Friday, May 22, 2015

Circumcision or Why I’m Not an Egalitarian

There is a group of libertarians I’ve witnessed who regard male circumcision as the equivalent of female circumcision.  These are people who usually argue that women are more privileged than men because parents are permitted to “mutilate” a little boy’s penis but not a little girl’s vagina.

The trouble is, our egalitarian Western ideals seem to have been taken too far.  What people in the West call “female circumcision” is really just genital mutilation.  Only a man can be circumcised, not a woman.  This much is fairly clear as last I checked, a woman doesn’t have a penis.

As to the matter of circumcising baby boys, though, this does have trouble with libertarian ideals.  For one thing, the libertarian ideals call for not bringing harm to other individuals and many argue that circumcising a baby boy is bringing harm to a child.

On the other hand, there are religious reasons for doing so, at least among Jews and Muslims, though many Christians believe this to be something they must practice in order to get right with God, Book of Acts notwithstanding.

What do I think?  I think these libertarians are looking for any excuse to attack religion.  While I agree that there are some problems with circumcising boys, especially when you’re not all that religious, there is no indication that it has devastating effects on the health and sexual well-being on men as a whole.

Personally, I don’t think you should circumcise your baby boys unless you have a strong religious reason to do so.  It does not rob them of their sexual enjoyment, but at the same time, it isn’t necessary for Gentiles to perform such an act on their children.  Consider just baptizing them instead.

This is one of the many reason why I can’t stand with libertarians whole-heartedly since many of them seem to have reached a point where gender differences don’t exist.  Male circumcision is a very different thing from female genital mutilation.

And yes, in the interest of full disclosure, my son is not circumcised.  I am, but that was done when I was a baby and I’m not bitter about it.  Maybe I’m missing out on something, but I haven’t noticed anything myself, especially considering that the sexual experiences of individuals varies from person to person.