sex education


Dear Governor Palin,

I understand that you want to be the VP of a party that thinks no one should ever be able have an abortion no matter what. And you don’t believe in teaching kids about sex and STD’s and birth control. AND your 17 year old daughter is pregnant, still in high school and not married. AND you don’t want us to talk about it because it is your family.

Well Mrs Governor, it doesn’t work that way.

You see, your policies and your republican platform are terrible! They don’t work! Here are some examples:

Abstinence-only sex ed defies common sense. Education policy spreads ignorance, sends confusing message to teens

“One in eight youth are sexually experienced, having engaged in intercourse, oral sex or both before the age of 14,” the Journal of Adolescent Health reported in 2006. According to the Project Connect study, supported by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention: * “9 percent reported ever having sexual intercourse…and 8 percent ever had oral sex (active or receptive).” * “Of those who reported intercourse, 36 percent were age 11 or younger at first sex, 27 percent were 12, 28 percent were 13, and 9 percent were 14 or older.” * “Alarmingly, 43 percent of sexually experienced participants reported multiple sex partners.”

Kate Walsh: Abstinence-Only “Not Working.” Cites One-In-Four Teen Girl STDs Rate In U.S. As Proof Fed-Sponsored Sex Ed Needs Broadening

So we do get to talk about your policies. And we do get to talk about hypocrisy. You asked us to repect your family’s privacy, but you won’t respect my family’s privacy to make our own decisions!

“Our beautiful daughter Bristol came to us with news that, as parents, we knew would make her grow up faster than we had ever planned,” said Palin, 44, and her husband. “We’re proud of Bristol’s decision to have her baby and even prouder to become grandparents.” They asked the media to respect their child’s privacy.

How come she gets to make a decision but the rest of the girls and women in America don’t! You won’t even let me learn in school about all the decisions I might need to make!

Governor Palin, when I had my first boyfriend, my brother talked to me and to him about why we shouldn’t have sex. Actually, we had to sit down in my boyfriend’s living room with his parents and my brother and hear all about STD’s and love and all the reasons we were too young for sex. AND they told us about condoms and other ways of preventing pregnancy even though we promised to keep all hands above the waist until at least 16.

Did you have a talk like that with Bristol and her boyfriend? Did anyone show him how to use a condom? These are fair questions because of the policies you advocate for.

I am glad that Bristol decided to have her baby. Will she and her boyfriend raise it? Will they give it up for adoption? Who is going to pay for her to give birth? And for all the other doctor visits?

If you want your family life to stay private, the please don’t bring your family on stage with you when you campaign, and please stop being a hypocrite.

Sincerely,

Cassie

I just saw this and I think it is really warped. 

Kids: The New Voice In The Abortion Debate

The bell rang and the eighth graders jumped up, eager to compare notes.

“I named my baby Kyle Patrick,” one shouted.

“Mine is Antonio!”

At the urging of an antiabortion activist, they had each pledged to “spiritually adopt” a fetus developing in an unknown woman — to name it, love it from afar and above all, pray daily that the mother-to-be would not choose abortion.

“Maybe one day you’ll get to heaven and these people will come running to you . . . and say, ‘We’re all the little children you saved,’ ” activist Cristina Barba said. She smiled at the students in their Catholic school uniforms. “Maybe you really can make a difference.”

Thirty-five years after Roe vs. Wade, the U.S. Supreme Court decision legalizing abortion, opponents are pouring resources into building new generations of activists. Young people are responding with passion.

Today’s students and young adults have grown up in a time when abortion was widely accessible and acceptable, and a striking number are determined to end that era.

Pew Research Center polls dating back a decade show that 18- to 29-year-olds are consistently more likely than the general adult population to favor strict limits on abortion. A Pew survey over the summer found 22% of young adults support a total ban on abortion, compared with 15% of their parents’ generation.

Click here to continue reading

Here are some suggestions for those kids that might actually be more helpful than what they are doing:

  1. Learn more about how to NOT become pregnant.  This is called sex education.  The real stuff that includes contraceptives and how to use them.  Prayer might be less effective than condoms.  Just sayin’.
  2. Help change this country so that women who want to have babies can get daycare and healthcare and jobs that pay them enough to raise the babies.
  3. Spend your time opposing war, capital punishment, drunk driving, cancer, heart disease, child abuse and all of the other things that kill people.
  4. Help get national health care for the United States so that women who know their fetus will be a baby with health problems will be more likely to choose to have the baby.
  5. Focus on the choices you want to make for yourselves, but let the rest of us make OUR own choices.

By the way, this is my “blogging for choice” post. 

So, the new research on sex education shows that if y’all bother to teach us the real facts of sex education, we tend to be more responsible about sex and even to wait longer before we start.  So, of course the right wingers prefer not to teach us and just hope we do what they think is right.  Smart?  NO!  But it lets them bury their head in the sand so more teens can get sexually transmitted diseases and become pregnant.

This is what CarpetbaggerReport says about it:

Abstinence-only fails, sex ed doesn’t

The WaPo reported the other day that at least 14 states have “either notified the federal government that they will no longer be requesting [sex education] funds or are not expected to apply,” because the Bush administration mandates abstinence-only lessons in public schools receiving the funding.

“We’re concerned about this,” said Stan Koutstaal of the Department of Health and Human Services, which runs the program. “My greatest concern about states dropping out is that these are valuable services and programs. It’s the youths in these states who are missing out.”

Actually, that’s backwards. The youths are better off with actual sex-ed.

Teenagers who have had formal sex education are far more likely to put off having sex, contradicting earlier studies on the effectiveness of such programs, U.S. researchers said on Wednesday.

They found teenage boys who had sex education in school were 71 percent less likely to have intercourse before age 15, and teen girls who had sex education were 59 percent less likely to have sex before age 15.

Sex education also increased the likelihood that teen boys would use contraceptives the first time they had sex, according to the study by researchers at the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, which was published in the Journal of Adolescent Health.

“Sex education seems to be working,” Trisha Mueller, an epidemiologist with the CDC who led the study, said in a statement. “It seems to be especially effective for populations that are usually at high risk.”

Whaddaya know; giving young people reliable, accurate information about sexual health leads to safer, more responsible behavior. Who would have guessed?

And on the flip side, we have the Bush administration’s approach.

Programs that focus exclusively on abstinence have not been shown to affect teenager sexual behavior, although they are eligible for tens of millions of dollars in federal grants, according to a study released by a nonpartisan group that seeks to reduce teen pregnancies.

“At present there does not exist any strong evidence that any abstinence program delays the initiation of sex, hastens the return to abstinence or reduces the number of sexual partners” among teenagers, the study concluded. […]

The study found that while abstinence-only efforts appear to have little positive impact, more comprehensive sex education programs were having “positive outcomes” including teenagers “delaying the initiation of sex, reducing the frequency of sex, reducing the number of sexual partners and increasing condom or contraceptive use.”

“Two-thirds of the 48 comprehensive programs that supported both abstinence and the use of condoms and contraceptives for sexually active teens had positive behavior effect,” said the report.

Bush has routinely talked, in other contexts, about funding “what works.” If only he meant it.

What age is old enough to have sex? When are we old enough to have babies? Is statutory rape a fair law? Is a 9th grade girl with a 19-year-old boyfriend different from two high school seniors, one at 17 and one 19? What about kids who come from countries where lots of people get married and have kids at 15 or 16?

I have 2 friends that have had babies in HS. One is 16 now and already has two kids and the other is 17. The 16-yr-old lives with her 22-yr-old boyfriend and the 17-yr-old is living with her mom and her sister and the baby. They’re both Christian (one is Catholic), and neither one is married. My friend who has two kids will probably drop out of school — she hardly comes now.

I don’t know if my friends chose to keep their babies instead of have an abortion or put the baby for adoption because they are Christian or if that is just what they chose. Being Christian didn’t stop them from having sex. And what passes for sex education in Texas did not keep them from having sex, but it may have kept them from using condoms.

Are these the kind of conversations America will have now that Jamie Lynn Spears is pregnant? Or will it all be about celebrity?

What is the “responsibility” that Nickelodeon is praising her for? Is that about her not having an abortion? Because getting pregnant at 16 is not very responsible.

Britney Spears’ baby sister is pregnant

Another Spears baby is reportedly on the way – and it’s not Britney’s.

Jamie Lynn Spears, the 16-year-old star of Nickelodeon’s “Zoey 101” and kid sister of Britney, told OK! magazine that she is pregnant and that the father is her boyfriend, Casey Aldridge.

“It was a shock for both of us, so unexpected,” said Spears, who is 12 weeks along.

After going to a doctor, she said, “I took two weeks to myself where I didn’t tell anybody.”

She broke the news to her mother, Lynne, just before Thanksgiving, the magazine reported.

“She was very upset,” Spears said, “because it wasn’t what she expected at all. A week after, she had time to cope with it and became very supportive.”

Lynne Spears, already grandmother to Britney’s two young sons, told the magazine: “I didn’t believe it, because Jamie Lynn’s always been so conscientious. She’s never late for her curfew. I was in shock. I mean, this is my 16-year-old baby.”

Jamie Lynn plans to raise the baby in her home state of Louisiana – “so it can have a normal family life,” she says.

Nickelodeon released a statement, saying in part: “We respect Jamie Lynn’s decision to take responsibility in this sensitive and personal situation.”

Dear Mr. Friedberg,

When I was in middle school, I knew three girls who had babies before we graduated. One has had a second baby already. By the time we graduated in 8th grade, many of us were 14 and a few were already 15. Two of the kids I know turned 16 the summer after 8th grade. And a lot of people had been having oral sex. Some had been having intercourse.

Did you read this, which was also in the Huffington Post?

“One in eight youth are sexually experienced, having engaged in intercourse, oral sex or both before the age of 14,” the Journal of Adolescent Health reported in 2006. According to the Project Connect study, supported by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention:

* “9 percent reported ever having sexual intercourse…and 8 percent ever had oral sex (active or receptive).”

* “Of those who reported intercourse, 36 percent were age 11 or younger at first sex, 27 percent were 12, 28 percent were 13, and 9 percent were 14 or older.”

* “Alarmingly, 43 percent of sexually experienced participants reported multiple sex partners.”

Here in Texas, most of our sex education at school is abstinence-only. They teach us about the existence of condoms and other birth control, but they don’t teach us how to use anything safely or where to get it. I don’t know how much birth control will make kids decide to have sex that didn’t have sex before, but I do know that it will make a lot of kids who are already having sex safer. And it will mean fewer abortions and fewer teen pregnancies and less AIDS and less STD’s. Which is more important?

—-Freckles

Malcolm Friedberg: Sex, Condoms in Schools

Eleven-year-olds shouldn’t be having sex.

A middle school in Maine is handing out condoms
. Middle school children are as young as 11 years old. Is it just me, or is 11 just a tad shy of an appropriate age for intercourse? I don’t think I had even made it to second base by then. In fact, I don’t even think most 11-year-old girls had a second base.

According to an op-ed in the New York Times Republicans in Congress are attempting to add $28M to the State Children’s Health Insurance bill that was vetoed by the president. The money goes specifically to teaching abstinence. The editorial states that studies show that abstinence doesn’t work, and abstinence programs teach false information.

Clearly, if kids are getting bad information, that issue needs to be addressed.

But the fundamental point remains: Isn’t handing out condoms encouraging 11-year-old kids to have sex?

In the Maine article, a supporter of the handing-out-condoms program states that society can’t rely on parents to protect their children. So, does that mean its now the State of Maine’s job to make decisions on the behalf of parents? And, even assuming Maine has the ability to make the “right” decision to protects kids (although I’m unsure how one could determine that), under what rationale is handing out condoms the best decision?

The government should not be the forum for imposing personal values, but aren’t there some lines we don’t want to cross?

Malcolm Friedberg is the author of Why We’ll Win, a set of books that explain the law behind hot-button social issues to laypeople.

I am nearly 16 years old. (November 1st is the big day!) School wants me to not have sex, my family wants me to not have sex. But how old were my parents when they started having sex? Seems like it matters, at least in England!

The Beat Goes On: Kids Start Sex at Same Age as Parents, Grandparents

Next time your parents tell you that you should wait to have sex, just show them this survey. According to a new report entitled Sexual Health in Canada, is that adolescent sexual practices have remained largely unchanged for decades. Linda Capperauld, executive director of the Canadian Federation for Sexual Health said that the survey shows that “Young people aren’t having sex any younger than their parents or grandparents.”

HEALTH: SEXUAL BEHAVIOUR

Youth start sex at same age as their parents, grandparents did

Practices unchanged in decades, report says

PUBLIC HEALTH REPORTER

The common media image of today’s youth is that they have, under a steady barrage of sexually charged images, become increasingly precocious – engaging in intercourse at a younger and younger age and with a dizzying array of partners.

But the reality, according to a new report entitled Sexual Health in Canada, is that adolescent sexual practices have remained largely unchanged for decades. “Young people aren’t having sex any younger than their parents or grandparents,” Linda Capperauld, executive director of the Canadian Federation for Sexual Health, said in an interview.

Nor – despite suggestive music videos, ready access to Internet porn and creeping hemlines – are more teens having sex.

Nationwide, only 28 per cent of adolescents age 15 to 17 report having had sex, a figure that rises to 65 per cent by age 18 to 19.

All told, the mean age for sexual intercourse is 16.5 years, about where it’s been since the sexual revolution that was launched by today’s baby boomers.

Despite the closing gender gap – equal numbers of boys and girls now say they have had sex – the primary reason for not having done so remains remarkably unchanged from previous generations: Most girls said they were not ready, while most boys reported a lack of opportunity. The No. 2 reason for both sexes is the same: “I haven’t met the right person.”

But when they do, teens are remarkably faithful. The number with a single sexual partner is on the rise.

more

Daisy, in the post below, seems surprised at how religiously biased and anti-scientific sex education has become. I live in Texas and I am still in HS, so it doesn’t surprise me at all. “Say no until you are married” is about half of what they tell us in school. But —– neither school nor the ad Daisy linked to mention religion as the reason.

My family tells me to wait, and I think it is important to wait —- not because God says it is wrong, but because the adults I trust tell me that I should learn to have a good relationship for a while before complicating things with sex.

Where the ad is wrong is in NOT telling kids (or parents) what we really need to know. Teach us the difference between love and pressure. Teach us how to protect our bodies if we do have sex. Teach us about diseases and how to prevent them. Teach us why we shouldn’t have 22 year old boyfriends when we’re 14. Teach us why we are not ready to have a baby at 15 or 16. Because there’s a chance, a pretty good chance that just telling us to wait won’t work for all that long.

If you have sex outside of a heterosexual Christian marriage, you will ruin your chances at education, family, and happiness.

 


Video from Feministing. Made for you by the federal government.

You know what this world needs more of, folks?

More disconnect between people and their bodies. We need more people alienated from their sexualities.

What do your kids need to hear?

Not, “Your body belongs to you.” Not, “Do what you want to do when you’re ready, safely.”

Oh no.

They need to hear what you want for them. What you want for their sex lives.

Because who is sex about? Is sex about you and your parter?

Christ no! Sex is about what the authorities dictate! Hello!

…Seriously, what the fuck kind of message is that? I am all for families communicating about sex; I am not for anyone trying to control what anyone else (minors included) does (consensually) with their own sex organs. It is psychic rape. And it doesn’t work. And it’s bullshit.

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