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Kiwi blogger accuses us of absurdities

October 12, 2019

​​Hugh Young, a retired broadcaster and editor in New Zealand, created and maintains an anti-circumcision website called Circumstitions. He includes "Intactivist" in his identity on both Facebook and Twitter. He has added thousands of comments about circumcision to online articles, several of which are only vaguely - if at all related - to the topic. Back in 2007 this Kiwi filed a formal complaint about a radio program, claiming it was unbalanced because speakers in favor of circumcision received more air time than those who questioned the procedure. It is unclear whether this man has a life outside of his foreskin/circumcision obsession.

On one of his website pages, Young archives what he considers to be "absurd claims about genital cutting". Based on the earliest entries, it appears that he has maintained this list for at least 19 years. One of the most recent items is the Facebook comment reprinted below, posted by a Circumcision Choice admin back in 2018.

Websters dictionary defines absurd as: "ridiculously unreasonable, unsound, or incongruous". Analyzing the functions of the penis would determine whether a circumcised organ is complete and fully functional or incomplete and damaged.

Urination: Circumcision doesn't interfere with the urinary function. On the contrary, circumcision improves the urinary function by reducing urinary tract infections. Other urinary benefits include: no need to pull back the foreskin, and a lower risk of the dreadful zipper injury.

Procreation: There is no evidence that circumcision interferes with procreation. In fact a lower STD rate might give circumcised men an advantage in this area. One observation that dispels any notion that the procedure should diminish a man's ability to impregnate a woman is that Muslims and Orthodox Jews - ethnic groups with the highest percentages of circumcised men - tend to have large familes.

Sexual Pleasure: It's no mystery to our readers why circumcision does not affect sexual pleasure. While studies show that the foreskin is more sensitive to fine-touch stimuli, sexual stimulation involves mobile or frictional contact, not fine-touch. Researcher Jennifer Bossio explained, "The nerve fibers in the penis that are activated by temperature and pain are more relevant in sexual functioning - or the feel of a sexy touch - than the light touch that past researchers had done. Even though [the foreskin] is more sensitive to light touch, I suspect that isn't implicated in sexual pleasure."

Two years ago we refuted the so-called 16 functions of the foreskin. Since circumcision has no adverse effect on the three functions - and may actually inprove penile functioning - it cannot be considered necessary. Therefore our comment is correct.

You know what would be absurd? Keeping a list of every male celebrity who is uncircumcised (particularly since the majority of men are). Tracking every single circumcision or foreskin reference in literature, television, and film from around the world. Traveling to other continents to preach to the choir about such irrelevant and deviant topics as the fetishism of circumcision instruments, circumcision as a memeplex, and the rise and fall of snipping in the Shire. You know what would be really absurd? To learn about terrorist attacks in the American cities of Portland, Oregon and Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. And then to react - not by raising funds to help the survivors and victims' families. Not even by offering sympathy for the affected communities. An absurd and obtuse reaction would be to worry about whether the religiously-motivated attacks will discredit the intactivist movement.

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