Foreskin Man Comic Illustrates Controversy Over S.F. Circumcision Ban
|Foreskin Man doesn't really sound like a name for a superhero ...|
It depicts the story of a lovely Jewish couple who decide not to circumcise their young son, Glick, at his bris. But at the last minute, with guests gathered, a crew of evil-looking rabbis busts into the home.
We soon find out that the rabbis were working in cahoots with the husband, who had duped his wife into thinking he didn't care that Glick wasn't circumcised. As it turns out, the circumcised dad does want his son's foreskin removed: Like father, like son.
With mother screaming, the Jewish villains scoop up little Glick and take him into the family billiard room to perform the ceremony. This religious practice has been the key argument against banning circumcision. Lawyers argue that it is unconstitutional, violating freedom of religion.
Foreskin Man interrupts the ceremony, which in the comic has been portrayed as a crime. Our superhero then makes a relatively antisemitic remark: "That's it, monster. Keep babbling."
He then takes an eight-ball off the pool table and throws it at the rabbi, knocking the bloody scalpel out of his hand. A nasty fight breaks out, with blood and pain spewed all around. You can guess who won: Foreskin Man. But not without a threat. The rabbis warn the superhero, who storms off with Glick, that they will be back, scalpel and all.
So can we expect a sequel?
Because we were not satisfied with the plot, we called Matthew Hess, the creator of the comic book, to ask him what the hell? He has not returned our phone calls. You might recognize Hess, who is also the head of the national group Male Genital Mutilation, as the man who wrote the ballot language for San Francisco's circumcision ban, which will go before voters in November. The group is now pushing a similar proposal in Santa Monica.
He told SF Weekly last week that his efforts to criminalize circumcision are rather obvious.
"Boys are born with a foreskin for a reason," Hess said. "The foreskin functions like an eyelid, providing protection and keeping the penis moist and sensitive."
Abby Porth, associate director of the Jewish Community Relations Council, called the comic offensive. "It's reminiscent of Nazi-era propaganda," she says. "It's as offensive and outrageous as the measure itself."
See the full comic on Foreskin Man's Facebook page.
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