On the whole circumcision issue I'll readily admit that I am biased, so I'm going to try and be as neutral as possible.
Apparently some studies have shown that circumcision helps in the prevention of HIV/AIDS, an issue that is plaguing Africa at the moment.
The Luo Council of Elders won't sanction circumcision because it is against their culture.
What I like about this story though is not that they might be dooming themselves to an increased risk of HIV/AIDS (who the hell would want that?) but the views of the elders.
The BBC article states:
The elders are afraid that some men will think that being circumcised is an alternative to using condoms, which will put them at a higher risk of infection, our correspondent says.
But individual members of the community who want to be circumcised are free to do so, the council says.
The first snippet is something that I agree with. If you get people thinking that they will become superman and won't get any diseases by getting circumcised will probably ruin any benefit by increasing the amount of unsafe sex that they have.
This is a region where there are accounts of young girls being raped because of some supposed "cure for AIDS" if you sleep with a virgin. Then the girl contracts the disease and the bloke isn't cured.
Education is still one of the most effective methods for preventing transmission of HIV/AIDS. It doesn't matter if you are cut or not, or have that CD4 mutation, you still have a chance of getting the disease.
The latter snippet is good too because although they have said that it is against their culture for people to get circumcised, or to force them, they will let those that want to go ahead and get cut.
As opposed to certain Imams in Muslim countries issuing fatwas and wanting people that disobey to get punished.