SEPTEMBER - OCTOBER 2019

IT'S OUR BIRTHDAY!


Intact America is "celebrating" its 11th birthday. I put "celebrating" in quotation marks, because as another year rolls by, sometimes I think, "Wouldn't it be wonderful if we didn't need to do this work because all children were allowed to grow up with intact genitals? And wouldn't it be terrific if parents and doctors and other caregivers understood that amputating a boy's foreskin, or forcing it to retract, is painful and causes harm over the long term?"

But then I remind myself that so long as there are men whose genitals were  amputated when they were too young to defend themselves (let alone, to consent), so long as doctors and others push new parents to cut their sons, so long as the public needs educating about the intact penis, Intact America will have to keep on keeping on.

And with you by our side, we will do just that.

With your support, Intact America will keep this issue on the public's radar screen, raising awareness and talking about the facts: genital cutting is risky and harmful, and having intact genitals is normal and desirable. With your donations, Intact America will keep on answering letters, calls, emails, and inquiries to our Info box and Facebook pages from people whose lives have been torn apart — or whose current peace is threatened — by the harm or specter of genital cutting. We listen, we advise when asked, and we happily incorporate strategies and ideas from our constituents. The thanks we get — for our thoughtful and strategic approach to change the way America thinks about circumcision, for the rich information on our websites and blog, for our campaigns, for our presence in the media — make it more than worth our efforts.

After eleven years, I clearly see that public attitudes are changing. Conversations about all-things penis and foreskin are daily fare on the internet and even in print publications. The annual surveys being commissioned by Intact America also show that the percentage of Americans agreeing with the principle that boys should be kept intact is, indeed, growing. Beginning with NOCIRC’s founding by Marilyn Milos in the 1980s (see this month's Voices essay), the intactivist movement has become organized, uncompromising and increasingly powerful.

But to keep on doing all of this and more, Intact America needs your help. Please help us to celebrate our 11th birthday by ensuring that we can keep on doing this work until the day it's no longer necessary.

Thank you for being there.

Georganne Chapin
Founding Executive Director

 

 

NEWS & UPDATES:

Newsweek: Pharmacist convicted of having boy circumcised against parents' wishes. Read more >>

NYC DOH: Neonatal herpes infection reported following ritual circumcision. Read more >>

The Independent: Growing number of Ugandan men opting out of circumcision. Read more >>

United Humanists: Why we stop circumcising baby boys and start viewing it as mutilation. Read more >>

 

INTACT AMERICA'S "VOICES" SERIES — MARILYN MILOS, RN


Since her days as a hospital floor nurse over 35 years ago, Marilyn Milos, RN, has been at the front of the fight to end forced circumcision in the U.S. She founded the National Organization of Circumcision Resource Centers (NOCIRC), now Genital Autonomy - America, and is a co-founder of Intact America (IA) and a member of its Steering Committee, and also serves as IA’s Clinical Consultant. Read more >>


Interested in lending your voice? Send an email to [email protected], giving us a brief summary of what you would like to write about, and we will get back to you.

 

DO YOU KNOW YOU'RE INTACT AMERICA'S GREATEST RESOURCE?


When Marilyn Milos founded the National Organization of Circumcision Information Resource Centers in 1985, she expected that spreading awareness about the painful and unnecessary surgery being forced upon helpless baby boys would be enough to stop the practice. She was wrong. Marilyn was fired from her job as a nurse. Anonymous people threatened to kill her. And the medical establishment worked to portray Marilyn and the small but growing number of "anti-circumcision activists" as crack-pots and weirdos, as radicals who were obsessed with penises and thought they were smarter than the doctors who promoted newborn male genital cutting.

Thanks to Marilyn and the growing number of thinking people who recognized her truth and joined in the call to end the assault on boys and the men they would become, intactivism (the now-accepted term) has taken its place in the broader human rights context.

With two non-serious exceptions (a menacing message left by a Pennsylvania physician and a 6am anonymous call from a man accusing me of anti-Semitism), since co-founding Intact America nobody has threatened me with bodily harm. And I’ve been able to easily withstand the insults, dumb jokes, snickers and raised eyebrows from people who are uncomfortable with our issue. To me, these are simply clear signs that our message is hitting home.

While some still think it's not "polite" to talk publicly about penises and foreskins, and too many Americans are still ignorant about the scars on their sons’ or husbands' or even their own penises, in the 11 years since Intact America began, awareness has grown exponentially.

You're reading this newsletter! You've already declared your commitment to this cause. YOU ARE NOT ALONE! And you can help to grow the circle of people who share your awareness by becoming an Ambassador for Intact America and for intactivism. Here are some ways:

  •  

    • Talk about your own initial awareness, your own journey. It's much harder for people to dismiss a first-person story than a technical argument for which they can cite contradictory "evidence."
  •  

    • State the fact that that nearly half of all baby boys born in the United States today are leaving the hospital with their foreskins in place, and that they are growing up healthy and clean.

     

    • Share that you are NOT alone in your position. Tell your friends, family, neighbors and co-workers that there is an established and growing movement among people like you, people like THEM, against cutting baby boys' genitals.

     

    • Remind your audience that just because something doctors do was once popular — and even fashionable — doesn't mean that it must continue. Think "routine" tonsillectomies, and the now-debunked belief that the appendix "doesn't do anything." Think "bleeding" (did you know that George Washington died from having nearly half of his blood removed in an attempt to cure him of a sore throat?).

     

    • MOST IMPORTANTLY, speak out about Intact America. Ask your friends if you can send them a copy of the most recent newsletter. Write letters to the Editor and post a response to any online article about genital cutting (male or female or intersex). Mention CircumcisionDebate.org and IntactAmerica.org. Tell them YOU support our work and ask them to consider doing the same. Tell friends, family, neighbors, co-workers and fellow congregants that we (and you) are just regular people who want to see all children grow up whole, with all the parts given to them by God or nature.

     

Thank them for listening! And thank YOU for being an Ambassador for Intact America.

 

INTACT AMERICA IS ON YOUTUBE!


Every week, our YouTube curator and former Intactivist of the Month, Shelton Walden uploads both new and vintage clips related to circumcision in the United States and beyond.


Feel free to browse our videos and audio files, and share them with friends. Subscribe today!

 

 

ADD INTACT AMERICA AS YOUR AMAZONSMILE CHARITY


Do you shop frequently on Amazon.com? Are you an Amazon Prime subscriber? If so, be sure to add Intact America (registered under Hudson Center for Health Equity and Quality) as your AmazonSmile charity.

What is AmazonSmile?

AmazonSmile is a website operated by Amazon that lets customers enjoy the same wide selection of products, low prices, and convenient shopping features as on Amazon.com. However, the difference is that when customers shop on AmazonSmile, the AmazonSmile Foundation will donate 0.5% of the price of eligible purchases to the charitable organizations selected by customers.

Remember, every purchase helps to support Intact America's efforts to protect boys and the men they'll become. Sign up for AmazonSmile today and designate Intact America (Hudson Center for Health Equity and Quality) as your charitable organization!

 

 

CHECK OUT OUR INTACTIVIST GEAR


Visit Intact America's online store to browse fun intactivist gear that helps spread our message.

Intact America is now selling "Say No! to circumcision" bumper stickers.

 

Remember, every purchase helps to support Intact America's efforts to protect boys and the men they'll become. Order yours today!

 

 


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Intact America
PO Box 8516
Tarrytown, NY 10591
IntactAmerica.org
 

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