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California activist seeks circumcision ban, end to teen-sex prosecutions

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An activist has sued the state of California for a ban on circumcision, arguing that infants can't consent to the practice. In fact, according to twenty-four-year-old Oakland based minister, born-again conservative, musician, and activist Svend la Rose, circumcision is already illegal in California, under the state's mayhem law. Judge for youself on that one:

A person is guilty of aggravated mayhem when he or she unlawfully, under circumstances manifesting extreme indifference to the physical or psychological well-being of another person, intentionally causes permanent disability or disfigurement of another human being or deprives a human being of a limb, organ, or member of his or her body.

La Rose is also seeking to end statutory-rape prosecution for teenagers who have consensual sex with each other, making the argument that

It's not like teens aren't having sex anyways. And it's not like we really want all those who do to be convicted of "unlawful sexual intercourse." What we want is responsible decisions. And it's not really an invitation to responsibility to say "just say no and if you say yes then it's invalid anyway and your beloved will go to jail."

It's not all progressive logic with this fascinating character, though; a self-described "paleoconservative dealing with the fallout from my former progressivism," La Rose was also outraged by Iowa's decision to legalize gay marriage. Actually, his self-penned press release is kind of a goldmine; describing himself, La Rose writes that he

is president of ASFAR Youth Liberation, which is the oldest comprehensive organization in the United States advocating for the liberty and self-determination of young people… an ordained minister and accomplished musician. He is suing in another case to get back into UC Berkeley. Finally, and purely coincidentally, he is homeless.

You can also find his OkCupid profile if you Google him, and, not surprisingly, that's kind of a goldmine too. There he lists a number of preoccupations both heady ("the liberties and opportunities of America's young people") and… less so ("why great girls go for so-so guys, especially jocks"). He also strongly implies that he's never had sex; in a section on his survivalist training, he notes that he "can do without air for 50 seconds, water for 8 hours, sleep for 40 hours, food for 72 hours or so, and sex for 24 years."

Beneath all of this color, La Rose's points on circumcision and teen sex (if not gay marriage) are well-taken, but his typo-ridden screeds and self-aggrandizement seem like they'll keep California from paying much attention. (And in fact, he's actually at least the second Californian who's sought a ban on circumcision.) More on this as it develops, maybe.