There was a recent article in the Washington Post about some of the inaccuracies found in abstinence-only education programs. “Some Abstinence Programs Mislead Teens, Report Says.” According to the article:
“Many American youngsters participating in federally funded abstinence-only programs have been taught over the past three years that abortion can lead to sterility and suicide, that half the gay male teenagers in the United States have tested positive for the AIDS virus, and that touching a person’s genitals “can result in pregnancy,” a congressional staff analysis has found.”
It horrifies me that federal tax dollars are being used for these programs. Aren’t the realities of sex in our society scary enough without adding any lies? Not to mention that abstinence-only education doesn’t work, and will never work as long as humans have hormones.
“Nonpartisan researchers have been unable to document measurable benefits of the abstinence-only model. Columbia University researchers found that although teenagers who take “virginity pledges” may wait longer to initiate sexual activity, 88 percent eventually have premarital sex.”
There’s a shocker.
“Bill Smith, vice president of public policy at the Sexuality Information and Education Council of the United States, a comprehensive sex education group that also receives federal funding, said the Waxman report underscored the need for closer monitoring of what he called the “shame-based, fear-based, medically inaccurate messages” being disseminated with tax money. He said the danger of abstinence education lies in the omission of useful medical information.”
I’m glad that Mr. Smith at least appears to have a brain in his head. What I wonder is, why does it take a report from a Committee on Government Reform to get people to have common sense? Why are the moral values of our current administration being used to push (in public schools) educational programs that are scientifically inaccurate?
I know the answers, sadly. As the recent presidential election indicates, it’s because enough people don’t mind making decisions based on morals instead of facts.
That is why, “Some course materials cited in Waxman’s report present as scientific fact notions about a man’s need for “admiration” and “sexual fulfillment” compared with a woman’s need for “financial support.” One book in the “Choosing Best” series tells the story of a knight who married a village maiden instead of the princess because the princess offered so many tips on slaying the local dragon. “Moral of the story,” notes the popular text: “Occasional suggestions and assistance may be alright, but too much of it will lessen a man’s confidence or even turn him away from his princess.” “
Kids are being taught this sort of thing in textbooks purchased in part by my tax dollars. This makes me so angry, I could almost cry. Must be because I’m a woman.