Foreskin Man is not a typical comic-book superhero, and neither is his choice of adversaries – doctors who practice circumcision and Orthodox Jews who support the religious ritual.
The comic books are produced to support activist Matthew Hess, of San Diego, who has managed to put a measure on San Francisco’s ballot in November that would make it illegal to perform a circumcision on a boy under 18 without medical need.
Hess is the founder of MGMbill, a national organisation pushing to outlaw circumcision on boys under the age of 18. MGM stands for Male Genital Mutilation.
Hess said he launched his campaign in 2003 but had been getting a lot of glazed eyes until he created Foreskin Man. The first issue, in which Foreskin Man confronts Dr. Mutilator, was viewed as kind of weird, he said, but the second issue has sent Internet traffic soaring. This is generating a lot of attention that is pushing people to look into this a little bit more, Hess told The Associated Press: The more you look into it, the worse it gets. It is a serious human rights violation. Now a lot of people are going to learn about circumcision and be thinking about it before the November ballot.
In the comic’s second issue, the mohel (a specialist in Jewish ritual circumcision) barges into a San Diego home, snatches a baby boy from his mother, and proceeds to circumcise the infant on a pool table before being stopped by Foreskin Man.
Now Hess is being accused of anti-semitism over his use of imagery.
The (Monster) mohel has a dark complexion, hook nose and is practically drooling at the thought of apparently doing harm to a child, said Nancy Appel, associate director of the Anti-Defamation League: He even has claws on his fingertips. He is blood thirsty just like the grotesque Jewish stereotypes that appeared in Nazi propaganda. It’s absolutely a direct parallel.