California, while in fiscal shambles, may soon be rich in foreskin if an activist group gets its way.
Santa Monica, California recently joined San Francisco in proposing a ban on circumcision of male infants. The Santa Monica bill was penned by the same anti-snipping activist who wrote the measure on the ballot in San Francisco.
Proponents of the ban claim that circumcising boys is tantamount to genital mutilation, that the practice is harmful and dangerous. They say the goal of their group is to make cutting any baby boy's foreskin a federal crime, and they're very adamant about it. Reports the New York Times,
Jena Troutman, the mother of two young boys who is promoting the ballot measure in Santa Monica, said she did not think of herself as a crusader against religion. Instead, she views her work as a chance to educate would-be parents against a procedure that "can really do serious damage to the child."
"I am just a mom trying to save the little babies," Ms. Troutman said. "I'd rather be on the beach, but nobody is talking about this, so I have to."
Well, let's be thankful that Ms. Troutman has opted not to combine baby penis activism with beachgoing, because the last thing I'd want when I was on the beach would be some stranger approaching me to talk about my infant son's penis. But I digress.
There are obvious religious complications to a ban on circumcision, as both Jews and Muslims' religious law dictates that boys are circumcised as infants.
"People are shocked that it has reached this level because there has never been this kind of a direct assault on a Jewish practice here," said Marc Stern, associate general counsel for the American Jewish Committee, an advocacy group. "This is something that American Jews have always taken for granted - that something that was so contested elsewhere but here, we're safe and we're secure."
While the activist group originally planned on including a religious exemption in the circumcision ban, they eventually decided the ban should apply to all babies.
Not only does the ban tend to target Jews and Muslims, it also may be unnecessary, as the practice of circumcision is fading out on its own. Most babies in America used to be circumcised; now experts believe the figure stands at between 30 and 50%. In a generation, that number will likely shrink further.
This year has been a challenging one for many- women's access to abortion and contraception is being threatened as states attempt to defund the abortionapalooza funhouse known as Planned Parenthood, immigrants' rights are being threatened in Arizona, Georgia, and elsewhere, America's ballsacks are being gently cradled by TSA officials who think you might be harboring the tiniest of explosives down there. But if you're a fetus or a baby penis, this has really been your year. Congratulations, babies, on all of your newfound rights.