Twilight Intact: A guide for readers and writers of Twilight Fan-Fiction— “Fifty Shades of Grey”, “Beautiful Bastard”, etc.
PREFACE TO THE 2014 EDITION: This paper originally went online in 2010, when Twilight-mania was at its peak. Now I have put it back online because of interest in a Twilight fanfiction turned bestselling trilogy and film: “50 Shades of Grey”. The star of the film, Irish actor Jamie Dornan, like Rob Pattinson, is intact (not circumcised).
Dear Reader, Information here will include frank discussion of human anatomy, sexuality, birth, breastfeeding, and infant care. If you're not old enough to be learning about the human body and sexuality, please go ask your parent to read this instead!
This project grew out of my love for the Twilight Saga combined with my life's work: Intactivism. I am a human rights activist focusing on keeping children intact; that is, protecting boys and girls from the harm of circumcision. When I read the Twilight Saga, I discovered a dedicated fandom that turned a novel into a hobby, involving art, travel, conventions, new friendships, and discussions as varied as “historical and political accuracy in literature” to “gender roles in media” to “what to cook for dinner” (mushroom ravioli, of course!).
While participating in online fan forums, a question came up several times: “Is Robert Pattinson intact?” (that is, “Is Robert Pattinson uncircumcised?” ) Or, “Is Robert Pattinson circumcised?” This led to discussion about the Saga itself, and wondering about the characters: Is Edward Cullen intact? Is Edward Cullen circumcised? What about the other Cullens? The Quileutes? What about other characters, or other actors in the Twilight Saga? Because of my work, I had my theories....
Also, I was surprised by what I read in some fanfictions: some sex scenes, (lemons) such as Breaking Dawn honeymoon sex scenes, described Edward as being circumcised, or described circumcised sex. Also, scenes in some Robsten fanfiction (also known as Robsten rpf or real person fiction), which characterized a fictional--yet thoroughly British--Robert Pattinson, described the man as circumcised, or described circumcised sex. The lack of knowledge I saw in these passages was disheartening, and prompted me to write this piece.
Since I work as an educator, teaching prospective parents about intact genitalia, sexuality, the harm of circumcision, and infant care, I decided to combine my work and my “Twi-love” and created this project specifically for fans who might want to learn more about the subject of circumcision and the normal anatomy of intact males—like Rob. I also wanted to gather any Twi-theories regarding circumcision or intact characters in the Saga. And while there are RPattz and Twilight references throughout this information, I hope that it can be useful to non-Twilight fans as well. Even “haters” need to learn about normal anatomy!
I wrote this piece in question-and-answer format, as discussion of this topic usually originates as a series of questions from those seeking information. If you have any questions not answered here, please drop me a line - twilightintact at sign gmail dot com
Q: What does intact mean?
A: “Intact” means “Whole, full, undisturbed, unharmed.” In terms of sexuality, a person is said to be “intact” if their sexual organs are whole, natural, with all parts present as they were at birth, with no parts missing. A person is intact if they have never had any parts of their outer sexual organs cut off, such as the prepuce, clitoris, or labia. In terms of sexuality, “intact” is the opposite of “circumcised”.
Q: What is a prepuce? / What is a foreskin?
A: Males and females both are born with a “foreskin”. The medical name is prepuce. The clitoral prepuce of the female, or ‘hood’, covers and protects the clitoris, keeping it moist and lubricated, like a tongue inside of a mouth. The penile prepuce, or ‘foreskin’, covers and protects the glans or ‘head’ of the penis, keeping it moist and lubricated, like a tongue inside of a mouth. Specifically, the male foreskin is a double-layered part of the penis. It contains the highest concentration of erogenous nerves: 20,000 sexual nerve endings. It contains over 200 feet of blood vessels and over 200 feet of nerves. In infancy, the foreskin is attached to the glans or ‘head’ of the penis, keeping the glans lubricated and protected. In puberty, with increased hormonal and sexual activity, the foreskin gradually separates from the glans. In adulthood, the foreskin is a movable sheath, accomodating a full erection and allowing for normal mechanical function during intercourse.
Q: What is circumcision? / What does circumcised mean?
A: Circumcision means “cut around”. “Circumcision,” in common usage, refers to any cutting of the sexual organs. This includes any slicing, cutting, and/or amputation of sexual parts. Depending on the country, culture, or circumciser, male circumcision can mean anything from sticking the penis with a needle to draw blood, to amputation of the penis and testicles. In American medical practice, it refers to amputation of the foreskin, including ridged band and frenulum. A person is said to be “circumcised” if they have had a piece or pieces of their sexual organs cut off.
Q: What happens during a circumcision?
A: Male Circumcision: In American hospital practice, the newborn boy is taken from the mother’s arms, and usually taken to a separate, isolated room. The child is strapped down, spread-eagled and screaming, on a plastic board called a circumstraint. The circumciser rubs the boy’s penis with a swab. Sometimes the circumciser then gives a series of injections in the base of the boy’s penis and his scrotum. Then the circumciser inserts a metal probe into the boy’s penis, tearing apart the foreskin, which is normally attached during childhood. Then the circumciser uses a pair of scissors to cut up the side of the foreskin. Then the boy’s glans is covered with a bell-shaped piece of metal, and the now-torn foreskin is pulled tight across the bell. The foreskin is then squeezed into a metal device called a clamp. Then the foreskin is cut off.
The child remains awake the whole time, screaming in agony, or quickly collapses into shock. Some mistake this shock for “sleepiness,” and think the baby is “just fine.” He isn’t. The most sexually sensitive part of his body has been cut off, and is gone forever. It will never grow back.
Circumcision of boys is still legal in the United States, despite growing opposition from an increasingly educated public.
In other countries where circumcision is common, it is often performed ‘free-hand.’ The circumciser detaches the foreskin from the glans using a tool or sharpened fingernail, then pulls the foreskin taut either with fingers or a metal slider clamp. A knife or razor blade makes the final cut. The circumciser may then suck the boy’s penis to help stop the bleeding.
Internationally, human rights groups refer to male circumcision as “male genital cutting”, “male sexual mutilation”, “male genital mutilation”, or MGM. MGM has been condemned by activists and educators around the globe; by healthcare workers, including individual physicians and physician associations; and by political and human rights groups, including the United Nations.
A: Female Circumcision: Depending on the country, culture, or circumciser, female circumcision might include slicing or amputation of the prepuce, the labia, and/or the clitoris. It can also include infibulation, which is the stitching closed of the labia and/or vagina. In American hospital practice, female circumcision of minor children was made illegal in 1996. Prior to that, US female circumcision usually consisted of using a combined clamping/cutting device to cut off the clitoral prepuce or ‘hood.’ Previously, acid was used to burn the clitoris, or it was amputated altogether.
In May 2010, the American Academy of Pediatrics issued a statement that suggested re-instating the cutting of girls. They condoned a straightforward slicing of a girl’s clitoris, or what the Academy euphemistically called a “nick.” Keep in mind that a “nick” on a tiny baby’s clitoris is proportionately much larger and more damaging than a small cut or “nick” on, say, an adult’s finger. The Academy has since withdrawn their statement.
Internationally, human rights groups refer to female circumcision as “female genital cutting”, “female sexual mutilation”, “female genital mutilation”, or FGM. FGM has been condemned by activists and educators around the globe; by healthcare workers, including individual physicians and physician associations; and by human rights groups, including the United Nations.
Q: Is circumcision necessary?
A: No. Children are born whole, and in 80% of the world, including the British Isles (Where Rob and Jamie were born), they remain whole their entire lives.
Q: Why is circumcision done?
A: Circumcisionists give a variety of reasons for cutting children, but the main reason is fear: fear of sexuality, fear of normal anatomy, fear of the unknown.
Q: Is Robert Pattinson intact? / Is Robert Pattinson uncircumcised? / Is Rob Pattinson circumcised? / Is Jamie Dornan intact?/ Is Jamie Dornan uncircumcised?/ Is Jamie Dornan circumcised?
A: According to circumstitions.com , which maintains a “Gallery of Famous Intact Men”, Rob Pattinson is Intact (whole; not circumcised), as is Jamie Dornan. This was already long suspected, because of Rob’s country of origin, England, and Jamie’s birthplace, Northern Ireland. Circumcision is rare in most of the world, including the British Isles.
Q: Who circumcises? Who doesn’t?
A: 80% of the world’s men and women are intact. The largest circumcising groups are:
1. Fundamentalist practitioners of Islam, Judaism, and Animism living in Africa and Asia. These religions likely absorbed genital cutting when it was inflicted as a form of marking captives during wartime, turning prisoners-of-war into sexually-mutilated slaves. Circumcision is a “cultural construct”—it pre-dates all of the major religions, and was absorbed by the mechanism of religious syncretism—the adoption of new religious rites under the influence of an outside group or conqueror. The original Genesis scripture, the “Book of J”, does not contain any reference to circumcision- it was added much later. There is also a passage in 1 Samuel indicating that forced circumcision was a method of obtaining a “war trophy” from conquered people. The Quran does not contain any reference to circumcision; Hadith passages on circumcision came much later. Because of this, and because of increasing awareness of human rights, children’s rights, and genital autonomy, Muslims and Jews are increasingly rejecting the ritual sexual cutting of children and developing non-cutting welcoming ceremonies for their children. Christians are expressly forbidden to circumcise in the New Testament; and Christians of the Catholic and Mormon faiths have additional doctrine and scripture teaching to avoid circumcision. Religious people opposing the sexual mutilation of children join organizations such as Galatians 5, Catholics Against Circumcision, Jews Against Circumcision, or Muslims Against Circumcision.
2. Americans residing in the Midwestern states. After circumcision was medicalized (performed in hospitals) and became routine in the US in the 1940s, it was inflicted on almost 80% of American boys until the late 1960’s, after which there has been a steady decline. Today, the states with the LOWEST circumcision rates (less than 30% of newborn boys) are the Western states: Washington, Oregon, and California. The highest circumcision rates remain in the Midwestern states. There are many theories as to why this remains the case, including insufficient educational outreach regarding normal sexual anatomy. The United States is the only country in the world which routinely cuts pieces off the sexual organs of babies.
3. Countries, counties, or cities impacted by US-trained physicians. Even in intact societies around the world, you may find pockets of circumcised individuals. This has been traced to the impact of doctors trained in the US exporting circumcision to other countries, whether through foreign employment or foreign-aid missions.
4. Locations impacted by foreign invaders who force circumcision on prisoners-of-war. Where war goes, torture and mutilation goes, and so goes circumcision. Forced circumcision by Muslims on Christians was well-documented during the Armenian genocide of World War I. More recent large-scale forced circumcisions of prisoners-of-war have been reported in East Timor and Iraq.
Q: What does being intact mean, in terms of sexuality? AKA “What is sex like with Rob/Jamie/an intact man”?
A: Here is some general information regarding the normal, intact male:
-His penis is whole and complete, including shaft, glans, prepuce (foreskin, including ridged band), and frenulum, with no missing parts, retaining its full length and girth as is his human right. His foreskin comprises up to 50% of his penis; it is a movable part that folds over onto itself and over his glans, and can glide back and forth across his glans (head) and up and down over the shaft of his penis. (see links for anatomical photos)
-He is capable of having the full erection he is meant to have. The foreskin contains over 200 feet of nerves, over 20,000 erogenous nerve-endings, muscle tissue, over 200 feet of arteries, veins, and capillaries to sustain penile health and full engorgement, helping an intact man achieve the complete length and thickness possible during erection. An average circumcised penis, by contrast, is shorter and thinner than an average normal penis, since it is lacking the proper blood supply and tissue for full expansion.
-He was never traumatized as a child by the horror of forced sexual mutilation, allowing him to develop full emotional, psychological, and physical bonding with his mother, laying the foundation of all his future loving relationships. Untraumatized as an infant, he was able to establish a full nursing relationship with his mother, allowing for his optimal health and brain development during infancy and throughout his life.
-He never lost a moment of the developmental milestone that teaches children that love begins in the eyes and travels directly to the brain: the mother-infant gaze. Kept safe and protected by his mother, he learned the trust and love that allows him to deeply bond with a woman, so that as an adult, his gaze can easily project his desire. Circumcised children lose eye contact after the trauma; the eyes of sexually mutilated children have been described as “dead”; and the look they exhibit after mutilation as “the birth of the dissociative state”- a psychological state in which the brain “disconnects” from emotion.
-His sexual growth was never impeded nor marked by violence and pain during his developmental years, allowing him to develop the fullness of his sexual response.
-He has a complete penis, with a double-fold of movable foreskin, which glides up and down the shaft, allowing for an intimate sexual experience for himself and his lover. During vaginal intercourse, even when drawing back on a thrust, his penis remains ‘sealed’ with his lover’s vagina, so that she doesn’t ‘dry out’, and retains his full lubrication throughout lovemaking. Without this gliding action, the corona of the circumcised penis can function as a one-way valve, scraping vaginal lubricants out into the drying air and making artificial lubricants essential for comfortable intercourse. Vaginal lubricants are not necessary for intact sex.
-His penis is not half-covered by skin-colored scar tissue, as is a circumcised penis. Instead, the foreskin, which on the outside is the color of the rest of the man’s body-skin, remains covering the glans. His complete penis includes the frenulum and the ‘ridged band’, the most erogenous zone of the normal male, which spreads across and encircles the penis, unfolding on the shaft during erection. During erection, when the penis fills with blood, the foreskin will usually retract, that is, pull back as the penis engorges, revealing an intimate, wet, warm, reddish-pink glans (head) and inner foreskin, akin to the underside of the tongue. (Perhaps it’s why in the film, Rob as Edward laughs at Bella’s disgust at any “cold, wet thing”; “thing” is slang for “penis”, and most *living* men have a “warm, wet thing”; Edward would indeed have a “cold, wet thing” :-)
-He has full control of his ejaculatory response, having retained all the tens of thousands of erogenous nerve endings; hundreds of blood vessels and nerves, and sexual muscles that are present in a normal foreskin. The erogenous nerves of the penile foreskin are analogous to those of the female clitoris.
-His sexual sensations spread through his entire foreskin--a considerable length of his shaft when retracted. This sensitivity allows him and his lover to have a complete sexual experience: He is not hampered by the desensitization of penile loss and resulting focused pain sensitivity on the tiny foreskin remnant, or “sweet spot” of a circumcised man, which can result in premature ejaculation. His entire penis is “sweet”; it’s been said that, “The foreskin’s not the candy wrapper, it’s the candy.”
-His penis retains the natural lubrication of normal sexual organs, moist and soft, as in all intact men and women, allowing for a comfortable, easy insertion and “ride” for both parties. This non-abrasive gliding action of the normal penis, in and out of itself within the vagina, facilitates smooth, comfortable, pleasurable intercourse for both partners.
-He would never need artificial lubricant in order to masturbate, as do many circumcised men. If he was born outside of the US, or after the 1940s, he would not have been circumcised to prevent masturbation. He would have learned to explore his own body without fear, and therefore gained the sexual self-knowledge that leads to being a great lover. (Remember Rob’s joke about “playing his own trumpet”? :-)
-He has the capability to be a gentle and thoughtful lover, never needing to ram repeatedly into his woman in order to stimulate his tiny ‘sweet spot’, the way a circumcised man must. Of course, hard, heated banging is always possible if his woman wants it. But he doesn’t need it to orgasm.
-He might enjoy sexual variety, but only because he’s having fun with his lover. He does not need it to orgasm, the way a circumcised man might. In the attempt to obtain the sexual satisfaction that can never be complete, circumcised men have shown higher rates of promiscuity, fellatio, and anal sex. By contrast, given the choice, intact men prefer intercourse over other sexual acts.
-He feels pleasure throughout intercourse, because his intact penis allows him to do so; therefore, he is able to give and receive pleasure throughout intercourse. “Intact men get pleasure all the way along; and the orgasm is drawn out and huge—unlike a circumcised man, who has only a short measure of pleasure at the end. For an intact man, the journey of lovemaking is as important as the arrival at orgasm.” (see circumstitions)
-His natural orgasm is “like the buildup from the third to the fourth movements of Sibelius’ second symphony, swaying, surging, and rolling, with a long drawn-out calming down”: http://www.circumstitions.com/Sounds/sibelius.mp3 In contrast, a circumcised man’s orgasm is described as being “like the end of Stravinsky’s Rite of Spring—rough and jagged, a pause, and then in a great crash, it’s all over”: http://www.circumstitions.com/Sounds/rite.mp3 (Of course if an intact man wanted to speed through sex and have a ‘Stravinsky’, he could; unlike a circumcised man, who’s stuck with Stravinsky.) Other musical analogies have been used to describe the difference in intact sex vs circumcised sex: “An intact penis is like a multi-note trombone; a circumcised penis is like a one-note vuvuzela.” “Circumcised sex is like listening to Mozart without the string section”.
-He knows that the expressions “clean” and “dirty” in reference to the sexual organs connote religious fear, not biological reality, since the sexual secretions of intact men and women are normal and healthy. He uses the term “dirty” in sexuality to refer to sexually adventurous, not unclean or sinful. (Remember Rob’s joke?:“Feel like it’s dirty. Feel like it’s wrong.” )
-His penis was always naturally clean as a baby, never having suffered a raw, open, bloody, oozing wound that became covered in feces and urine while in diapers. He is always naturally clean as a sexually-active adult, having learned, like all sexually-active men and women, to wash his folds. (It’s not only Rob’s fingernails that should clean up when he’s having sex )
-He smells good. The scent of the human body may change due to diet or illness, but in general, human organs smell the same. Furthermore, he releases the ‘scent of attraction’; he retains all the pheromones that are secreted by the natural sexual organs. On a side note, it may be considered polite practice for all sexually-active adults, circumcised or intact, man or woman, to wash their genitals as part of their regular hygiene (though certainly not necessary). Intact women and intact men may also choose to remove any existing smegma from their folds (though it is not necessary). Smegma means “soap,” and that’s what it looks like; it is one of the natural lubricants excreted by the normal intact sexual organs of women and men. (Thus, if you’re intact, whether man or woman; you know what an intact person smells like.) If you are circumcised and post-puberty, you smell too; but mostly from sweat and body oils--you don’t have the lubrication of the normal sexual organs.
-If he was raised a Christian outside the United States (as Rob has said he was), he would very likely know that circumcision is condemned in the Christian bible. If he was raised Catholic outside the US, (as Rob has said he was), he would know that it is a mortal sin to circumcise.
-If he is educated in sexuality, he would know that circumcision does not prevent AIDS—Condoms do. And that in order to not get sexually transmitted diseases, he should follow the ABCD’s of std-prevention:
Don’t do drugs.
-If he is smart and wise, he would know that if he ever should need medical counsel, he must seek out an intelligent, compassionate doctor educated in the care and treatment of the normal male, and should avoid any America-trained, circumcised physician who seeks to cut first and ask questions later; destroy, rather than heal; and deliberately deceive the innocent and the ignorant by calling for the sexual mutilation of every male, in order to justify the circumciser’s own sexual sickness.
-His lover, if knowledgeable about sexuality and anatomy, would know that his penis is normal. Circumcising societies, including the United States, are becoming increasingly educated about sexuality and sexual anatomy after an era in which the male foreskin was literally written out of history: American medical textbooks, anatomy books, and health books rarely if ever referred to the foreskin; anatomical drawings almost always showed an incomplete penis- missing a foreskin. With the advent of the internet, truthful information is now only a click away.
-As an innocent child, he was kept safe and protected, allowing him to easily become a protector himself as an adult: a caring, sensitive man, responsive to his lover’s needs.
-He was never exposed to infection, hemorrhage, and the fatal threat of circumcision, which kills thousands of boys and girls every year. (For example, tetanus, which kills thousands of children worldwide, is often caused by circumcision.) In short, unlike so many who have suffered the fate of circumcision, he is alive.
-His normal body would be shocking to the sexually-ignorant people of a circumcising society (such as the US), because with the glans covered, it would look to them as though he were missing his glans—they do not know it is beneath the foreskin. In the intact penis, the glans is usually only fully exposed during erection. In the circumcised penis, the glans remains exposed, denuded by the absence of foreskin. The circumcised glans is covered with scar tissue, so the normally rich color withers, and it becomes the same color as the rest of the body-skin a few months after circumcision. In order to show someone in a circumcising society that he indeed has a glans, an intact man would have to manually retract his foreskin. This intimate revelation of what is in actuality the inside of the body, would be very unexpected to someone unfamiliar with normal anatomy.
-Sexually-ignorant people might resent, ridicule, or question his wholeness, and that he would have to patiently educate them, while maintaining his confidence that his body is whole and perfect. This would be easy to achieve if he had grown up being educated about his body and his sexuality, and allowed to develop the self-confidence that comes with having a positive body-image.
-Sexually-ignorant sex partners might blame their personal health problems on him, instead of seeking out treatment for themselves and their own bodies. This is common in the US, where physicians pass on the ignorant notion that normal sex organs are “dirty”. For instance, if a woman in the US presents with a genital malady, instead of addressing a woman’s diet, overall health, hydration, hygiene, and sex practices (such as ensuring clean hands, and urination after sex), a physician might encourage her male partner’s foreskin amputation. It’s been said that “Foreskin is natural bimbo repellant”: an educated woman knows that an intact lover is best; an informed physician knows the importance of a complete sex organ, and knows how to treat it.
-It’s important to note here that being intact does not make a man “more” sensitive. Being intact makes a man normal. Being circumcised, on the other hand, makes a man desensitized —because he has lost the most erogenous part of his body. When a circumcised man talks about being “too sensitive” this is because fewer nerve endings means less control over ejaculation. It is not what is meant by “sensitive” in an intact man; that is, the intense sexual response to delicate touch when intimate organs are exposed.
So, what do intact men and women have in common with men and women who’ve been circumcised? The most important factor of all: All can choose to become a hero by protecting children from the harm of sexual mutilation, simply by being frank about sexuality, and discussing openly the harm of circumcision, the advantages of an intact body, and the importance of protecting all children from harm.
Now, on to the question of male lovers who had the misfortune of being circumcised as children.
Q: How does circumcision affect a child, a man, and sexuality? What does being circumcised mean in terms of sexuality?
A: Here is some general information regarding the circumcised male: as a child, and as an adult:
-First, as an adult, it means he would at least he will have the hope of foreskin restoration. This refers to the non-surgical methods by which circumcised men and women stretch the remaining tissue on their genitals to regain some of the look and mechanical function of complete genitals. It involves tape, and weights, and time, to regrow skin. He cannot restore lost nerve cells or blood vessels. But he may be able to restore some of the natural appearance of the normal genitals, including normal coloring and lubrication. One international organization, NORM, specifically helps adult men trying to restore function. Another, ClitorAid, works with women. Surgical restoration of circumcised genitalia is only recommended for women—the procedure involves everting the internal clitoral arms. For men, the best surgical hope will be Foregen tissue regeneration, but that is a long way off and still in the early research stages. Manual restoration is currently the best option for men.
- Being circumcised would mean that as a child, he had been gotten hold of by either a sexual predator or a sexually-ignorant circumciser; and that he was left unprotected by misguided or sexually-ignorant parents. It would mean that he was held down, screaming and crying, while an adult cut off pieces of his sexual organ; that he retreated into shock after the trauma, collapsing into a semi-comatose state mistaken as “sleep”.
-His first sexual experience with another person was one of agonizing pain. His genitalia was opened, “deflowered” as it were, without his consent, and his sex organ was forcibly penetrated with fingers and metal instruments. Criminally, this is termed “digital rape” and “object rape”. Afterward, he suffered agonizing pain for weeks, each defecation and urination bringing renewed pain to the raw, open wound on his penis. All these experiences were recorded in his infant memory, which can surface later as subconscious fears.
-He suffers lifelong sexual, emotional, and psychological consequences that go along with having suffered a traumatic sexual injury in childhood. Whether or not he is able to overcome this childhood trauma will depend on numerous factors, including the love of his family, and the support of his recovery and restoration.
-It would mean that as an infant he most likely lacked the physical and emotional energy to bond with his mother after the trauma, damaging him psychologically in the newborn period by breaking the bonds of trust, and damaging his ability to feed properly—circumcised babies cannot breastfeed properly or without special assistance. His mother may have given up in frustration altogether, rearing him instead on artificial breastmilk (formula), losing the normal bonding experience that comes with the breastfeeding relationship. Lack of breastfeeding would in turn compromise his future health, as breastfeeding is the foundation of human nutrition and brain development, not only for infants, but for the adults they become. Unless his mother were instructed to formula-feed or feed expressed breastmilk using a cup instead of a bottle, artificial feeding would also have compromised his developing oral musculature. Unless his mother was instructed to open her shirt and his, and lie him on her chest during artificial feedings, switching sides with each feeding, he would also have lost the important skin-to-skin and visual contact that helps lay a foundation for human intimacy, intelligence, and visual perception.
-It would mean that his mother had to go above-and-beyond average parenting in order to produce a man who was sexually well-adjusted despite carrying the knowledge that he was sexually mutilated as a child. Then again, even as an adult, especially if he were raised by sexually-ignorant or fearful parents, he might remain sexually ignorant himself. He may not even know that half of his penis is covered with a scar, or that the most sexually gratifying part of his penis is the tiny bit of foreskin he has left at the back of his glans. There are many circumcised adults who have no knowledge of what they are missing or what was done to them. In this case, like all circumcised men and women living in denial, he would consider the standard complications and sexual dysfunction of circumcision to be normal.
-When learning the truth about circumcision, he may become angry and resentful, lashing out at the people who harmed him: his parents, his physicians, his religious leaders. If he learns about the harm as a teenager, he may have the option of suing his circumciser. Some states in the US have a one-year statute of limitations during which an 18-year-old may sue their circumciser.
-Any ability he has as a lover would be in spite of, not because of, his missing parts. He would run a high risk of premature ejaculation and erectile dysfunction, especially after the age of 35. His sexual technique would be compromised, requiring that he concentrate solely on stimulating his foreskin remnant in order to orgasm.
-If choosing to live in denial, he would have a greater chance of inflicting sexual mutilation on his own son. He runs the risk of delving so deep into repression that he would choose to sexually mutilate his own children rather than deal with the pain of his own sexual loss.
-Let’s say he falls in love, and wishes to marry and become a father. For a circumcised man, it would mean that the love of his life, his spouse, would also never experience the sexual fulfillment of being with an intact lover for life; neither adult would know the fulfillment of intact sex with a spouse. It would mean that sex would become increasingly painful for his wife as they grew older, especially during the times of life when a woman normally has less vaginal lubrication: after childbirth; during breastfeeding; during menopause. It would mean that as he got older, he would increasingly lose sensation in his penis; after the age of 35 there is a marked decrease in sensation of the circumcised penis. Some men feel nothing- are numb- by the time they reach their forties. This can cause decreased libido and problems that are common in circumcising cultures, such as erectile dysfunction.
-It means that any sexual difficulties might be blamed either on his partner’s body, or on his technique: his positioning or speed, say, and never on the fact that he is missing half his penis. If his partner felt pain or discomfort during intercourse, she would likely be told by physicians that it was her fault, physically as well as psychologically. The fact that the male does not have any lubrication or penile sheath-movement, and is therefore performing an unnatural sex act, might not be considered in a circumcising society.
- It means that he may be lulled into a false sense of security, believing that because he is missing a part of his penis, he is also missing an entryway into his body for disease and infection. This is a dangerous supposition, because all sexually-active adults need to protect themselves from sexually-transmitted diseases. For instance, despite having the highest rate of circumcision in the industrial world, the US has the highest rate of AIDS in the industrial world.
-It would mean that his normal body would be shocking to most men and women of the world, because with the glans exposed, it would look, even as child, as though he were in abnormal state of perpetual arousal, and that it was the wrong color: dead-looking, covered with scar tissue. In the normal penis, the glans is only fully exposed during erection. It would mean that sexually ignorant sex partners would think that his penis was normal. I would mean that insensitive people might ridicule or question his circumcision, and that he would have to patiently educate them about the harm that was done to him, while maintaining his confidence that despite the trauma he suffered as a child, he is well-adjusted, and can learn to compensate in the bedroom with his love. This would be easier to achieve if he had grown up being educated about his body and his sexuality, was given the hope of restoration and legal restitution, and allowed to develop the self-confidence that comes with having the ability to change the future.
-Depending on the country he resided in at the time of his circumcision, he may have been traumatized at an older age. For instance, in the Philippines, he would have been held down as an older child, with tourists gathering round to watch in glee as he cried in pain and had pieces of his penis cut off. Or, his parents may have consoled themselves that they had the mutilation done “in hospital” behind closed doors, where no one else could hear him scream.
So, what do men and women who’ve been circumcised have in common with intact men and women?
The most important factor of all: All can choose to become a hero by protecting children from the harm of sexual mutilation, simply by being frank about sexuality, and discussing openly the harm of circumcision, the advantages of an intact body, and the importance of protecting all children from harm.
Now, on to other questions related to Twilight!
Q: Are the characters in Twilight circumcised or intact / uncircumcised?
A: Only Stephenie Meyer knows for sure! But, as an intactivist and Twilight fan, I have my own theories, and present this information for fanfiction writers and readers to consider. According to what is known about the history and distribution of circumcision, several characters in the Saga would be intact, as follows:
Carlisle Cullen was born in England. Circumcision has never been prevalent in England, and certainly not among Christians. Carlisle was both English and Christian. There was only one short period of time in which circumcision became popular in England: in the early 20th century, it was inflicted on baby boys for a variety of spurious “health” reasons. The fad disappeared from England by the 1940’s.
Edward Cullen, Emmett Cullen, Jasper Hale, Rosalie Cullen, and Esme Cullen would all be intact. Though born in the US, these characters were born before circumcision really took hold in the United States (late 1930s-early 1940s) —and would therefore be intact for the duration of their human lives: Edward was born in 1901, Emmett and Rosalie in 1915, Jasper in 1843, Esme in 1895.
Between 1897 and 1914 in the US, pediatricians recommended that any child caught masturbating should be circumcised, as they believed masturbation was evil and caused insanity, and was cured with circumcision. So, unless Meyer envisioned her family of vampires were all punished with circumcision for childhood masturbation, the Cullens would have been intact as humans…with one possible exception: Alice.
Alice Cullen was locked up in a mental institution around 1918. In the early 20th century, circumcising patients and prisoners of mental institutions was widespread in the United States. It was believed to prevent insanity.
Keep in mind, though: even if they’d had the misfortune of being born after 1945, or institutionalized and circumcised, Saga vampires become perfect upon transformation—and, therefore, their bodies would become whole and intact even if previously circumcised. (This is also in keeping with Christian theology of Resurrection, which is also part of Mormonism, Stephenie Meyer’s religion).
-Other vampires come from countries that do not have a history of routine circumcision. These include:
-Volturi Coven: Aro, Caius, Marcus, Didyme (Italy)
-Volturi Guard: Demetri, Felix, Heidi, Jane, Alec, (Italy)
- Denali Coven: Carmen, Eleazar (Spain); Irina, Tanya (Slovakia)
-Maria’s Coven: Maria (Mexico)
-Amazon Coven: Kachiri, Senna, Zafrina (Brazil)
- Romanian Coven: Stefan, Vladimir (Romania)
-Irish Coven: Liam, Maggie, Siobhan (Ireland)
-European Nomads: Alistair (England)
-American Nomads: Charlotte, Peter (These were human prior to the civil war era in the United States, so would have been intact)
-James’ Coven: Laurent. While no country of origin is given for Laurent in the Saga novels, for the movie role, Edi Gathegi was told to study France, and use a French accent. Circumcision is very rare in France.
The Egyptian Coven: Amun, Benjamin, Kebi, and Tia
The earliest historical documents we have about circumcision come from ancient Egypt. A bas-relief shows one man, bound, being held down and forcibly circumcised; the other is not bound, and is being circumcised. One interpretation is that, as Egyptians marked prisoners of war with circumcision, successive generations became easier to harm without question. Or, that if one was circumcised forcibly, others would submit out of fear.
Gianna (Italy) Circumcision of boys and girls is rare in Italy. Circumcision of girls was made illegal in 2005.
Bella Swan (born 1987), Jessica Stanley (born 1988), Lauren Mallory (born 1988), Angela (born 1988) : These characters were all born in Washington state. Female circumcision was not outlawed in the US until 1996. However, circumcision of girls in America is rare. It does happen, though. The last female circumcision paid for by the insurance company Blue Cross was in 1977. In 2010, the American Academy of Pediatrics released a statement condoning the circumcision of girls (The organization has since retracted the statement.)
Michael Newton, born in California, 1987
Eric Yorkie, born in Washington, 1987
Ben Cheney, born in 1987
These characters were all born in 1987. Circumcision of boys was then, and as of 2010, still is, legal in the United States. However, Washington state has one of the lowest rates of circumcision in the US. Furthermore, Ben is described as being of Asian descent. If his parents were Japanese or Chinese, they came from a non-circumcising culture. South Koreans circumcised for a brief period due to the influence of American military during the Korean War, but it has fallen out of practice. Other East Asian countries with Muslim populations cut boys and girls at different ages, often at the start of puberty. So, if we go from the Western States birth statistics of 1987, there is a 70% chance that the humans in Twilight are intact.
Renee Dwyer, born 1968/Charlie Swan, born 1964 : Born in 1964, Charlie would have been born just when circumcision began to decline in the United States, spurred on by the modern natural-birth movement. It is quite possible that a child born in Oregon, even in 1964, would have escaped circumcision.
Renee Dwyer, born 1968: Circumcision of females in America was rare in 1968, but it did happen. The form of genital cutting that Renee Dwyer could more likely have been a victim of is episiotomy. Episiotomy is the cutting open of the vagina during childbirth. It, like circumcision, is an unnecessary and damaging sexual cutting. It is also known as “the Nigerian cut”, because it was a form of female genital cutting popularized in that country. Episiotomy was routine in American hospital births throughout the latter half of the 20th century. It has since fallen out of favor. Because Renee gave birth to Bella in 1987, whether or not she was given an episiotomy would have depended on how knowledgeable she was about birth and whether or not she birthed at home with a midwife (more natural, less cutting) or in a hospital with an obstetrician. Renee was nineteen when Bella was born, so may not have received sufficient birth information to protect herself.
Isaac and Joshua Weber: twin brothers of Angela Weber. The sons of a Lutheran minister, Angela’s brothers should have remained intact. They were born in Washington state, which has a declining rate of circumcision. They were born in 1998, the year that the American Academy of Pediatrics reaffirmed that there is no medical reason for routine circumcision. Their father is a Lutheran minister; Christians are not supposed to circumcise, according to the New Testament.
Jason “J” Jenks aka Jason Scott was born in Seattle in the 1950s, at the peak of US circumcision.
Quil Ateara, Jacob Black, Brady, Embry Call, Leah Clearwater, Seth Clearwater, Collin, Jared, Paul, Sam Uley, Old Quil, Billy Black, Rachel Black, Rebecca Black, Claire, Harry Clearwater, Sue Clearwater, Kim, and Emily Young:
The Native American populations of the US historically do not circumcise. Circumcision was introduced via American hospitals, just as it was throughout the US. Historically in the US, African American men were specifically targeted for circumcision out of fear. Many racist medical articles were written in the early 1900s about the dangers of these men. The authors of those articles feared that white women would be raped by intact men of color, and circumcision was promoted as a means to suppress the rape urge. Could these racist “studies” have been used to target Native Americans as well?
Today, tribes that maintain strong cultural identities may support natural birth and breasfeeding, and reject circumcision.
In 1908, anthropologist Aleš Hrdlicka published the book "Physiological and medical observations among the Indians of southwestern United States and Northern Mexico". Hrdlicka included Quileute in this study. He wrote: "There is no trace in any of the tribes of circumcision or other mutilation."
Q: What about Wolves ?
A: Wolves are intact, the natural state of all mammals :-)
Q: What about the fact that Edward and Carlisle are doctors? Does that mean they are circumcisers?
A: Both Carlisle and Edward are physicians—Edward has attended medical school twice, but never practiced medicine (that is, never been employed as a physician); Carlisle is a practicing physician (meaning he is currently employed as a physician).
During medical school (as well as nursing school) in the United States, students perform or assist in circumcisions. In fact, US boy-circumcisions are most often done by students—the most inexperienced surgeons; and obstetricians—physicians trained in female anatomy, not male anatomy. However, students, physicians, and nurses are never required to perform or assist in surgery that violates their ethics. (Indeed, circumcision violates all ethical codes of medicine, beginning with the Hippocratic Oath that doctors say at graduation: “First, do no harm.”) Physicians and nurses who voice their objection to the sexual mutilation of children do so by signing a hospital document that states their refusal to participate in circumcision on moral grounds; and they join support organizations such as Doctors Opposing Circumcision and Nurses for the Rights of the Child.
So, would Carlisle and Edward ever have performed a circumcision? No, because:
1) their respective personalities are founded on compassion and intuition; making them protective of humans;
2) they would never engage in the unnecessary bloodshed of innocent humans;
3) they are Christians who have studied their religion and therefore know that circumcision is a violation of Christ’s teachings; and
4) they have the perspective of history to know that circumcision is both unnecessary and harmful. Also, think about Edward’s ability to read minds—just as he can read Renesmee’s mind and bonds with her in utero, so too would he be able to read the minds of the children under his care as a physician. He would never hurt a human child, because he knows their fragility and vulnerability. He would also have the ability to read the minds of various couples worldwide and therefore know the sexual problems caused by circumcision.
Q. What about the author, Stephenie Meyer? Is she an intactivist?
Stephenie Meyer is a Mormon. Mormons are instructed by both the Bible (New Testament) and the Book of Mormon to not circumcise their children. Of course, it is possible that even so, like so many Americans, Stephenie Meyer does not know the truth about normal male anatomy. Stephenie lives in Arizona, which is in the Western United States, and has three sons. Circumcision rates in Arizona are as low as in California, so it’s possible that Stephanie knew enough to keep her own children intact. Stephenie was born in Connecticut, on the East Coast of the United States, in 1973—at a time when female circumcision was still legal, and medical articles recommending it were available. However, by 1973, after the rise of the women’s movement and increased information availability regarding female sexuality, female circumcision was falling out of favor—though it was still covered by medical insurance companies. If Stephenie is intact, she can thank her parents for protecting her!
On to RPF “real-person fiction”. RPF is “contemporary historical fiction”, which fictionalizes real individuals and situations. It is controversial, in that, unlike historical fiction, RPF is based on living individuals. Above, I presented information regarding Rob Pattinson being intact. What about other actors characterized in RPF?
Q: What about other Saga actors ? Are they intact? Circumcised?
A: There is information available to speculate, as follows:
Peter Facinelli, born in the US to Italian parents, could have been spared the knife; Italians rarely circumcise their children. However, immigrants are a favorite prey of the US circumciser; Peter’s parents would have been an easy target. US medical textbooks still teach American health care providers how to “convince” immigrants to mutilate their sons, using fear tactics and faulty medical claims. Circumcisionists still issue articles specifically targeting immigrant and low-income populations. Peter has also mentioned being Catholic. Catholics, like all Christians, are instructed to not circumcise in the New Testament. Catholics go one step further and specifically condemn circumcision in Church doctrine. It is a mortal sin. The current pope has re-affirmed that the Catholic church is a “Church Without Circumcision.” (“una chiesa senza circoncisione”) Why then has Peter posted to his twitter account a video in which he makes light about the sexual mutilation of children? It could be that he is circumcised, remains in denial, and must make light of his own condition by insulting children in this offensive manner. Or it could be that he is ignorant about circumcision, and the harm it causes, despite being intact.
Kellan Lutz has mentioned that he was Christian; however, many US Christians are ignorant about their own religion’s condemnation of circumcision. Kellan was born in the Midwest US, which has in the past had the highest rate of US circ. However, his grandparents are German and Swedish. These two countries are non-circumcising, so if Kellan’s grandparents passed on the information to Kellan’s parents, he would be intact.
Jackson Rathbone was born in Singapore, which does not routinely circumcise baby boys. Muslims in that country typically cut little boys at a later age—usually in their grammar school years. So it’s most likely that he, too, is intact. However, if Jackson was born under the care of an American doctor practicing in Singapore, this harm may have been inflicted on him, too.
Taylor Lautner was born in Michigan in 1992. He was raised a Roman Catholic. The New Testament of the Christian Bible specifically condemns circumcision. Catholics also have additional doctrine condemning circumcision, and Pope Benedict reaffirmed in 2007 that the Catholic church is one without circumcision.
Rob Pattinson and Jamie Campbell Bower are English. Michael Sheen is Welsh. Circumcision is rare in the UK.
Xavier Samuel is Australian. He was born in Adelaide. The circumcision rate in Adelaide was less than 20% in 2005, and declining. All six Australian medical societies agree that children should not be routinely circumcised.
Edi Gathegi was born in Nairobi, Kenya, but grew up in California. The Maasai tribe in Kenya doesn't circumcise boys and girls until puberty. Circumcision after the newborn period is uncommon in the US.
Kiowa Gordon was born in Berlin, Germany. As in all European countries, circumcision is rare in Germany. He is also Mormon; Mormons have two holy books that oppose circumcision: the Bible (New Testament) and the Book of Mormon. He is also of Native American descent (Hualapai); historically, Native Americans do not circumcise.
Bronson Pelletier, Christopher Heyerdahl, Daniel Cudmore, and Noot Seear were born in Canada. Circumcision is rare in Canada. Bronson is also of Native American descent (Plains Cree). Historically, Native Americans do not circumcise. Daniel Cudmore's parents are English. Circumcision is rare in England. Tyson Houseman was born in Canada in 1990; Cameron Bright was born in Canada in 1993. In 1989, the Canadian Pediatric Society re-affirmed that children should not be circumcised. Tyson is also of Native American descent (Cree Nation).
Other actors of Native American descent: Chaske Spencer (Sioux, Nez Perce, Cherokee, Creek); Gil Birmingham (Comanche); Alex Meraz (P'urhépecha): Like the Quileute, other Native American tribes do not have a history of circumcision. Whether or not the American actors who portray the Quileute in Twilight remain intact would depend on where they were born and how their families embrace Native American culture, and therefore reject circumcision.
A NOTE ON CHILDBIRTH
In Breaking Dawn, Bella protects her pregnancy with the help of her sister-in-law, Rosalie Cullen, and her best friend, Jacob Black. Rosalie’s unfulfilled human desire to have children makes her the ultimate warrior to guard Bella and her vampire-fetus, Renesmee. Bella goes into labor in a weakened state, and Renesmee’s inhuman strength causes Bella’s back to break, and Bella spirals into death. Edward is, like all the Cullens, a medical school graduate, and has learned how to perform an emergency cesarean section. In the novel, an emergency c-section is necessary to save Renesmee, because Bella is dying. Bella is then saved by Edward’s vampire-venom and reawakens as a vampire herself.
So, what are some of the good lessons about birth in Breaking Dawn? Well, mothers do need to eat well for their babies to grow properly and for the mother herself to remain strong and healthy. Human-blood smoothies might have worked for Bella, but there are other foods more palatable to the real-life mother! The father’s loving involvement (who doesn’t love Daddyward?) and the knowledgeable support of friends and family members can go a long way in ensuring a pleasurable and safe pregnancy and birth. And, the “homebirth” in Breaking Dawn can serve to inspire young women to investigate this option for an optimal birth experience. The more knowledgeable women become about birth as a normal process, the more likely they are to turn to the safety and security of homebirth, or, in the case of preexisting medical conditions, go to the home-like setting of a “birth center”, where they can birth with a midwife while having a hospital nearby.
The presentation of childbirth-as-horror-story in Breaking Dawn, while an understandable part of the novel, is also in keeping with so much of American media, which presents even normal labor as a terrifying ordeal. In reality, labor and childbirth can be a wonderful experience! But having a pain-free, peaceful birth does require that women investigate and learn about pregnancy and birth, because this information is not readily available from American obstetricians. Just as American physicians are taught little to nothing about normal male anatomy, they are also taught little to nothing about normal birth (and breastfeeding). If you are a potential parent, it’s important to extensively research pregnancy, childbirth, and infant care long before you may need the information. Over the past decades, there has been an alarming rise in abnormal surgical birth - cesarean section - in the United States. Some even speculate that the decline in circumcision in the US has left obstetrical surgeons eager to cut something – anything— and have settled on their female patients instead of the male offspring of their female patients. This dangerous surgery has become so alarmingly commonplace in America that the rates of survival for mothers and children are dropping across the nation. There are many more apparent reasons for this shift, having to do with insurance, money, and profit. Young women are growing up with the very mistaken and deadly notion that somehow normal vaginal birth isn’t possible, despite the fact that a woman’s body is perfect for giving birth.
In real life, birth can be a frightening ordeal if a woman is not knowledgeable about pregnancy, labor, and birth. Yet the reality is that birth is normal and safe. It is outside factors, such as unnecessary medical interventions, disease, sexual mutilation, drugs, alcohol, and smoking that interfere with what is a completely normal life-experience. Most importantly, birth does not have to be painful! Women who grow up comfortable with their bodies, who learn to exercise their bodies years before pregnancy in order to strengthen abdominal and pelvic muscles, to stretch and relax the legs and torso, the age-old “bellydancing” ways of childbirth preparation, come to childbearing well equipped to have an orgasmic birth experience. Women who learn about their bodies and about birth can dispel the myths—and the pain—associated with birth. The “orgasmic birth” or “sensual birth” movement encourages women to embrace birth without fear, resulting in intense pleasure instead of pain throughout the laboring proess. Fear causes and increases pain. Learning about birth and trusting the mother and child to birth normally can go a long way to making birth a pleasurable experience.
A NOTE ON BREASTFEEDING
In Breaking Dawn, baby Renesmee is fed bottles of donated human blood. However, in a world in which a male vampire can harbor sperm from his human days (completely plausible in a sci-fi way, because viable sperm can be extracted from a male corpse – albeit a recently deceased man, not a 109 year old one!)—it would seem only “logical” to extend the same ability to Bella regarding breastmilk: recently deceased lactating women still have breastmilk in their breasts; so Vampire-Bella would have retained the most important breastmilk of all—colostrum, the first milk that is produced during pregnancy. Furthermore, breastmilk has been called “The White Blood” because that’s exactly what it is: white blood cells and antibodies to protect and ensure optimal growth of the child. Mother's milk is exactly a baby’s “brand” of feeding :-)
Circumcision has a profound negative effect on breastfeeding, as discussed above.
SOME NOTES ON OTHER ROB PATTINSON MOVIES:
Bel Ami is based on the French novel of the same name by Guy de Maupassant. Rob plays the 'beautiful friend', George Duroy. Bel Ami takes place in 1900 France. Circumcision is not now, nor has it ever been, common in France.
WATER FOR ELEPHANTS
Water for Elephants is based on Canadian writer Sara Gruen's novel of the same name. Two characters are described as intact in the novel- both Jacob Jankowski (played by Rob in the movie) and Kinko/Walter.
Jacob Jankowski is intact: Despite Gruen's allusions to Genesis, Jankowski is a Polish Catholic. He would not have been circumcised. Also, Jacob was born in the US around 1916 (He is "ninety or ninety-three" in the 2006 novel's modern-day scenes). In 1916 America, circumcision was rare. But most obviously, the author gives a clear description of Jacob's intact penis when he is drunk: "pink turtle hiding in its shell." Only an intact penis has a 'shell': the foreskin. And only an intact glans retains its normal pink-to-purple coloring.
Walter/Kinko is seen masturbating. The author writes: "He stops midstroke, its slick purple head extending beyond his fist." Only an intact glans retains its normal pink-to-purple coloring. Only an intact penis retains the normal lubrication that makes the glans 'slick' - and makes artificial lubrication unnecessary for masturbation.
OUR GIFTS TO ROB PATTINSON AND KRISTEN STEWART:
On July 5, 2010, in Los Angeles, California, Twilight Intact gave Rob and Kristen gifts of the following books:
Rob: Gentle Birth Choices (including GBC and NoCirc dvds) by Barbara Harper
Kristen: Natural Childbirth the Bradley Way (including NoCirc dvd) by Susan McCuthcheon
Both these books advocate birth as a normal process; as well as normal breastfeeding and gentle infant care. As midwife Jeannine Parvati Baker said, “Birth is not an emergency. It is an emergence.”
It is our intense hope that this knowledge will pave the way for a new generation of enlightened parents, making the world a safer place for children everywhere.
The Twilight Saga is a worldwide phenomenon precisely because it inspires fans to “go beyond the book.” Fans who are avid readers join book clubs; musicians write songs about the Saga; writers are inspired to pen their own stories based on or inspired by Meyer’s work; teachers design Twilight-based curriculum; historians discuss the fictional and factual histories in the books; fashion designers create costumes and clothing designs; wedding planners plan out every detail of Edward and Bella’s wedding. I’ve even read an article discussing Twilight from a baseball fan’s point of view! So it is only natural that as an intactivist and educator, I was inspired to create this webpage.
Yes, sexuality is personal. That is precisely the point of intactivism. Lacking education about normal anatomy and sexuality, people living in circumcising cultures think that adults have the right to cut off pieces of children’s sexual organs. Intactivists, on the other hand, know that a child is a human being and has the human right to their own body, free from sexual cutting. As intactivists, we know that would-be-circumcisionists learn in a variety of ways. Because the foreskin is written out of American textbooks, most Americans have never even seen a normal penis. On the other hand, Americans are movie-goers, and those Americans who have seen a normal body usually saw it for the first time when viewing a photo or film featuring an intact celebrity. People who grow up in sexual ignorance are taught to believe that normal sexual organs are “bad” and “ugly” and “dirty”. Fears of normal anatomy and sexuality drive adults to cut the sexual organs of children. By learning that they already admire people who may be intact, would-be-circumcisionists can begin the education process necessary to protect future children.
In creating this paper, I hope also to challenge the preconceived notions of circumcisionists who think that in order for a man to be desirable, he must first have pieces of his penis cut off. Humans often display a pscychological state called “cognitive dissonance”—simultaneously holding two contradictory ideas. For instance, they may think that forcibly cutting a child’s sexual organs is wrong; but think that calling it “circumcision” makes it right. They may think that children are individuals whose human rights must be respected; but think that adults have a right to cut a child’s sexual organs. They may think it is a crime to harm a child; but think that cutting off pieces of a child’s body is not harmful. They may think that cutting a child’s sexual organs is sexual abuse; but that cutting a child’s sexual organs, and calling it circumcision, is not abusive. They may think that the penis is a sex organ, but that cutting pieces off the penis does not affect sex. They may think it is OK to discuss, photograph, and contemplate a celebrity; but that discussion to inspire others to protect the human rights of children, is not. They may think that merely speaking of sexual matters is personal and an invasion of privacy; but that cutting off pieces of a child’s sex organs is not an invasion of privacy and their personal space. Or, they may condemn circumcision, but never speak out against it, and thus condone the sexual cutting of children with their silence. Or, they may say protecting children is important, but condemn those who actually do protect children by preventing sexual mutilation.
Just as in Breaking Dawn, resolution comes without bloodshed, I hope that readers of this page will be inspired to lay down their knives, and encourage others to do so.
http://www.infocirc.org/townsend/anatomy2.htm Includes photos of Intact Anatomy and link to animated gifs
http://www.circumstitions.com/Anatomy.html Anatomical drawing; Includes link to animation
http://www.infocirc.org/townsend/problem.htm Anatomical photos of standard complications of circumcision
Celebrities Against Circumcision
Hey LLL! Circumcision Affects Breastfeeding! Tell Moms the Truth!