SF to vote on male circumcision in November
May 18th, 2011
05:33 PM ET

SF to vote on male circumcision in November

San Francisco voters will  decide whether to ban male circumcision in the November 8 municipal election.

Activists gathered enough signatures to put a proposal on the ballot, the city's election board confirmed Wednesday.

The measure  aims to prohibit all male circumcisions in San Francisco. Led by Lloyd Schofield who is part of a Bay Area “intactivist” group, the advocates want to eliminate the  surgery and liken it to  "male genital mutilation."

Schofield and the "intactivists" seek to make it "unlawful to circumcise, excise, cut, or mutilate the whole or any part of the foreskin, testicles, or penis" of anyone 17 or younger in San Francisco.  Under the proposal, a person who violates the proposed ban could be jailed (not more than one year) or fined (not more than $1,000). Exemptions for religious reasons would not be allowed.

Column: Circumcising our son– how do we decide?

The measure faces huge hurdles: Legal, religious opposition and varying public opinion.  It has brought up some interesting discussions about why we circumcise and whether there are any sound medical benefits.

Empowered Patient: Should teens make their own circumcision decision?

“We hope to get a greater outreach to the people in the city,” Schofield said Wednesday during a celebratory lunch.  He said the activists would step up efforts to talk about the issue with residents.  “We are willing and happy to talk to people who want a respectful conversation. We’re excited to do it.”

soundoff (762 Responses)
  1. Brian

    Yea, I would have to agree with the rest. I have not met anyone, anywhere who have said they would rather be uncut. It was only the people who were uncut that normally got defensive when the topic was brought up. Statistics show that female would rather do a guy who is cut. But why am I talking about females, its SF for universe sakes!

    May 19, 2011 at 02:49 | Report abuse | Reply
  2. Collette

    Let's just face the true fact that matters...circuncised meat wands look sooooo much more appealing than uncut ones. Argument over.

    May 19, 2011 at 02:50 | Report abuse | Reply
    • LEB

      No, that doesn't matter. Surgery for cosmetic reasons in a child is only appropriate when there is an obvious deformity (such as a cleft palette), or when it is an elective procedure undertaken by an ADULT. You only think a circ'd penis looks better because you're used to it. Yes, it does look better, but at the potential cost of pain during penetration, discomfort during intercourse, and reduced sensitivity for your male partner. A circ'd man can even get abrasions on his penis from the friction due to his glans not being protected by foreskin. Who wants to experience THAT?

      May 19, 2011 at 05:52 | Report abuse |
    • onehunglow

      there need to be more Irish Cops on the beat and without planting foreskins, we don't have enough of them to go around!!!

      May 19, 2011 at 07:47 | Report abuse |
    • Dave

      You're a disgusting mnster, Collette. Go cut yourself, since I'm sure a trimmed vulva would be "so much more appealing."

      May 19, 2011 at 12:31 | Report abuse |
  3. Max

    Is there anyone out there that says to themselves, "gee i really wish i had that foreskin right now, it would definitely come in handy." Seriously foreskin is gross and useless and I'm glad my parents had it removed when I didn't have to use my penis for anything but to pee.

    May 19, 2011 at 02:57 | Report abuse | Reply
    • LEB

      Yeah, actually, there are a lot of men who wish they hadn't been cut. When they learn what they've lost, some feel quite robbed, and I don't blame them.

      May 19, 2011 at 05:53 | Report abuse |
    • shotgunman006

      I wish I still had mine. There isn't anything gross about it. I think if more people were educated about what the foreskin does then far fewer would be having it removed

      May 19, 2011 at 12:56 | Report abuse |
    • Jellomundo

      A foreskin isn't any more gross than an eyelid!

      May 19, 2011 at 14:33 | Report abuse |
    • Hugh7

      You can be sure that if you still had it you'd be even more glad, because it confers "a symphony of sensation".

      May 19, 2011 at 23:34 | Report abuse |
  4. thomas

    Mother nature for some reason decided to have a fore skin how come we always believe that we humans are smarter then this most powerful nature?

    May 19, 2011 at 03:48 | Report abuse | Reply
    • BeefJerky

      Because it was determined that foreskin gets dirty and infected. Nature also grows cancer, so maybe we should just let cancer grow. Just let the parents decide what to do. It doesn't matter, b/c when these kids grow up in SF, they will remove their penis's anyhow.

      May 19, 2011 at 09:14 | Report abuse |
  5. CG

    San Francisco should think twice about this, as it has a large population of teen transgendered.

    May 19, 2011 at 03:49 | Report abuse | Reply
    • myweightinwords

      What does being transgendered have to do with having or not having a foreskin?

      May 19, 2011 at 10:42 | Report abuse |
  6. Mic

    I'm a nurse and seen this procedure done many times. The child barely whimpers most of the time. You give them a pacifer dipped in sugar water and they are in hog heaven. Just another example of idiot liberals thinking Big Brother knows what's best for you, your body and your child.

    May 19, 2011 at 03:52 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Shawn

      That's a ridiculous thing to write, nurse or not.

      May 19, 2011 at 14:26 | Report abuse |
    • Hugh7

      You may call it "hog heaven". Those who've looked at their blood pressure, cortisol, etc, call it "going into shock".

      May 19, 2011 at 23:36 | Report abuse |
    • Arapahoe

      Watch one: http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=-6584757516627632617#

      June 7, 2011 at 13:59 | Report abuse |
  7. Anne


    May 19, 2011 at 03:53 | Report abuse | Reply
  8. Lucinda

    To Greg:
    You apparently did not watch the news last week! San Francisco is no longer even in the Top 10 Gay Cities in the USA! The number one??? Surprise! MINNEAPOLIS!!!! Even Pittsburgh, PA made the Top 10. However, after interviewing some gays in S.F., they are determined to regain their number one spot!

    May 19, 2011 at 07:42 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Shawn

      Well. Watch what you read. Whatever article you read is ridiculous. Minneapolis is a maybe, but old fashioned fuddy duddy Pgh?... NO WAY. Laughable. Anybody with half a brain will gravitate to liberal, modern cities- and coastal and warm climates in general.... and that's for sure. 😉

      May 19, 2011 at 13:58 | Report abuse |

    So who excactly came up with this idea?

    Was it "The Anti Semitic Association of Foreskin-lovers Against God" ?


    May 19, 2011 at 08:44 | Report abuse | Reply
    • The Mad Man

      I love it, a new subversive group of terrorists to watch out for.

      May 21, 2011 at 10:25 | Report abuse |
  10. Sad

    The 1st amendment doesn't just prohibit congress from esatblishing religion, it also prohibits them from limiting the free exercise of religion. It bothers me that this proposal does not allow religious exemption. Not that the SF voters are congress, it just seems to be against our nation's ideals.

    May 19, 2011 at 08:47 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Dave

      Since when does on person's fredom of religion mean we have to allow them to cut on someone else's body?

      May 19, 2011 at 12:33 | Report abuse |
  11. HPNIII

    It is good to know the people in SF have gotten so many problems solved in their fine city that they now have time to devote to these type of issues.

    May 19, 2011 at 08:51 | Report abuse | Reply

    So let me get this straight:

    You are legally allowed to crush your babys head, and tear his body to pieces limb by limb through abortion.

    But you are not allowed to snip of his foreskin, to remind him of The Covenant the Lord God made with your ancestors to ensure amongst other things, that the child would remember not to kill.

    Why not change the name of San Francisco to City of Satan?

    May 19, 2011 at 09:01 | Report abuse | Reply
  13. Wes

    ok... I see alot of people crying about liberals or gays or something along those lines on here. Neither of which have anything to do with this issue. Bottom line is... I am glad I do not live in SF. I would simply not put up with this. If I did live there and this was passed, I would move. The government needs to stay out of my pants and the pants of my children. Period. Anything less and I will find a new government and move there.

    May 19, 2011 at 09:27 | Report abuse | Reply
  14. John

    How can anyone take ANYTHING that comes out of California seriously? This is the most ridiculous thing I have ever heard. The state is near insolvency, yet they are debating things like this. Wow.....liberalism run wild……

    May 19, 2011 at 09:31 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Shawn

      So waht? So are half the states. Are they all supposed to stop living while they get out of debt? That would be a long long time.

      May 19, 2011 at 14:01 | Report abuse |
  15. Dan

    History does repeat itself...

    May 19, 2011 at 10:41 | Report abuse | Reply
  16. Osama

    how did this end up on abortion??? you americans love this issue!

    May 19, 2011 at 10:42 | Report abuse | Reply
  17. Chris Honry

    "EXEMPTIONS for religeous reasons NOT ALLOWED" ? Is SF 1939 Berlin ? Sounds like it. Facist f@gs the new National Socialists.

    May 19, 2011 at 11:38 | Report abuse | Reply
  18. Sci0n

    Seeing that all you Christian folks are on here talking about the bible, I just wanted to point out that you can’t pick and choose either, the states for those that follow the new testament in 19 different verses that you should circ your children, doing do is forsaking Christ as our savior, you all really need to go look up “what the bible really says about Circ umcision”

    May 19, 2011 at 11:52 | Report abuse | Reply
  19. Sci0n

    Seeing that all you Christian folks are on here talking about the bible, I just wanted to point out that you can’t pick and choose either, the states for those that follow the new testament in 19 different verses that you should circ your children, doing do is forsaking Christ as our savior, you all really need to go look up “what the bible really says about Circ umcision”

    May 19, 2011 at 11:53 | Report abuse | Reply
  20. Cathy W

    You conservatives keep accusing libs of a nanny state thing. But isn't outlawing abortion the ultimate in nanny state? It's saying that a woman does not have the right to decide what is done to HER body, that the fetus she carries trumps any rights she might have.

    May 19, 2011 at 13:41 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Timmy

      Yes, and they want to tell you who you can marry or not, what plants you can grow or not, what movies you can watch, music you can listen to, but yes, it's the OTHER guys who perpetuate the "nanny state." Fact is, they are mindless trolls who regurgitate their partisan talking points as many times as possible hoping that it'll make it true. It doesn't and it won't.

      May 20, 2011 at 15:17 | Report abuse |
  21. Mohel75

    I guess this mean no more magic wallets.

    May 19, 2011 at 13:52 | Report abuse | Reply
  22. s

    I think this is all a little crazy and getting way out of hand. First abortion should be up to the mom and dad if he is involved no body knows their story but them not saying im for it just saying it should be up to her and it has nothing to do with what SF is trying to pass. Then getting ride of the foreskin should also be up to the parents its no one else buisness and who really cares unless its your kid if you dont want to then dont. you dont need a law to tell you to do it or not. The fact that it is a baby and not there choices should not matter parents make choices for there chlildren for many years so this should be no different.

    May 19, 2011 at 17:20 | Report abuse | Reply
  23. sally

    Ok–poor kid who who retracts his foreskin and cannot put it back, the kids' poor glans is turning purple, MD is unable to replace foreskin in the ED...call in the Urologist to snip the foreskin before the glans becomes necrotic...Oh, wait. We are in San Fransisco. It is illegal to cut the foreskin.....big fine....?jail? ....., oh, well. Lets let the glans of the poor kid fall off because a bunch of nuts passing a ridiculous law. Oh, exception for medical necessity? Well, there will be a bunch of circs done for medical necessity if this passes.

    May 19, 2011 at 18:00 | Report abuse | Reply
  24. TPL792

    It's amazing how these ultra liberal boneheads will try and pass legislation to protect the penis, but also support the killing of the entire baby through abortion. Protect the penis kill the baby, The end of times cant come soon enough for me!

    May 20, 2011 at 06:42 | Report abuse | Reply
  25. The Mad Man

    Stop with this already. This has been a personal choice for years and should remain so. Get the foreskins out of office that want to push this on the ballet.

    May 20, 2011 at 11:15 | Report abuse | Reply
  26. MG

    I am appalled by this potential legislature. Especially being a Jew I am even more offended. The government has no right telling me what choices I can make with my family. I am not religious but this is the basic foundation of being a Jew, and in addition there is no harm done. Let people run their own lives.

    June 7, 2011 at 10:22 | Report abuse | Reply
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    December 13, 2020 at 03:33 | Report abuse | Reply
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