Remember Derek The Abstinence Clown?
Derek Dye is a trained clown who is paid by taxpayer-funded
abstinence-only groups to go into middle school classrooms and juggle,
telling kids that having sex with condoms is like juggling machetes and
pre-marital sex will destroy all of your life’s dreams.
Well, meet Keith Deltano: America’s new Abstinence Clown.
Deltano is a “comedian” who is paid by abstinence-only programs to
perform for students all over the country. And what does this
“performance” consist of? Take a look:
That’s right, as you can see at 1:00 into the video above, he tells
(and shows) kids that if you use a condom, there is a 30% chance that
your genitals will virtually be smashed by a cinder block wielding
This is sex education? Further, this is sex education that our tax dollars should go to?
has documented, Deltano’s performances are full of messages of fear and
shame, misleading statistics, and biased views of gender stereotypes
that aren’t doing students any good at all.
One of the most common themes among his performances is that students
are stupid fools who aren’t responsible enough to make their own
decisions. He commonly states "Talking about safe sex is like telling a
5-year-old not to eat any cookies", adding "here’s a jar, have a
napkin". In other words, young people are too stupid to learn about
safe sex without immediately thinking that they should have sex in
response to this.
Deltano also insults the intelligence of young women by discouraging
the use of birth control pills. He refers to oral contraception as "the
wheely thingy" and suggests that they are too complicated for young
women too use properly.
And then there is the distortion of facts about condoms that he uses to
discourage their use among students. He commonly says that condoms have
a 10-30% failure rate. What he fails to mention is that the CDC says
that when condoms are used correctly they are highly effective at
preventing HIV. The FDA also says that when condoms are used correctly,
they are 97% effective at preventing pregnancies. But Deltano has no
problem intentionally deceiving students on this matter.
Deltano also encourages the gender stereotypes of young women as
disinterested in sex and only caring about being married, and young men
as crazy, uncontrollable sex addicts. Women are always the passive
agents when it comes to sex. They are all characterized as
disinterested in sex, only wanting love and marriage. As Deltano says
after describing boys as dumb, uncontrollable sex addicts, "Girls, you
want a ring on your finger." Men, on the other hand, must prove their
manhood by "protecting girls from their (the men’s) sexual desires" and
not "meeting any of your own needs until you meet your family’s needs."
In other words, decisions on whether or not to have sex are exclusively
in the hands of men, who are then solely responsible for their family’s
needs. Young women are merely asexual passive beings who are supposed
to stay pure, with the help of "real men" who control their dirty
These fear and shame tactics, misleading statistics, and biased gender
roles are par for the course when it comes to
abstinence-only-until-marriage programs all over the country. These
programs have milked the federal government out of $1.5 billion
dollars, with no positive results to show for it.
President Obama is currently finalizing the details of his 2010 fiscal
budget, and he has a golden opportunity to strike a blow against these
harmful, ineffective programs by zeroing out their finding.
We are at a critical juncture in our goal of ending abstinence-only
funding. Please let Obama and Congress know that we can’t afford to
leave the sex education of young people in the hands of abstinence
clowns like Derek Dye and Keith Deltano. America’s youth need and deserve much better.