Is this really safe sex?
In some African countries, tribes have shunned circumcision because it was seen as a Muslim practice or was simply considered primitive.
Via HuffPo reports:
“We thought they were born differently and had to reconfigure the way they were,” said Mumena.
So the tribal chief was not prepared for his son’s declaration that he wanted to get circumcised. Mumena read the pamphlets on circumcision’s health benefits, which argue that the procedure cuts HIV transmission by 60 percent, and agreed with his 18-year-old son.
Risking impeachment by the 60,000 members of his tribe, he had the procedure done in 2011 at the age of 47.
Mumena is among a growing number of Zambians opting for circumcision as a way to ward off HIV infection. In so doing, they are adding to the number of people who take on this ancient practice for cultural or religious reasons.
Mumena is also a Christian, and he is finding biblical justifications for circumcision.
“If it was good enough for God’s people in Leviticus, it is good enough for me,” he said. “I have made a stand for circumcision because of what the Bible has taught me. God demands good hygiene from his people as a way of living.”
Mumena attends an evangelical church and is also a lay preacher. His advocacy on behalf of circumcision has brought him attention from people like Microsoft founder and philanthropist Bill Gates, who has called Mumena one of Africa’s “true heroes.”
Circumcision has become a popular tool to fight HIV/AIDS and cervical cancer. In 2012, the Zambian Ministry of Health launched a national campaign to circumcise 2 million men by 2015. The U.S. President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief has committed $11.4 million to support Zambia’s efforts.
“Male circumcision is the best vaccine in Africa,” says Dr. Manasseh Phiri, a Zambian HIV/AIDS activist who was inspired by Mumena to get circumcised.
Health experts also explain that circumcision is not a magic bullet. Some men assume that if they are circumcised, they have almost no risk of contracting HIV.
Why would a rational person choose genital mutilation over condoms and common sense safe sex knowledge?