Thursday, August 16, 2007

Fight of the Long Knives

In the latest Forward, there's a recounting of a fascinating custody battle: evidently the custodial ex-husband, a recent convert to Judaism, wants to have his twelve-year-old son circumcised now, and the non-custodial ex-wife is against it. The twelve year old's wishes? In dispute.

As a guy Jew, I've never felt that circumcision has had a net negative on me; having not had to learn either the term or the meaning of "smegma" until I started watching Red Dwarf seems to be a net plus, in my opinion. Plus, circumcision reduces the risk of one of the last great dread diseases were I charming and jerk enough to engage in promiscuous unprotected heterosexual intercourse.

Still, this case raises issues. It's somewhat imperious (and not very Jewish-seeming) to just yank kids into the religious fold a year before their bar mitzvah. On the other hand, most complaints against circumcision are so broad that they make Jewish ritual male circumcision seem like the most barbaric thing ever.


Jack's Shack said...

Circumcision hasn't ever bothered me. Not real interested in being a turtle.

The Pedant said...

Yeah, the debate is often between people who completely freak out and those of us who are like, "no big deal - what's your problem?"