Time Is Running Out
I just signed the newest petition by Intact America at http://org2.democracyinaction.org/o/5922/t/6483/campaign.jsp?campaign_KEY=2554
According to Intact America, "The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) Task Force on Circumcision has been meeting to finalize its policy on routine male circumcision. Having recently retracted its policy statement calling for a lift of the Federal ban on female genital cutting, the AAP must now stand up and protect the rights of ALL children to an intact body.
While the AAP prepares to go public with its statement, it’s critical that it hear directly from people who oppose circumcision. Remind them that it’s wrong – morally, medically, and ethically – and that doctors took an oath to “do no harm.”
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Please help by going to the website above and "signing" the petition. You are able to edit it before "signing" it. Here's a copy of it:
American parents trust their pediatricians and rely on them for the best advice in caring for their children. As a matter of ethics, that advice cannot include neonatal male circumcision - a medically unnecessary, potentially risky surgery that no major medical authority in the world recommends.
That is why I am asking the committee charged with reviewing the American Academy of Pediatrics' current neutral position on infant circumcision NOT to revise that position in favor of the surgery. Further, I ask you to take an ethical stand against the removal of a healthy, functioning body part - the prepuce, or foreskin - from non-consenting newborn babies.
The United States is the only western nation today where doctors routinely circumcise infant boys in medical settings. Although the rate has fallen from above 90 percent 30 years ago to below 60 percent today, more than one million American babies still undergo the surgery every year to the tune of one billion dollars in health-care spending.
Doctors have a responsibility to tell parents the truth: circumcision does not prevent disease. Most European nations, with circumcision rates near zero, have lower HIV/AIDS rates than the United States. Circumcision rates in America do not correlate with HIV rates in any ethnic population or geographical region.
Furthermore, circumcision has significant risks, including infection, bleeding, impairment of sexual function, and even death. Earlier this year, an Atlanta family was awarded $2.3 million because a physician accidentally amputated much of a baby's penis during a "routine" hospital circumcision. A Canadian baby bled to death in 2004, after being circumcised in a British Columbia hospital. In 2008, a baby from South Dakota bled to death, and his parents have filed suit against the hospital where he was circumcised, as well as the doctor who performed the surgery.
Infrequent though complications may be, because the surgery is performed on healthy babies who have no need for it, each injury and each death is utterly indefensible. And even an "uncomplicated" infant circumcision permanently removes healthy functional tissue from a person who did not consent to it.
Growing numbers of medical professionals and expectant parents are saying "No" to infant circumcision. I urge the AAP's committee charged with reviewing circumcision policy, as well as all pediatricians, to make the same decision on behalf of the babies who are their patients.
Thank you for your time and attention to this serious matter.
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November 2010 Update:
Last year, the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) said it would come out with recommendations on infant circumcision "soon"—and yet they still remain silent even after their annual conference last September. Many members of the AAP Task Force on Circumcision, currently considering whether the AAP should recommend infant circumcision for all baby boys, was there. Intact America was there too. With the recent news that the U.S. circumcision rate is down to just 33%, America’s pediatricians have been put on notice: circumcision is an antiquated, violent, and unnecessary procedure that has NO health benefits.
Please write to the AAP today and remind pediatricians they took an oath to do no harm—which means they MUST start listening to America’s parents and the rest of the world: circumcision is not an effective tool against AIDS, it isn't medically necessary, and it inflicts needless pain and suffering on helpless infants. Please stop cutting baby boys now!
A prewritten email letter to the AAP, where you can change, delete, or add at your choosing, is at