Circumcision ‘death season’ claims more lives

Four more boys died this month as a result of traditional initiation rituals in the Eastern Cape, adding to the three boys in December and another earlier this month. As usual, the boys succumbed to the poor conditions of ‘illegal’ initiation schools operating outside the boundaries of hygiene and proper medical controls… in other words, traditionally.

Thanks to a strong effort by the provincial health department, the death toll is down from an average of 24 over the last three years. But it’s not just death that youths have to worry about: every year a number of boys end up having their penises amputated after botched circumcisions, and an unknown number will contract AIDS when the same blade is used on one boy after another. All so that they may be considered to be adults, a state which the mere passing of time bequeaths upon the rest of us in due course and without the prerequisite of genital mutilation.

Yet another point to raise when people ask you “what’s the harm?”


13 Responses to “Circumcision ‘death season’ claims more lives”

  1. “… a state which the mere passing of time bequeaths upon the rest of us …”

    i’m not so sure how accurate that statement is. sure, legally that might be the case, but there a lot of people that never really reach it. i suspect that this is why they had rituals to make it happen

  2. Con-Tester Says:

    Well, if the state of adulthood is determined by one’s behaviour rather than one’s tally in years, then neither those who perform the circumcision procedure, nor those who promote it, nor those who submit to it actually meet the requirement.

    And let’s not get sidetracked by misplaced appeals to “cultural respect”, okay? Because then you’d have to condone on the same grounds various other barbarities like the rape of infants as a cure for AIDS and the mutilation and murder of innocents for medicinal ministrations. This shit simply has no place in the 21st century.

  3. Con-Tester Says:

    And that wasn’t an April Ghouls’ joke, either…

  4. Bunny Chow Mein Kampf Says:

    A old friend of mine once worked as a doctor at Chris Hani “that’s where you learn *real* medicine” Baragwanath Hospital. Penile amputation (and occasional reattachment) was common place. Typically, a township man would take the African version of Viagra which resulted in a two-day hard-on. Which isn’t too good for one’s dong. Mind you, it’s not restricted to the blacks. With white guys, prescription drugs are involved but the end result is the same: blood flows in but doesn’t flow out, tissue atrophies and so the pecker gets the chop.

    On the subject of circumcision, is it true that Rabbi’s sucks the blood out of penis when performing circumcision ? I’m too embarrassed to ask my Jewish friends, just in case it’s a hoax and I look stupid.

  5. Bunny Chow Mein Kampf Says:

    Oops ! Please excuse the terrible grammar in the last paragraph in my previous post.

  6. “On the subject of circumcision, is it true that Rabbi’s sucks the blood out of penis when performing circumcision ? I’m too embarrassed to ask my Jewish friends, just in case it’s a hoax and I look stupid.”
    In just a few very small fundamentalist sects. It was not too long ago I read a story about one such who infected 20 infants with something horrible – aids I think but it could have been hep. I cannot find the link, but here is another…

  7. It was Herpes, I found a link, it was not quite as I remembered it but I do remember a child dying…

  8. Bunny Chow Mein Kampf Says:

    Sailor, thanks ! I quote the following from the link:
    After a child died of herpes and two others were infected, the city’s health commissioner ordered Fischer to undergo blood tests for herpes and stop using the mouth suction method without a tube until the issue was resolved. He continued to use the mouth suction method, so court orders were sought in December, the city’s lawyers wrote in court papers.

    Why would one require a court order to stop an adult from engaging in oral-penile contact with a minor ? In a non-religious context, no one would hesitate to call it “sexual abuse” and “paedophilia” – which are crimes.

    Now, I am an amateur philosopher so perhaps some one better trained can answer my question: Shouldn’t “Freedom of Religion” fall under “Freedom of Thought” while prosecuting any religious practice that violates the law of the land ?

    If not, then I am going to start a religion where I am permitted to pinch women’s bottoms with impunity. If I was an American I could count on the ACLU to defend my “religious beliefs” – just like they defend Somali refugees’ “right” to perform female circumcision but conveniently ignore the suffering of the little girls.

  9. Bunny Chow Mein Kampf Says:

    Once again, my skill with the keyboard leaves much to be desired. I forgot to put a closing italic tag for the quoted paragraph. 😦

  10. Babyacid Says:

    Non-medical circumcision is about logical as non-medical surgeries. Its about as logical as leeches and trepanning. Ritualised initiation on the other hand may still have a place in society.

  11. Bunny Chow Mein Kampf Says:

    Ritualised initiation on the other hand may still have a place in society.

    …especially if it involves copious amounts of booze and stupid stunts 🙂

  12. Bunny Chow Mein Kampf Says:

    Question: Is the term “Bogus Witchdoctor” an oxymoron ?

  13. Unfortunatly you’re looking at changing the mind set of cultures that have no concept of ‘the 21 century’ Most of these people still live in areas where they don’t even were clothes. So how can we empose on them our 21st century ways of life when they still have their kids running around naked?

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