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Archive for Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Abstinence only’ policy doesn’t work

June 25, 2008

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So all we know for sure is that something happened in Gloucester, Mass.

What that something was depends on whom you believe. Last week, on its Web site, Time magazine quoted Gloucester High principal Joseph Sullivan as saying that, of 17 girls who became pregnant during the school year, nearly half did so as part of a "pact" to have and raise their babies together. Sue Todd, president of a group that runs a day care at the school, told Time she had heard a similar story from a social worker.

Officials reportedly became suspicious when an unusually high number of girls began showing up at the school clinic for pregnancy tests. Many who tested negative seemed crushed at the news. Those whose pregnancies were confirmed celebrated with high fives.

But on Monday, Gloucester Mayor Carolyn Kirk and school superintendent Christopher Farmer held a news conference to deny the supposed pact, saying there is no evidence any such agreement was ever made. Sullivan, according to Kirk, was "foggy in his memory."

The principal was not at the meeting to answer for his allegedly faulty memory - Kirk said she was not "comfortable" having him there - and has declined to comment about the matter since the Time report, as has Sue Todd.

Frankly, it sounds as if the mayor and the school's chief, faced with embarrassing international attention, are trying to cover their municipal backside by silencing and undermining the principal and the child care provider; it's hard to believe Kirk and Farmer would know more about what was going on in Joseph Sullivan's school than Joseph Sullivan did.

But the alleged pact is not what is most important here. These facts, after all, are not in dispute: 17 girls got pregnant; at least some of them did so on purpose; this represents more than a fourfold increase over the year before.

The Gloucester story unfolds in the context of troubling recent news about teen sexuality. In March, a federal study reported that one in four American girls between the ages of 14 and 19 - and nearly half of all African-American girls in that same age range - are infected with at least one of four sexually transmitted diseases: human papillomavirus, chlamydia, genital herpes and trichomoniasis. In June, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported that a steep decline in teen sexual activity through the 1990s leveled off between 2001 and 2007. And after years of decline, the teen birth rate rose by 3 percent between 2005 and 2006.

Some will seek to blame this disturbing news on "Juno" or Jamie Lynn Spears, but the trends predate both. They do not, however, predate the Bush administration's abstinence-only policy, which requires that any groups or states receiving federal funds for pregnancy prevention may not discuss contraception and must teach that sex outside marriage will lead to harmful psychological and physical effects. In other words, they cannot talk about sex or help children who do have sex to protect themselves. They can only tell them to say no.

Who can argue against saying no? What parent isn't pro abstinence? But abstinence only? Anyone who thinks a teenager will never do a thing because she has been forbidden has never met a teenager. Common sense - and a 2007 study by the National Campaign to Prevent Teen and Unplanned Pregnancy - tell us abstinence-only does not work. But since when does President Bush let common sense and fact trump ideology?

Gloucester, Mass., is an aberration, but it might be an omen, too. And if it is, if these troubling numbers prove the leading edge of a new teen baby boom, we will have to answer many tough questions, but one won't be tough at all.

We already know where it started. We already know who the father is.

Leonard Pitts Jr., winner of the 2004 Pulitzer Prize for commentary, is a columnist for the Miami Herald. He chats with readers from noon to 1 p.m. CDT each Wednesday on www.MiamiHerald.com.

Comments

ReadingSports 5 years, 9 months ago

More name calling... " stop being a fool."

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Agnostick 5 years, 9 months ago

[partial c/p from a posting of mine, in another thread]Abstinence needs to be part of the dialogue in public school health programs, from a purely secular, non-religious perspective. The spiritual and religious "benefits" of abstinence should be the focus of parents, and the family religious institution (church, mosque, temple, synagogue etc.). Now, you have a three-pronged assault, if you will-the kid's hearing about abstinence at home, at school, and at church. You've effectively tripled your chances that the message will get through.And what if it doesn't? Then let's have condoms discreetly available via the school nurse.For the so-called "pro-life" extremists, this is where the rubber hits the road (pun intended). The only kind of woman who seeks out the services of Dr. George Tiller, Planned Parenthood etc. is the woman with an unintended pregnancy. It's a scientific fact that women who are not pregnant, and women who want to be pregnant and want to give birth: typically don't seek out the services of an abortion provider.Reduce the number of unwanted pregnancies: and the number of abortions will go down. There is no other way.Abortion providers, first and foremost, are businesses. No business can survive without paying customers. Cut off the customer base, and the business will fold.Abstinence education is not an ironclad, guaranteed prevention method for 100% of the population-but it's a good start.Agnostickagnostick@excite.comhttp://www.uscentrist.orghttp://marciaford.blogspot.com

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Bubarubu 5 years, 9 months ago

"The definition of nilhism I used was a straight copy-paste from a dictionary.""Orthodox Christians, or Evangelical Christians, which meets my definition BTW. account for about 26 percent of the American population."If you get to define "Christian" to your own specifications, then don't complain when someone else seeks to define their own belief system. Alternatively, adopt a cut-and-paste definition of Christian (" one who professes belief in the teachings of Jesus Christ") and stop being a fool. Most people in this country are Christians. Whether they're Christian enough for you is immaterial.

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ReadingSports 5 years, 9 months ago

"It might be possible that you are not an hypocrite ReadingSports", Okay, maybe you didn't actually say "You're a hypocrite", but maybe the nuances are lost on me. Is it possible for a reasonable person to look at that and say you called me a hypocrite?The definition of nilhism I used was a straight copy-paste from a dictionary. Isn't this topic about a traditional value? Aren't many of you atheists rejecting that traditional value? Does that somewhat fit the definition that I pulled from the dictionary?

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supertrampofkansas 5 years, 9 months ago

"And once again you called me a hypocrite. Maybe you should look at your hand when pointing fingers." Please point to the offending comment in my post????Never called you a hypocrite.Never said that you said I couldn't hold an opinion (makes you kind of dizzy doesn't it) but as I said, when you "create" your own definitions (such as an apple is an orange) then don't be surprised when you are told that your definition is incorrect which is what happened. Don't believe me? Go back and look at your own posted definitions."And for rude and arrogant, look at what the atheists said in this thread. Where is your condemnation of that?"And this excuses your behavior because...?"Yes, let's have a good childish fight"Nah. Not interested.Have a great day ReadingSports.

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ReadingSports 5 years, 9 months ago

"Exactly and by trying to identify or label who exactly are the real "Christians" (in your opinion) does not give you indirect supporting data." Seriously, read the post that I was responding to. Someone said that Christians are criminals and have all the abortions in this country. I was discussing their contention. I did not claim that I had contravening evidence, merely pointing out the speciousness of their claims.Orthodox Christians, or Evangelical Christians, which meets my definition BTW. account for about 26 percent of the American population. Seriously, those of us that are Christians take significant portions of our time studying our faith, and what it requires. While I did have a qualifier, (I said that most atheists may not know the faith that well) and I frequently see atheists make wild accusations and misunderstanding what our faith requires. I did not say all. And for rude and arrogant, look at what the atheists said in this thread. Where is your condemnation of that? Maybe you should "...explore my own shortcomings..."I never said that you couldn't hold an opinion. I have an opinion about atheism, you have an opinion about me. I'm willing to discuss. But don't throw tomatoes, I've got them too. Yes, let's have a good childish fight, I'm up for it. Rather have a good discussion, but either way. As for being perfect or examining myself. I'm not and I do. And once again you called me a hypocrite. Maybe you should look at your hand when pointing fingers.

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Bubarubu 5 years, 9 months ago

To return to a much earlier post, I don't think anyone here has expressed any objection whatsoever to dialupandy's church (or anyone else's) teaching whatever they believe about sex and the moral guidelines behind such decisions as long as it doesn't violate the law (see the FLDS and sex with underage girls). That's not only legally protected, but it's a damn fine decision.The question is what do we teach when all of our kids are together in the schoolhouse? I want my kids to treat their partners with respect and love and to see sex as the natural, healthy, and most powerful physical expression of those emotions. I also recognize that they may not, or they may think they are. When they make the decision to have sex, I want it to be an informed decision. I want them to feel comfortable in and with their bodies. Teach whatever you want in your church, but don't condemn my kids to ignorance because you're afraid yours might learn something new.Short version: no one is saying that Sunday school should include sex ed, but there's a profound collective interest in making sure that Monday-Friday school does.

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supertrampofkansas 5 years, 9 months ago

Readingsports,I disagree with your comments that most Americans are not Christians. Most Americans "identify" themselves as Christian. Here is a link for supporting this contention: http://www.religioustolerance.org/chr_prac2.htmYou may have your own ideas about who actually are Christian but it doesn't change the fact that most Americans consider themselves Christian."I couldn't find directly supporting data, but here:" - ReadingsportsExactly and by trying to identify or label who exactly are the real "Christians" (in your opinion) does not give you indirect supporting data.You also claimed that it was your "opinion" that atheism is a form of nihlism. This is like saying that apples are form of oranges. You can have that "opinion" if you really want to but don't be surprised when someone tells you that apples are not oranges.And finally, to assert that "most" atheists don't really understand what the Christian faith is, or what it requires, makes you come across as being rude and arrogant. You are implying that someone must agree with you before accepting that they might have something credible, reasonable or justified to say on a subject. It might be possible that you are not an hypocrite ReadingSports, and maybe you actually have some justifications for saying that. However your comments show exactly the same judgemental behaviors you are criticizing. My beliefs might be different than yours Readingsports, but certainly I am not perfect nor do I know everything. I'm not afraid to explore my own shortcomings or learn something new.

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barrypenders 5 years, 9 months ago

"gayokay (Anonymous) says: Abstainence only is like telling a kid to not walk outside because walking outside is evil. Eventually, the kid isn't going to stand it and will walk outside and won't know to put on shoes to protect his/her feet from thorns, glass and dirty public bathroom floors. Then when they come home with injuries and disease you blame them for walking outside not yourself for not giving them shoes."How many kids do you have? You sound like someone that has had a lot of children to teach sex principles to.

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ReadingSports 5 years, 9 months ago

75x55 Thank you, that was well put...

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75x55 5 years, 9 months ago

ReadingSports - excellent observations. I might offer that too many Christians are indeed poor examples of disciples - most occasionally, and some chronically. That is the nature of 'the walk', which critics rarely understand. I think it was best stated very recently by a major opinion columnist as follows:"Christian churches have a lot of work to do in addressing biblical illiteracy, ignorance and, yes, heresy, in their midst. They might want to pay more attention to fixing what's gone wrong among their members before expending too much energy on politics and politicians."He's one of the LJW communities favorites, so I'll bet it will be easy to guess who said this...

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Multidisciplinary 5 years, 9 months ago

It's very easy to make this all go away.Everyone, repeat after me..."Mekka-lekka hi mekka hiney ho!" "Mekka-lekka hi mekka chahney ho!" "Mola-mekka chala mekka hola hayla hey!" Jambi solves everything.

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Andrew Stahmer 5 years, 9 months ago

I figured tonight I might as well get on here and read the 500 flaming responses. I was very pleasantly suprised. Not only were there no serious attacks, there were even several that defended what I had written. I thank you, and I appologize for underestimating many of you. My prejudice of LJW bloggers was proven wrong. (Until my next provocitave post.)

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ReadingSports 5 years, 9 months ago

...well established statistics on the U.S. population.Most Americans are Christians, and most Americans don't want to completely outlaw abortion. Okay a little math lesson here.. First you did say that atheists are better educated than Christians, hence my comment about "dumb-old-Christians" SEVERAL of the posts that both you and AA have made have come across as put downs of either dialupandy or myself. I have made some sarcastic, even bitting, comments in response, and I implied that atheism is a form of nihilism, which by the why is my opinion. But I will refrain from using that term in the future, because AA takes exception to that. Yes, I know that there are a lot of Christians that have trouble living out their faith. In all honesty, I personally do my best, but I am still a human being. I will defend the faith however. Now for the math lesson. Just because most Americans are Christian, and most Americans support abortion does not imply that most Christians support abortion, or that most abortions are had by Christians, or that most convicts are Christians. I would also say that most Americans are not Christian, but instead believe in a god, which is not the same thing. Okay, it was more of a logic lesson. I couldn't find directly supporting data, but here: http://www.gallup.com/poll/107458/Abortion-Issue-Laying-Low-2008-Campaign.aspx(I don't share your adversion to posting links. I like to find supporting documentation.)Conservatives are opposed to abortion 66 to 29 percent, and there is some correlation between Christian belief and Conservative political views. A personal observation is that some, not all, atheists like to play the hypocrite card against us Christians, even when we are actually living according to the dictates of our faith. I would assert that may be because we have violated the atheist's view of what we should be, not what Christ calls us to be. I was also assert that may be due to the fact that most atheists don't really understand what the Christian faith is, or what it requires.

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Strontius 5 years, 9 months ago

"Care to prove that little statement?Ah, Last time I checked, Christians were mostly, though not universally opposed to abortion. And the country's prisons are full of Christians?As for putting us into "neat little groups", of course you wouldn't because you're more educated than us dumb-ol-Christians."I don't really feel like going to the trouble of proving well known and well established statistics on the U.S. population. I'm not a fan of link posting in an online discussion thread. Most Americans are Christians, and most Americans don't want to completely outlaw abortion. Just do some google research looking at polling statistics and you can verify this for yourself. Actually, I wouldn't put Christians into neat little groups because I know that such neat little groups do not accurately portray the complexity of individuals. It has nothing to do with being more or less smart than someone, it simply has to do with being aware of the nature of human beings; something that one does not have to be limited to based on their religious belief or lack thereof. I've known and continue to know several very intelligent and thoughtful people who consider themselves Christians. The problem is, most Christians I've met openly violate the basic tenets of their religion and get mad when you make them aware of that fact. It's pretty clear that for most people who consider themselves Christians, the religion is there to make themselves feel better about their mortal lives, give them a ready-made purpose to fall back upon, and ultimately fill in gaps where modern technology and science don't have all the answers. I have a lot of respect for true believers who make every effort to live their lives by what they preach. I may fundamentally disagree with them, but they are sincere people. I have a hard time having respect for hypicrites, which I'm sad to say seems to be the majority of the Christians I've met throughout my life. And considering I'm a lifelong Kansan, I have a hard time imagining the situation being much better outside America's supposed heartland.

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ReadingSports 5 years, 9 months ago

Oh, and I'm not a religious crack-pot, I'm more of an earthen vessel. :-)

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ReadingSports 5 years, 9 months ago

(which you follow, ahem, religiously), You flatter me sir. Besides I follow Christ. The text is a sign to him, but I do fall short.

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ReadingSports 5 years, 9 months ago

dangerous is not equal to wrong. So is skydiving wrong? How about watching a 24-hour Barney marathon?So, then it is okay to have a different partner every weekend. (And for your information the Bible says that sex in the context of marriage is good.) Actually, quite good, but I digress.

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Clint Gentry 5 years, 9 months ago

It's dangerous to pass out every night due to alcohol consumption due to the ability of alcohol to cause brain damage with overuse. It's also dangerous because it impairs your ability to drive, (or walk for that matter) properly, increasing the likelihood of an accident. Sex is another story, if done properly, safely, and with consent of two adults, (unlike say a Mormon compound), there is no reason you can't have as much sex as you want. Sex isn't bad, it's good, it's only your ancient texts, (which you follow, ahem, religiously), that say otherwise.

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ReadingSports 5 years, 9 months ago

The prison system is full of christians, how do you refute it? not with any facts of course.You're the one making wild accusations, not me. BTW Christian is capitalized.

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ReadingSports 5 years, 9 months ago

Permit me to rephrase this:What reasoning can you apply that says it is wrong to get drunk as to pass out every Friday night! or bring home a different partner every weekend.Rationalize the statement, Please. I'm not saying that you do that, in fact you probably don't, but if you don't then justify your position. Isn't that an acceptable part of an atheist's complete and broad worldview?

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Clint Gentry 5 years, 9 months ago

"Christians were mostly, though not universally opposed to abortion" (Alert, alert, giggle-test failure.) The prison system is full of christians, how do you refute it? not with any facts of course...

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ReadingSports 5 years, 9 months ago

So KU is a Christian university?Wow, that's news.

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ReadingSports 5 years, 9 months ago

"Now if I ran into mr. dialupandy, would I harangue or belittle him?" You did belittle him, right here. I pointed it out in my last post. Where did I scapegoat the atheist? I criticized your philosphy, I did not say atheists were responsible."I guess because secular people are the least likely group to commit crimes, have abortions (It's mostly Christians who have them)," (Alert, alert, giggle-test failure.) Care to prove that little statement? Ah, Last time I checked, Christians were mostly, though not universally opposed to abortion. And the country's prisons are full of Christians? As for putting us into "neat little groups", of course you wouldn't because you're more educated than us dumb-ol-Christians.

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Strontius 5 years, 9 months ago

"What moral authority can you exercise to disagree with someone that gets so drunk they pass out every Friday night! or brings home a different partner every weekend."Well, it's not Jesus, God, or Christianity, because all those conservative Frat and Sorority kids do all of that on a regular basis, not just on weekends. When the majority of a religion's adherents openly flaunt the basic tenets of that religion, can you really claim that said religion's moral authority is, well, an authority? Personally, the respect I command by simply being a good, kind, and hard working person is more of an authority than anything else I've ever seen. What good is an authority that people openly flaunt or blow off because they think you're a religious crack pot?

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Strontius 5 years, 9 months ago

It's really sad that a discussion about how to best prevent teen pregnancy and reduce/eliminate STDs quickly turns into a game of "scapegoat the atheist". Is the abstinence only education position really so weak that it has to, once again, blame a minority group of people for a problem that largely affects the majority group? I guess because secular people are the least likely group to commit crimes, have abortions (It's mostly Christians who have them), experience unexpected pregnancies, and generally are the most educated group of a given population, we somehow deserve the scapegoating and stereotyping we get from the American public on a daily basis. And yet, secular people work hard to reach out to religious people and not stereotype them into neat little groups, which frankly, would be really easy from where I sit.

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Clint Gentry 5 years, 9 months ago

Existence is not senseless or useless, I don't know why you think that I think that, simply not true. You are confusing someone who sees no proof of "god", (atheist), with someone who thinks no belief is correct, (nihilist), this is your error. That being said, I do think a lot of "beliefs" are incorrect, here's a list...Water has turned to wine, a child has been born to a virgin, there are concubines in heaven, there is a heaven. If you can simply "make" yourself believe such clap-trap then what value is "belief", or (as ungrounded belief is called), "faith"? Now if I ran into mr. dialupandy, would I harangue or belittle him? No, he's a human on this earth deserving the respect of one, but does that make his ideas unassailable? No, and in a world being brought to it's knees by fundamentalist thought, (Bush, Radical Islam, radical Israel), when do we stand up and stop the irrational thought process of "faith"?

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ReadingSports 5 years, 9 months ago

This statement was condescending and arrogant. "I'm sorry you've decided to close yourself off form the world of others, (that being people that think differently from you). It isn't a very courageous move on your part, as it stifles learning, knowledge, and a general understanding of the human condition."and you continued your attack with "fit your narrow world view"And is quite typical, though not universal, of atheist views of any Christian that disagrees with them. My comments were intended to be over-the-top satire, not a personal attack on you, or is your worldview above critique? I will apologize that you took my comments as an insult. As an atheist, how can you say that my sarcastic suggestion was wrong. What moral authority can you exercise to disagree with someone that gets so drunk they pass out every Friday night! or brings home a different partner every weekend. From the dictionary nihilism is defined as: "1 a: a viewpoint that traditional values and beliefs are unfounded and that existence is senseless and useless b: a doctrine that denies any objective ground of truth and especially of moral truths."Have I been unfair to your philosophy in some way? If I have then I will apologize.

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Jason Bowers-Chaika 5 years, 9 months ago

Abstainence only is like telling a kid to not walk outside because walking outside is evil. Eventually, the kid isn't going to stand it and will walk outside and won't know to put on shoes to protect his/her feet from thorns, glass and dirty public bathroom floors. Then when they come home with injuries and disease you blame them for walking outside not yourself for not giving them shoes.www.KansasEqualityCoalition.org

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Clint Gentry 5 years, 9 months ago

"readingsports" - I am not a nihilist, please don't call me that, it's incorrect, it makes me wonder if you know what you are talking about. That being said, I've never told anyone to act immorally as you have stated above, another "inconvenient truth" you've chosen to ignore. Instead of attacking my points, (teaching abstinence doesn't work), you've slandered me and made things up to fit your narrow world view. Wonder why I don't like religion?...

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ReadingSports 5 years, 9 months ago

DialupAndy,AnxiousAtheist is quite correct. How dare you fail to listen to your intellectual superiors. You know that Christianity is the last retreat of small-minded primitive fools. Let nihilism be your amoral guide! Believe in nothing, it's the best way!How better to understand the fallen human condition, and display empathy, than to live for yourself. So have a beer! and a trashy blond! Preferably a surgically and chemically enhanced trashy blond.

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Clint Gentry 5 years, 9 months ago

Tthere is nothing to "teach" about abstinence, it is simply "not having sex". It's a 5 min lesson, how can you base your sex education on such little information. If you think your "teaching" anything about sex with an abstinence lesson, you're wrong. Sex education is about sex, not about "not-sex".

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denak 5 years, 9 months ago

diapluandy and bkgarner have a right to their opinions and it doesn't make them ignorant or stupid just because it does not jive with yours.I don't totally 100% agree with them but they have a point.Abstinence is a good thing. I don't think anyone would necessarily disagree with that. There are a lot of benefits to it.However, statistically, that isn't what is going on in our country. Some of our teenagers are having sex. Some aren't. Many more of our college students are having sex. And by the time one is 30, over 90% of the population is having sex. This could be inside marriage, which is good, but most is outside marriage. This can be good and bad.This is the reality. As such, it is the responsibility of both the parents and the schools to prepare our children for adulthood. Teaching a child about sex ed. is not the mark of an athiest. It is not bad parenting. it is smart parenting. Would you really send your child out in the world without any understanding of the importance of credit? Not handling your money correctly, screwing up your credit, has just as much of a negative impact on a person's life. So, why would you send your child out in the world, ignorant of something as important as their sexuality.Comprehensive sex should be taught. The child should be taught throughout his or her life in age appropriate ways. They should be taught their responsibilities, the emotional and financial sides of sex, sexual resproduction, sexual biology, disease prevention and yes, abstinence. What they chose to do with this information, is then in their hands. But living a child ignorant of that information leaves you with a child who is unprepare for life and in doing so, vulnerable to other's and to making bad choices.Dena

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Clint Gentry 5 years, 9 months ago

"dialupandy" - I'm sorry you've decided to close yourself off form the world of others, (that being people that think differently from you). It isn't a very courageous move on your part, as it stifles learning, knowledge, and a general understanding of the human condition. Your christianity isn't a shield, (or weapon), it is an excuse to not listen, plain and simple. Please bring viable points to this post as you will deemed incoherent and more likely ignorant of what is going on in the real world.

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absolutelyridiculous 5 years, 9 months ago

bkgarner...no blasts for you. You are 100% correct! Must be truth because you are in the minority...the litmus test for moral issues today.

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absolutelyridiculous 5 years, 9 months ago

The problem with abstinence is that no one has ever tried it. Scientific evidence would say that there is unsubstantiated evidence to make a conclusion. Abstinence is 100% effective in avoiding pregnancy and STD's. That HAS been scientifically proven. Let's give it a chance folks. STD's, pregnancy and having to carry the scares of abortion are all consequences for irresponsible actions for a few moments of pleasure...I believe that called hedonism. Good day to you all.

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terrapin2 5 years, 9 months ago

barrypenders- Everyone on both sides of the issue has said that abstinence is the best way to deal with teen pregnancy and STD's. Who is the anti-abstinence crowd anyway? Maybe anti-abstinence only sex education, but not anti-abstinence.

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Haiku_Cuckoo 5 years, 9 months ago

No surprise here. It was just a matter of time before someone blamed Bush for the situation in Gloucester.

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Brent Garner 5 years, 9 months ago

Nearly 20 years ago while in the USAF, the crew I was part of were deployed to a remote location. While there, one day, we got into a lengthy discussion regarding the then emerging problem of HIV. I tried to stay out of the conversation because I knew my viewpoint would not be accepted. Unfortunately, my silence drew the crew's attention to me and they insisted on knowing how I felt. I said, simply, abstinence before marriage, fidelity after, and this whole problem goes away in 20 years without massive government spending and taxes. I still maintain I was correct. But today, we want to create solutions to the problems people create for themselves and, as a consequence, of making some very very bad decisions. The problems of AIDS/HIV, teenage pregnancy, significant portions of poverty and crime would be solved without governmental intervention or funding if we simply obeyed an ancient concept contained in the notion that we should not be having sex outside of marriage and then only with the spouse to whom we are legally and lawfully wedded.Oh, and by the way, I obeyed that concept so it is possible. We don't have to behave like rutting animals!OK. Now blast away.

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i_tching 5 years, 9 months ago

Abstinence always eventually fails.

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ReadingSports 5 years, 9 months ago

Dialupandy, Gasp!!I bet you believe in Jesus, too! And a lot of bronze age stuff like loving your neighbor, carrying your cross. Stuff like that. Oooohhh, the shame, ooohh, the shame...

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justfornow 5 years, 9 months ago

I agree, we had a similar program 25 years ago when I was in school, I would have relations with a suitor if he held the door, took me to the movies, bought me flowers or pointed out how nice my dress looked. Heck sometimes I would have relations just for the fun of it. Some of us just like Relations.

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Andrew Stahmer 5 years, 9 months ago

I'm a member of a very fundimentalist, extremely conservative chruch--if we were inside the city limits of Lawrence you'd all come stone us. We teach our kids the importance of staying pure until the wedding night--no intimate contact at all. Probably something SRS would conisder 'child abuse' now. I think back and consider what my wedding night would have been like if I would have lived that way.I think this kind of thinking and living cannot -- will not -- does not exist outside of a Christian environment (and today it's even rare there). It cannot happen in an athiest one. In an atheist enviroment-what's the point of abstenence? There is none.It really doesn't matter if you ridicule me....

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barrypenders 5 years, 9 months ago

What type of people are pushing sex on our children anyway? If it were drugs that the boob tube and internet was pimping there would be quite an uproar. Don't you think?

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LadyWolf 5 years, 9 months ago

What jg said. Thank you. Is it possible that common sense, reality, and morals can all be useful in guiding our youth today? Quite a concept...I like it!

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Ray Parker 5 years, 9 months ago

Meanwhile, Planned Parenthood continues pushing condoms and contraceptives with known high failure rates at air-headed schoolchildren, reaping obscene profits when inevitably large numbers of the promiscuous ones turn up for devastating abortions and treatmentw for incurable venereal diseases.

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J Good Good 5 years, 9 months ago

Yep - ALL teenagers should absolutely be expected to have self-discipline at the most hormonal time of their lives when most of the media is beaming sex at them endlessly....Obviously that is working well for everyone.....Kids need facts to make good decisions. Abstinence is WAY the best choice, but not everyone is going to follow that, because young people make bad decisions sometimes. Birth control and STD information have to be part of the discussion. They need to hear it early and often, at home preferably (but we know that is not always going to happen). Young boys need a lot more guidance on being respectful of the young women in their lives than most receive too.

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barrypenders 5 years, 9 months ago

One actually has to have "self discipline" before you can teach "self-discipline" to your children.That's why the anti-abstinence crowd are the way they are. They don't have any self-discipline or self control.

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75x55 5 years, 9 months ago

barrypenders - are you suggesting (gasp) that if a few make mistakes, then we must assume that instilling any kind of moral decision-making ability in our children is futile? Ah, the horror, the tragedy, ... the startling amount of newly acquired free time. Where's that reading list at...?

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barrypenders 5 years, 9 months ago

Don't tell your kid to not have sex. It doesn't work. On top of that, don't tell them to not rob banks, or to accept homosexuals, or washing their hands after using the toilet, or to follow speed limits, or to not bully weaklings, or to stick their hands in flames, or to not.....

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Confrontation 5 years, 9 months ago

"But since when does President Bush let common sense and fact trump ideology?"Best part of the commentary.

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Phill_Davis 5 years, 9 months ago

He's not "Bush-bashing," he's citing national statistics to illustrate a policy failure. Better education will help to overcome problems with home life and self-image - it's not an either-or situation. Lack of comprehensive sex-ed has a lot to do with President Bush.

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Robert bickers 5 years, 9 months ago

Is it just me, or is Pitts stretching to fit in his Bush-bashing this week? Say what you will about the role of sex-ed in this event, but it boils down to home life and self-image - neither of which has anything to do with Mr. Bush.I spent several years teaching in a (public) school for pregnant / parenting teens in a district with comprehensive sex ed. I trust my own observations over those of Mr. Pitts.

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