Letter to the Medical Board of California: Complaint against Dr. Edgar Schoen

Attorneys for the Rights of the Child

2961 Ashby Avenue, Berkeley, CA 94705 510-848-4437


Medical Board of California

1425 Howe Avenue

Sacramento, CA 95825


June 12, 1999


Re: Edgar Schoen


Dear Sir or Madam:


We are an international children’s human rights organization which is deeply concerned by the actions of Dr. Edgar Schoen. Dr. Schoen, the former chair of the Task Force on Circumcision of the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP), appeared on the Today show on November 9, 1998 in a nationally televised debate with Dr. George Denniston. . As detailed in the enclosed letter of complaint to the AAP from the National Organization to Halt the Abuse and Routine Mutilation of Males (NOHARMM), Dr. Schoen made knowingly and repeatedly made numerous false claims in the course of this show to attempt to convince the television audience of the claimed advantages of infant circumcision.


Dr. Schoen has thereby willfully disseminated false information to misrepresent the scientific data regarding the foreskin and circumcision. He has thereby perpetuated an anachronistic medical practice and deceived the public regarding the pertinent medical evidence.


We have been advised by NOHARMM that the AAP has taken no action to date against Dr. Schoen. We therefore are compelled to call your attention to Dr. Schoen’s grave ethical violations and serious misconduct and to request that the appropriate disciplinary action be taken against Dr. Schoen.


We would request a written reply stating the actions taken in response to this request.


Sincerely yours,




J. Steven Svoboda

Executive Director


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