The Feds Have Spoken: Cut is In!
“The scientific evidence is clear that the benefits outweigh the risks,” says the Federal Centers of Disease Control or CDC about circumcision which, according to its just released research study, can lower risk of STD’s, including possibly HIV (based on studies of African males), urinary tract infections, and cancer of the penis.(ugh!) This study is at odds with many foreskin devotees and guidelines released last year by the American Academy of Pediatrics which stressed circumcision was not necessary and in a small number of cases could even prove dangerous.
Practiced by certain religious groups for centuries, circumcision did not come into vogue in the U..S. till the mid twentieth century which is why so many of us Baby Boomers (like me) are cut. The practice began to fall out of favor in the seventies as other ethnic groups like Latinos whose culture did not practice circumcision grew in greater numbers. Then came the onslaught of anti-circ advocates who opposed what they viewed as mutilation without the individual’s permission, and the American Academy of Pediatrics’ before mentioned guidelines. Medicaid programs in 18 states even stopped paying for the procedure.
In the fifties and sixties the circ rate was 80%; today it stands at just 58%.
But now the CDC’s views on the subject may change all that – maybe. For the next month or so, the CDC is looking for public comment before finalizing these guidelines next year. Even so, no one can force parents to have their boy circed so who knows how effective the CDC’s pronouncements will be. Neither physicians nor parents are the blindly obedient sheep they were thirty years ago when it comes to following directives delivered from on high.