Until the last few weeks.
First Rav Herschel Schachter was chastized for claiming there are 15 cases a year, most of which go unreported.
And this week, another report has come forward, claiming that two children have been infected with Herpes in NY, post brisses which included Metzitzah (Fox News originally mistakenly said HIV, but they meant HSV - Herpes Simplex Virus)
Here are a few links:
The radio showman Michael Savage (nee Wiener) spent an hour talking about this subject - here is the youtube link: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RPLh36XYolc
Suffice it to say, the man knows nothing about bris milah and is a bumbling buffoon on this subject. The only thing I'll agree with him on is that the Metzitzah with direct oral suction needs to be stopped. And that the people who say "If it were dangerous we would stop" are not telling the truth. Yes, the numbers don't reflect it being an overwhelming danger, but as I've written before - if ONE baby gets infected or dies from this practice, that is ONE WAY TOO MANY!
It is an irresponsible practice in 21st century. Chazal would not approve if they knew what we know.
It's not a mitzvah. And the argument that it's been practiced for 4000 years is a lie.
It's a chillul Hashem (desecration of God's name). Plain and simple.