INTACTIVIST OF THE MONTH: Shawn Jenks
One of Intact America's greatest strengths is the diverse and supportive intactivist community. Our "Intactivist of the Month" series highlights some of the most ardent opponents of infant and childhood circumcision, whose tireless efforts will ensure a future where all babies are kept intact.
MAY 2011: One of the most common arguments in favor of circumcision is "I want my son to look like his father." But that argument makes no sense! Dad, if you were missing a hand, would you ask a doctor to cut off your baby’s hand? Would you take Junior in for an anchor tattoo to match the one on your shoulder? Would you give the baby back if his eyes were a different color from yours? Of course not!
More and more American fathers are breaking with this cultural "tradition" and choosing to keep their sons intact, though they themselves were circumcised. As Father's Day approaches, Intact America honors those men who had the courage to do what was best for their sons. One father in particular stands out: Shawn Jenks, who worked with his wife to make a passionate, honest video about their decision to leave their son whole.
Shawn became involved in the intactivist movement shortly after the birth of his second son. "After seeing the empirical data on circumcision, or after watching the procedure being performed," says Shawn, "who could rationally support routine infant circumcision? I got up to speed on the topic through organizations like Intact America, NOCIRC, and The Whole Network. I pitch in where I can by helping respond to emails from a modern father's perspective, writing an occasional article, and by helping my wife assemble and distribute pro-intact information packets. I got involved because I believe that every person has the right to their body. As a circumcised man, I wish that I had been given the choice to remain as nature had intended. I hope through my dialogues with expecting parents that more baby boys can leave the hospital/birthing center the way they entered it—perfect."
Intact America applauds Shawn and other fathers like him who've spoken out in favor of keeping their sons whole and respecting their genital integrity. It's voices from real people like Shawn that can make the most difference in changing the way America thinks about circumcision!
Here is Shawn Jenks' heartfelt video, "Confessions of a Circumcised American Dad."
Visit our Intactivist of the Month Archive page to read about previous intactivists we've highlighted.