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Author Topic:   Religious Special Pleading
NoNukes
Member
Posts: 10704
From: Central NC USA
Joined: 08-13-2010
Member Rating: 1.9


Message 16 of 354 (829290)
03-05-2018 12:57 PM
Reply to: Message 15 by Coyote
03-05-2018 12:38 PM


For starters, lets call it by its proper name: male genital mutilation.

Wow. That's awful helpful, Coyote. Are you going to stick around for the discussion?


Under a government which imprisons any unjustly, the true place for a just man is also in prison. Thoreau: Civil Disobedience (1846)

"Give me your tired, your poor, your huddled masses yearning to breathe free, the wretched refuse of your teeming shore. Send these, the homeless, tempest-tossed to me, I lift my lamp beside the golden door!”

We got a thousand points of light for the homeless man. We've got a kinder, gentler, machine gun hand. Neil Young, Rockin' in the Free World.

Worrying about the "browning of America" is not racism. -- Faith

I hate you all, you hate me -- Faith


This message is a reply to:
 Message 15 by Coyote, posted 03-05-2018 12:38 PM Coyote has not yet responded

    
Modulous
Member
Posts: 7789
From: Manchester, UK
Joined: 05-01-2005
Member Rating: 1.7


Message 17 of 354 (829294)
03-05-2018 2:43 PM
Reply to: Message 14 by NoNukes
03-05-2018 11:55 AM


My question is directed at whether or not the practice of male circumcision is harmful. You say it is. But is that any kind of official position. I haven't been able to find any such thing, and I did try.

Well it removes the foreskin. If you did that to me without my consent I'd sue the crap out of you. And I'd be successful in asserting harm was caused and easily win if I could demonstrate you committed the act or you admitted it.

Is causing harm to someone who doesn't recognize they were harmed not actually causing harm to them?

Not only does it reduce functionality of the penis, but the procedure itself carries risks - some of which can have lifelong consequences (up to and including death) or require additional surgery to correct.

It has about the same degree of harm as removing the clitoral hood, which is illegal because it is considered harmful.

Since any benefits that exist are minor and there are risks present:

You cannot have the procedure performed in Australian public hospitals.
The legality is unclear in Britain, one reading of the law suggests it is illegal due to nonsensually causing harm to another individual - citing human rights act and others. As one judge opined:

quote:
In my judgment, if FGM Type IV amounts to significant harm, as in my judgment it does, then the same must be so of male circumcision.

Royal Courts of Justice Case No: LJ13C00295 - although the judge concedes the law treats FGM and male circumcision differently. It's as close to an official statement that harm is caused by the British government that I can find and its 'only' a Family Court.
The law does allow an adult to sue their GP for circumcising them as infants, but there is a small window of opportunity (3 years after majority) and I know of only one case where someone attempted it. I can't find any follow up so I presume it never went to court.

In Europe there is a non-binding resolution on Children’s right to physical integrity:

quote:
Parliamentary Assembly is particularly worried about a category of violation of the physical integrity of children, which supporters
of the procedures tend to present as beneficial to the children
themselves despite clear evidence to the contrary. This includes, among others, female genital mutilation, the circumcision of young boys for religious reasons...

Germany, we had a thread (German judge rules child circumcision as child abuse. ) on Germany. A judge ruled male non-therapeutic circumcision amounted to causing bodily injury (violating the bodily integrity of an individual). This only applied to the local jurisdiction of Cologne and Germany enacted a State wide law later explicitly permitting it under certain circumstances after pressure from Jewish and Muslim groups. So, it is harmful but we will create a religious exception clause. That is - you can harm a child if there is a religious reason to do so.

It still strikes me as odd that you can get multiple years in prison for licking a 10 year old's genitals because it is harmful - but slicing bits of their genitals off (if they're a boy) is considered acceptable.

It's also odd to think that if it had never been done for religious reasons and a new religion sprung up which mandated infant circumcision as a sign of a covenant with God...it would probably never be made legal any more than a religion that mandated infant oral sex would. I wonder how long a practice has to go before it is considered legal due to religious or cultural concerns and what the limits of that would be.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 14 by NoNukes, posted 03-05-2018 11:55 AM NoNukes has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 19 by NoNukes, posted 03-05-2018 9:23 PM Modulous has responded

  
Tangle
Member
Posts: 5788
From: UK
Joined: 10-07-2011
Member Rating: 2.4


Message 18 of 354 (829295)
03-05-2018 3:19 PM
Reply to: Message 14 by NoNukes
03-05-2018 11:55 AM


NoNukes writes:

My question is directed at whether or not the practice of male circumcision is harmful.

In absolute terms, of course it is. It's surgery, all surgery carries risk. People can and do die from circumcision, about 229 in the USA per year.

http://www.cirp.org/library/death/

Circumcision is not necessary for health so circumcising boys for purely religious reasons is harmful.

You say it is. But is that any kind of official position. I haven't been able to find any such thing, and I did try

The official position is 'don't interfere'. But it's very easy to find harm, just read the wiki.

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Circumcision

My test is 'if it hadn't always been practiced, would we allow it today'? Outside those situations where there is a medical necessities or a benefit such as in Sub-Saharan Africa where it seems to help, you'd have to say we wouldn't.

Edited by Tangle, : No reason given.


Je suis Charlie. Je suis Ahmed. Je suis Juif. Je suis Parisien. I am Mancunian. I am Brum. I am London.I am Finland. Soy Barcelona

"Life, don't talk to me about life" - Marvin the Paranoid Android

"Science adjusts it's views based on what's observed.
Faith is the denial of observation so that Belief can be preserved."
- Tim Minchin, in his beat poem, Storm.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 14 by NoNukes, posted 03-05-2018 11:55 AM NoNukes has not yet responded

  
NoNukes
Member
Posts: 10704
From: Central NC USA
Joined: 08-13-2010
Member Rating: 1.9


Message 19 of 354 (829310)
03-05-2018 9:23 PM
Reply to: Message 17 by Modulous
03-05-2018 2:43 PM


Well it removes the foreskin. If you did that to me without my consent I'd sue the crap out of you. And I'd be successful in asserting harm was caused and easily win if I could demonstrate you committed the act or you admitted it.

Is causing harm to someone who doesn't recognize they were harmed not actually causing harm to them?

Nobody is trying to remove your foreskin. If, in fact, that was what was going on, unquestionably it would wrong.

Supposedly removing the foreskin has some positive impact. There is little to no evidence that it is harmful. Parents also have their kid's ears pierced and their tonsils removed without any kind of informed consent on the part of the child. And yes, for some folks, there is a religious component to the practice of circumcision.

Folk also elect to remove their sex organs, to pierce their belly buttons and nipples, and to donate their kidneys. I expect you would also sue the crap out of someone if did that to you without your consent. So, is that observation really any part of a great argument?

Edited by NoNukes, : No reason given.


Under a government which imprisons any unjustly, the true place for a just man is also in prison. Thoreau: Civil Disobedience (1846)

"Give me your tired, your poor, your huddled masses yearning to breathe free, the wretched refuse of your teeming shore. Send these, the homeless, tempest-tossed to me, I lift my lamp beside the golden door!”

We got a thousand points of light for the homeless man. We've got a kinder, gentler, machine gun hand. Neil Young, Rockin' in the Free World.

Worrying about the "browning of America" is not racism. -- Faith

I hate you all, you hate me -- Faith


This message is a reply to:
 Message 17 by Modulous, posted 03-05-2018 2:43 PM Modulous has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 21 by Modulous, posted 03-06-2018 1:14 PM NoNukes has responded

    
ringo
Member
Posts: 14679
From: frozen wasteland
Joined: 03-23-2005
Member Rating: 1.4


Message 20 of 354 (829344)
03-06-2018 11:07 AM
Reply to: Message 11 by Tangle
03-04-2018 3:05 PM


Tangle writes:

ringo writes:

Who decides what's "harmful" and what's "harmless"?


Our secular institutions. That's their job.

I think the job of our institutions is to follow the public will, not dictate its practices.

Tangle writes:

I'm not fond of any harmful practice, but here we're talking about harmful religious practices.


We're talking about cultural practices that can be used to target specific religious groups. By declaring certain practices like circumcision "harmful", you can excuse discrimination against the people who practice them.

Why not let the individual decide what's "harmful" to him?


An honest discussion is more of a peer review than a pep rally. My toughest critics here are the people who agree with me. -- ringo

This message is a reply to:
 Message 11 by Tangle, posted 03-04-2018 3:05 PM Tangle has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 22 by Modulous, posted 03-06-2018 1:29 PM ringo has responded
 Message 25 by Tangle, posted 03-06-2018 1:48 PM ringo has responded

  
Modulous
Member
Posts: 7789
From: Manchester, UK
Joined: 05-01-2005
Member Rating: 1.7


Message 21 of 354 (829376)
03-06-2018 1:14 PM
Reply to: Message 19 by NoNukes
03-05-2018 9:23 PM


Nobody is trying to remove your foreskin. If, in fact, that was what was going on, unquestionably it would wrong.

Exactly the point I was making. Glad you agree. It is wrong because it is harmful. If it's harmful to non-consenting adult, I can't see how it is not harmful to a week old baby.

Supposedly removing the foreskin has some positive impact.

By the reckoning of many many, probably most - maybe even almost all, medical groups any benefits are insignificant enough that they cannot justify prophylactic circumcision under almost all circumstances.

There is little to no evidence that it is harmful.

Unnecessarily removing skin from sexual organs is harmful. It is not like the judges, legal and ethical experts came to this conclusion arbitrarily. You asked for some official stances, I gave them - but you seem to have ignored them. Why?

Parents also have their kid's ears pierced and their tonsils removed without any kind of informed consent on the part of the child.

I certainly question the ethics of piercing a baby's ears. I also question the ethics of piercing a 10 year old's ears if they express they don't consent.

Removing tonsils is a medical procedure often done when the tonsils are infected, at risk of being infected and possibly in some cases - when associated Ear/Nose/Throat problems are being corrected through surgical intervention. It's either justified as a prophylactic - or medically useful to do it.

Neither piercing ear cartilage nor procedures used to treat disease are comparable to non-therapeutic circumcision.

What is the mortality rate for ear piercing? How often does it have a long term impact on sexual function? How difficult is it to reverse an ear piercing? How many support groups exist for people who had their ears pierced as children?

Folk also elect to remove their sex organs, to pierce their belly buttons and nipples, and to donate their kidneys. I expect you would also sue the crap out of someone if did that to you without your consent. So, is that observation really any part of a great argument?

Do you think it is ethically justifiable to remove children's genitals entirely or to harvest their organs for non-therapeutic reasons?

I suppose you also think that removing the clitoral hood from little girls is OK too?

If the answer to either is 'No' then yes - my argument that doing it to a non-consenting adult would be harmful is applicable to children too.

Just because a person may consent retrospectively when they come of age, is not a sufficient justification for doing it before they can consent.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 19 by NoNukes, posted 03-05-2018 9:23 PM NoNukes has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 23 by NoNukes, posted 03-06-2018 1:30 PM Modulous has responded

  
Modulous
Member
Posts: 7789
From: Manchester, UK
Joined: 05-01-2005
Member Rating: 1.7


Message 22 of 354 (829381)
03-06-2018 1:29 PM
Reply to: Message 20 by ringo
03-06-2018 11:07 AM


I think the job of our institutions is to follow the public will, not dictate its practices.

It is also to defend against the tyranny of the majority. If most people refuse to serve Black people at shops, hotels etc etc, it is still justifiable for the government to criminalize doing so.

We're talking about cultural practices that can be used to target specific religious groups. By declaring certain practices like circumcision "harmful", you can excuse discrimination against the people who practice them.

What's the problem with that, exactly? People excuse discrimination all the time - if they are breaking the law in doing so they themselves are subject to legal consequences. It is neither an ethical nor legal justification even if people justify it to themselves. Cutting of a thief's hands may be a religiously motivated practice - but it is illegal. And if someone were to illegally discriminate against a hand chopper they too should be penalized.

This was pretty much settled in the US in Reynolds v. United States (1878)

quote:
Laws are made for the government of actions, and while they cannot interfere with mere religious belief and opinions, they may with practices. Suppose one believed that human sacrifices were a necessary part of religious worship, would it be seriously contended that the civil government under which he lived could not interfere to prevent a sacrifice? Or if a wife religiously believed it was her duty to burn herself upon the funeral pile of her dead husband, would it be beyond the power of the civil government to prevent her carrying her belief into practice?

I'm confident you will find similar decisions being made by other nations that have religious freedom enshrined into law.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 20 by ringo, posted 03-06-2018 11:07 AM ringo has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 35 by ringo, posted 03-07-2018 2:35 PM Modulous has responded

  
NoNukes
Member
Posts: 10704
From: Central NC USA
Joined: 08-13-2010
Member Rating: 1.9


Message 23 of 354 (829382)
03-06-2018 1:30 PM
Reply to: Message 21 by Modulous
03-06-2018 1:14 PM


Exactly the point I was making. Glad you agree. It is wrong because it is harmful. If it's harmful to non-consenting adult, I can't see how it is not harmful to a week old baby

I did not agree that it was harmful. I agreed that you had a right to bodily integrity. You have the right not to allow circumcision to be performed on you even if it has a positive impact on your health. What I asked others, and what I now ask you is for evidence that circumcision is harmful.

Apparently, nobody is willing to do more than assert that circumcision is harmful. Is everyone going to join the Coyote heap on that issue?

I certainly question the ethics of piercing a baby's ears.

Okay, well at least your position is internally consistent. I am not in favor of the state getting involved in decisions regarding piercing the ears of toddlers even if you find yourself willing to "question the ethics".

I'll note here that you take it further to discuss piercing the ears of a 10-year-old who does not want it done. Yes, that is questionable. But I am not really addressing that issue.

Do you think it is ethically justifiable to remove children's genitals entirely or to harvest their organs for non-therapeutic reasons?

Is that what circumcision is? Is it non-therapeutic? Is it removing genital's entirely? If so, then the state should be involved. I'll even agree that the state should be involved at some point where the harm is lower than that. But is circumcision that point. Do you have an argument that does not extend the question to amputating a babies penis or clitoris?

Edited by NoNukes, : No reason given.

Edited by NoNukes, : No reason given.


Under a government which imprisons any unjustly, the true place for a just man is also in prison. Thoreau: Civil Disobedience (1846)

"Give me your tired, your poor, your huddled masses yearning to breathe free, the wretched refuse of your teeming shore. Send these, the homeless, tempest-tossed to me, I lift my lamp beside the golden door!”

We got a thousand points of light for the homeless man. We've got a kinder, gentler, machine gun hand. Neil Young, Rockin' in the Free World.

Worrying about the "browning of America" is not racism. -- Faith

I hate you all, you hate me -- Faith


This message is a reply to:
 Message 21 by Modulous, posted 03-06-2018 1:14 PM Modulous has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 24 by Modulous, posted 03-06-2018 1:38 PM NoNukes has not yet responded
 Message 26 by Tangle, posted 03-06-2018 1:57 PM NoNukes has responded

    
Modulous
Member
Posts: 7789
From: Manchester, UK
Joined: 05-01-2005
Member Rating: 1.7


Message 24 of 354 (829383)
03-06-2018 1:38 PM
Reply to: Message 23 by NoNukes
03-06-2018 1:30 PM


I did not agree that it was harmful. I agreed that you had a right to bodily integrity. You have the right not to allow circumcision to be performed on you even if it has a positive impact on your health. What I asked others, and what I now ask you is for evidence that circumcision is harmful.

I define harmful such that it includes the violation of bodily integrity unnecessarily. I can consent to have it done, which removes the harm - assuming the procedure is carried out competently and successfully. Since you concur that non-consensual and non-therapeutic circumcision violates bodily integrity, by my definition it is harmful.

You have yet to define harm, so you can't criticize me for not scoring a goal to your satisfaction when you haven't placed the posts down yet.

I'll note here that you take it further to discuss piercing the ears of a 10-year-old who does not want it done. Yes, that is questionable. But I am not really addressing that issue.

So if they are old enough to decline the procedure- there's a valid ethical concern if they are forced into it. But if they are unable to give consent or to say "no", then you don't see any problem? Does this apply to sex too?


This message is a reply to:
 Message 23 by NoNukes, posted 03-06-2018 1:30 PM NoNukes has not yet responded

  
Tangle
Member
Posts: 5788
From: UK
Joined: 10-07-2011
Member Rating: 2.4


Message 25 of 354 (829384)
03-06-2018 1:48 PM
Reply to: Message 20 by ringo
03-06-2018 11:07 AM


ringo writes:

I think the job of our institutions is to follow the public will, not dictate its practices.

The job of our institutions is to protect all of society and improve our society. It balances personal freedoms against public harm.

We're talking about cultural practices that can be used to target specific religious groups.

Jews have informed me very forceably that circumcision is a religious practice, not a cultural practice. And why would we not prevent harm just because it occurs within a religious community? That makes no sense at all. Is it ok for a religious group to sacrifice virgins to their sun god?

By declaring certain practices like circumcision "harmful", you can excuse discrimination against the people who practice them.

No. Things are not 'declared' harmful, they either are or are not. Cutting an infants penis is a harm.

Why not let the individual decide what's "harmful" to him?

I would be very happy with that outcome. At the age of 18, indivuals can decide whether they want their dicks hacked - or not.


Je suis Charlie. Je suis Ahmed. Je suis Juif. Je suis Parisien. I am Mancunian. I am Brum. I am London.I am Finland. Soy Barcelona

"Life, don't talk to me about life" - Marvin the Paranoid Android

"Science adjusts it's views based on what's observed.
Faith is the denial of observation so that Belief can be preserved."
- Tim Minchin, in his beat poem, Storm.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 20 by ringo, posted 03-06-2018 11:07 AM ringo has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 28 by ICANT, posted 03-06-2018 2:30 PM Tangle has responded
 Message 36 by ringo, posted 03-07-2018 2:48 PM Tangle has responded

  
Tangle
Member
Posts: 5788
From: UK
Joined: 10-07-2011
Member Rating: 2.4


Message 26 of 354 (829385)
03-06-2018 1:57 PM
Reply to: Message 23 by NoNukes
03-06-2018 1:30 PM


NoNukes writes:

What I asked others, and what I now ask you is for evidence that circumcision is harmful.

Apparently, nobody is willing to do more than assert that circumcision is harmful. Is everyone going to join the Coyote heap on that issue?

You obviously missed my reply at 18 above.


Je suis Charlie. Je suis Ahmed. Je suis Juif. Je suis Parisien. I am Mancunian. I am Brum. I am London.I am Finland. Soy Barcelona

"Life, don't talk to me about life" - Marvin the Paranoid Android

"Science adjusts it's views based on what's observed.
Faith is the denial of observation so that Belief can be preserved."
- Tim Minchin, in his beat poem, Storm.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 23 by NoNukes, posted 03-06-2018 1:30 PM NoNukes has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 31 by NoNukes, posted 03-06-2018 8:07 PM Tangle has responded

  
ICANT
Member
Posts: 5878
From: SSC
Joined: 03-12-2007
Member Rating: 1.2


Message 27 of 354 (829390)
03-06-2018 2:26 PM
Reply to: Message 13 by Tangle
03-05-2018 4:34 AM


Circumcision
Hi Tangle,

Tangle writes:

The only reason for this practice is religious. All the rationalisation therafter can be ignored.

quote:
What are the benefits of circumcision?

There is some evidence that circumcision has health benefits, including:

•A decreased risk of urinary tract infections.
•A reduced risk of some sexually transmitted diseases in men.
•Protection against penile cancer and a reduced risk of cervical cancer in female sex partners.
•Prevention of balanitis (inflammation of the glans) and balanoposthitis (inflammation of the glans and foreskin).
•Prevention of phimosis (the inability to retract the foreskin) and paraphimosis (the inability to return the foreskin to its original location).

Circumcision also makes it easier to keep the end of the penis clean.


https://www.webmd.com/...l-conditions/guide/circumcision#1-5

Don't sound like that is religious to me.

God Bless,


"John 5:39 (KJS) Search the scriptures; for in them ye think ye have eternal life: and they are they which testify of me."

This message is a reply to:
 Message 13 by Tangle, posted 03-05-2018 4:34 AM Tangle has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 29 by Tangle, posted 03-06-2018 2:52 PM ICANT has not yet responded

    
ICANT
Member
Posts: 5878
From: SSC
Joined: 03-12-2007
Member Rating: 1.2


(2)
Message 28 of 354 (829392)
03-06-2018 2:30 PM
Reply to: Message 25 by Tangle
03-06-2018 1:48 PM


Decide for me
Hi Tangle,

Tangle writes:

The job of our institutions is to protect all of society and improve our society. It balances personal freedoms against public harm.

So you believe that the government knows what you need better than you do.

God Bless,


"John 5:39 (KJS) Search the scriptures; for in them ye think ye have eternal life: and they are they which testify of me."

This message is a reply to:
 Message 25 by Tangle, posted 03-06-2018 1:48 PM Tangle has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 30 by Tangle, posted 03-06-2018 2:56 PM ICANT has not yet responded

    
Tangle
Member
Posts: 5788
From: UK
Joined: 10-07-2011
Member Rating: 2.4


Message 29 of 354 (829396)
03-06-2018 2:52 PM
Reply to: Message 27 by ICANT
03-06-2018 2:26 PM


Re: Circumcision
ICANT writes:

What are the benefits of circumcision?
There is some evidence that circumcision has health benefits, including

I have already pointed out that there are benefits and given a link to them.

The point is that the practice is not done for incidental benefit, it's done for religious reasons. Modern societies recognise that the harm caused by circumcision overcomes any notional gain.

Would this practice be allowed today if it had never been practiced - of course not.


Je suis Charlie. Je suis Ahmed. Je suis Juif. Je suis Parisien. I am Mancunian. I am Brum. I am London.I am Finland. Soy Barcelona

"Life, don't talk to me about life" - Marvin the Paranoid Android

"Science adjusts it's views based on what's observed.
Faith is the denial of observation so that Belief can be preserved."
- Tim Minchin, in his beat poem, Storm.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 27 by ICANT, posted 03-06-2018 2:26 PM ICANT has not yet responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 37 by ringo, posted 03-07-2018 2:50 PM Tangle has responded

  
Tangle
Member
Posts: 5788
From: UK
Joined: 10-07-2011
Member Rating: 2.4


Message 30 of 354 (829397)
03-06-2018 2:56 PM
Reply to: Message 28 by ICANT
03-06-2018 2:30 PM


Re: Decide for me
ICANT writes:

So you believe that the government knows what you need better than you do.

That's not the purpose of government. It's their job to balance needs of individuals against society as a whole, not do everything I demand of it.


Je suis Charlie. Je suis Ahmed. Je suis Juif. Je suis Parisien. I am Mancunian. I am Brum. I am London.I am Finland. Soy Barcelona

"Life, don't talk to me about life" - Marvin the Paranoid Android

"Science adjusts it's views based on what's observed.
Faith is the denial of observation so that Belief can be preserved."
- Tim Minchin, in his beat poem, Storm.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 28 by ICANT, posted 03-06-2018 2:30 PM ICANT has not yet responded

  
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