Thursday, May 7, 2009

SEE YA, Abstinence-only education

As broadsheet so perfectly put it: "Suck it, abstinence-only ed!"

From the Wall Street Journal:
President Barack Obama's 2010 budget eliminates most federal funding for abstinence-only sex-education programs and replaces it with a pair of new teen-pregnancy-prevention programs that could include discussions of birth control.

But like other proposed cuts in the budget, it isn't clear whether Congress will go along. Liberals have derided abstinence-only education as ineffective and even misleading, but the Democratic-controlled Congress has continued to fund the programs.

In total, the Obama budget proposes $164 million for teen-pregnancy prevention. Of that, about 25% would be open to abstinence-only programs, which would have to compete with other initiatives. The rest of the money is reserved for programs that have been proved "through rigorous evaluations" to be successful, the administration proposal says.

Let's just hope that abstinence-only programs don't even get that 25 percent.

Oh, what am I thinking--we should probably follow Bristol Palin's advice and just tell teens not to have sex. And we have to make sure they don't know how to use condoms. Hooray! Babies for everyone!

"Umm, I would have waited. To have sex. Obviously." --Bristol Palin

WOW! Thank you, Bristol! You're almost as smart as your mom! Jesus Christ. This is what happens when you don't tell kids about birth control.

Thank you, President Obama, for having common sense and cutting these programs. And one last "fuck yeah" for today: Hooray for Maine!


  1. I'm glad to see a shift away from a focus on abstinence-only programs, but I think an important component of teen pregnancy prevention programs should be focused on delaying the onset of sexual behavior. Research generally indicates that the longer kids wait to start having sex, the smarter they are about it when they do. Obviously, we should be teaching kids about birth control, but I worry sometimes that the lefty response to the blinkered thinking of abstinence-only programs is to think that we should just forget trying to keep teenagers from having sex until they are a little more mature.

  2. I absolutely agree. However, I think that the more you tell a hormone-charged teenager NOT to do something, the more they want to do it.Hence one of the many dangers of abstinence-only education. I think talking frankly with teenagers about birth control, pregnancy, and STDs is the only way to encourage them to make the best decisions. Ideally, that would be to wait until they're mature enough to handle sex and all its repercussions.

    So shifting to more comprehensive sex education, complete with information about STDs, and specifically, the fact that the earlier you have sex, the more likely you are to contract a strain of HPV, is the best way to push teenagers to make smarter decisions.

    Equally important, we need to make sure teenagers have easy access to condoms. If they're not going to wait to have sex, they at least need to feel comfortable getting condoms. And that they know how to use them!