WHAT IS CIRCUMCISION?
Circumcision refers to the cutting and removal of healthy erogenous tissue from either males or females. In boys, circumcision refers to cutting away of the foreskin (prepuce) from the penis, typically done to babies. In girls, circumcision refers to the cutting away of the labia or clitoris. Circumcision can also be referred to as genital mutilation.
Circumcision is a euphemism for genital cutting. The term “circumcision” is an attempt to conceal the unpleasant truth. The word “circumcision” only describes the act of cutting, meaning literally “to cut around.” The word “circumcision” ignores the fact that a person’s genitals are actually being cut.
INTACT or CIRCUMCISED or UNCIRCUMCISED. Why the confusion?
Males can be either intact or circumcised. To use the term “uncircumcised” is incorrect and insulting to intact males. One cannot be “uncircumcised,” as the act of circumcision is a permanent condition. Hence, the proper terminology for a male with his foreskin attached in a normal state is “intact.”
You might expect only diseased or damaged tissue to be surgically removed. But in the case of circumcision, it is normal healthy tissue that is removed.
What is the foreskin, and why do males have one?
The foreskin is a normal anatomical feature found in all mammals. It has evolved to protect the penis, and contains unique structures.The foreskin is the most densely nerve laden part of the penis, containing 240 feet of nerves and 20,000 nerve endings. The foreskin contains dense concentrations of Meissner’s corpuscles, which are special nerve endings especially sensitive to light touch. These highly specialized nerve sensors are one reason why genital cutting is so painful to an infant. The foreskin also contains Langerhan’s cells, which act as sentries to alert the immune system to invading bacteria and viruses. As a protective cover, the foreskin acts in the same way the eyelid functions. It keeps a sensitive area covered, but retracts as necessary. Scientific research is always making new discoveries. It is presumptuous to assume the foreskin is an unnecessary “flap of skin.”
Check out Intaction’s other articles for more facts and myths about circumcision.