Foreskin Man
Matthew Hees' "Foreskin Man"ADL has criticized it as being offensive and anti-Semitic

What's in a foreskin?

According to many experts in the field of sexually transmitted diseases, a lot.

Including HIV.

In the unprecedented San Francisco circumcision ban campaign, much attention is being paid to the cartoon that the Anti-Defamation League and other Jewish groups are calling anti-Semitic.

But what of the medical ramifications?

If the measure passes, circumcising males under the age of 18 would become illegal in San Francisco and considered a misdemeanor offense punishable by a fine of up to $1,000 or up to one year in jail.

Circumcision is known to prevent a whole slew of medical complications, according to experts at

Failing to circumcise a child, before their adolescent years when they are inevitably still learning about the importance of maintaining personal hygiene, can lead to urinary tract infections.

Also, it is well known in the medical community that sexually transmitted infections (STIs) like HIV, genital herpes, syphilis and HPV can be transmitted by microbes carried in the foreskin.

Circumcision also almost entirely reduces the chances of contracting penile cancer, which can only be addressed through invasive medical procedures.

While the circumcision debate has inflamed anti-Jewish and anti-Muslim sensibilities on America's West Coast, questioning whether American law can trample traditions, thousands of years older than San Francisco's Union Square, people should focus on the medical ramifications of the ban.

Before it's too late.