Judge Strikes Down Push to Ban Circumcision

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A San Francisco judge has struck down a city ballot measure that would ban male circumcision.

Judge Loretta Giorgi ruled Thursday that the measure violates a California state law forbidding localities to make their own laws involving medical procedures.

Attorneys for the measure's supporters tried to convince the judge that circumcision is not a medical procedure and that the bill included a provision allowing for circumcision for health reasons.

After hearing the arguments Wednesday, the judge made her temporary stay against the measure permanent.

Citizens opposed to circumcision collected more than enough signatures to put the measure on the November ballot. The law would have made the practice a misdemeanor punishable by a fine up to $1,000 or a year in jail.

If it had passed, it would have made San Francisco the first city in the nation to outlaw the circumcision of minors.

Critics of the measure were concerned that the motives behind it were anti-Semitic, since circumcision has been at the heart of the Jewish faith since Bible times.

Campaign material produced by proponents included anti-Semitic comic books.

One Jewish mohel, or performer of circumcision, is portrayed as a sinister villain named "Foreskin Man." The superhero fighting the Jewish villains is blond and blue-eyed.

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