San Francisco’s Circumcision Ban- Cancelled

This past week, a Superior Court judge removed San Francisco’s circumcision ban from the ballot completely.

The proposed measure banned male circumcision with a penalty of a $1,000 fine or jail time. Religious circumcisions would not have been exempt, and the measure was met with heavy resistance from religious, civil liberties and medical groups.

According to Superior Court Judge Loretta Giorgi, circumcision is “a widely practiced medical procedure.” She added that medical services are regulated by the state and not by individual cities.

The Jewish Community Relations Council, the Anti-Defamation League and various other Jewish and Muslim groups who had sued to remove the measure, were relieved by the announcement.

“While we are confident that the overwhelming majority of San Franciscans would have voted to defeat this extreme measure and are grateful for the outpouring support of every sector of the community, we believe the right decision was made in the right venue,” said Abby Michelson Porth, of Jewish Community Relations Council.

“It’s unusual for a judge to order an initiative off the ballot, but the proposed circumcision ban presented that rare case where the court should block an election on an initiative,” ACLU Northern California staff attorney Margaret Crosby said. “Not only is the ban patently illegal, it also threatened family privacy and religious freedom. The court’s order protects fundamental constitutional values in San Francisco.”

This past week, a Superior Court judge removed San Francisco’s circumcision ban from the ballot completely.

The proposed measure banned male circumcision with a penalty of a $1,000 fine or jail time.

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