What else can one conclude after assault charges were filed against a German rabbi for performing ritual circumcisions, which have been required by Jewish law since forever? Think about it: in Germany, in 2012, a rabbi faces criminal charges for doing what Jews have always done with their male children, and indeed what is a defining act of male membership in the Jewish community.
Wow, Germany. Just wow.
But as Yair Rosenberg says, this is not just a matter of religious freedom, but one of public health. And now, he reports, the American Academy of Pediatrics is about to come down in favor of circumcision. Excerpt:
A leaked copy of the new American Academy of Pediatrics’ policy statement on circumcision, scheduled to be released on Monday, reveals a change in the prestigious medical body’s previous position (set in 1999) on the medical benefits of the procedure from “neutral” to “pro.” It details how a comprehensive evaluation of research from the last 15 years demonstrates that the medical benefits of circumcision—including “prevention of urinary tract infections, penile cancer, and transmission of some sexually transmitted infections”—outweigh the risks.
The importance of this cannot be overstated. The AAP is a driving force behind health policy in America, and the experts involved in its new statement are already going on record in major media outlets to advocate that circumcision be covered on public health plans like Medicaid. The statement solidifies the scientific consensus behind the advisability of infant male circumcision (noting that complications are more likely to arise when the procedure is performed later in life) and places the traditional practice squarely within the realm of sound medical science.