CIN (Circumcision Information Network) 1:4

Journal  Circumcision Information Network, Volume 1, Issue 4. Tuesday, 28 June 1994.

Richard Angell

Introduction
This weekly bulletin is a project of CIN, the Circumcision Information Network (formerly CIN CompuBulletin). The purpose of this weekly bulletin is to educate the public about and to protect children and other non-consenting persons from genital mutilation. Readers are encouraged to copy and redistribute it, and to contribute written material.
--Rich Angell, Editor.


ACTION ALERTS
*On P32 of the May issue of Sassy, a magazine for teen girls,
the following appeared:
"Why is it that when thousands of women's vaginas are
mutilated or cut off (still are and have been for years)
there is no immediate protest by the masses but when one man's
penis gets cut off it becomes headline news for a week?
The double standard is dangerously
disgusting."         --Su Hui Won, Elmhurst, NY
Write Sassy, 230 Park Ave., New York, NY 10169,
call (212) 551-9500, fax 599-4597.
 
*Two publications have rejected my advertisements for
the 900 line.  They wouldn't even take my money to
publish them. They both returned my script and uncancelled
checks, and neither had the courtesy of telling me why until
I called them.
The National Inquirer (8 million readers) wrote "Russell
Johns Associates, Ltd. is the classified ad representative
for the Nat'l Inquirer.  We have received your classified
copy and are sorry to report that our acceptance committee
has rejected your ad...."  My proposed ad was under the
heading "Of Interest to Men" and emphasized foreskin restoration.
I was told over the phone that they don't print ads of controversial
or sexual nature.  But some of the ads they do publish include
cigarettes, psychic lines, and breast enhancement.  Write Nat'l
Inquirer,
Classified Dept., POB 10178, Clearwater, FL 34617, (800) 223-6226
or (813) 443-7667, Fax (813) 445-9380.
*Joyce Walter of the San Francisco Penninsula Parent monthly
magazine wrote "We are sorry but we will not be able to put your
classified ad in our publication."  I was told over the phone
that the editor had found it "inappropriate."  POB 1280,
Millbrae, CA 94030, (415) 342-9203.
 
*The May issue of Pediatric News published an article on P20
by Catherine Cooper Nellist entitled "Is Circumcision a Job of
Ob.Gyns. or Pediatricians?  Opinions Vary."  Some excerpts:
Dr. Abbott would like to see the procedure done by well-trained
and family physicians--the primary care providers of
children--rather than ob.gyns.  Performing circs "should be part
of pediatricians' skills."  After all, "we'll take care of
these boys until they go to college, he said.  &Dr. Eileen Aicardi,
a San Francisco pediatrician, confirmed [the fact that some doctors
really don't want to circ].  "I was never trained to do circs, and
I don't want to know how.  I'm not a surgeon, and although this is
a relatively simple procedure, I'm not trained to handle the
bleeding complications  that can occur."  She noted that she
does not need
the added income and is too busy to take on this additional
procedure.  &However, Dr. Edgar Schoen, chair of the AAPUs task
force on circ,
thinks pediatricians are showing more interest in doing circs.  When
he offered to distribute a circ training film he made, he "got quite
a response, and this included a number of pediatric residency programs."
Editor:  "Do you do circs?  Why?  Why not?  Write to us, and we'll
consider your comments for publication."  Write Editor, Pediatric News,
12230 Wilkins Ave., Rockville, MD 20852.
 
*There is a series of Masters and Johnson workshops on sexual trauma
taking place throughout the U.S.  This looks like a beautiful
opportunity for us to get involved and to sound off.  For conference
& program info, call 1-800-598-2040.  For referral hotline,
call 1-800-733-3242.
 
*Send your letters of support for the Santa Fe Nurses.  Letters
should go to the administration of the hospital, describing your
response to the nurses' stand in defense of the babies.  Please
make your letters polite and concise.  Wording from the heart is
appreciated.  Your words can compliment either the nurses' stand
or the recent video "Nurses of St. Vincent:  Saying No to Circumcision"
or both.  Thank the hospital administration for their courage and
pioneering of not only the nursesU courage but also for showing
a leadership role in defense of the body ownership rights of
newborns.  Write to any or all of the following persons:
Pat Ellison, V.P. for Nursing Services; Ronald Winger, CEO;
or Justina Trott, MD Medical Director; St. Vincent Hospital,
455 St. MichaelUs Drive, Santa Fe, NM 87501.
 
*On 6 April, I discovered a recorded message on Great Western
Directories on circumcision.  (In Palo Alto, the number is
(415) 812-7600 X 9026.)  Not liking what I heard, I tracked
down the person responsible for researching and recording the
misinformation, Connie Thomas.  Here is the recording as
transcribed:
"The surgical removal of all or part of the foreskin of the
penis is known as circumcision.  This operation in infancy
is done without anesthetic and is relatively simple.  In infancy
or childhood circumcision is usually done for religious or
cultural reasons.  In adulthood circumcision is usually done
for medical reasons, such as infection of the glans or scarring
of the foreskin.  Your decision to circumcise your child will be
based on your personal preference, doctor's recommendation and/or
religion.  In any case, your child should be taught to wash himself
daily, paying attention to cleaning that area and retracting the
foreskin if he's not circumcised.  In infants the foreskin is
unretractable, since at birth the foreskin is still attached to
the penis.  When cleaning your infant, gently push the foreskin
back, but don't force it back.  The foreskin will not be fully
retractable until your child is about five years old.  While
circumcision is still a fairly routine surgery, it is still
voluntary, and is the personal choice of the parents."
My conversation with the responsible one was pleasant, and she
was sent information.  She said she would update the recording
"soon."  But as of this writing, no change has been made, and
who knows how many people have been misled in the meantime.
Contact Brite Voice Systems, 7309 E 21st St. N, Wichita, KS 67206,
Ph. (316) 652-6500, Fx. (316) 652-6800.
eThe Miracle Year, 1992) by Lanie Carter, Pocket Books, 1230
Avenue of the Americas, New York, NY 10020, Division of Simon
and Shuster.  This book has some very bad parts:  "...in a few
seconds, the surgery is done.  Many times it happens so fast
that the baby does not even cry....  Most babies settle down
and do not seem to have any discomfort.  &Many times I have
gone into a new mom's postpartum room to find her in tears
following her son's circ.  This reaction is perfectly normal.
You will feel better in a few days....  &When a father is circ'd,
he usually wants his son to be circ'd so that the son will be better
able to relate to his father as a role model.  The same reasoning
applies when parents want their son to look like the other boys
at school."
 
*Deserves our support:  The Natural Baby Company, 816 Sylvia St.,
800 B-S, Trenton, NJ 08628-3299, (609) 771-9233.  On P28 of
their 1994 catalog,  they offer good material on circ
(Caring for Your Intact Little Boy by R. Romberg and Circ.:  What
Every Parent Should Know by Anne Briggs).  They also wrote:
"In 1975 the AAP stated that 'there is no absolute medical
indication for routine circ. in the newborn.'  Contrary to
what you may have heard--In June 1989 the AAP explicitly
stated that they had not changed their position."
Thanks to Wayne Hampton.
 
*The Sterling Radio Show, mentioned in the 6 June (Vol. 3:7)
is up and running, broadcast so far in Oregon and Ohio,
9:00-12:00 PT weekday mornings.  It is very easy to get
on the show.  Call 1-800-242-1182.  You will be put on
hold and be able to listen to the show.  If the timing
isnUt right, try again another day.  If you have a comment
or question go for it.  Our friend Ron Goldman already
sounded off about circ as a violence issue when the topic
of the day was domestic violence.  If you can't be on the
air, why not send informative material and letters:
Sterling Institute of Relationship, 695 Rand Ave., Oakland,
CA 94610.
 
HO HUM, ANOTHER MUTILATION
Your newspaper may not have covered it, but yet another
hapless boy has lost his penis due to a botched circumcision.
Following is an English translation (original en fran
ais)
Translation by John Outspeake and Rich Angell:
LOSS OF PENIS DUE TO CIRCUMCISION
TEL AVIV (AFP) - The parents of a two-year-old child who
lost his penis due to an error during circumcision, have
turned to the district court of Tel-Aviv, demanding
US $800,000 in damages.  According to the parents,
the mohel--the one who performs circumcision--cut too
deeply, causing a hemorrhage, then applied a bandage too
tightly, which resulted in gangrene of the babyUs penis.
The parents have stated that the baby will have to undergo
complicated surgical procedures, and will never have a
normal sex life.  Circumcision of male children is
prescribed by Genesis, the first book of the Bible.
Seen as a symbolic act of covenant of the Jewish people
to God, it is considered one of the principal
Commandments  of the Jewish religion.
 
NURSES SPEAK OUT
Following are letters which appeared on P16 of the June
1994 American Journal of Nursing.
*We also struggled with the ethical dilemma of botched
circumcisions and unconcerned physicians (Ethical Dilemmas,
March) at our own hospital.  The more we educated ourselves
about the issues, the more we came to the conclusion that
every circumcision is a botch job since it is an assault
on a childUs sexuality and a violation of his right to an
intact body.  Finally after years of strapping the babies
down for this brutal procedure and listening to their screams,
we couldnUt take it any longer.  In October 1992, 24 nurses at
our hospital became conscientious objectors to infant
circumcision.--Betty Katz Sperlich, RN, Mary Conant, RN Santa Fe, NM
*Here is a true professional ethical question:  How can doctors,
nurses, or parents be allowed to remove a normal,
functional body part for no known medical
reason?             --Daniel Skomp, RN Keaau, HI
Circumcision is too complex an issue for tired postpartum
parents to grasp by listening to a health care provider
with a surgical permit in hand verbalize a list of pros
and cons of this surgery.  A few examples from my own
interaction with postpartum parents point to the need
for prenatal education on this matter:  *Mothers who
believe there is some law or requirement that boys must
be circumcised;  *Mothers who canUt explain what the word
circumcision means;  *Mothers whose mates are circumcised,
and the mates themselves, who have no concept of the unique
characteristics related to sexual intimacy of the
uncircumcised penis, yet will make a final decision
for their baby;  *Parents who are unaware of circumcision
rates in other countries, which have never approached those
of the U.S.  The educated expectant parents and those who
educate them on the topic of circumcision become the best
deterrent to "botched" or unnecessary circumcisions.
--Nancy R. Cooksey, BSN, ICCE, IBCLC, St. Louis, MO
Write you letter of support to AJN, 555 W 57th St.,
New York, NY 10019-2961.
MEETINGS & CONFERENCES
*On Sunday, 10 July at 14:00, there will be a seminar on
routine infant circ and its options at East Stroudsburg
University Lower Dansbury Lounge.  The guest speaker will
be Dr. Thomas Ritter, author of "Say No to Circumcision!"
Expectant parents, grandparents, physicians, child birth
educators and the merely curious are invited.  The cost is
$5/person and limited advanced registration is required.
Call (717) 223-1337.  The southeastern Pennsylvania/greater
Philadelphia area NOHARMM has reserved a block of tickets.
For those interested contact Jim at (610) 357-2792, or Al
at (610) 489-6505. Arrangements are also being made for
car pooling.
 
*NOHARMM Field Organizer Barry Ellsworth reports:  "The NY
Chapter of NOHARMM will have its first meeting on Tuesday,
12 July, at 19:30.  NOHARMM Founder Tim Hammond of San Fransisco
will be be present, as well as NOCIRC-NY representative
Richard DeSeabra and I.  This will be a "get to know you"
meeting, and we will discuss targets and strategies for
potential actions in our area.  This meeting will take
place at 874 Broadway at 18th St. in Manhattan.  Ring buzzer,
take elevator to 10th floor, and go to rear of building.
RSVP (212) 505-1139."
*NOHARMM of San Francisco will meet from now on at 15:30
at the Metropolitan Community Church, 150 Eureka (between
18th and 19th St.).  This is just after the NORM meeting,
which meets from 13:00-15:00 in the same location.
The meetings of both are still the first Sunday of
every month (except 10 July ).  NORM, the National Organization
of Restoring Men, is the new official name of RECAP and UNCIRC,
united.
*Duane Jorde of Hawaii:  "The Kalani Honua Cultural Center
has accepted my application to facilitate a workshop on
'Healing the Wounds of Male Genital Mutilation.' If anyone is
interested in attending, this is going to happen at the Pacific
Conference on Men and Masculinity, 10-17 July on Hawaii Island
(not far from Kilauea volcano).  Call 1-800-800-6886.  &Tim Hammond
will be on Oahu on 27 July to help facilitate a speaking engagement
re showing of the film
'The Nurses of St. Vincent:  Saying "No" to Circ.'"
*Barry Ellsworth writes:  "A three-day NOHARMM/NOCIRC strategy
meeting has been tentatively planned for November in Washington
State.  We have been discussing the possibility of an action in
Seattle at Circumstraint, which manufactures the plastic and
velcro 'circ boards' that are used to restrain babies, as well
as an action at the University of Washington School of Public
Health, which has published a study suggesting that circumcision
reduces AIDS transmission."  Contact Barry with feedback on the
following:  goals, symbolism, and attendance and/or assistance.
This meeting and action will center around the showing of the
documentary film "The Nurses at St. Vincent:  Saying No to
Circumcision."  The showing will be sponsored by Frank Cranbourne,
NOCIRC of Washington.    Contact Barry by email:  BarryBE@aol.com,
or by post:  874 Broadway #1005, New York, NY 10003.
 
%Our friend Manny Brandt is in the process of forming a group
of intact men, although others are welcome.  The purpose is to
allow for intact men to support one another, share their
experiences, and promote the benefits of having a foreskin.
Also, Manny is interested in putting together a unified group
of anti-circ activists in the DC/Baltimore area to meet on a
regular basis.  Write Manny Brandt, 2251 Pimmit Dr. #209,
Falls Church, VA 22043, or call (703) 356-0894.
 
ON LINE FORUM LAUNCHED
Our friend Al Fields of Pennsylvania writes (via email):
I am in the process of establishing a custom forum, Men Against
Circumcision, on the Delphi on line service.  Access to the
forum is by application which prevents "flamers" from posting
unwanted messages.  In addition I have control over the messages
and can delete any message not appropriate.  The purpose of the
forum is to provide information in the fight against routine
infant circumcision.  Any information I might share WOULD NOT
include any
names and addresses of those individuals working for the cause.
Anyone who belongs to Delphi can gain access to the forum by
E-Mailing me (albfie), then entering at any promot "go cus 175."
Earlier this year I worked with Gary Burlingame in establishing
an Internet Restoring mail list.  This is a great way for restoring
men to share when there is no local support group.  You can join
the list by sending a message to rest-lib@mit.edu.  This is not an
automated subscription package so please include a message
indicating that you would like to join.  The addition will not
take place until the day after you have been added.  You can
join the list by sending to: rest@mit.edu.
Contact Gary Burlingame for further information @
n7044623@henson.cc.wwu.edu.
 
PRO-INTACT VIDEO
As reported in the 2 Oct. 93 Guardian Angell (Vol. 2:33),
DAD (Dads Against Discrimination) made an hour-long video
starring DAD President Victor Smith, Guardian Angell
distributor Ron Fisher, and Dr. Landon Smith.  Their
interview is spiced with videos taken elsewhere.  Very
little is left unsaid about why babies should be left intact.
The video has gotten some air play, but we could help give it
some more.  Contact your local TV stations or Victor Smith
at PO Box 8525, Portland, OR 97207, (503) 222-1111.
Copies can be obtained for $20 apiece.
 
HEALTH CARE PROPOSAL AVAILABLE
NOHARMM announces that the Health Care proposal, entitled
RAmerican Health Insurers and Contraindicated Surgery:
Routine Neonatal Circumcision,S is available for ordering.
It is full of information, including some harm documentations.
ItUs to be used by individuals who want to lobby their HMO,
corporate Employer benefits department, local Blue Cross/Blue
Shield, or local legislators.  ItUs available from NOHARMM for
$17.50 first copy and $7.50 each additional copy (prices include
tax & shipping).
 
IDEA FOR ACTIVISM
HereUs an idea that came out of the recent symposium:  If you
donUt have time to write a letter, write a post card.  Just one
or two key phrases would be better than nothing--and in some
cases, better than a letter.
THOUGHT FOR THE DAY
"So many parents today, especially in Utah, are so anxious
to teach their kids that they shouldn't smoke, drink alcohol,
use drugs, have sex, dress certain ways, etc. etc. and that
"everyone else does it" is no excuse for the kids to do it too.
Then those same parents take their baby boys and have someone
strap them down and cut off part of their healthy genitalia
because "everyone else does it"!  Darillyn Starr, in a letter
post marked 19 April.
 
CompuBulletin LAUNCHED
I started a weekly on line bulletin on 7 June.  Unlike The
Guardian Angell, which serves the anti-circumcision movement,
the on line bulletin is designed to provide news, voices of
victims, and other information which is designed to educate
the general public and hopefully bring in more activists.
My main distributor is our friend Al Fields, who has already
gotten some positive response from several grateful readers.
Anyone on line is welcome to submit material for this one or
two page bulletin.  The first two issues went out under the
name of NOCIRC CompuBulletin.  But this will no longer be, due to a...
 
..NAME CHANGE
The 900 line, which was designed to provide information and
bring in revenue at the same time, has gotten off to a shaky
start.  ItUs been one obstacle after another.  The latest
(other than the National Inquirer et al) concerns the question
of legality in using the name of NOCIRC, a non-profit organization,
to promote a business.  For that reason, I am disassociating myself
(in name only) from NOCIRC.  From this day forward, The Guardian
Angell, the CompuBulletin, and the 900 circumcision information
line are services provided by the Circumcision Information Network,
Rich Angell, Founder and Director.
The Guardian Angell		Vol. 3:8,
28 June 1994    	
Citation:

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