Friday, April 12, 2013

My response to "Foreskin Activist Protests Oprah's Endorsement of (Fore)Skin Cream "

Scaramouche criticized the recent protest to Oprah's endorsement of SkinMedica (a cream that includes a byproduct of culturing cells obtained from a baby's foreskin, a baby who was forcefully circumcised and his foreskin sold or donated by the hospital for commercial use, on his blog:

He considers idiotic protesting against "(an AIDS preventative, hence [his] suggested slogan for an anti-AIDS campaign: FORESKINNED IS FOREARMED"

I commented, but since his comments are moderated I'm also posting my response here in case he does not approve my comment:

A study found that female circumcision was correlated to lower HIV prevalence in Tanzania. This was the contrary of the expected results, so it was attributed to confounding factors.

Rebecca Stallings. Female circumcison and HIV infection in Tanzania: for better or for worse.

Male and female circumcision associated with prevalent HIV infection in virgins and adolescents in Kenya, Lesotho, and Tanzania.
Brewer DD, Potterat JJ, Roberts JM Jr, Brody S.

Kanki et al. reported that, in Senegalese prostitutes, women who had undergone Female Circumcision had a significantly decreased risk of HIV-2 infection when compared to those who had not.

Kanki P, M'Boup S, Marlink R, et al. "Prevalence and risk determinants of human immunodeficiency virus type 2 (HIV-2) and human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV-1) in west African female prostitutes
Am. J. Epidemiol. 136 (7): 895-907. PMID

So, does male and/or female circumcision have anything to do with HIV? Some studies show a protective effect (from both male and female circumcision), some studies like the one from Brewer, show that the procedure of circumcision in fact exposes the individual to the risk of HIV.

When bad science kills, or how to spread AIDS
Published May 22, 2012 | By Brian D. Earp

Sub-Saharan African randomised clinical trials
male circumcision and HIV transmission:
Methodological, ethical and legal concerns
Gregory J Boyle and George Hill

So, to round up, would you forgo safe sex because you are circumcised? NO, you shouldn't. Doing that is playing Russian Roulette. So if circumcision DOES NOT prevent HIV infection, then why is it part of the package? It seems like an empty diversion of resources instead of promoting condom usage, education, safe sex, and focusing on high risk individuals and communities with treatment and testing.

BTW, it is known that North American and European circumstances are different. Even those who accept circumcision as a "preventive" measure (or risk reduction measure) have accepted that:

Circumcision does not affect HIV in gay men in the U.S.

or in the UK

Studies in the U.S. Navy have found no correlation:

There was no correlation found in Puerto Rico:

Zimbabwe has reported that the new infections of HIV reported in 2010-2011 were more prevalent among circumcised men.

Real world data comparison between prevalence of circumcision and prevalence of HIV does not support the thesis that circumcision reduces the risk of HIV:

So what is more idiotic, to compare forced genital cutting of male babies with forced genital cutting of female babies, or to promote a preventive measure that does not prevent anything, giving people a sense of security over something that just doesn't work?


  1. Yes, because babies are crawling out of their beds and having mad promiscuous sex.

    It's almost entertaining how circumcision advocates have to change the subject because the subject at hand is too hard to tackle.

    So what if circumcision "might" prevent HIV?

    How does that make it OK to mutilate the genitals of a healthy, non-consenting, non-sexually active child?

    Let alone sell his foreskin and profit from products derived from it?

    I am intact, and I would NEVER undergo circumcision "to prevent AIDS," because I think it's idiotic, especially given the fact that I am not sexually promiscuous and am faithful to my wife.

    So how is it idiots like this one dare assume that all babies would WANT these so-called "benefits?"

    Morally repugnant in more ways than one.

  2. Even Bill Gates is pulling away from the circumcision rollout when he offered a prize for a more tolerable/effective condom.