My kid bro just finished his KCPE. You know, those national exams that take 3 days to test what you’ve learned for 4 years and are the only determinant of which high school you go to. Those national exams. If he had been sick or unable to take his exams, his whole future would literally be ruined. The exam week is so tense that they have a Prayer Day before they start; to pray for miracles. Hell, they even made sure that no student gets a success card lest the one who got less felt unmotivated. The whole thing is ridiculous.
But not as ridiculous as the week after.
As a Bantu tradition, every boy that comes of age has to be initiated into manhood in a ritual that is now nothing short of barbaric. Before getting into high school, one must undergo the cut that makes him a man. For, you see, the lack of that floppy piece of skin is the only reason men are men. Little girls bleed through their genitals when they come of age, so it’s only right that little boys also bleed through their genitals when they come of age too, because you know, EQUALITY.
If you get a slight feeling that I am against circumcision you are right. I touched on this four years ago as a confused uncle and you can check the archived post here <link>.
I now reignite the topic again because I realized so many people of my age were for it for the reasons that are really not valid anymore.
Circumcision. Why is that still a thing?
Circumcision is part of the Bantu customs and getting rid of it would be sacrilege. Other ethnic groups had such ridiculousness as plucking out 6 front teeth, but have thankfully stopped. So why can’t we? Well, this of course is because of tradition preservationists. Deep down, these are the people who are sad that Female Genital Mutilation is illegal.
Back then, circumcision was a rite of passage, but it was more than just a cut. It was a more ‘fulfilling experience’. Where elders sat down with the initiated boys and talked to them about being a man and having responsibilities, or so the history books say. It involved being grouped into things GHC called age-set or riika where the training included hunting, war, family stuff etc. Right now we do not have time for that.
Back then, you’d be standing naked by a river in a single file waiting for your turn with an old near-blind village elder who is using an undisinfected piece of rock to swing haphazardly at your shriveling penis. There might even have been an a crowd there to watch and see if you will cry – if you didn’t you are a man. How it was supposed to work is, the pain should be so excruciating it numbs all your future pains. It should be so painful that in future you cannot cry. Death of your loved ones? No need to cry about something so insignificant. Crying because of emotional pain is unmanly, and compared to being cut by a rusty ironsheet, less painful. This kind of numbness might have been necessary back then when you had to be at war all the time but right now circumcision is just there to give you a false sense of manhood.
A middle aged man killed his wife for calling him ‘kivici’ (uncircumcised) in Kieni Nyeri.
— Enemy of Progress (@pnmurimi9) October 26, 2015
Especially now when you do not have all the other age-set kind of activities that used to last forever. These days, you get cut in a hospital, hold a party , uncles give you money, then you go back to the house to play with your Play Station until the wound heals enough for you to play with your stitches as you wait for your KCPE results. There may be a few uncles who actually talk to you about being a man. But rarely, and not in-depth.
We place too much emphasis on the removal of the foreskin than on the real teachings on how to be a man. Nothing about the lack of that piece of skin makes you a man. Nothing. Being a man is much more than that. You cannot sit there and say that the communities that do not do circumcision do not have real men.
If we want to have teachings on being a man, then let us do it properly and realize circumcision does nothing but harm. Get the boy a real mentor. A man who is going to actually help the boy become a better person. Someone is not going to bullshit him but will also be there to show him the path, in a way his father might not. Let the mentor tell the boy about how sex is really like, how to ask for it and how not to, how to have safe sex and how to know when not to have sex at all. How to be respectful to other men (who have not been circumcised [because it’s not their tradition]). How to treat women with respect. How to treat juniors with respect. How to treat nature and its resources. How to take up responsibilities. How emotions are not unmanly. When to know he has alcohol/gambling/porn/drug/social media addictions. How to take care of his health/hygiene. Basically how not to be a dick to others and to himself. There’s a lot that can be taught here that cannot just be crammed in that two-week healing session.
I repeat once more, circumcision does not help you become a man. If you still think it is the pain that works, however, I have a better solution for you sadistic fucks. After your son finishes KCPE tie him down in a cold room. Or it can be a warm room, that part doesn’t matter. Call his uncles and other men and takes turns slapping him hard in the face. Use open palms not closed fists, we are not trying to be that inhumane. Make the slapfest frequent and regular. If you are real men, there should be some blood. Make this slapanado last for about a month. After that stop and move on, he has received enough pain to numb him, he is now a man, and no permanent scars. You can now sit together and have a beer as you pat yourself on the back for helping a boy become a man.
Now you might be sitting there thinking , ‘But Dexxe, it’s not just about hurting the boy, it’s also about sexually defiling him. Slaps don’t give us men any sexual gratification‘. I get you, but leave the poor penis alone, chose another sexual organ. Like the nipples. Clip those off. That is by far a better loss than the dick snip. Ask our sexually depraved high school disciplinarian.
- Hygiene and general health
Another common reason given for circumcision is hygiene. Apparently, the foreskin holds so much dirt that circumcision is the only way to clean it. You’d think they are talking about washing a duvet inside a cup. It is so hard to pull back the skin and rinse, might as well as take it off. But why stop there? Men also don’t bother washing in between their toes. Why not just get rid of the toes to make it easier to clean feet? It’ll fuck up your balance but at least you will have clean feet.
@Dexxe “It takes more effort for an uncircumcised man to remain clean” Kwani the foreskin is a heavy-duty tent that needs 3hrs to wash?
— The Thot Awakens (@viru5detected) November 14, 2015
The hygiene reason is not a good reason to get circumcised. The penis is easy to clean, just like the vagina. Just rinse thoroughly with water. A baby’s penis is even easier to clean, because just like an eyelid, it is self-cleaning. You shouldn’t even pull back the skin; just clean it like you would clean your eyes.
It is not the uncircumcised penis that is unhygienic, it is the man. Most complaints may be from the ladies, because you know… blowjobs. No woman wants to get to suckle on a smegma-infested head. I get that. But if so, talk to your man. Let him know that sometimes his eggplant emoji turns you off. If you approach it with good communication and he is not a dick, he will listen. He can then decide to pay extra attention like cleaning himself before sex or, if he is truly lazy, he can cut the foreskin off. The point being the decision will lie on him as an adult. Not as a prepubescent teen who is demoralised by how many success cards his classmates got before KCPE. Or a baby who hasn’t even started breathing right yet. That is child abuse. And that is why we called it female genital mutilation, I am surprised the resistance we get from calling it male genital mutilation.
Women might be more concerned about health than men. You can see that by the effort they make during Breast Cancer Awareness. And the silence we, men, have during Men’s Cancer Awareness Month. When is it anyway? Oh that’s right. It is this month. I always wondered why there was a big deal with beards this month (learn something about your health lads). Anyway, as proponents of health and hygiene, mothers may be more inclined to want their babies circumcised when they are babies, ‘because it heals faster‘ or ‘because it hurts less‘. But ignore the risks that exposes him too. Just google failed baby circumcision if you do not believe me.
A study done in Bungoma found 17% of the circumcised boys got complications including lacerations and erectile dysfunction. If you are thinking ‘this has to be the traditional kind, the clinical has to better‘, you’d be wrong. This is the clinical one. The traditional one is twice as bad. 35% of those that underwent the traditional kind got complications. I’d tell you one died but the researchers doing this study were able to help him because they had brought in a doctor that salvaged the situation.
- HIV risk reduction
‘ I am going to get my son circumcised because I read a screenshot of a tweet from my primary school alumni WhatsApp group that said that it reduces the risk of catching HIV by UP TO 60%!‘
First of all, condoms have a higher success rate at reducing the risk of contracting (AND SPREADING!) HIV. 99% beats 60%. It even reduces spread of other sexually transmitted diseases like gonorrhea, pregnancy, syphilis, chlamydia and etc.
Secondly, that 60% comes from the World’s Health Organisation study that has been thoroughly debunked.
One of the studies was done by randomly selecting around 3000 males from South Africa and then splitting them into two groups. When the clock started, one half was circumcised and told not to have sex until 6 weeks had gone by. They were then given and taught how to use condoms if they were to have sex before the wound was completely healed so as not to spread infections. So the circumcised ones started late and were given condoms. That right there should have been where the study messed up but there’s more.
After the study prematurely (because of how shitty it was), they found that about 1% of the circumcised and about 2% of the uncircumcised had gotten HIV. So they did some mathogothanio math and came to the 60% figure. The lesser infection percentage in the circumcised can be explained by the 6 week delay and the condoms, but you will never get to hear that. They are not also going to tell you that this 60% relative (not absolute) figure is a mean ranging from 32% – 76%.
— Bob (@BobSee123) November 15, 2015
But even if it were true. That circumcision reduces the risk of contracting HIV by 60%, what about spreading? What about the other ways of contracting HIV? What about other STDs? Are you saying that you would sleep condomless with an infected person just because circumcision it gives you a 60% chance?
Even if it were true, do we see how useless it is? All the countries with high HIV prevalence rates are African countries with high circumcision rates. Might it be that circumcision actually heightens HIV risk? Might it be that circumcision gives a false assurance that encourages people to engage in high risk sexual behaviour? People are out here believing that if 10 circumcised men have sex with an infected person, 6 of them will not get it. Everyone then thinks they are one of the 6. Because of this one time you played SportsPesa and won, now you think you are always lucky.
The BEST way to stop the spread of HIV is by proper education to remove the ignorance/ stigma and to teach condom use.
- Peer Pressure
‘ I will circumcise my son to avoid him being made fun of by other boys’
What a lovely way to teach your kid about peer pressure. Why bother teaching him self-esteem or how to respond to peer pressure when he can just succumb to it and avoid the talk. Next he will be experimenting with drugs, sex, alcohol etc because the boys are doing it and he might not learn when to stop: because why should he?
Peer pressure as a reason for circumcision is lazy, and bad parenting.
- It is God’s will
I do not want to get into a religion argument because all that is going to happen is… I will show you all the other things the Bible tells you to do but you don’t. You will then come up with explanations about how those are different from circumcision because that was a different time. I will then say now is a different time for circumcision too. Then you will bring up another story about how those that are not circumcised will not go to heaven. So let’s just shorten this by you starting the argument by
‘But the Bible says….‘
and me interupting you by saying,
That’s all you feel people against you think anyway, no?
‘ The cut dick looks better. Uncut ones just look wrong’
This comes down to preference where a lot of women (and men) just prefer it cut. Nothing complicated about it. She just likes the shape of the exposed head. Which is okay. We are allowed to have preferences. But should these preferences make circumcision mandatory?
It’s like saying since I like big butts (and I cannot lie), every girl should have a big butt. Those with small ones should get Vera Sidika-like implants. They should get them before they start high school.
Did that sound as wrong to you as it did to me? It should have. We shouldn’t be having everyone’s dick cut just because you like it that way. How many dicks do you think you will see in your lifetime? Count even the ones you see in porn or the screenshots you will get from your girlfriends. Do they get to even 1000? No! So millions of boys should be cut just to increase your chances of seeing a circumcised penis. Come on!
Okay then. So there’s really no point of forced circumcision. I can hear you thinking, ‘Dexxe, there’s no reason to cut it, I get it, but we might as well as just get rid of it because it has no purpose.‘
The prepuce is not a vestigial organ.
The sheath works as a protector of the head. When cut (especially as a baby) the head gets exposed to bruises and abrasions that make the head insensitive to pain (and pleasure) and prone to infections.
- Disease fighting
The foreskin provides enzymes that create antibacterial and antifungal proteins that generally help you fight diseases.
- Sexual pleasure
Circumcision cuts off more than 3 feet of veins, arteries, and capillaries, 240 feet of nerves, and more than 20,000 nerve endings. These structures were not just there to look ugly. The foreskin is an erogenous zone capable of enhancing sexual pleasure when stimulated. Furthermore, it has a lubrication feature that makes it glide in a way that makes the sex less painful to the man AND woman. Damn right, foreskin helps the women enjoy sex.
You can find more uses here. This post is getting too long now. (Who is going to proof-read all this now?)
So what am I saying? Circumcision as we do it is child abuse. It is a direct equal to Female Genital Mutilation. It serves no purpose other than make belief ones. Even if the make belief ones are good enough, it should be left to a man of legal age to choose for himself. Because there is nothing greater about being a man than having choice. But let’s make sure that he makes and informed choice.
How Does Circumcision Harm? http://noharmm.org/mothering.htm
Circumcision in Africa https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Circumcision_in_Africa
Doctors opposing circumcision http://www.doctorsopposingcircumcision.org/info/HIVStatement.html
The study that WHO loves http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/16231970
Complications from circumcision in Kenya http://www.who.int/bulletin/volumes/88/12/09-072975/en/
What do they do with the skin after taking it off? http://www.scientificamerican.com/article/a-cut-above-the-rest-wrin/