It never seems to amaze me that the religious right in this country continues to use destructive practices when they try to engage teens in a discussion of sex education. Not only do they make themselves look like fools, but their abstinence games have never showed results and teenagers are the ones being hurt. When I think of abstinence only sex-ed, Bill Frist's name comes to mind because of his discussion with George Stephanopoulos about AIDS, sweat, tears and abstinence only, but it's 2014 and these morons think that telling teenage girls they will become dirty, filthy, stinking used up, unclean pieces of candy after they have sex is unconscionable.
Here's the great PZ Meyers:
Mssissippi has horrific rates of teen pregnancy and sexually transmitted diseases, so they’re slowly waking up and realizing that they have to have better sex education in the schools … and they’ve actually adopted a sex-ed curriculum in some of their school districts. Unfortunately, it’s not what most of us would consider goodeducation.
Marie Barnard was delighted when, after decades of silence on the topic, Mississippi passed a law requiring school districts to teach sex education. But the lesson involving the Peppermint Pattie wasn’t what she had in mind for her sons.The curricula adopted by the school district in Oxford called on students to unwrap a piece of chocolate, pass it around class and observe how dirty it became."They’re using the Peppermint Pattie to show that a girl is no longer clean or valuable after she’s had sex — that she’s been used," said Barnard, who works in public health. "That shouldn’t be the lesson we send kids about sex."
Unfortunately, the dirty scary chocolate trick still doesn’t work. The outcomes they want to prevent are actually being worsened by their evasive silly little abstinence-only games.
I'll say. Mississippi is one of the worst states to live in the United States for a reason:
> Well-being index score: 63.7
> Life expectancy: 75.0 years (the lowest)
> Percent obese: 35.4% (the highest)
> Median household income: $37,095 (the lowest)
> Percent with high school diploma: 82.3% (3rd lowest)↓ Story continues below ↓
Nowhere else in the U.S. did people feel as negative about their work environment as in Mississippi. But this was just one of the problems facing state residents. Respondents were among the most likely in the nation to lack access to basic necessities. More than a quarter of people surveyed in the state indicated they did not have money for food at some point in the previous 12 months, while nearly as many lacked money for health care. By a number of measures, the state was one of the absolute poorest in the nation. The median income in Mississippi was just $37,095 in 2012, lowest in the U.S. Also, 24.2% of people lived below the poverty line, more than in any other state. With limited access to basic needs and poor healthy behaviors, the state was among the worst in the nation in physical health assessments. Last year, no state had a higher obesity rate than Mississippi. In 2010, no state had a higher rate of death from heart disease or a lower life expectancy at birth than Mississippi.
Here's a thought. How about states take religion out of local policy and focus on what works best? That just might improve the well being of its constituents
PZ Myers continues:
So they have a new threat that they make:
Johnson thought he had made a good case for contraception education when he shared disturbing statistics: The local birthrate was 73 out of 1,000 females between 15 and 19; the national rate is 29.4 per 1,000.He encountered the usual gasps of shock when he revealed that the rate of chlamydia, at 1,346.8 per 100,000 people, was nearly double the rest of Mississippi, and approaching triple the U.S. rate. But later Johnson got a call from someone who had attended the board meeting — telling him that people who have sex before marriage don’t go to heaven. The board voted for abstinence-only.
Apparently, most of the state of Mississippi is damned to hell, so why is anyone paying attention to those sinners?
Luckily after Marie Bernard started complaining, things slowly changed. Sex education stumbles in Mississippi
The school district in Oxford also embraced abstinence-only until Barnard and other mothers complained, speaking out so vocally that some kids in town began calling them the "sex moms."
Dora Chen, a former Oxford High School student now attending Princeton University, was editor of the school newspaper when it ran a story about sex education that featured a pregnant classmate. She endorsed abstinence-plus at the next school board meeting, facing a crowd of people she'd known since childhood.
"The majority of high school students in Mississippi have sex before they graduate," she said in an interview. "To me, if we just do abstinence-only, we're really sort of ignoring the large majority of students in Mississippi."
A month after its initial decision, the board decided to let students learn about contraceptives after all.
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