What is Routine Male Circumcision (RIC)

Circumcision is the surgical amputation of a some or all of this tissue. By routine male circumcision we mean the removal of the foreskin from the penis of normal male babies or boys, on the decision of adults (usually parents or guardians), without the boy's consent, and in the absence of any genuine medical indication, and particularly in the absence of the sort of critical injury, malformation or disease which would be required for the amputation of any other part of the body without the subject's consent. In the past the procedure was referred to as Routine Neonatal Circumcision or Routine Infant Circumcision, abbreviated here as RNC.

Strictly speaking, RNC is no longer practised even in places where it was once common, since most doctors are opposed to the practice and only do it in response to parental insistence. Each case today is thus an individual decision, not a matter of mere routine. In the heydey of circumcision in the 1950s, doctors pressured parents to agree to have their baby boys circumcised and would automatically do it unless they strenuously objected; sometimes they did it without even parental consent, as still occurs in the United Sates from time to time. The essential elements of routine (medically unnecessary) circumcision as practised today are (1) decision by adults; (2) absence of medical indication or need; (3) lack of consent on the part of the boy. - Dr. Robert Darby

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