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October 22, 2014 / 28 Tishri, 5775
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Posts Tagged ‘circumcision’

European Council Passes Anti-Ritual Circumcision Resolution

Wednesday, October 2nd, 2013

A resolution that calls male ritual circumcision a “violation of the physical integrity of children” was passed overwhelmingly by the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe.

The council, a pan-European intergovernmental organization that strongly influence European Union decisions, debated and passed the resolution on Tuesday, as reported here.

The resolution was based on a report by the Committee on Social Affairs, Health and Sustainable Development led by German rapporteur Marlene Rupperecht and passed by a lopsided margin of 78-13, with 15 abstentions.

It calls on member states to “initiate a public debate, including intercultural and interreligious dialogue, aimed at reaching a large consensus on the rights of children to protection against violations of their physical integrity according to human rights standards” and to “adopt specific legal provisions to ensure that certain operations and practices will not be carried out before a child is old enough to be consulted.”

Practices covered by the resolution include female genital mutilation, the circumcision of young boys for religious reasons, early childhood medical interventions in the case of intersexual children, corporal punishment, and the submission to or coercion of children into piercings, tattoos or plastic surgery.

“Although the adoption of this report is non-binding and does not represent any direct threat to milah, we are troubled at the readiness of the Parliamentary Assembly to dismiss the points made during the debate about religious freedom,” the Milah UK organization told JTA.

The ritual circumcision of boys younger than 18 has come under attack increasingly in Scandinavia and German-speaking European countries both by left-wing secularists and right-wingers who fear the influence of immigration from Muslim countries.

Britons in Suspense over Possibility of a ‘Royal Circumcision’

Wednesday, July 31st, 2013

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?

Rabbinical Group Aims to Standardize Circumcision in Europe

Wednesday, July 24th, 2013

A European rabbinical group has created a union to include every mohel – ritual circumciser – in an effort to standardize ritual circumcision and combat attempts to ban it.

Based on the model of Britain’s Initiation Society, the Union of Mohalim in Europe seeks to “unite approved mohalim across Europe under a single banner, ensuring that all communities can be assured of the high level of training and regulation,” according to a statement released Wednesday by the Conference of European Rabbis.

In April, a dispute occurred between the Conference of European Rabbis and a Chabad rabbi from a rival group, the Rabbinical Centre of Europe. The Chabad rabbi, Menachem Margolin, published an op-ed criticizing the Conference of European Rabbis for its disapproval of metitzah b’peh — a controversial ritual involving oral suction of the circumcision wound…”

In December 2012, German lawmakers passed a law that guarantees parents the right to circumcise boys for religious reasons. The vote followed a court ruling in Cologne that defined ritual circumcision as causing “bodily harm,” and the German parliament later passed a law preserving ritual circumcision. However, the Cologne court ruling led to partial bans on circumcision in Germany, Austria and Switzerland and intensified the heated debate over the issue in Scandinavian countries and beyond.

Duchess Kate Had a Boy, Call the Mohel

Monday, July 22nd, 2013

Duchess Kate Middleton gave birth to a baby boy on Monday. The baby weighed in at 8 lb. 6oz.

No word yet if the local Rabbi will be called in to perform a circumcision.

It’s been the tradition of the British Royal Family for the past 150 years to circumcise their boys, though rumor has it that Princess Diana broke that tradition with William and Harry.

Anti-Circumcision Group to Picket ACLU’s Marriage Equality Rally

Monday, July 15th, 2013

San Francisco anti-circumcision activists are planning to picket a campaign for marriage equality by the American Civil Liberties Union of Northern California (ACLU )in Oakland Wednesday evening because the civil liberties group opposes circumcision bans.

The reasoning is based not only on mixing apples and oranges but also making them equal, just like boys and girls are born equal – from top to bottom.

Here is a civil liberties group campaigning for equality in marriage but is being picketed because it does not support the argument that there should be gender equality in the law that protects girls from circumcision.

The American Civil Liberties Union of Northern California has organized a screening of “The Campaign,” and members of Bay Area Intactivists said they will protest outside the event venue” to condemn the ACLU’s work denying boys equal protection from genital mutilation.”

The ACLU’s sin, in the eyes of anti-circumcision activists, is that it argued that the San Francisco Male Genital Mutilation Bill a ballot initiative two years ago to restrict non-therapeutic circumcision to consenting adults  violated the right of parents to have their sons circumcisions, according to Jewish law.

The ballot proposal never even reached the voting booths because  a San Francisco judge ruled that state law preempts the city from regulating medical professionals.

San Francisco Superior Court Judge Loretta Giorgi removed the measure from the ballot in her order, stating, “The [California state] statute speaks directly to the issue of local regulation of medical procedures and leaves no room for localities to regulate in this area.”

But if you already are going to change the facts of life and disregard certain bodily differences between girls and boys, then why stick to other facts?

IntactNews, which reports on the “genital integrity movement,” reported that the removal of the proposal from the ballot was “squelching democracy by denying voters their voice.”

In other words, democracy is when you win and it is anti-democratic when you lose.

Once that reasoning can be understood, everything becomes clear.

Federal law protects girls from genital mutilation. IntactNews points out that the law does not stipulate any “religious or cultural exceptions.” If there are any readers who know of a religion that considers circumcision of girls a mitzvah, please raise your hand.

Following the court ruling striking the anti-circumcision proposal from the ballot, California passed a law making it illegal for local authorities to ban or restrict circumcisions. The ACLU backed the law, making it persona non grata for the activists.

By the way if you want to demonstrate against the ACLU next week, be warned that, according to Intact, “a limited number of signs will be available [but] you are also welcome to bring your own sign.”

Danish Health Board Says No Need to Ban Circumcision

Sunday, June 30th, 2013

A Danish government panel has dealt an anti-circumcision group a severe setback with a new study that concludes there is little risk in circumcisions and that no new  guidelines are necessary.

A Health Ministry commission ritual also concluded that circumcisions also have few medical benefits, the Copenhagen Post reported.

Leo Milgrom, deputy chairman of the anti-circumcision group responded, “Even without all the weighty ethical considerations, and without all the many legal, sexual and psychological consequences, at the very least a scientific precautionary principle should apply: circumcision should be immediately stopped simply as a result of the scientific uncertainty described in the health agency’s own report.”

Between 1,000 and 2,000 ritual circumcisions a year take place every Denmark, and current guideline require a child’s permission only if he is at least 15 years old.

A widely-known Jewish Danish journalist who converted to Christianity described last year circumcision in the most brutal terms. “Around the baby stand ten black-clad men – a must in every Jewish circumcision. As usual in Judaism, women aren’t allowed to be present. An untrained rabbi mutilates the baby, who cries and bleeds profusely as the men pray,” he wrote.

“Some anti-immigration campaigners are using the circumcision issue to prevent what they call Denmark’s “Islamization,” Finn Schwarz, president of the Jewish Congregation of Copenhagen, told JTA last year. “ If not for the Jewish community, circumcision would’ve already been banned here,” he said.

In 2001, the Jewish community lobbied successfully for special legislation on circumcision of male babies younger than two months.

The law says that circumcision of newborns may be performed by a “licensed professional.” The country’s Jewish ritual circumcisers, or mohelim, receive their license from the country’s health board, but a nurse or doctor must still be present when they perform the procedure.

Pot Quinn Accusing Kettles of Pandering to Jews

Tuesday, June 11th, 2013

A friend just emailed me this item from Politicker (June 4), reporting that City Council Speaker Christine Quinn accused her opponents of pandering to please voters when it comes to trash, policing and circumcision.

In an interview with WOR’s John Gambling, Quinn said: “You know what else is wrong, John? Going into communities and pandering and telling them what they want to hear just so you can get their vote. That’s not leadership and that’s not being a mayor.”

Gambling cautioned. “Careful, Madame Speaker. Because there’s a lot of that going on right now,” but the speaker lady wouldn’t listen.

“You gotta say, ‘fair’s fair,’” she said. “And it won’t make people happy, and I get that. But whether it’s the Upper East Side transfer station or going into a synagogue–as I did last week–and saying that practices around circumcision that are done in particular ways that are unhealthy for children aren’t gonna continue without proper notification. You just have to stand up sometimes, even if gets you booed, as supporting Ray Kelly has done for me in some places and as has supporting the Inspector General bill has done for me in other places–’cause you have to lead, not seek votes.”

What’s amazing is that politicians today think that You Tube is turned off whenever they say something dumb. But, alas, You Tube is alive and well, and, also, it’s a pleasure, when these things come up, to have on hand the reports—both in text and video—of our swift man on the scene in NYC, Jacob Kornbluh, who just the other day sent us this video:

“Speaking to NY1′s Josh Robin at the MET council legislative breakfast, ahead of the Celebrate Israel parade,” Jacob reported, “mayoral hopeful Christine Quinn boosted her pro-Israel credentials with the common phrase: ‘Jerusalem is the capital of Israel.’ Ms. Quinn urged the US government to immediately recognize Jerusalem as the capital of the Jewish State.”

No, Ms. Speaker, no pandering over here whatsoever.


Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/breaking-news/pot-quinn-accusing-kettles-of-pandering-to-jews/2013/06/11/

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