“Unlawful personal injury” is an excellent description.

This is a step in the right direction:

A regional appeals court in Frankfurt am Main found that the circumcision of an 11-year-old Muslim boy without his approval was an unlawful personal injury.

According to the court, circumcision can “be important in individual cases for the cultural-religious and physical self-image,” even if there are no health disadvantages involved. So the decision about whether or not to go through with a circumcision is “a central right of a person to determine his identity and life.”

The penis belongs to the individual, not the individual’s parents or society. That’s as it should be, although the court failed to rule on an age minimum. The answer should be birth, although I don’t hold out much hope in the short-term for that lucid conclusion. Also, some of the court’s reasoning was silly.

The court suggested, in part, that it was a punishable offense to subject one’s child to teasing by other children for looking different.

That wouldn’t translate to the United States, where we have warped views of what it means to look different, how a person should decide to value the opinion of others, and whether or not those decisions belong to the individual or his parents. It’s also bad legal reasoning, since children would then have a “right” to fashionable clothing, for example, if his friends might laugh at him otherwise. Still, I applaud the basic outcome of the ruling. The court seems to have understood that forced circumcision is wrong.

3 thoughts on ““Unlawful personal injury” is an excellent description.”

  1. Because infant circumcision is a violation of an individual’s human rights and basic medical ethics and it continues. It is wrong.
    Why are you a serial pro-circumcision poster? If I have to guess, I’d say it’s because you believe in what you’re saying. But that’s a guess. I’m open to other explanations, which will no doubt be forthcoming towards me as accusations.
    Since we’ve done this dance before… Are you going to wait two months to respond, hoping I’ll go away so you can have the last word? Planning to insinuate that I’m happy with people dying of HIV because I support a solution that’s considerably more effective at preventing HIV? What about twisting a random quote and assuming that it proves your point?
    Have at it, if you must, but of the two of us, you’re the only one committed to a predetermined solution of what’s right for everyone, forever. You “know” you’re right. I know I don’t know what every single male wants done to his body. I rely on the evidence of what men don’t do to their bodies when given their choice, while leaving open the option that some men will choose outside the majority.
    See if this is familiar… “Nobel Prize-winning French novelist Andre Gide had a point when he advised, ‘Believe those who are seeking the truth; doubt those who find it.'” I advocate letting each man seek his own truth. You’ve already found it for him.
    If you want to continue, we can. But you’ll have to do better than lobbing unfounded theories and pithy quotes. Actually rebutting an argument or ten against circumcision might be the place to start.

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