Richard Lieberman, M.D.

There were a few years where I was the main one doing most of the obstetrical and family-planning services, which included circumcision. In those days, I was doing them-- I was working full-time for the Indian Health Service and was doing circumcisions on the Indian children.

I was doing circumcisions usually at the request of the parents-- after considering the situation on their own, getting what information and advice they could get-- they requested that I perform the procedure on their boys.

This is an example of medicine borrowing from religion, understanding that the procedure-- any procedure that was requested, or, in fact, required by God must have not only spiritual benefits, but health benefits as well.

The first part of the relationship between Man and God, involved God's requirement that Jewish children be circumcised. A Jewish ritual circumcision is not what is happening in the hospital. And so, really, it's not-- I mean, there is this Jewish effect-- but, um, you could counter by syaing, "Well, that's not what it's... That is not what God said. God did not say that Steve Lucero is going to circumcise your child on Day Two after birth". God said that on the eighth day, a Mohel would come to your home and do the procedure with all the prayers, and that's what the covenant is.

The whole question about when people change their minds-- and how people change their minds-- is an important issue, and I think that people in life do change their minds. In this case, I will say I can not conceive of anything that would make me change my mind. To be honest, I think that if there were a devistating complication of a circumcision procedure in someone close to me or in a family member, that would certainly make me think twice about the procedure. Or if I were aware of increasing complications from circumcision.

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