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Circumcision: San Francisco voters to consider ban

San Francisco voters will be asked in November to weigh in on what was until now a private family matter: male circumcision.

Elections officials in the US city confirmed that an initiative that would ban the circumcision of males younger than 18 in San Francisco has received enough signatures to appear on the referendum. The practice would become a misdemeanour if the vote is passed.

Supporters of the ban say male circumcision is a form of genital mutilation that should not be forced on a young child.

But opponents say such claims are alarmingly misleading, and call the proposal a clear violation of constitutionally protected religious freedoms.

The initiative's backers say its progress is the biggest success story to date of a decades-old nationwide movement to end circumcision of male infants in the United States.

"Parents are really guardians, and guardians have to do what's in the best interest of the child. It's his body. It's his choice," said Lloyd Schofield, who lead the calls for the referendum. He added that circumcision was a more invasive medical procedure than many new parents or childless individuals realised.

Isn't it about time we in the UK were making a louder noise about the unnecessary and permanent disfigurement of babies' penises?



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