Culture

The Navy Needs You...To Be Circumcised!

Tuli me tangere?
IMAGE The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou
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What’s up, supót? It’s summertime, which means tuli time, thanks for asking. For our few foreskinned friends unfamiliar with the ritual, it’s the time of year when Filipino parents bring their sons to the doctor to be relieved of their floppy foreskin. It’s a rite of passage more than a religious custom, as the Catholic Church does not require circumcision, but it’s a centuries-old procedure, nonetheless, which turns boys into swole little men.

The Philippine Navy, pre-celebrating its 119th anniversary, decided it had some skin in the tuli game as well, and last Saturday offered a mass circumcision ceremony in Taguig. According to the Daily Mail, over 100 boys were signed up by their parents for the annual activity, which is provided free of charge.

Of course, the reasons for circumcision are many and quite complex. The British online news outlet notes that the stigma attached to excess foreskin forces many fathers to have their sons circumcised, while other parents cite smegma, not stigma, as the main health reason for circumcision. These sponsored events offer an important service to Filipino parents, many of whom would not be able to afford this costly procedure or who live in areas where medical facilities are substandard.

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To cut a long story short, the journey to male maturity isn’t an easy one and sometimes involves donning house dresses or loose skirts to protect a boy’s sensitive manhood. Perfect for the hot summer weather.

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Christopher Puhm
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