I see there's an uproar again in Germany because a Rabbi has been charged for performing a circumcision violating the ban on ritual circumcision. It is an outrage and an infringement on religious freedom Jewish and Muslim groups, are saying and I assume all organized faiths support that. I feel unless I can be convinced otherwise that I have to support the ban in defense of children.
The bigger issue is how much freedom of religion can be allowed? What about human sacrifice and other "rites" like clitoridectomy? During the British rule in Kenya, the infringement of this right to practice clitoridectomies on the part of the Christian missionaries caused a huge schism between the missionaries and their converts in the native Christian community. I personally support the right of people to have beliefs and practice their religion up to a point, but I do not believe society should give groups free rein just because they constitute a religion which is purely an institution representing people who believe some form of supernatural being created them and is acting on this supernatural beings' dictates. In this case, a child has no say in the matter and it is our obligation to defend that child I believe. If someone wants to get circumcised when they reach adulthood they should be free to do so. All "progressive" people when confronted with reproductive rights agree that such choices belong to a woman in the last analysis, an adult woman. In the case of circumcision a child has no rights.
- AFSCME Local 444 negotiations assesment 1997
- Preparing for Revolution: A discussion document
- The Internal lives of Revolutionary Organizations
- Socialist Alternative members: Questions and Answers
- Sanders: Our Alternative
- The Nature of the New European Left
- University of California workers and Unions
- An Invitation to Our Readers
- Facts For Working People Weekly Phone Conferences and Discussions
- Help open The AFL-CIO AIFLD Archives