web analytics
May 30, 2015 / 12 Sivan, 5775
At a Glance
InDepth
Sponsored Post


Home » InDepth » Op-Eds »

Mayo on Milah

There have been venomous campaigns against brit milah attacking the ritual as, among other things, unhealthy, complete with cartoons showing leering, fang-toothed rabbis wielding blood-drenched knives,
The Mayo Clinic

The Mayo Clinic
Photo Credit: MayoClinic.org

With no more important problems to address in the world, the European Community and even some Americans have attempted to focus public attention on what some claim to believe is the biggest human rights abuse on the planet right now: Jews circumcising their eight day old sons.

Many will recall a venomous campaign against brit milah attacking the ritual as, among other things, unhealthy, complete with cartoons showing leering, fang-toothed rabbis wielding blood-drenched knives, which circulated for a while in San Francisco — the city universally regarded as the world capital of healthy sexual practices.

A new study published by the highly respected Mayo Clinic, however, just may add enough actual facts to the discussion so that a rational result can be attained.

In the Mayo study, Dr. Brian J. Morris explains that “over their lifetime half of uncircumcised males will contract an adverse medical condition caused by their foreskin.” As a result, Morris concludes, the health benefits of infant male circumcision outweigh the risks by a factor of at least 100 to 1.

Dr. Morris and his co-authors argue that the health benefits of milah – not only for the male who undergoes it but also for any future sexual partners — are so great that doctors should be required to offer the procedure to parents. Morris explains: “circumcision might be seen in the same light as other interventions that parents must choose for their child. It is the duty of states to create conditions necessary for the fulfillment of rights to good health by facilitating the availability of interventions that are beneficial. Logically it can be argued that should include male circumcision.”

The study also disproves the suggestion that benefits from circumcision can be obtained if it is delayed until the male is old enough to decide for himself whether to undergo it. Dr. Morris demonstrates not only that there are effectively no detriments to the procedure, but also that its performance in infancy dramatically reduces the risk of urinary tract infections during childhood which may lead to kidney damage. In addition, in a conclusion which will no doubt calm some of those who characterize the Jews’ ancient practice as child abuse, the study also concludes that there is “no adverse effect of circumcision on sexual function, sensitivity, or pleasure.”

All of Morris’s evidence should make a big difference to those who oppose infant male circumcision by analogizing it to female genital mutilation, claiming for themselves the mantle of “intactivists.” We are not aware of anyone —anyone sane, anyway — who even claims that that barbaric practice has any positive medical effects, for the woman victim or anyone else.

The Mayo study concludes with what can only be described as a tongue-in-cheek recognition of the Jew-hatred that really animates the movement against infant male circumcision, but which often tries to hide its face. Morris sums up as follows:

Many nations that condemn childhood male circumcision are not as quick to condemn other comparably invasive and dangerous procedures that have no medical benefit, eg, cosmetic orthodontia, correction of harelip, surgery for tongue-tie, growth hormone injections for treatment of dwarfism, and removal of supernumerary digits. Thus . . . it seems odd that neonatal male circumcision is regarded by some as controversial.

Odd indeed — my goodness, whatever could be motivating such people?

Dr. Morris’s conclusion brings to mind the exchange in doggeral between William Norman Ever, a now-happily unknown British journalist, and Ogden Nash: “How odd of God to choose the Jews,” Ever opined; but “it wasn’t odd,” Nash answered, for “the Jews chose God.”

About the Author:


If you don't see your comment after publishing it, refresh the page.

Our comments section is intended for meaningful responses and debates in a civilized manner. We ask that you respect the fact that we are a religious Jewish website and avoid inappropriate language at all cost.

If you promote any foreign religions, gods or messiahs, lies about Israel, anti-Semitism, or advocate violence (except against terrorists), your permission to comment may be revoked.

13 Responses to “Mayo on Milah”

  1. Excellent article…..a little logic and truth goes a long way.

  2. JoAnn Morris says:

    Great article, thank you. Nash’s comment is right on!

  3. Yori Mendel says:

    The Bris has absolutely nothing to do with Sanitation Practices. It has everything to do with being in the Covenant with G-D. Those who aren’t Circumcised by an Orthodox Rabbi, and by Two Orthodox Witnesses viewing according to Torah, the Mishnah, and the Talmud, are not a Part of Israel, or it’s Covenant with G-D. Christians are not Part of the Covenant, whether a Doctor Circumcised them at a Hospital at Birth, or Not. The Law on Circumcision is very Specific, and Cannot be Altered.

  4. Eduardo Mazo says:

    yes since then that wound that heal and healthy.

  5. I agree, and will never be changed. It is a Conenant.
    The mizrahi Jews brit is beautiful.

  6. Allen Miller says:

    That’s why God commanded it!

  7. While I don’t think it should be forced on anyone, I don’t understand the anti-circumcision movement. They tried to ban it in San Francisco and are thinking about banning it in some European countries.

  8. Yori, two points. Orthodox it’s not required in Torah, only a Jew. Secondly, the Mayo only commented on the health aspects. What a great bonus to G-d’s word!

  9. Sadie Acosta says:

    Lol “benefits” coming from the money hungry doctors.

  10. There are many benefits with circumcised men :)

  11. There are many benefits with circumcised men :)

  12. Barb Bear says:

    That’s a REALLY good site, Vincent Coletta.

Comments are closed.

Current Top Story
What's happened to NYC's Celebrate Israel Parade?
Israel Rejects as ‘False’ UJA Federation’s Claims about Israel Parade ‘Inclusion’
Latest Indepth Stories
Keeping-Jerusalem

For a peace treaty with the PA, half the Israeli public would agree to divide the Jerusalem

As for the president’s new, softer tone vis-à-vis Prime Minister Netanyahu and Israel, this is most likely being driven by the results of the recent Israeli election.

What especially appeals to us is his grand – some critics would say extravagant –view of what the borders of Israel should look like.

There was something else of great importance in play – something we would have liked to see him take into account before deciding to stand with the boycotters.

The establishment of Hebrew University was a cause much beloved to Einstein who in 1923, during what would be his only trip to Eretz Yisrael, delivered the university’s inaugural lecture on Har Hatzofim (Mt. Scopus) and, discussing the theory of relativity, spoke the first few sentences of his address in Hebrew.

The Golden Square wanted Germany to destroy the British and Jewish presence in their country. The Third Reich craved what was beneath the ground – oil.

Ida Nudel’s account of how the Soviets persecuted and punished her was far worse than imagined.

Swim4Sadna is an annual event benefiting Sadna, an integrative special-ed community in Gush Etzion

Prof. Wistrich, was THE foremost historian of anti-Semitism; committed spokesman & advocate of Jewry

Jewish Voices for Peace’s 2015 Haggadah is a blatant anti-Israel screed crying, “L’chayim to BDS!”

On his shloshim, I want to discuss a term I’ve heard countless times about Rav Aharon: Gedol HaDor

After obsequious claims of devotion to Israel, Obama took to criticizing Israel on peace process

Mr. Obama, Israeli voters have democratically chosen to apply Israeli sovereignty over Judea&Samaria

Netanyahu so disdains Shaked’s appointment he completely ignored her after the swearing-in ceremony

More Articles from Louie V. Yadua
Demonstrator holds ISIS flag on the ancient plaza of the Temple Mount in Jerusalem's Old City.

Value of IS: It enables people to see the place to which all other Islamist fascism is headed.

d Bayit Yehudi chairman Naftali Bennett

Because let’s face it: Hamas obviously can’t defeat the IDF in the field, soldier against soldier

We hit their missiles in mid-air with computer-guided projectiles invented and built by Jews’ between rounds of rigorous scientific education or yeshiva study.

In 20 years it won’t matter what the Presbyterians thought or whom they pretended to love.

Mayo Clinic study confirms health benefits of circumcision.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/indepth/opinions/mayo-on-milah/2014/04/03/

Scan this QR code to visit this page online: