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Brian Morris

Prof. Brian Morris
Prof Brian Morris

Emeritus Professor Brian J Morris, DSc, PhD, is a retired professor of molecular biology, formerly at the University of Sydney. He is a prolific writer of scientific papers, with a distinguished record in his specialties, high blood pressure and the genetics of cardiovascular disease. He is also one of the highest-profile promoters of infant circumcision. In this, his record is not so distinguished.

He endorses every possible reason for infant male genital cutting, no matter how trivial:

Morris: circumcise to prevent zipper injury and''bathroom splatter''
(And the bathroom splatter of circumcised males can not?)

"Why circumcision is a biomedical imperative for the 21st century" p 1153

His output on the subject is prodigious, and in argument he is a master of the Gish Gallop, issuing misstatements faster than they can be checked and refuted.

He has compared his own work to that of Einstein!

''Perhaps Einstein's publications on relativity should be dismissed on similar grounds?''

"The Culture War Against Circumcision", Slate. February 2014

(Einstein did not cite his own work, nor appeal to the authority of his position as a patent clerk.)

Here are some of his clearest misstatements of fact:

Morris: "The AAP recommends circumcision"

Morris: ''AAP recommends circumcison''

AAP: "benefits not great enough to recommend circumcision"

AAP: ''not sufficient to recommend''

Morris: the AAP's recommendation for circumcision is as strong as its recommendation for vaccination.

Morris: AAP recommends circumcision as strongly as vaccination

AAP: strongly recomends vaccination

AAP: recommends vaccination

 

Morris: 25% of all uncircumcised males have frenular chordee

Morris: 1/4 of ALL uncircumcised males have frenuluar chordee

(If they did, it would be considered normal!)
"Why circumcision is a biomedical imperative for the 21st century" p 1153

His reference: 20 out of 75 boys undergoing elective circumcision had frenular chordee

Griffen et al: 20 out of 78 boys undergoing circumcision had frenular chordee

Griffin AS and Kroovand RL, "Frenular Chordee: Implications and Treatment"

 

Morris et al.: 3.6% of "uncircumcised" boys have had a UTI by the time they are 16.
Morris et al.: cumulative prevalence in UNCIRCUMCISED boys 3.6%''
Reference: Coulthard MG, Lambert HJ, Keir MJ. Occurrence of renal scars in children after their first referral for urinary tract infection. . BMJ 1997; 315: 918-919.
Their reference: no mention of circumcison
Coulthard ''cumulative prevalence 3.6% of boys''

A search of the paper finds no reference to circumcision.

 

Morris: "19% of uncircumcised boys get recurrent UTIs"

Morris: ''19% of intact boys get recurrent UTIs''

"Why circumcision is a biomedical imperative for the 21st century" p 1151

His reference: 5 intact boys in a population of ~34,900 got recurrent UTIs

The source of Morris's claim that ''19% of intact boys get recurrent UTIs''

Conway et al., "Recurrent Urinary Tract Infections in Children"
(and P=.13 means the finding was not statistically significant)

5 intact boys got recurrent UTIs out of 36 of known circumcision status out of 68 boys with UTIs out of ~34,900 boys''

To more detail

Morris: Germaine Greer supports circumcision 100%

Morris: ''Germaine Greer supports circumcision 100%''

Greer: We should attack disease, not remove healthy tissue (43'40"" in)

Greer: Rather than, than actually remove healthy tissue in order to avoid possible disease, we should be thinking of attacking the diseases, that we've got a wrong priority there.

 

Male genital mutilation is seldom condemned. Men mutilate the genitals of other men... In England a doctor will be struck off the medical register if it is found that he has carried out a female circumcision of any kind… . Any suggestion that male genital mutilation should be outlawed would be understood to be a frontal attack on the cultural identity of Jews and Muslims.

Notwithstanding, the opinion that male circumcision might be bad for babies, bad for sex and bad for men is steadily gaining ground… in the US between 60 per cent and 70 per cent of male babies will have their foreskins surgically removed. No UN agency has uttered a single protocol condemning the widespread practice of male genital mutilation, which will not be challenged until doctors start to be sued in large numbers by men they mutilated as infants. Silence on the question of male circumcision is evidence of the political power both of the communities where a circumcised penis is considered an essential identifying mark and of the practitioners who continue to do it for no good reason. Silence about male mutilation in our own countries combines nicely with noisiness on female mutilation in other countries to reinforce our notions of cultural superiority.

- The Whole Woman (1999)


Morris: Dr Terry Russell was subjected to a witch-hunt.
Ex-Judge Michael Kirby strongly supports circumcision.

Morris's false claims about Terry Russell and Michael Kirby J

Russll: punished for good cause

In 2004, the Professional Services Review Determining Authority resolved to reprimand and counsel Dr Russell, and fine him $A4,488.88 for opportunistically diagnosing tongue-tie on boys referred to him for circumcision in 1999.

Kirby: "Circumcision cannot be a universal strategy"

Circumcision, however useful, cannot therefore be a universal HIV prevention strategy

Michael Kirby, The HIV/AIDS Pandemic: The Third Phase

 


Morris vs Morris - When he disagrees with himself.

Morris: The AAP's policy is not strong enough
Morris: ''The AAP's policy is not strong enough''

San Rafael Patch, September 2, 2012

Morris et al.: A strength of the APP's policy...
Morris et al: ''A strength of the AAP policy is that it is ... conservative...''

Pediatrics, September 7, 2012

(The policy makes no mention of the rights of the child.)

 

Morris: no such thing as female circumcision
Morrs: so-called 'female circumcision' is a misnomer

Medical News Today, April 24, 2014

Morris: true female circumcision may have benefits
Morris true female circumcision... is said to increase sexual sensitivity...

Professor Morris's website, Circinfo - Whose responsibility

 

 

Professor Morris has his own section on the Absurdities page of this site:

 

The Brian Morris Hall of Shame

 

Stretching or 'growing back' the foreskin is a form of genital mutilation....
The men who choose this route have psychological problems.

- Prof. Brian Morris in "The Unkindest Cut?"
(Australian) "Men's Health" July 2001

 

There are no deaths today from medical circumcisions in developed countries.

- Prof. Brian Morris on his website in 2006.

 

There is a big anti-circumcision campaign out there run by lunatic-fringe organisations
and unfortunately they've infiltrated the medical profession.

- Prof. Brian Morris in The Australian, August 27, 2007.

 

Lamenting the loss of parts we discarded as children, whether it be baby teeth, appendixes or even tonsils, is not only misguided, it's downright silly.

- Prof. Brian Morris in his website, (August 31, 2007)

 

A clip-on plastic device is used these days, so there's no "cut".

- Prof. Brian Morris, letter to Men's Style (Australia) #29, Spring-Summer 2008

 

Morris: genital integrity is maintained when circumcised

 

 

Here are two of his main texts, with partial rebuttals:

External criticism of Professor Morris's circumcision advocacy:

Brian Morris and the Gilgal Society (a circumcision-promoting organization)

Morris: I have no association iwth the Gilgal Society

And again here, after a claim in an earlier article

.
  • A pamphlet published by Brian Morris, on a pro-circumcision web-page is "Copyright © 2006 Brian Morris and The Gilgal Society"
  • Morris's "Circumcision as a biomedical imperative for the 21st century" thanks the Gilgal Society in his acknowledgements (p 1156)
  • A list of circumcisers in Australia and New Zealand, on his website (as of July 3, 2014) carried the Gilgal Society logo. It was removed less than 10 days before Vernon Quaintance's trial began.
    Gilgal's list of circumcisers on Morris's site
    Click for larger

  • Morris has slowly removed other Gilgal- and Quaintance-related material from his website. Follow the chain of news items in reverse order.
  • Brian Morris and Vernon Quaintance (head of the Gilgal Society)

    It is not evidence of anything that Morris was associated with Quaintance before Quaintance was convicted of possessing child pornography or charged with crimes against boys, but Morris's credibility is undermined by his attempts to deny the association and the seriousness of Quantance's crime/s.

    Morris: VQ was "fined a small amount" for "a misdemeanour" involving one videotape

    Morris: VQ's ''misemeanour''

    Morris: VQ's ''small fine''

    It may be true that Morris has never met Quaintance in the flesh, but electronically they were on first-name terms.

    Fact: VQ given a suspended prison sentence for three seriously abusive videotapes

    Qauintance's first conviction

     

    Brian Morris and James Badger/Professor Guy Cox

    Professor Morris has published with the academic circumcison advocate Cox and treats him as distinct from the circumcision pornography writer Badger (who also promotes anti-masturbation underwear), though there is every reason to suppose they are one and the same. For example, Morris's own website at one time identified the aboutcirc.org website with Cox, but later with Badger.

    Professor Cox/Badger can also play fast and loose with fact:

    Cox: Pythagoras was circumcised to enter the Library of Alexandria

    Cox letter to NS, Pythagoras circumcised to enter Library of Alexandria

    - New Scientist, August 9, 2014

    Warbruton: The Library of Alexandria opened long after Pythagoras' death

    Warburton reply to NS: Library of Alexandria not built till long after Pyhtagoras' death

    - New Scientist, September 6, 2014

     

    Brian Morris and the Circumcision Foundation Academy of Australia

    Professor Morris is a founding member of "the Circumcision Foundation of Australia" (2010). Some time between May 17, 2014 and June 18, 2014 it changed its name to "the Circumcision Academy of Australia", but for some reason it wants to rewrite its history and backdate the name change to 2010. Unfortunately, nobody has told Professor Morris, and his website was continuing to call it "Foundation" as recently as June 19, 2014

    Morris's website:

    Morris's website: The Circumcision Foundation of Australia
    Click to enlarge

    The Foundation Academy's website:

    The Circumcision Academy of Australia's website
    Click to enlarge

    The words "evidence based" were added in September or October 2012. "Individual choice" to stay intact is impossible if it has been second-guessed by "parental choice", but the Foundademy thinks only of the choice to circumcise.


     

    NB: The Twitter account @BrianMorrisCirc was not set up by Professor Morris (although it uses his photo) but by an enemy of his, although no friend of Intactivism - in other words, a troll.

     

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