being open-minded, such an intolerant proposition seems bizaare.

Muslims are similarly affected, for circumcision also is widely practiced by Muslims (but at age thirteen);  and while circumcision does not appear in the Koran, it is mentioned in the Sunnah, the sayings of the Prophet Muhammad.

This attack upon Judaism and Islam is even more striking when one considers that international health organizations have promoted circumcision as an important strategy for reducing the spread of the AIDS virus, based on studies that showed it can prevent AIDS among heterosexual men in Africa.  Circumcision also reduces the incidence of other sexually transmitted diseases, as well as penile cancer and urinary tract infections. Read the rest of this entry »

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