Monthly Archives: March 2017

Metzitzah b’Peh – 6 babies infected with herpes after oral suction during circumcision following NYC Mayor Bill de Blasio’s repeal of existing regulations

[New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio,] asked directly if it was ever appropriate for an adult to suck the penis of an infant, the mayor demurred.

“This is religious tradition and look I’m keenly aware of our Constitution,” he said.

[But religious tradition is not above the law. For example, the 1996 law against FGM provides no religious or cultural exceptions]

[de Blasio also said:] “And we’re going to say to [parents], it’s important to ask the mohel — if you choose to engage in this practice, that’s your right, and we respect religious freedom — but ask the mohel if they are infected with herpes. And if they are, you should find a different mohel. It’s as simple as that.”

[But Mayor De Blasio, the person "engaged" in this practice is not the parent. It's a BABY, an individual who does not have the maturity or the legal competence to consent to this practice, someone who did not "choose to engage" in the practice, so this is nothing short of sexual assault of a minor!

Putting the genitals of a person who did not consent, inside the mouth of another person, is sexual assault. When this person is a minor, this is sexual assault of a minor.

To do it in the context of a religious ritual then also becomes ritual abuse of a minor.]


Previous Mayor Bloomberg “regulated” this practice by requiring parents to sign a “consent form” where they acknowledge the risks of the procedure. The measure was not enforced, and the consent form would only be requested when there were any complaints. The rabbis objected angrily calling it an infringement on their religious freedom. In a couple of cases of herpes infections, it was found that no consent form was signed.

Democratic candidate Bill de Blasio promised to repeal this regulation, and did so once he became mayor. Since then, 6 babies have become infected with herpes as a consequence of the ritual.

The health commissioner Mary Bassett said the city has identified two of the six mohels involved in those cases, but would not identify them because they “entitled to their privacy” (it’s not like sucking the penis of a non-consenting minor and infecting him with a sexually transmitted disease could be seen as a criminal action, right?).

These two mohels have been “banned” of practicing the ritual (just the oral suction part, not circumcisions per se – even though they are not medical doctors… isn’t that practicing medicine without a license?), but they are not being named, so the city relies on them to “comply on their own”. The community has no way of knowing who they are to verify compliance.

Since 2000, there have been 24 confirmed cases of herpes infection following DOS, according to the health department. Two of the 24 babies died, and at least two others suffered brain damage.

March 10, 2017 First Baby In 2017 Is Diagnosed With Herpes After Oral Suction Circumcision

March 29, 2017 NYC bars two men from practicing Jewish circumcision after infants contract herpes

March 9, 2017 More infant herpes cases linked to Jewish circumcision ritual found since de Blasio’s new policy with community

Feb 24, 2015 Mayor de Blasio Is Set to Ease Rules on Circumcision Ritual

Cutting off children’s penises… an acceptable risk?

In 2012, following the lead of Germany, hospitals in Austria and Switzerland briefly banned circumcisions on male minors after the Cologne court ruling that it could amount to bodily harm. Unfortunately it was only briefly.

Unfortunately, I said, because in 2014, a doctor in Geneva severed a four-year-old’s penis during a circumcision and ‘wasted time’ before sending him to hospital. The doctor now faces trial accused of inflicting serious bodily harm through negligence.

The father blames the doctor, who he says ran looking for a catheter and told him to wait in the operating room, and who also failed to properly restrain the boy. The doctor, through his lawyer, blames the father, because he was taking photos and the boy turned to face him, resulting in the act of severing his penis, and also states that he told the father to go to the hospital immediately.

It took several surgeries to reattach the penis, but further procedures will be needed once he becomes an adult. The surgeon continued practicing after the incident, and has since conducted an additional 1,800 circumcisions.

Every year we hear about a some boys losing part or the totality of their penises during circumcision. For a recent American example, Dr. Stephen R. Glicken from Hazleton, PA, on July 20, 2016 circumcised a newborn baby and “cut off a significant portion of the penis” and then failed to transfer the partially amputated portion of their son’s penis on ice, and as a result, attempts to reattach it were “unlikely to succeed and could result in additional complications.”

And in the meantime, circumcision fanboy Brian Morris PhD, who has in the past claimed that the benefits of circumcision outweigh the risks (which in his words are “predominantly minor”) 100 to 1, now claims the actual benefit to risk ratio is 200 to 1. How did this rate doubled up in a couple of years, I wish someone would ask Mr. Morris.

Now, Morris, and I know you are reading this, can you help us understand how this 200 to 1 benefit ratio applies to the very real and individual boys who suffer traumatic injuries such as the ones here described?

Perhaps a few boys are considered an acceptable risk for the medical community, but it’s not an acceptable risk for the families and boys who suffer such horrible loss.

In the meantime, in Denmark, where most of the population is in favor of banning the circumcision of male boys, the government claims that circumcision is “a human right” – and part of the reason is that it “is rarely associated with medical complications, when performed under medical supervision, and that it’s viewed as a religious expression and therefore falls under the freedom of religion right.” Tell that to the unnamed Swiss boy – or the also unnamed American baby.