CLEVELAND - We've seen many protests in the past several months in Cleveland. But one that took place on Friday was certainly different from the rest.
A group of men protesting circumcision.
They call themselves Bloodstained Men, and they want your attention. The non-profit group based in California is traveling from Chicago to New York trying to convince people not to do it.
Most circumcisions are performed on newborn boys and have been practiced for religious, cultural, and ethnic traditions for thousands of years.
Bloodstained Men consider it cruel.
"It's an unnecessary surgery, it's quite painful, and it violates the right of someone to have control over their own body," says Bloodstained Men's Harry Guiremand. "Plus the it destroys the sexually sensitive part of the penis so most of the sensitivity of the penis is destroyed when a circumcision takes place."
The American Academy of Pediatrics found the health benefits of newborn male circumcision outweigh the risks, but the benefits are not great enough to recommend universal newborn circumcision. The decision should be made by parents.
Risks include bleeding, swelling, and botched procedures. Benefits include prevention of urinary tract infections, penile cancer and transmission of some sexually transmitted diseases including HIV.
While Bloodstained Men claims to be gaining support for what they consider equal rights, they weren't exactly welcomed here. A local car dealer was spraying water on the group.
There were men, women and children at the protest, at least half were from the area.
According to the Centers for Disease Control, the circumcision rate among newborns is on the decline in the United States. Bottom line, this a decision that's been left up to parents. Do your homework from reputable sources, talk to your pediatrician or OB and go from there.