General Question

RareDenver's avatar

A court ruling in Germany has effectively banned circumcision. What are your thoughts on this?

Asked by RareDenver (13141points) July 15th, 2012

A district court of Cologne says circumcision “for the purpose of religious upbringing constitutes a violation of physical integrity”.

The judgement added: “The child’s body is permanently and irreparably changed by the circumcision. This change conflicts with the child’s interest of later being able to make his own decision on his religious affiliation.”

This has of course angered Jews and Muslims and the German Chancellor, Angela Merkel has said that Jewish and Muslim communities should be able to continue the practice of circumcision.

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29 Answers

Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

I agree with it.

Lightlyseared's avatar

I think if we allow female genital mutilation we should allow male genital mutilation.

Also I like who its only the religious who think they can improve on God’s design.

RareDenver's avatar

Where does it end? Do we not allow parents to pierce their childrens ears? Although piercings can heal, you can’t really grow back a foreskin!

I guess in theory I agree with the courts but Germany of all countries should realise the dangers in curtailing peoples freedom to religious practises. It’s a difficult one.

RareDenver's avatar

I’m still pissed off that some dude sprinkled magic water on my head when I was a baby, can’t imagine how pissed off I would be if he had cut my foreskin off!

poisonedantidote's avatar

As long as you can still have it done when you are 16/18/21 years old, I would agree. If you want to cut a bit of your dick off, it is your dick, you should be allowed to do it, you just don’t get to do it to people who can’t talk yet, much less mount a reasoned argument for why they do or dont want it.

EDIT: if the Dr says you need it when you are 8 years old to fix a medical problem, that would be fine too.

janbb's avatar

Didn’t we just do this?

Dutchess_III's avatar

Yes, @janbb we did. It’s so interesting how the tones are different on each question, though!

I guess I hope that the Jewish people can find a way to justify putting off circumcision until the kid is old enough to decide for himself. It’s a difficult one.

RareDenver's avatar

@Dutchess_III it has to be done by the time they are 8 days old source

cazzie's avatar

It. Was. Not. Banned in all of Germany. The court decision was a small district court and it was a result of a legal case involving a doctor who carried out a circumcision on a four year-old that led to medical complications.. Keep up people.

But, oddly, it has brought Muslims and Jews together, fighting a common enemy: Germany’s Medical Association told doctors not to perform circumcisions.

RareDenver's avatar

@cazzie and hospitals all over Germany have stopped performing circumcisions for fear of prosecution, the court ruling ‘effectively’ banned circumcision on any grounds other than immediate health concerns. I’m sure it will go to a higher court eventually especially as it has become so political. Keep up @cazzie

cazzie's avatar

yea! Common sense and reason wins the day, then. I celebrate.

The German medical association has been trying to stop the practice for years, I guess.

The ruling wasn’t binding. I am thinking that this is a storm in a tea cup that will soon be filled with small baby schmucks before long, anyway. Reason may win a day, but seldom the era.

bolwerk's avatar

I’m not a fan of circumcision, but banning it almost seems to be dumb for the big socioeconomic reason banning abortion is ultimately dumb. Banning it will just drive the operation underground, away from licensed doctors and toward quacks who probably (at least in the case of Muslims) think jinn cause infections.

Linda_Owl's avatar

Circumcision used to be done because it reduced the incidence of vaginal cancer(?) or other disease(?) in women when men & women got old enough to have sex. Now it is a religious thing & if the doctors do not do the circumcisions, someone will do them who have less knowledge & less training & less than sterile conditions & baby boys could die. I understand the German’s government position on this, it is a barbaric thing to do, but since it is tied to religion, someone will find a way to do it.

RareDenver's avatar

@Linda_Owl the German Government are pretty much saying everyone should be allowed to circumcise their children, it’s a German Court that has said otherwise.

Dutchess_III's avatar

@RareDenver I’m aware of the “law.” However, adults convert to Judaism and get circumcised after that. And if a baby is a preemie or has other problems and can’t be circumcised on the 8th day, they have to have some law or something to take justify delaying it. So there is a way around it.

@Linda_Owl Circumcision for Jewish infants has been practiced for thousands of years as a part of their religious rite. They’ve been doing it loooong before any possible connection between cervical cancer could have been known.

bewailknot's avatar

Jewish babies are not circumcised by a doctor so doctors not doing it wouldn’t matter as long as a mohel is still permitted to do it. My son was circumcised by a doctor when he was 2 days old – if I had it to do over I would not have permitted it, it was horrifying to watch.

Crashsequence2012's avatar


Imagine it is inflicted on women instead.

What does you collective gut tell you now?

That’s right, the correct answer is to support the ban.

Dutchess_III's avatar

There is a vast difference between circumcision of men and women, and huge differences behind the “logic” of each one @Crashsequence2012.

Crashsequence2012's avatar

True @Dutchess_III

But it makes no difference in this argument.

Dutchess_III's avatar

Yes, it does. You were comparing circumcision of women with circumcision of men, suggesting that they are the “same.” They are not.

Crashsequence2012's avatar

I am able to compare them because they share an important quality:

They are both undesirable.

I understand that to you comparing male circumcision runs the risk of making female circumcision seem less outrageous, a conflict with your cause.

Dutchess_III's avatar

What? What in the WORLD are you talking about??!

Crashsequence2012's avatar

Some believe that the severity of a bad act depends on the various social groups to which the victim belongs.

If you are not one of these people ignore my last statement and accept my apologies.

Dutchess_III's avatar

That was a ridiculous statement to make to someone whom you know nothing about. Consider it ignored.

cazzie's avatar

There are more risks from the circumcision than from UTI or cervical cancer risk to partners though out their lifetime. Deaths are also under reported. It is believed that the number of deaths are closer to double the amount.

Dutchess_III's avatar

@bewailknot Where do you get the idea that Jewish circumcisions are not done by doctors??

janbb's avatar

@Dutchess_III They are usually done by mohels who are specially trained professionals.

mattbrowne's avatar

Lawmakers just announced to change the existing laws as everyone expected they would. Circumcisions will be possible. Some activists here have already started to protest. But there will be a large majority in the parliament.

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