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German intactivist projects deceitful and bullying tactics


Ulf Dunkel, a 56 year-old German software developer, has created and maintained a Wikipedia-style website for intactivists. While IntactWiki has a similar style as the popular Wikipedia website, Dunkel maintains total control over the website. Typical articles include esoteric and often cherry-picked facts with Dunkel's personal opinions woven into the entries.

Accusations against Circumcision Choice

Dunkel recently added an article titled "Circumcision advocat" [sic] about Circumcision Choice and other parental choice groups that provide factual information about circumcision and intactivists. [1] Dunkel falsely claims that Circumcision Choice advocates in favor of circumcision. We are a group of doctors, nurses, parents, and other concerned citizens who provide factual information about circumcision. We monitor intactivists and report on their malicious actions. We neither promote nor recommend circumcision; we support a parent's choice for or against the procedure.

Dunkel refers to the defense of circumcision as a "fetish", and he claims that we "denounce, ridicule or stalk intactivists or spread myths that have long been refuted by science as arguments for circumcision." Notably Dunkel provides scant evidence for his defamatory accusations. By contrast, most of our posts include quotes from, links to, and screen shots of original material.

Some of Dunkel's accusations - regardless of whether they were true or false - would not qualify as bullying. Merely making an argument - even if the argument is wrong or logically fallacious - does not constitute bullying. Dunkel failed to provide any evidence to support 14 out of his 16 accusations. We'll discuss 10 of his claims, while noting that Ironically, most of his accusations are tactics that intactivist leaders use and encourage their followers to use. [2]

  • Accuse the opponent as being anti-Semitic.

Our observations indicate that a significantly higher percentage of intactivists hold negative views and anti-Semitic stereotypes toward Jews and Israel. We've documented statements by high-profile intactivists like Dr. Morten Frisch, who dismissed the Holocaust as "a ploy" and blamed the Jews for anti-Semitism. We've documented how intactivist leaders like Georganne Chapin have ignored or dismissed blatantly anti-Semitic statements. [3] We've observed thousands of anti-Jewish comments and posts in private intactivist Facebook groups, with little or no complaint. Eliyahu Ungar-Sargon, who wrote and directed an anti-circumcision documentary, [4] is one of the few members willing to label elements within the movement as anti-Semitic. [5] He has pleaded with the intactivist community to address the blatant anti-Semitic rhetoric and tone-deaf attitudes. [6]

In 2012 Dunkel himself ran as a Green Party candidate in a local parliamentary election, but he was forced to withdraw after he published two anti-Semitic poems. The local Green Party denounced his "derogatory and hurtful" statements. [7] It's true that not every intactivist is motivated by anti-Jewish sentiment. But as for Dunkel: if the shoe fits, wear it.

  • Cite arguments pro circumcision that have long since been refuted.

Dunkel linked to his article titled, "Arguments pro circumcision". In this article, he gives little evidence to support any of his factual claims. The few studies he cites, by researchers with an anti-circumcision bias, are addressed in other articles on this website. Dunkel misrepresents American law, he distorts Jewish law, he falsely claims that foreskin protects against infections. He misrepresents many pro circumcision arguments. Several of his "refutations" are based on the circular premise that circumcision is bodily harm, an assumption that forms the root of the debate. His statement that penile cancer is rare doesn't refute the argument that circumcision protects against penile cancer. His assertion that phimosis can be treated by various means doesn't refute the fact that circumcision can prevent phimosis. We have reviewed several anti-circumcision arguments that are far more logical, coherent, fortified, and persuasive than this mediocre attempt by Dunkel to refute pro circumcision arguments.

  • Claim that inactivists are not about children's rights.

Intactivists don't care about the rights of girls. We've seen no evidence that they have tried to protect at-risk girls from female genital mutilation. For more on this topic, see our article on Intact America.

Nor do they care about the rights of boys. First of all, foreskin is not a human right. And second, if intactivists got their way, they would prevent 16 and 17 year-old boys from choosing to be circumcised. By demanding a minimum age of 18, intactivists show that they don't support a boy's right to make his own medical decisions.

  • Claim that intactivists are pedophile. [sic]

Kenneth Hopkins - the leader of the Blood Stained Men who calls himself "Brother K" - has repeatedly asked parents to send him photos of their children's genitals. We've received numerous reports about intactivists who peer over a parent's shoulder at a diaper station to glimpse a baby's genitals. These reports are posted in pro circumcision groups by concerned parents and in intactivist groups by the perpetrators themselves. To repeat: if the shoe fits, wear it.

  • Deny and make fun of personal experiences and sufferings from mutilated men.

Circumcision Choice does not mock or insult people based on their genital status. We wish that every man - circumcised or uncircumcised - is happy with his penis. Moreover, no one mocks mutilated men - because none of the approximately 1 billion circumcised males on earth is mutilated. Explaining to an angry man that circumcision isn't mutilation is not mockery; it is telling the truth.

We have good reason to express skepticism at incredible intactivist claims. Intactivists have a history of lying and deception. Christian Wimmer, an uncircumcised European, created the alias "David J. Bernstein" - a circumcised American Jew. Wimmer used the sock-puppet alias to portray himself as a victim of circumcision on hundreds of articles, blog posts, and social media posts. When his deception was exposed in April 2014, Wimmer begged intactivists not to reveal the truth to outsiders because 'David J. Bernstein's anger works very well in discussions.'"

Intactivist Jason Fairfield has argued that in order to persuade parents, intactivists should flood the internet with absurd claims, such as: circumcised men have a 10 times greater risk of lung cancer, and only circumcised boys die from SIDS. Anti-circumcision pioneer Paul Fleiss was convicted of bank fraud for falsely claiming that his daughter Heidi worked in his medical office. Eugene Gu, another anti-circumcision physician, created sock-puppet Twitter accounts in order to offer himself gushing praise and exculpation.

On the other hand, we've documented how intactivists constantly deny and make fun of the personal experiences of happily circumcised men. There is nobody that an intactivst hates more than a man who is happy - even grateful - to be circumcised.

  • Focus on the child's penis, not on his human rights.

We're a little confused about this claim, which Dunkel doesn't explain. Both proponents and opponents will generally focus on the penis, since circumcision is about the penis. Circumcision defenders would not focus on human rights because foreskin is not a human right. By contrast intactivists never focus on parental rights.

  • Give names.

We aren't sure what this means, but we'll guess that it means making insults. Circumcision Choice eschews insults; we simply report the facts. Intactivists invariable use demeaning slurs - calling them "cutters", "mutilators", "circumfetishists", "monsters" - designed to deny the humanity of circumcision practitioners and defenders.

  • Name intactivism a "cult".

Circumcision Choice has called intactivism a cult. Our article contains more than one hundred screenshots and links showing that the intactivist movement exhibits most of the characteristics that are typically associated with cult movements. (Many examples represent hundreds or thousands of comments and posts.)

  • Send death threats.

In a 2015 op-ed, a Circumcision Choice admin documented an anonymous threatening email sent to a mohel in Southern California. In response to death threats, another mohel required an armed bodyguard when he traveled to be a guest speaker at a medical conference. We've spoken with hundreds of physicians and mohels who report receiving disturbing messages with explict threats of bodily harm and death. Dunkel provides no evidence that Circumcision Choice or our fans have threatened anyone. There is no such evidence, because we abhor violence. We aren't the ones trying to silence dissenting voices.

  • Write private messages to the opponent with threatening or bullying content.

​This website contains dozens of examples of unsolicited messages in which intactivists threaten or otherwise bully people who disagree with them. We've shared plenty of additional examples on our Facebook page.

Whimsical articles

Dunkel's decisions on which individuals to feature on his website appear to be whimsical. For example, he doesn't mention Gillian Longley, a retired nurse who has held leadership positions in Intact America, Doctors Opposing Circumcision, Nurses for the Rights of the Child, and Nocirc Colorado. [8] Nor does he mention Frances Maxant (a.k.a. Franny Max - photo at right), a lawyer in Montreal who conceived the "Intactivists Stop Circumcision" Facebook group, and who has developed hundreds of local "Circumcision Resources" pages. Both Longley and Maxant have been named Intact America's "Intactivist of the Month" for their longtime dedication and respective efforts to the movement. [9]

Yet IntactWiki does include an entry for Daniel Tati, a 29 year-old man who has participated in a few anti-circumcision protests, but who has no leadership credentials, website administration, scholarly papers, or other accomplishments to his name. IntactiWiki has just a brief two-line entry for intactivist pioneer Paul Fleiss, whose strong influence on the movement continues several years after his death. [10]

Of the people Dunkel identifies as circumcision promoters, he has two pages - including a 3,800-word entry with extensive details [11] about Jake Waskett, a British software engineer who by Dunkel's own admission, retired from the circumcision debate back in 2012. Meanwhile the entry for Bill Gates, the Microsoft founder who has promoted circumcision and donated $50 million toward a program to circumcise the entire male population of Africa, contains just a few sentences.

The article ends with the remarkable claim that intactivists don't tolerate anti-Semitism. As we explained above, intactivists do tolerate anti-Semitism.

Conclusion

A new visitor might mistake IntactWiki for an unbiased compedium of information. A quick review of the website shows that the articles are false, misleading, incomplete, trivial, extremely biased, or otherwise deficient.

[1] Ulf Dunkel; "Circumcision advocat"; IntactWiki; May 23, 2020

[2] Projection is a psychological defense mechanism that involves projecting undesirable emotions or actions onto someone else rather than admitting to or dealing with the unwanted emotions or actions.

[3] "Intact America Part 4: We will cannibalize ourselves rather than focus on the real enemy"; Circumcision Choice; October 10, 2018

[4] Eliyahu Ungar-Sargon; "Cut: Slicing Through the Myths of Circumcision"; 2009

[5] Eliyahu Ungar-Sargon; "On Eric Clopper and Misdirected Anger"; August 8, 2018. "Sex and Circumcision: An American Love Story is factually inaccurate, negligently insensitive, and unambiguously antisemitic. Eric Clopper is a human being in pain and I hope that he can learn better strategies for getting his needs met in the future."

[6] Eliyahu Ungar-Sargon; "Dear Intactivists"; YouTube; July 18, 2018

[7] Toby Axelrod; "German pol quits party race over poems seen as anti-Semitic"; Jewish Telegraphic Agency; December 31, 2012

[8] "IOTM - Gillian Longley"; Intact America; June 14, 2011

[9] "IOTM – Franny Max"; Intact America; October 1, 2015

[10] Paul Fleiss wrote several prominent books and articles about circumcision, including "The Case Against Circumcision" and "What Your Doctor May Not Tell You About Circumcision". He invented the popular intactomyth that the foreskin contains more than 20,000 fine touch nerve endings. Intactivists continue to cite his works to this day.

[11] The extensive article with exhaustive details of Waskett's activity makes it seem as if Dunkel is stalking him online. Consequently Dunkel's accusation that circumcision advocates "stalk intactivists" appears tp be another instance of projection.

#IntactWiki #UlfDunkel #Dunkel #Projection

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