Friday, May 23, 2008


Or: Why Abstinence-Only Sex Education is STUPID.

I heard a story on NPR recently about sex-ed and heard yet another person spouting off that teaching abstinence-only sex ed is the best and safest way to teach kids about sex and sexuality, and to keep them from engaging in risky behaviors. This is a bunch of horseshit. Let me explain via metaphor:

Let's say you take a 15 year old boy, otherwise known as a human vacuum, to a buffet, one with all sorts of awesome food all over the place and so many options the kid's eyes just kind of glow with excitement. Then you tell the kid, "So all of this looks awesome, but you should really just eat from the salad bar. It's definitely the healthiest for you, and all that other stuff, the fried chicken, the mashed potatoes, the steak, the soup, the sushi, all that stuff you'd really like to try, should really be saved for a special occasion." And the kid asks "So I can't eat any of this other stuff?" And you say, "Well, obviously, you can, it's there. But you shouldn't eat it. You should just have some salad."

So the kid rolls his eyes at you and comes back with ribs sandwiched between pizza topped with a brownie. And you say "But I told you you should just have the salad!" And the kid says "Yeah, but there was all this other stuff that looked really good." And you say "But it can kill you!" And the kid says, "Oh, please. I'm not going to have a heart attack or a stroke or anything like that. That crap's not a problem for me." And you say, "But you can have that stuff if you're smart about it! If you eat that stuff and salad and bread and fruit, you just need to use your head about it!" And the kid says, "So it's not about just eating salad forever, or only eating rib-pizza, it's about using good judgment?" And you say, "Yes!" And the kid says, "So why didn't you just say that?"

That's why abstinence-only sex ed is stupid.


Marc Fishman said...

An interesting take for sure. But now, I want rib-pizza. thanks.

Karyn said...

I think sex ed should be taught the way my dorm rules were given my first year of college.

No candles allowed, so blow 'em out before you leave your room.
No alcohol allowed, so hide it well in case of random inspection.
No people of opposite gender in your room after 10, so sneak 'em in early so no one will notice.
No sex in the rooms, so be sure to lock the door and have the radio on.

You know?

Don't have sex because there are a lot of consequences, so be sure to use a condom every time.