CDC’s Notice Of Pending Federal Guidelines On Circumcision Has Intactivists Working Overtime

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) issued a notice Monday in the Federal Register announcing a draft of new federal guidelines about circumcision. It comes at a time when circumcision rates have been steadily declining in the United States. The notice from the CDC has advocates against routine infant circumcision (RIC) gearing up for campaigns against the CDC’s new draft, which strongly supports circumcision.

The purpose of campaigning against the proposed federal guidelines is to change the guidelines before they become official. The CDC’s statements are not currently final, but are part of a draft of recommendations. The recommendations made by the CDC will have to undergo peer review and will be open to public comment for 45 days before it becomes finalized, according to Today Health.

The CDC said that “such decision making is made in the context of not only health considerations, but also other social, cultural, ethical, and religious factors,” according to The Hill. The CDC’s draft doesn’t explicitly say that parents should get their newborn boys circumcised, Inquisitr previously reported. It does state that the risks of removing the foreskin do not outweigh the benefits. The Intact Network, an anti-RIC group, is initiating a comment writing campaign towards the CDC. Many intactivists are planning protests.

According to the CDC, new clinical trials indicate that circumcision can reduce the rate of HIV infection by up to 60 percent over time. The CDC also claimed that circumcision can reduce the rate of infection of other sexually transmitted infections as well.

According to Today Health, the studies highlighted “have not shown that circumcision will reduce an HIV-infected man’s chances of spreading the AIDS virus to women. And research has not found circumcision to be a help in stopping spread of HIV during gay sex.”

Opponents of routine infant circumcision feel the practice is a human rights violation. Opponents also often cite that it is a gender inequality issue given that girls are protected again circumcision in the U.S., even the forms that remove less tissue. Members of the Intact Network are also working on a campaign right now that addresses the inequality factor of the CDC’s pending federal guidelines. The campaign will feature hashtags #CDCethics and #equalityatbirth.

The CDC’s own data states, as Inquisitr previously reported, that of surveyed adult, heterosexual males, 80 percent said they would be “unlikely” or “very unlikely” to have a circumcision done even if it did reduce their chances of getting HIV. Earlier this year, a social media campaign used the hashtags #IAmNotThankful and #SinceIWasABoy. The campaigns featured adult men who were not thankful that their parents chose to circumcise them when they were infants. Therein lies the problem, according to intactivists opposing the new draft of federal guidelines.

The advocates for genital autonomy believe that the CDC’s new federal guidelines, if implemented, will take the circumcision choice away from the individuals they say it impacts the most.