The ‘pure’ and the punished. A deconstruction of circumcision.


PseudoscienceThis weeks feature on Pseudoscience is The ‘Pure’ and the punished. A deconstruction of circumcision. By Jeff Holiday.

Among the plethora of hotly debated topics in biology, one that has some of the farthest reaching effects is also commonly avoided: circumcision. It is estimated that, as of this writing, 1 in every 3 males on the planet are circumcised. To my recolle Continue reading

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Genital Autonomy Conference 2014


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Have you registered for the 2014 Genital Autonomy Conference in Boulder, Colorado? I’ll be speaking about the Scandinavian progress on Saturday and I would to see you – yes you! – in the audience.

– Lena

On Circumcision: Own it, mark it, brand your thing


M. Thomas FrederiksenM. Thomas Frederiksen has graciously agreed to share his story and a poem about it with Just a Snip‘s readers…

As a two day old neonate, I was strapped into a circumstraint, to have my genitals ritually mutilated. This was done by and at the insistence of a doctor. He used me as a thing, a means to his own ends—what ever they may have been. I have feelings abo Continue reading

Circumcision: Denmarks most Prominent Muslim says no


(Activate the cc button for sub-titles in English)

The Danish circumcision debate is moving forward at a fast pace. A recent representative poll shows that a vast majority of the population is in favour of legislation. The idea is to impose an age restriction on circumcision which would allow the adult to make the decision for himself at age 18+.

Only 12% of the populations oppose legisl Continue reading

Danish Minister of Children and Equality Open for Debate on Circumcision


Early March, Manu Sareen, Danish Minister for Children, Gender Equality, Integration and Social Affairs opened for a debate of circumcision of healthy boys. It happened on the direct radio show Call the Government, when a curious listener raised concerns about why healthy boys are not protected from circumcision, just as well as girls are.

Skærmbillede 2014-03-17 kl. 22.23.51Having learned more about circumcision of boys during the past year, I admit to have become aware that the matter may not be as clear cut, as I have previously thought. That is why I have changed my stance, because it does harm many men’s sexuality and does have some physical consequences. Even though it’s wrapped in a religious context we have to dare to take this debate about circumcision as well…. I fully respect other people’s religiousness, but that does not mean that I in any way accept that one can do anything in the name of religion. That makes this debate immensely difficult, but one has to dare to take it.

His party Radikale Venstre, a social liberal party, has passed a resolution to ban circumcision of healthy boys. However the members of parliament are not obliged to work actively for the parties resolutions and have negleted to do so up until now.

Listen to the show here (in Danish) at 28 min.

Inspired by other great Danish voices for children’s genital integrity and autonomy Intact Denmark has worked hard for the past year to make a Danish age restriction on circumcision of healthy boys a reality. Being the founder and chairwoman of the organisation, I am personally very proud of the results we have achieved so far.

Anti-circumcision thank you note


NOT-letter

N. sent me this beautiful note in response to reading my piece An Insight into the Danish Circumcision Debate, which Continue reading

Circumcision of boys is mutilation


In Denmark the debate about circumcision of boys is raging. It has reached the headlines of national news papers as well as the opinion pages in the local ones.

Politicians, commentators, medical experts and children’s rights advocates are debating the issue. In 2013 circumcision without medical indication reached the Danish media more than 200 times. Less than one month into 2014 it looks as though that number may quadruple at the very least during the year to come.

If all goes according to plan, Denmark is less than a year from a total ban on circumcision of healthy boys. Intactivist are working for an 18 year age limit for elective genital surgery.

Support Intact Denmark’s work – donate here. Every little bit helps.

1597118_10202827902075973_1920636240_oOn 22nd January 2014 Dahir Jama Roobleh posted in local Danish paper Fyens Stiftstidende “Circumcision is not mutilation, Lena Nyhus, Chairwoman of Intact Denmark, an organisation which fights to ban circumcision in Denmark. Dear Lena, you must respect and accept our action, which is performed by Jews and Muslims. Do not interfere with our faith!”

Circumcision is mutilation

Dear Dahir Jama Roobleh

“Do not interfere with circumcision of boys, it’s a religious act performed by Jews and Muslims”,  you wrote to on 22nd January 2014.

I do not mind explaining why Intact Denmark – Against Circumcision of Children and I would not even consider abandoning the issue. We are an organisation founded by people with Jewish, Muslim and Christian backgrounds. Some of faith, some not. We are all of the opinion that the child has a right to it’s own body, a right to protection against mutilation, a right to a personal choice of religion and in particular the right to choose whether that religion should include saying goodbye to their most sensitive body parts.

Parents do not hold ownership rights to their children, they have the obligation to care for them. That does not give them the right to cut functioning parts of their children’s genitals.

Chairwoman Lena Nyhus - Intact DenmarkYou may not know it, but this Tuesday (21st January 2014) the Danish National Board of Health ended a hearing on “Guidelines to Circumcision of Boys), in that context the Danish Medical Association, the Danish College of Medical Practitioners, the National Council for Children, the Danish Family Planning Association, Children’s Welfare and a number of other super talented professionals have taken a stance on circumcision of boys in addition to Intact Denmark, naturally.

In common for all the answers to the hearing I have had a chance to see is the opinion htat circumcision of boys without medical indication is mutilation. As simple as that. An opinion shared with 85% of the Danish population. We must have legislation to protect the children now.

Join Intact Denmark and support the organisations efforts. Press here.

Allow me to explain why:

Children are persons in their own right. They have rights. They have the right to their own bodies. They have a right to their own religious beliefs. Those rights are strictly personal and every bit as inalienable as your personal rights and mine. That means that I may not amputate part of your healthy body. That means that I may not force my personal cultual, religious and aesthetic preferences on you. It also means that you may not do that to your children.

The religious freedom is personal. It does not include the right to carve your religion into the body of another human being. Not even if this human being is your own child.

Of course the adult man who understands consequences and riscs should be able to choose circumcision if he wishes to say goodbye to half of the sensitivity of his penis. Of course he should be able to choose to mark his religion or culture on his body. That is his choice. His free right. His human right.

The basis of our life in a democracy is the respect for each persons human rights. That is why I interfere in the question of circumcision of boys. That is why the members of Intact Denmark have entrusted me with the position of Chairwoman.

Omskæring ér lemlæstelseI will not stop until boys are protected from unnecessary surgery to their genitals, just as girls are under the current legislation.

Thank you for raising the issue in Fyens Stiftsstidende Dahir Jama Roobleh, without your effort I might not have had the chance to inform the papers readers about this issue. I suggest that we arrange a debate, during which we can talk it through thoroughly. What do you say?

In conclusion may I suggest that you try a thought experiment? Imagine a religion which demands that fingers, toes or ears are cut off the children. Would you accept that the neighbours children came to school without their left ring finger (it has fewer funtions than the foreskin by far) or perhaps without an ear? Where would you draw the line?

I claim that you and I would agree on that issue, just as I assume we will, when it comes to circumcision of girls. One does not cut healthy children!

My Circumcised Life: Memories of Routine Infant Circumcision (RIC)


I was raised in a family that didn’t know how to talk about sex, or our bodies. My parents even used made up words to talk about bathroom behaviors and body parts. Though I was raised in this kind of family, I still had questions, but I had to learn not to ask them. I was very small when I started asking my mom about it. Of course nobody had ever mentioned it, but I knew that I had been “CUT” down there. I actually believed at the time that the doctor had carved the groove behind my glans (what I now know as the sulcus)…I wasn’t sure what had been done, but I knew it had been an act of cutting. I knew I had been hurt. I learned later that I was missing something.bigstock-Depressed-Man-Sitting-On-Top-O-48751034

I was in college when I had my first intact partner; it was then that I discovered what, exactly, was taken from me Continue reading

Every circumcision is botched


Steven Svoboda, Founder of Attorneys for the Rights of the Child explains why every circumcision in his opinion is botched and tells why he got into intactivism decades ago.