To: President Biden, The United States House of Representatives, and The United States Senate
Ban Routine Infant Circumcision (RIC/MGM) In The U.S.A. Now
WHEREAS routine infant circumcision (RIC, or male genital mutilation - MGM) is a medically unnecessary surgery that is performed without the victim's consent, and WHEREAS not a single national medical organization on Earth recommends routine infant circumcision, and WHEREAS RIC is a violation of the basic human right of bodily integrity, and WHEREAS boys deserve the same legal protection against genital mutilation or alteration that is now afforded girls in the United States, we call upon Congress to enact a law banning circumcision when not medically indicated on any male without his consent and before he has reached the age of 18.
Why is this important?
The foreskin is not a birth defect. Circumcision is a permanent amputation of normal, healthy, sensitive tissue that serves important physiological functions and without which normal sexual performance and sensation can be impaired. During the 19th century, circumcision was promoted as an effective remedy for a host of ailments including but not limited to rheumatism, epilepsy, asthma, skin cancer, insanity, and venereal disease. But it was as a remedy for "masturbatory insanity" which was believed to result from masturbation or "self-abuse" that circumcision was most widely promoted by its supporters during the 19th century. These are the historical and pseudo-scientific roots of routine infant male circumcision as it is practiced in the U.S. today.
Yet this petition is not about banning circumcision. It is about banning forced circumcision. It is about ending the practice of denying men the right to choose for themselves whether to be circumcised.
There is no right more basic nor more important than the right to control one's own body. Forced infant circumcision violates that right. It is a human-rights violation because it deprives infants, boys and men of the right to determine what is done to their bodies. The campaign to end involuntary circumcision, like its sister campaign to eradicate female genital mutilation, is based on the simple idea that each individual, regardless of sex, has an innate right to control his or her own body. Thus, the effort to ban routine infant male circumcision is part of a greater human-rights struggle in the broadest sense. It is a crucial part of the effort to create a world in which all people's rights - infants, girls, boys, women, men, and intersex individuals - are respected.