The Ethical Course Is To Recommend Infant Male Circumcision — Arguments Disparaging American Academy of Pediatrics Affirmative Policy Do Not Withstand Scrutiny

Journal of Law, Medicine and Ethics 45 (4):647-663 (2017)
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We critically evaluate arguments in a recent Journal of Law, Medicine & Ethics article by Svoboda, Adler, and Van Howe disputing the 2012 affirmative infant male circumcision policy recommendations of the American Academy of Pediatrics. We provide detailed evidence in explaining why the extensive claims by these opponents are not supported by the current strong scientific evidence. We furthermore show why their legal and ethical arguments are contradicted by a reasonable interpretation of current U.S. and international law and ethics. After all considerations are taken into account it would be logical to conclude that failure to recommend male circumcision early in infancy may be viewed as akin to failure to recommend childhood vaccination to parents. In each case, parental consent is required and the intervention is not compulsory. Our evaluation leads us to dismiss the arguments by Svoboda et al. Instead, based on the evidence, infant male circumcision is both ethical and lawful.



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