ADVANTAGES

Just as expected, seventy-two per cent of themale students are circumcised. At Clem's party I had beenreminded of the promiscuous way in which American doctors circumcisemales in childhood, a practice I highly disapprove of, agreeing withthat publisher who is forever advertising in the New York a work which proves that circumcision isnecessary for only a very few men. For the rest it constitutes, in theadvertiser’s phrase, “a rape of the penis.” Until the Forties, only theupper or educated classes were circumcised in America. The real peoplewere spared this humiliation. But during the affluent postwar years theoperation became standard procedure, making money for doctors as wellas allowing the American mother to mutilate her son in order that hemight never forget her early power over him. Today only the poor BostonIrish, the Midwestern Poles and the Appalachian Southerners can becounted upon to be complete.

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