Schroder wants “appropriate deafness” for circumcision

Schroder wants 'appropriate deafness' for circumcision

"Adequate deafness during circumcision is a very important point for me," schroder told the weekly newspaper "judische allgemeine". A spokeswoman for the federal ministry of justice assured the public on wednesday that a legal regulation would be presented soon. The german ethics council will hear from five experts, including theologians, lawyers and physicians, this thursday in berlin.

Schroder said: "i can see in judaic religious practice ways of reconciling maximum freedom from pain and medical standards with religious precepts". The minister had previously spoken with the israeli chief rabbi, yona metzger, and other rabbis. The previous day, metzger had emphasized the possibility of further medical training for jewish circumcisers, but at the same time spoke out against deafness and a general transfer of circumcision to doctors.

During a visit to liechtenstein, german federal minister guido westerwelle (FDP) said: "judaic and muslim traditions must be able to be lived in germany without legal uncertainty. We must not jeopardize germany’s image in the world as a country of religious tolerance."

The current occasion for westerwelle’s statement is another criminal charge of bodily injury against a rabbi. A doctor from gieben (hesse) has reported the jewish cleric david goldberg to the hof public prosecutor’s office (bavaria). Investigators are currently examining the "criminal relevance" of the complaint, a spokesman for the authorities said.

The 64-year-old rabbi announced that he would continue to circumcise boys without deafness, despite the charges. "So far there is no law that forbids circumcision," he told the dpa news agency. There is only the verdict of the regional court of koln, which evaluates the religiously motivated circumcision of a boy as a punishable bodily injury.

Goldberg says he performs up to 30 circumcisions a year on infants and calls in a doctor when requested. He refuses to deafen the small children. This is much more harmful, he emphasized, adding: "the children always fall asleep peacefully a few minutes later after the intervention.

Goldberg announced he would discuss his case with the central council of jews in germany. In the complaint, he is accused, among other things, of inviting people to perform "medically unindicated surgical genital operations on non-consenting infants" on his website. Rabbi suspects anti-semitic motives behind criminal complaint of abuse and grievous bodily harm. There is no other way to explain it, he said.

The gieben doctor sebastian guevara kamm rejected this accusation as a "common reflex. "I see myself committed to the protection of children, and that applies not only to ritual circumcisers, but also to medical colleagues," he stressed in response to an inquiry. Goldberg had neither a license as a doctor nor sufficient medical knowledge. In addition, he performed the interventions on medically unsuitable, unsterile bursts.

The religion-critical giordano bruno foundation announced further actions against the "forced circumcision" of small children. This was not a trivial matter, but an "unjustifiable interference with the child’s right to self-determination and physical integrity."