Some 50 lawmakers in Germany have signed on to a proposal that would bar ritual circumcision for boys under the age of 14.
Orthodox Jewish groups have sued New York City to block a required warning to parents of the dangers of a ritual in which the circumciser uses his mouth to draw blood from the baby's penis.
A Swiss hospital which briefly banned circumcision announced that it would now allow the procedure.
Two Jews and a Muslim in Germany have started a pro-circumcision campaign to counter a court ruling that bans the practice.
Germany’s Jews and Muslims will not be punished for breaking the law if they carry out circumcisions on young boys, Chancellor Angela Merkel’s spokesman said.
Germany’s top Jewish leader called on the federal Parliament “to ensure religious freedom” following a Cologne court ruling that said circumcising young boys on religious grounds amounts to grievous bodily harm.
In the very public fight over a ballot measure aiming to ban circumcision of underage males in San Francisco, the Jewish-led coalition that succeeded in keeping the practice legal in the city spent more than six times what the ban’s proponents did.
Jewish centers and synagogues were evacuated as a result of the 5.9 magnitude earthquake that was felt throughout the East Coast.
Believe it or not, an American city, San Francisco, is voting to proscribe one of the central rituals of an entire religious community, the Jewish people, who have been circumcising male infants since the time of Abraham.
Circumcision, or "brit milah," has long been the stuff of cheap jokes and comedy. But in recent weeks, what used to be nothing more than harmless fare has taken on a much more serious tone. So-called “intactivists” on the fringe left of American politics have pushed the radical notion that infant circumcision is an act of genital mutilation, so unacceptable in fact that it ought to be illegal.
The Jewish-led coalition working to defeat a San Francisco ballot measure that would ban circumcision there filed a lawsuit on Wednesday morning.
As luck would have it, the day local Jewish leaders gathered in Santa Monica to discuss the community’s response to a proposed ballot measure aimed at banning circumcision in that city was the very same day the proposition was rescinded by its proponent. Twenty-five people came to the meeting at the Milken Family Foundation offices on Fourth Street on June 6, including high-ranking Jewish professionals, local rabbis of all stripes and other Jewish community leaders.
According to the proponent of a ballot initiative to prohibit the act of surgically removing a male baby’s foreskin, the term “circumcision” is nothing but a euphemism. “Having your foreskin amputated is probably more like it,” said Jena Troutman, a doula and mother of two sons, who initiated the process of petitioning Santa Monica to include the initiative on a future ballot.
The attempt to make circumcision illegal, including those performed for religious reasons, is spreading beyond San Francisco, which aimed last week to become the first American municipality to ban the practice. Now, residents of Santa Monica have filed a petition indicating that they, too, intend to get a similar measure on the November ballot for their city. While these are the two most aggressive attempts to curtail the practice of circumcision, they represent an increasing trend away from the practice, or at least away from the presumption of its necessity.
San Francisco-area Jewish organizations condemned a proposed ballot measure to outlaw Jewish ritual circumcision in the city.
It was an ordinary brit milah -- until the mohel passed out cold . . .
When I congratulated "Julie" at her son's bris, I couldn't believe that she looked better than I did at my wedding. Like most of the other women attending the ritual circumcision, we were amazed that anyone could be so put together eight days after giving birth. Trim and graceful with manicured nails and perfect make-up, Julie went out of her way to insist that I sample the blintz soufflé on the elaborate buffet table, making me highly doubtful that this could be the same woman who had just shared her horror story describing 30 hours of excruciating labor -- and four of them were spent pushing!
Women like Julie shouldn't shock me anymore but somehow they still do. As the wife of a mohel, I have seen them all. From moms who fit into their pre-pregnancy Size-6 suits to others who still generously fill their maternity clothes that make me wonder if they already had the baby, meeting new mothers is routine as grocery shopping.
Another wedding, where I'm an FOB -- Friend of the Bride -- and not the groom.