Circumcision Ban Makes It To SF Ballot
Well it was nip and tuck for awhile, but the circumcision ban has finally made it to the San Francisco ballot. From Bay City News:
A proposal to criminalize male circumcision will go before San Francisco voters this November after the Department of Elections verified Tuesday that supporters have gathered enough signatures to place the measure on the ballot.
Proponents of the circumcision ban submitted 12,271 signatures to the city’s Department of Elections, which was able to verify 7,743 of them, a clerk with the department said today. The measure needed a minimum of 7,168 to qualify.
The organizer of the campaign, Lloyd Schofield, has said he believes male circumcision is wrong, and likens it to female circumcision practices already banned in the U.S.
Local religious groups have strongly opposed the proposal, which they say impinges on their constitutional rights to religious freedom.
The measure would punish people who circumcise a minor with a fine of up to $1,000 or up to a year in jail.
Schofield said today of the certification, “Obviously we’re very pleased, it was a lot of work for a lot of people … and we look forward to continuing that outreach and discussion with the people of San Francisco.”
Here is the initiative’s web site, which includes the proposed law’s exact language:
ARTICLE 50: GENITAL CUTTING OF MALE MINORS
SEC. 5001. PROHIBITION OF GENITAL CUTTING OF MALE MINORS.
Except as provided in SEC. 5002, it is unlawful to circumcise, excise, cut, or mutilate the whole or any part of the foreskin, testicles, or penis of another person who has not attained the age of 18 years.
SEC. 5002. EXCEPTIONS.
(a) A surgical operation is not a violation of this section if the operation is necessary to the physical health of the person on whom it is performed because of a clear, compelling, and immediate medical need with no less-destructive alternative treatment available, and is performed by a person licensed in the place of its performance as a medical practitioner.
(b) In applying subsection (a), no account shall be taken of the effect on the person on whom the operation is to be performed of any belief on the part of that or any other person that the operation is required as a matter of custom or ritual.
SEC. 5003. PENALTY.
Any person who violates any provisions of this Article shall be deemed guilty of a misdemeanor and upon conviction such person shall be punished by a fine not to exceed $1,000 or by imprisonment in the County Jail for a period not to exceed one year, or by both such fine and imprisonment.
And that’s the long and the short of it…