It is often said that a “Plastibell” circumcision is painless and doesn’t involve any cutting or blood. Many people say that it is a more “gentle” circumcision without any risks. All of these statements are false. It is not “safer” or “without risk”. In fact, there are studies surrounding the complications of this method. This article includes a video of a Plastibell circumcision, as well as photos involving just a few (of many) complications. ***WARNING: very graphic content***
Tag Archives: circumcision
With fewer than 1 in 1,000 Australian doctors involving themselves in the unethical practice of forced circumcision upon minors, it’s a surprise only half equate the practice to child abuse. Nevertheless, it’s encouraging to see community attitudes shifting so quickly.
“Half of the Australian Doctor community believe that the circumcision of newborns is tantamount to child abuse and should never be performed, a survey reveals.”
Circumcision is often quoted as being “a cure searching for a disease”. It was made popular in western societies in the Victorian period as a cure for masturbation, which was thought to be an evil that then caused all sorts of diseases.
Since then, pro-circumcision advocates have tried to find a disease that circumcision will ‘cure’ or prevent. One of the latest inventions is that somehow circumcision can prevent cancer of the penis.
The only person I’ve ever heard who contracted penile cancer was Al Pacino’s character Benjamin ‘Lefty’ Ruggiero from the Johnny Depp film ‘Donnie Brasco’. Apart from this, does anyone know anyone in Australia who has cancer of the penis? No? Well that is because it is extremely rare, accounting for less than 1% of all male cancers. And those cases occur in elderly men. Even if circumcision was a factor, would you amputate a healthy, functional part of your baby to try to reduce the risk of a cancer he has only a slight chance of getting late in life?
In any case, the medical world agrees that circumcision is unlikely to be a factor. The real world evidence shows that there is no difference in the rate of cancer of the penis between countries with relatively high circumcision rates (such as the USA) and low circumcision rates (such as Sweden). This is from the Cancer Council of Australia:
“In developed countries penile cancer is a relatively rare disease, with an incidence of approximately 1 in 100,000. The absence of randomised controlled trial evidence, combined with the rarity of penile cancer, suggests that circumcision is not justified for the sole purpose of protecting against penile cancer”
The plastibell technique is the most popular method for circumcision in Australia.This technique involves applying the plastibel devcie so that it restricts the blood flow to the foreskin until the tissue dies and drops off. It is similar to a controversial technique used in farming in Australia for docking an animal’s tail and castration, where a rubber band (elastrator) is used.
While the pro-cutting doctors will try to tell you that the risks are minimal, you should know that babies do die as a direct result of being circumcised by the Plastibell technique:
One myth about this technique is that it doesnt involve cutting. See this post from BubHub on the truth of what is involved.
More information can be found at the following links:
Warning: graphical pictures of severe infections as a result of Plastibell circumcisions:
Finding out that you’re going to be a parent is an exciting, yet surreal, moment.
But, if you’ve got a boy on the way, one of the decisions you’ll need to make is whether his penis will circumcised or not. This is the decision that my fianceé left to me last year when we found out the sex.
Anna was indifferent about it, and I just assumed our boy would be circumcised, mostly because I am myself. We also live in the United States (New Jersey to be particular) and it just seemed like something everybody does.
Read the full article at the following link:
We often get reports here in Australia on the abhorrent practice of female infant genital mutilation, which is carried out in some overseas countries. There are the typical “pearl clutching” reactions, and gasps of horror, followed by a small sense of relief that ‘we don’t do that is this country. Or do we? Yes, we cut our baby boys, but that’s different. Isn’t it?
Most of our society, especially the older generations like the former sex discrimination commissioner Pru Goward, will stand up indignantly and proclaim that female genital cutting is mutilation but offer no position on male genital cutting. Much of this opinion however is based on the misguided belief female genital mutilation involves amputation of the clitoris and the cutting off or sewing up of all other external parts. The fact is that this extreme practice is rare, and that there are different degrees of female genital cutting. Some or these practices are clearly worse than male circumcision. Others though, such as a symbolic pin prick, are clearly less severe than male circumcision.
The following articles and blogs explore these similarities and differences, and why our society seems to accept one, but not the other:
I’ve decided to keep a post on all the random quotes I come across online. I will choose one of these for the home page of the site, and will change it frequently. If one if these quotes is yours and I have not attributed it please let me know.
“The overwhelming majority of circumcised men were circumcised as newborn infants. The memory of this event is not in their conscious awareness. Consequently, the connection between present feelings and circumcision may not be clear. For example, a circumcised man wondering about its effects said: ‘It seems to me that there’s got to be a connection between circumcision and how I feel about my genitals and my sexuality. It just isn’t reasonable to me that there wouldn’t be a connection there. I think it’s something that’s so deeply buried that it’s going to take more exploration on my part for me to get in touch with it. It’s pretty disturbing that circumcision was the first sexual experience that I ever had.”
“The reason that doctors accept these myths, when they usually are eager to accept the scientific evidence on most topics, is that circumcisers are almost always victims of the procedure. An important body part has been stolen from them and they have great difficulty dealing with that loss. If they are women practitioners, they have either agreed to having their sons’ foreskins amputated, or they did a number of circumcisions without thinking, then lacked the courage to acknowledge the harm they had caused.”~George C. Denniston MD, MPH
“With due alteration of detail, the same ethical reasoning holds for male circumcision. There rarely are medical reasons for performing the procedure; personal preference or religious values of parents usually underlie the request. If these are insufficient to justify the circumcision of girls then unless there are distinguishing medical reasons, they are also insufficient to justify the circumcision of boys. TO ARGUE DIFFERENTLY IS TO BE GUILTY OF DISCRIMINATION ON THE BASIS OF SEX. BOTH involve what in other contexts would be called nonconsensual MUTILATION of a minor for non-medical reasons”.- Eike-Henner Kluge Ph.D. Professor with the Department of Philosophy at the University of Victoria , B.C., in his article on “Female circumcision: when medical ethics confronts cultural values” published in the Canadian Medical Association Journal – January 1993, 148 (2)
“MUTILATING(circumcising) the baby instead of teaching each child the arts of good hygiene is Very bad practice, bad ethics, bad theology and a bad idea.I do not understand how any religious system could ever endorse that. Female circumcision – I prefer to call it “female genital mutilation” is still practiced in parts of Christian Africa. It too is said to have health benefits. BOTH of these practices represent control tactics and guilt laden castration rites born out of the superstition and Ignorance of the past. I regard circumcision in BOTH sexes as a Barbaric act with No redeeming features. I find it almost laughable that the same religious voices that oppose the use of condoms would now support circumcision as a health practice.” ~ John Shelby Spong
Dear World: I promise you, you do NOT have to circumcise your children. You ARE smart enough to simply wipe them clean as babies. They ARE smart enough to rinse themselves off when they are older. They ARE smart enough to practice safer sex. The opposite sex IS smart enough to realize that missing body parts do not make for a better looking or performing lover. You ARE smart enough to realize that we don’t cut off any other body part ‘just in case’ and that logic applies to genitals too.” ~Woman Uncensored
“I feel that it’s an insult to presume that a child who would grow up to clean his fingernails, blow his nose and brush his teeth…would be too stupid to learn how to retract the foreskin and wash the glans penis– a procedure no more difficult than washing a finger.” Thomas J. Ritter, MD
“I grew up as the only intact boy in my area. I owe my good fortune to having unusually savvy parents. When a nurse came to take me to be circumcised, my parents said no because no male in my family had ever been circumcised or had any problems with his foreskin. Also, my grandfather was a druggist and had had to correct physicians’ prescriptions so that the doctors didn’t injure or kill their patients. At a time when most people treated doctors as if they were gods, my parents knew better.”
From Tight Phimosis to Full Retraction: One Man’s Stretching Experience
“It is true that many circumcised men are “happy” that they are. What is crazy is the response men (and women) who are not happy about it get. Are all these people maladjusted crybabies? I don’t think so. If you take a moment to reflect on it, why should any man be “well-adjusted” to the fact that an unnecessary penile reduction surgery was performed on him without his consent? Why would any spouse/partner be “well-adjusted” to the idea that a man’s parents decided to alter HIS penis’ “style” and features? It isn’t much fun learning the truth about circumcision, but despite the emotional turmoil such discoveries can engender, more men (and women) are facing facts. Do a search on “foreskin restoration” and you get ~243,000 results. That is not the number who search, but number of RESULTS. With all the advertisements and spam for “male enhancement” products, what is most astonishing to me is that we do not question the first product “sold” to us, “MALE DIMINISHMENT”, as the source for much of the physical and psychological need for “male enhancement.” ~Devon
“Factually speaking, circumcision is medical quackery, a scientific hoax, and a barbarous violation of human rights. Religious dogma aside, the psychosexual pathology of why this horrible practice persists in so-called civilized communities is probably encoded in the genes of aggression and in the perversion of sadism not unknown among medical doctors. Scientifically speaking, it is clear that the notion that the human male is an “inferior design” – the only mammal in creation born with a congenital deformity that needs immediate surgical amputation – turns evolution on its head. One only needs to see the shocked reaction on someone’s face when it is recommended that they have their dog or horse circumcised to understand just how absurd the whole business is. The foreskin system, which makes up the only movable part of the human penis, is no more a “mistake of nature” than are human eyelids or ears and it should be left alone.”
The Messenger (The Santa Monica Mountains News and Arts Publication), December 18, 1997 – January 15, 1998
The Messenger (The Santa Monica Mountains News and Arts Publication), December 18, 1997 – January 15, 1998
“Perhaps when we stop chopping up the genitals of baby boys, the men they grow into will stop wishing to control the genitals of women. I find it ironic that so many women are so angry about men’s intrusions into their sexual organs yet so many of these women see it as their right to amputate part of their baby boy’s penis. The hypocrisy is not lost on me!” – Karen Kelly Glennon
“The vast majority of Americans are ignorant of the purpose of circumcision, and when confronted with it for the first time, often feel angry. That is understandable, but the only rational thing to do is to realize that you should be angry at the doctors for not telling you or your husband’s parents the truth. You can even be angry at fate for being born in the one time and place that circumcision was popular for non-religious reasons. The one thing you cannot do is to get angry at the bearer of the facts, because whether or not you like it, whether or not you blame me or whoever told you the truth about circumcision, the fact remains that the purpose of circumcision has always been to curb male sexuality, and it has been enormously successful. Do not circumcise your sons – give them the gift of complete and normal sexuality.”
Dr Luke Bookallil
Parents from Armidale may be interested to read an article on circumcision that was published in the Armidale Express. An excerpt from this article reads as follows:
“Not only does the foreskin contain the vast bulk of the pleasure-sensing nerves of the penis, but it provides a gliding action that facilitates and enhances sexual activity of all types,” he said. “Before the 20th century it was well understood that the foreskin was the sexually dynamic and responsive component of the penis, which is why Victorian purity and anti-masturbation campaigners were so keen to cut it off.”
Dr Luke Bookallil falsely claims that circumcision prevents cancer of the penis, which is a Breach of Australian advertising regulations.
Coffs Harbour and Armidale
I will often hear women say that men do not complain about being circumcised. While it is difficult to accept that their parents did something to harm them, and that their sex life has been compromised, many men are now speaking out against what was done to them as a baby. Read some of their stories here.
In addition, you may wish to consider the following:
– in countries where circumcision is more common less than 1/1000 men who were not circumcised as infants decide to have it done as an adult. In countries that respect the genital integrity of their baby boys, the rate is around 1/16000. That means that in Australia there is at least a 999/1000 chance that your son will be happy with keeping all of his genitals. And if he happens to be the 1 in 1000 that decides or needs to have it done he can decide to do it. If he is circumcised and not happy about it there is nothing he can do to completely get it back.
– It is estimated that around 200,000 men world wide are currently undertaking non-surgical foreskin restoration. It does not regrow all of the complex structures lost to circumcision but does give some of the feeling of having a foreskin. Read some of their heartwrenching stories at Restoring Foreskin.org.
Dr Michael Read
(Gold Coast Circumcisions)
2nd Floor, 95 Nerang Street
Southport Queensland 4215
(Opposite Gold Coast Hospital)
Phone: 07 5531 1170
Have you had any experience, good or bad, with this doctor? We would like to hear from you, so please leave a comment below.