King George started circumcising newly-born princes 150 years ago, Princess Diana rejected the idea. Britain now wonders if Kate and William will or not. One thing for sure, it won’t be a Brit Mila.
The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, once known as Prince William and Kate Middleton, are keeping Britain in suspense over whether they will circumcise their new baby boy, Prince George Alexander Louis.
Most British royalty have adopted the practice of circumcision as a matter of status, even since King George I adopted it 250 years ago.
Queen Victoria might have wanted to adopt the practice of circumcision because she “basically got it into her head that her children were the sons of David,” British pediatrician and author Dr. Harvey Karp told the Huffington Post.
A rabbi circumcised Prince Charles in 1948, and Princes Andrew and Edward also were also circumcised.
Most British royalty have adopted the practice of circumcision as a matter of status. After all, not doing so might be disrespectful to the legend of King George but the rebellious Princess Diana reportedly refused to continue the practice, which may affect the Duke and Duchess’ decision.
“It’s very unlikely we’re going to be seeing [circumcision] this time around,” Dr. Karp said, but added that if the little prince is circumcised, it could spark a fad, which he said everyone will start calling “the Prince George.”
The issue at first glance seems totally banal. What difference does it make, especially to Jews, if they bring in a mohel for the king-to-be?
Considering the anti-Semitic campaign around the world to prohibit circumcision as some kind of barbaric mutilation that violates the human rights of a baby who has no freedom to choose, the royal decision could have affect the war on the Jewish rite, also practiced by most Muslims.
Tons of research, which has shown that circumcision not only is not dangerous or unhealthy but often can help the health of a child have, hampered the anti-circumcision crowd.
They have been forced to resort to the “free choice” argument, which makes their movement look even more absurd than it is.
Britons who are not Jewish or Muslim have showed less interest n circumcising their children in recent decades.
Maurice Levenson, the secretary of the Initiation Society, an Anglo-Jewish organization that represents about 55 mohels, told the London Telegraph, “The great majority of the enquiries we receive come from those of the Jewish faith, Muslims, Afro-Caribbeans and Americans, where circumcision remains popular.”
False reports that Kate Middleton, now the Duchess of Cambridge, is Jewish still are floating, partly because her mother’s maiden name was “Goldsmith.” Jewish-sounding or not, she was Christian, scotching the idea that the new prince might be Britain’s first Jewish king.
That does not mean he cannot be circumcised.
It will cost the royal family about $1,100, not including wine and herring, to circumcision the prince at the Portland Hospital’s private maternity ward, where he was born. The ward, by the way, is named the Lindo Wing after a Jewish donor, but that won’t cut the mustard for anyone trying to claim he is a Yid.
Presumably, Buckingham Palace has the shekels to afford the circumcision.
But no has asked the real question that should be on everyone’s minds: If Prince George Alexander Louis is circumcised, where the ceremony include Metzizah b’peh?
About the Author: Tzvi Ben Gedalyahu is a graduate in journalism and economics from The George Washington University. He has worked as a cub reporter in rural Virginia and as senior copy editor for major Canadian metropolitan dailies. Tzvi wrote for Arutz Sheva for several years before joining the Jewish Press.
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