San Francisco voters will decide whether to ban male circumcision in the November 8 municipal election.
Activists gathered enough signatures to put a proposal on the ballot, the city's election board confirmed Wednesday.
The measure aims to prohibit all male circumcisions in San Francisco. Led by Lloyd Schofield who is part of a Bay Area “inactivist” group, the advocates want to eliminate the surgery and liken it to "male genital mutilation."
Schofield and the "inactivists" seek to make it "unlawful to circumcise, excise, cut, or mutilate the whole or any part of the foreskin, testicles, or penis" of anyone 17 or younger in San Francisco. Under the proposal, a person who violates the proposed ban could be jailed (not more than one year) or fined (not more than $1,000). Exemptions for religious reasons would not be allowed.
Column: Circumcising our son– how do we decide?
The measure faces huge hurdles: Legal, religious opposition and varying public opinion. It has brought up some interesting discussions about why we circumcise and whether there are any sound medical benefits.
Empowered Patient: Should teens make their own circumcision decision?
“We hope to get a greater outreach to the people in the city,” Schofield said Wednesday during a celebratory lunch. He said the activists would step up efforts to talk about the issue with residents. “We are willing and happy to talk to people who want a respectful conversation. We’re excited to do it.”
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