Episode 11 – Circumcision is it good or bad -why do we do it, should we.

We take a critical dive into Circumcision, discuss wind energy, Solar Eclipse. Tom trys to get Dman to be interested, Adam takes over and he’s still not budging. And NASA gives us some alternative medicine, or is it.

My research for the topic that we are going to critically think and discuss today has revealed something interesting. You know how on the show always bring up the idea that we all build this house in our minds, that it is built by constructing our belief systems into a world-view? How sometimes someone has a belief on a topic that is important to that house. Well, today’s topic is one of the bearing walls for one of the members of the Critical Cactus here, and this belief holds up a lot of the house. MRI studies show that when you contradict someone’s belief, parts of the brain related to fight/flight light up and they can sometimes dig their heals in and argue from an emotional place. I think we are going to put that to the test today as we talk about Circumcision. The topic is fascinating, and we get to show our audience how we dig into emotional topics from a critical thinking perspective and hope they see how it can be different from what they find in a typical argument. I’ll be counting the fallacies on both sides of this one, but who’s keeping score.

Adam news:

Video Games and the Brain

Video Games and the Brain

Thanks Nasa: Light Therapy ( A real thing, taken way out of context is bad for cancer patients that aren’t thinking critically).

Reference notes:

Started: first ancient Egyptian mummies of considerable vintage, around 2300 BC. Egyptian paintings date circumcision to centuries prior, depicting ritual circumcision as prerequisite to entering the priesthood

by 1800 BC the Jews were practicing circumcision for religious reasons

Premature babies have to wait, waiting requires anesthesia.

Circumcision does significantly decrease the chance of a UTI. Which used to be a deadly problem. 10 times greater in uncircumcised

Circumcision may lower risk of penile cancer (rare either way).

Circumcision lowers HIV and other STD chances. 50 – 60%

Circumcision lowers chance of inflammation, irritation, infections.

It may lessen the sensation.

Medical associations recommending circumcision:
American Urological Association, http://www.auanet.org/guidelines/circumcision

the AUA recommends that circumcision should be presented as an option for health benefits

The CDC Conspiracy:
The idea that it’s a Billion Dollar industry so there is incentive for the CDC to continue allowing it.

Mutual masturbation when two men dock their penises together under mutual forskin. -Awesome.

Getting it back with specially designed weights.

Arguments against circumcision

“Nature makes no mistakes.”
It’s genital mutilation and a violation of human rights.
Doctors just do it to earn more money.
It’s cruel; babies suffer terrible pain.
Babies remember the pain.
There are permanent physiologic consequences: boys who were circumcised at birth are more sensitive to pain later in life.
The uncovered glans becomes less sensitive.
Circumcised men don’t get as much pleasure from sex.
Circumcised men are psychologically damaged.
Some men mourn their lost foreskin; some miss it so much that they try to reconstruct it.
The foreskin is required for the homosexual practice of “docking.”
An intact foreskin provides more scope for body art like piercings and tattoos.
There are complications from the surgery including hemorrhage, infection and even death (in one famous case a boy’s penis was accidentally burned off by an electrocautery device and they elected to raise him as a girl).
Other complications include poor cosmetic results and meatal stenosis.
If reconstructive surgery is needed later in life, an intact foreskin can provide tissue.
It’s elective surgery and the patient doesn’t get a choice in the matter.
Arguments FOR: https://sciencebasedmedicine.org/circumcision-what-does-science-say/


I see no arguments for or against neonatal circumcision that sway me, if anything the HIV argument is persuasive for.

Doctors are not “pro” circumcision, but they’re not “con” either. The American Academy of Pediatrics’ official policy states:

“Existing scientific evidence demonstrates potential medical benefits of newborn male circumcision; however, these data are not sufficient to recommend routine neonatal circumcision. In circumstances in which there are potential benefits and risks, yet the procedure is not essential to the child’s current well-being, parents should determine what is in the best interest of the child.”

NOT GOOD INFO–> The study, by researcher Dan Bollinger, concluded that approximately 117 neonatal deaths due directly or indirectly to circumcision occur annually in the United States, or one out of every 77 male neonatal deaths.

This guy Dan Bollinger, has no study, referrs to nothing, just asserts his estimate of 117/year on bad data that doesn’t account for base rate (males alwasy 6% higher infant mortality).
“Journal of boyhood studies” (presigious? gota pull out paypal $22 to see it)
A review of his study: http://circumcisionnews.blogspot.com/2010/05/fatally-flawed-bollingers-circumcision.html

Robert Baker estimated 229 deaths per year from circumcision in the United States. Bollinger estimated that approximately 119 infant boys die from circumcision-related each year in the U.S. (1.3% of all male neonatal deaths from all causes).
(I get .09 – .03%)

CDC info:
Number of infant deaths: 23,215
Deaths per 100,000 live births: 582.1
Leading causes of infant deaths
Congenital malformations, deformations and chromosomal abnormalities
Disorders related to short gestation and low birthweight: not elsewhere classified
Newborn affected by maternal complications of pregnancy

Good stats:

History of this debate:
10,000 (?) BCE Aboriginal tribes in central and desert regions of Australia introduce circumcision of boys as puberty rite

3100 BCE Egypt invaded from the south, attackers bringing circumcision with them.

600 BCE First five books of Hebrew Bible (Torah) compiled, including Genesis with its reference to Yaweh’s command to Abraham to circumcise himself, his sons and his slaves and servants. Circumcision enforced by priests among Jewish people as sign of the Covenant.

ANNO DOMINI or Christian Era Jesus born and circumcised in accordance with Jewish practice.

132 Roman Emperor Hadrian (98-138 CE) extends a previous ban, by Emperors Domitian (81-96) and Nerva (96-98), on the castration of citizens or slaves throughout the Roman Empire, to include circumcision.

1955 (Australia) Australian routine circumcision rate peaks at 90 per cent.

1965 W.K.C. Morgan publishes “The rape of the phallus”, the first criticism of circumcision’s murky psychology to appear in a US medical journal.
– peak of US rate at 80-90% 1950-1980

1999, 65.3 percent of all male newborns born in hospitals were circumcised
ranging from a low of 60.7 percent in 1988 to 67.8 percent in 1995

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