Roundup: Teens Promise Not to Have Sex, Except When They Do


It’s Monday morning and the kids are back at school.  And what are they learning now?

If they’re in an abstinence only ed class, probably not very much.

Why, yes, it IS time for an Abstinence Only Roundup!

First off, a reminder from the New York Times about what we already know: abstinence only education just doesn’t work.

No doubt a number of factors contributed to the upticks, [in teen pregnancy] including,
for example, declining contraceptive use by teenagers. But the
[Guttmacher] institute also sees a link between the rise in the teenage pregnancy
and abortion rates and the Bush administration’s reliance on
abstinence-only sex education programs that bar teaching about
contraception. This is not an unreasonable inference.

The
study is timely. As part of the broader health care reform effort,
abstinence-only advocates are trying hard to restore financing for the
narrow, ineffective and fundamentally dishonest approach.

Seems pretty clear, right?  So of course, the Times had to come up with an outside op ed to counter it.  You know, because balance is way more important than facts.

The new numbers, declared the president of Planned Parenthood, make it “crystal clear that abstinence-only sex education for teenagers does not work.”

In
reality, the numbers show no such thing. Abstinence financing increased
under Bush, but the federal government has been funneling money to
pro-chastity initiatives since early in Bill Clinton’s presidency. If
you blame abstinence programs for a year’s worth of bad news, you’d
also have to give them credit for more than a decade’s worth of
progress.

More likely, neither blame nor credit is appropriate.
The evidence suggests that many abstinence-only programs have little
impact on teenage sexual behavior, just as their critics long insisted.
But most sex education programs of any kind have an ambiguous effect,
at best, on whether and how teens have sex. The abstinence-based
courses that social conservatives champion produce unimpressive results
— but so do the contraceptive-oriented programs that liberals tend to
favor.

Got that?  Abstinence only education may not work, but since you haven’t proven to him that other sex-ed classes do, you should keep funding them anyway.  The fatal flaw in his argument being that if there was less abstinence only ed during Clinton and the numbers were down, than an increase in it during Bush and the numbers rose, then yes, you pretty much did prove right there what’s causing the problem.

Need a little more convincing that teaching about contraception is the best way to reduce teen pregnancy and STD infection rates? How about this: even the Mormons are doing it.

The irony behind a poll published Thursday in The Salt Lake Tribune is
that while most Mormons oppose teaching about contraception in their
schools, the population centers with the highest concentration of
members of the LDS Church lead the nation in accessing emergency
anti-pregnancy treatments. They also are among the leaders in STD
rates.

That is why conservative Mormon Sen. Stephen Urquhart, R-St.
George, is sponsoring a bill this session that would require school
districts to teach students in their sex education classes about
contraceptives.

"I was blown away when I learned of the infection rates (of
sexually transmitted diseases)," Urquhart told me in a recent
interview. "We have got to get a handle on this thing.

But if you really want to keep going with this abstinence only thing, you’ve got some really good ammunition to assist you in getting the message across these days — Bristol Palin and the Candies Foundation.

Candies wants to help fight teen pregnancy, but not in any way that
might actually, you know, work. Its whole strategy is to tell teens to
wait. Wear sexy clothes, but don’t have sex. Just don’t have sex. Its
page of “tips” are all about sex — not safe sex, mind, you, but how
most teens who end up pregnant hadn’t really considered the
consequences of sex. So, you see, just don’t do it, and then you won’t
have that problem.

Naturally, Bristol is the perfect spokesperson for this campaign.
Because even though she had sex, and we all know it, there’s no law
that says she can’t pretend she didn’t have sex and that her vows of
abstinence won’t be true in the future.

But one thing that will always help keep a teen safe is to augment any type of sex ed, be it full educational or just of the abstinence variety, is to talk to your children.  Advice columnist Carolyn Hax walks one parent through the process in her latest piece.

[E]xplain what it is about: making big decisions for the right reasons.

What society thinks isn’t relevant. What her friends do isn’t relevant.
(Though both have the power to make her miserable, if she’ll let them.)
Whether she’s ready to take responsibility for her sexual health is
relevant. (Can she remember to take medication regularly, or use a
barrier method correctly and/or in the heat of the moment?) Whether
she’s ready to raise a child, abort one or place one for adoption is
relevant, because birth control isn’t perfect. When you’re doing things
that will potentially create a life, your life has to be at a stage
where you can handle that responsibility.

 

Mini Roundup:  The Council of Catholic Advocates in Mexico argue that children raised by same sex couples cannot will be submitted to "psychological violence" and not be "fostered to their full potential," like they would be with no families at all, and in Nebraska, anti-abortion forces continue to rally for a ban on a procedure that hasn’t been performed in the state in a year. And if all of that doesn’t make you go "what?" then read a little about what doctors may be doing while you’re out cold — without your consent.

 

February 1, 2010

The Pro-Life
Assault on Ron Paul
Lew
Rockwell

Sidewalk
Counselors: The Front Lines of the
Pro-Life Movement (Part One)
Catholic Online

Debate
in America: Extremes and excesses
Seattle Post Intelligencer

Strategy
Shifts on Global Health
Wall Street Journal

The
adoption option
Washington
Post

Detained
Missionaries Call Incident a ‘Misunderstanding’
New York Times

 

January 31, 2010

Dangerous
generalizations about
pro-life protesters
Washington Post

White
House Aims to Broaden Approach to Global Health
Wall Street Journal

Obama
budget targets women amid complaints

Kansas City Star

A
Super Bowl ad we can do without
Los Angeles Times

Sen.-elect
Brown says he supports
abortion rights
Washington Post

Abortion
foes want to see…
Omaha
World-Herald

It’s
the Stupid Sex, Stupid
Daily Kos

Sex
Ed in Washington
New
York Times

Scott
Brown Says He Supports Abortion, Limits, and Opposes Health Care Bill
LifeNews.com

Carolyn
Hax offers advice on talking to a teenage daughter about sex
Washington Post

US
boy, girl arrested for ‘sexting’
Montreal Gazette

Editorial:
Jump in HIV cases deserves attention

Minneapolis Star Tribune

Bill
would open future Missouri
adoption records
Columbia Missourian

 

January 30, 2010

Same-sex
adoption
displays contempt for children, warns council
Catholic News Agency

A
Troubling Uptick
New
York Times

NARAL
Pro-Choice
America Statement on Jury’s Conviction of Scott Roeder
Common Dreams

Pro-choice
group promises to help teens obtain abortions in Mexico City
Catholic News Agency
If
"
Pro-Choice"
is "
Pro Choice,"
Why the Controversy over Tim Tebow Ad?

Opposing Views

Conviction
angers anti-
abortion
militants
Atlanta
Journal Constitution

Gay
Dating Ad Sacked before Super Bowl

CBS News

Rolly:
Sex ed,
birth control and
STD
Salt
Lake Tribune

Convention
touts personhood amendment
Billings Gazette

Health
care system costs not just dollars, but lives
Cumberland Times-News

A
Determined Quest to Bring Adoptive Ties to Foster Teenagers
New York Times

Children
kept in care to save
adoption cost
The Guardian

Haiti
quake orphans trapped by red tape
BBC News

 

January 29, 2010

Courtroom
Confession Rules Out Lesser Charge in
Abortion Doc Death
ABC News

Abortion
foes feel betrayed
Omaha
World-Herald

Jury
Considers if
Abortion
Slaying Was Murder
Wall
Street Journal

Guilty
verdict in slain Kansas
abortion doctor case
Reuters

Attacking
Pregnancy Centers:
Abortion Advocates Can’t Produce a Real
Scandal
LifeNews.com

Utah
House panel supports pre-
abortion ultrasound access
Salt Lake Tribune

Human
Rights Watch condemns Irish ban on
abortion
Catholic Culture

A
better choice for emergency
contraception?
The Guardian

‘Pharmacist
Conscience’ Bill Back in Idaho Legislature
New West

Emergency
contraception is
more varied than you might think
Los Angeles Times

Forced
Feedings At Your Local Catholic Hospital.
AlterNet

Op-Ed:
Pro-choice?
Stand up.
The
Stanford Daily

Pro-choice! An
embarrassment of musical riches in LA tonight
Los Angeles Times

FIRST-PERSON:
Pro-choice
groups aren’t
pro-choice
BP News

Roeder’s
Ex-Wife Applauds Guilty Verdict
fox4kc.com

Spirit
of hope pervades Boston
pro-life rally
The Pilot

New
Drug Ellaone Billed as Better Morning After Pill, But It Causes Abortions
LifeNews.com

Why
Is NOW So Afraid of a
Pro-Life, Pro-Family Ad?
FOXNews

The
real meaning of Tim Tebow’s
pro-life Super Bowl ad.
Slate

Pro-Life
Group: Scott Roeder Promoted Violence on Abortion, Not
Pro-Life
Ethic
LifeNews.com

Pro-life
group clarifies why it does not support referendum on abortion in Spain
Catholic News Agency

Illinois
Bishop Sartain: “To be Catholic Means to be
Pro-Life
Lifesite

Witless
for the defense
Augusta
Chronicle

Meet
the
pro-life
generation
Beliefnet.com

Reproductive
Rights Groups Beg Obama Not to Cut
Family Planning
U.S. News & World Report

What
Tim Tebow’s Super Bowl ad can teach the pro-choice movement
Washington Post

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