We are proud to announce that Los Angeles attorney Marc Angelucci has joined forces with ARC as our Gender Equity Strategist. Marc has done awesome work litigating on behalf of gender equity. He has also been extremely active as an intactivist in recent years, publishing a number of letters and opinion pieces, and even driving up from Los Angeles for the Bay Area premiere of Eliyahu Ungar-Sargon’s film, “Cut.” Marc is a true powerhouse activist.

Marc writes:

On November 17, 2011, the Los Angeles and San Francisco Daily Journals (the leading legal daily newspapers for those cities) printed my op-ed responding to the American Medical Association’s irresponsible and unexamined statement on November 15, 2011 that male circumcision has documented health benefits. The text of the op-ed is attached to this email.

Here is the letter of support for Marc’s op-ed that we sent today to the Los Angeles and San Francisco Daily Journals:

November 23, 2011

Dear Editor:

We are writing to express our support for Marc Angelucci’s excellent opinion piece on circumcision (Nov. 17). As a non-profit organization founded nearly 15 years ago and devoted to educating the public, judiciary, and legal community regarding the harm caused by genital cutting (male circumcision), we support Mr. Angelucci’s clearly reasoned article. Human rights, medical ethics, and domestic and international law all militate against the permissibility of excising functional tissue from non-consenting infants. Yet male circumcision persists due to a combination of cultural blindness and unawareness of the origins of medicalized circumcision in the woeful medical ignorance of 150 years ago.

The doublethink is stunning that outlaws any form of genital cutting of females–even cutting that fails to remove any tissue–yet tolerates a procedure that takes away half the surface skin of the penis. The American Medical Association will be proven wrong for effectively encouraging the perpetuation of this sexist practice. Public opinion is already shifting to the preferable alternative of letting the affected individual make his own decision upon reaching adulthood. Already–according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the majority of boys leave the hospital with intact foreskins. And based on the low numbers of American men who choose circumcision in adulthood (currently no more than 3 in 1,000), we expect the great majority will elect to remain as they were born.

J. Steven Svoboda
Executive Director
Attorneys for the Rights of the Child

Marc writes regarding the reaction to his op-ed piece:

The AMA completely disregarded what national medical associations worldwide are saying, and based on some of their responses to us on Facebook it appears they didn’t even read them. The AMA’s announcement on its Facebook page has well over 150 very critical comments from the public about this decision.

Interestingly, two of their members answered by admitting this was somewhat of a quick decision. One of them, name, Sam Mackenzie, said this was made with only “limited debate,” and he offered to draft a resolution for reconsideration at their June meeting, and he said this that the AMA’s report “stated that there was very limited testimony arguing against the resolution. The limited debate was framed around intrusion of patient choice and physician practice, not on the merits of circumcision. I’m not saying this is appropriate–just that it’s what happened. Second, this was submitted as a late resolution; hence, it was not privy to discussion on the online forum before the meeting. A strong case could have been made for referral to a council, for example, the Council on Ethical and Judicial Affairs. In hindsight, this would have been my preferred action, but as a medical student, I was focused on other issues, for example, those centered around Medicaid revisions and cuts to graduate medical education funding.”

Steven Svoboda
Attorneys for the Rights of the Child

11-17-11 Marc Angelucci’s Daily Journal op-ed.pdf