Hard to believe, but that’s what the decision handed down by the regional court in Cologne, Germany means: circumcising a child under the age of consent is a crime, notwithstanding the religious beliefs of the parents.
Many judges who loyally served the Third Reich finished their careers in perfect peace and quiet after World War Two; in some cases, they are still collecting pensions for administering Hitler’s laws. However, Germany’s moral sensibilities are so refined and so pure today that the thought of Jewish parents (or Muslims for that matter) performing an immemorial religious rite is unacceptable.
Jews believe that the circumcision of infants is a necessary act; the command to circumcise male children at the age of eight days is the first command that God gives Abraham to mark their covenant; for thousands of years this has been a foundation of Jewish life. To ban infant circumcision is essentially to make the practice of Judaism illegal in Germany; it is now once again a crime to be a Jew in the Reich.
Some may have worried that the memory of past, ahem, problems in German-Jewish relations would inhibit German judges from the single most anti-Semitic state action taken anywhere in the west since 1945. Holm Putzke, a legal expert at the University of Passau, praised the court’s dedication to duty, telling the Financial Times Deutschland that “Unlike many politicians, the court has not allowed itself to be scared off by charges of anti-Semitism or religious intolerance.”
Well, thank goodness for that! If courts start letting themselves be inhibited because people will denounce them for being intolerant anti-Semites, how can we possibly build a clean and beautiful New Europe?
Perhaps those convicted of wrongful circumcision could be required to wear a yellow star?