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Tilting at Windmills

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April 22, 2006
By: Kevin Drum

REVERSING THE SEXUAL REVOLUTION....Since 1996, thanks to the Republican addition of Section 912 to that year's welfare reform bill, the federal government has spent over a billion dollars funding "abstinence only" sex education programs for teens. Recently, however, the Bush administration rewrote the rules so that programs can only get funding if they promote avoidance of sex at any age until you're safely ensconced in a traditional marriage of one man and one woman. Via Dale Carpenter, Walter Olson complains:

Such language inadvertently makes clear, however, that the abstinence program has cut loose from whatever original public-health rationale it may have had, and is now about enforcing social conformity, not reducing risks of disease or out-of-wedlock pregnancy or empowering novices to make more considered decisions.

I just have to ask Walter a question: did he ever really believe that public health considerations were behind this in the first place? Did anyone? Seriously?

Kevin Drum 1:41 PM Permalink | Trackbacks | Comments (105)

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Comments

So when does the press start to ask the Bush twins, or Condi, or Ken Mehlman, etc. etc about how they're doing on their "abstinence only"?

Posted by: Robert Earle on April 22, 2006 at 1:44 PM | PERMALINK

It's ironic when you consider how hard this Republican Government has been trying to f**k everyone us, every day.

Posted by: Ten in Tenn on April 22, 2006 at 1:50 PM | PERMALINK

And I wonder how many of my fingers I would need to count the top Republican officials who have faithfully abided by that dictum. I suspect the need for toes would be out of the question.

Posted by: little ole jim from red country on April 22, 2006 at 1:51 PM | PERMALINK

Kevin, you failed to mention the part of the language that it probably most astonishing, namely its definition of sexual abstinence:

Abstinence means voluntarily choosing not to engage in sexual activity until marriage. Sexual activity refers to any type of genital contact or sexual stimulation between two persons including, but not limited to, sexual intercourse.

That is, no petting of any kind, not even, presumably, getting to second base, and, of course, regardless of your age.

Posted by: frankly0 on April 22, 2006 at 1:51 PM | PERMALINK

You could probably cound it on your antennae.

Posted by: jefff on April 22, 2006 at 1:52 PM | PERMALINK

The War on Drugs
The War on Sex
The War on Terraism

All cost huge amounts of money.
All based in fake moralism.
All fueled by ignorance.
All run by and for conservatives.

I really wish we could quarantine all conservatives on some island somewhere where they can endlessly make laws forbidding each other to do things, and bankrupting themselves in the process. And leave the rest of us alone.

Posted by: Alan on April 22, 2006 at 1:54 PM | PERMALINK

Lil Ole Jim ~ The Republican culture of corruption knows no bounds. Affairs, man-whores in the White House, long-time secret "love children". No, for some reason there is no shame in living 180 degrees from the soap-box bloviations.

Posted by: jcricket on April 22, 2006 at 2:00 PM | PERMALINK

All yuor vagina are belong to us!
GET THEE TO THE PURITY BALL!

Posted by: BushAdmin on April 22, 2006 at 2:01 PM | PERMALINK

Question: is it legal for teenagers to purchase condoms? Do vendors get prosecuted like they do for alcohol and cigarettes? I gots teenagers, I need to know.

Im just a poor ignorant fool who was educated way prior to 1996, so I wuz morally and culturally deprived/depraved. Still trying to catch up with my Republican betters.

Posted by: little ole jim from red country on April 22, 2006 at 2:03 PM | PERMALINK

George W. Bush should have practiced abstinence in 1971 when he impregnated 15 year-old Robin Lowman, then paid her to abort his love child. But of course, Bush is born again, so we just cant bring up anything in his past, can we? Unlike Bill Clinton, about whom every detail of his sex life, back to when he was a toddler is fair game for the right-wing controlled media

Posted by: Stephen Kriz on April 22, 2006 at 2:10 PM | PERMALINK

I hope these abstinence programs are required to have sections on Cold Showers, and Handling Blue Balls.

Posted by: frankly0 on April 22, 2006 at 2:17 PM | PERMALINK

With all due respect to my Republican betters, this reversal of the sexual revolution sounds a lot like trying to put the ___ back in the ___.

Posted by: MaryCh on April 22, 2006 at 2:19 PM | PERMALINK

Stephen Kriz: seems there are not enough non-right-wing billionaires. William Mellon Schaif would have investigated the hell out of an alleged Clinton assisted abortion. Same for whatever happened when Laura Bush killed via reckless driving. Was she drunk? Who knows? Never asked the question, not even the intrepid Barbara Walters.

Posted by: little ole jim from red country on April 22, 2006 at 2:22 PM | PERMALINK

Alan,

The War on Drugs
The War on Sex
The War on Terraism

["Terraism"? Is that Gaia-worship, or what?]

All cost huge amounts of money.
All based in fake moralism.
All fueled by ignorance.
All run by and for conservatives.

Alan, some explanation is in order here. If "The War on Sex" is "based in [sic] fake moralism," perhaps you would be kind enough to explain wherein the moralism is fake. Either the people promoting abstinence sincerely believe that sex outside of heterosexual marriage is wrong (in which case their "moralism" may be wildly mistaken, but is obviously genuine); or else they don't, in which case you really ought to come up with some more venal motive. Why do you suppose people have this crazy idea that sex should be bound up with long and lasting human ties? Obviously there must be money involved somewhere, because no one could ever connect things so disparate as sex and love and family otherwise. Right?

And assuming you mean by "Terraism" what I think you meant to type, if "killing thousands of random people to make a political statement is wrong" is "fake moralism," count me among the fake moralists, please.

Meanwhile, amongst the sane: Kevin, I think it's plain that "abstinence" is both about health and about "morals." At least, both motives are there, and often in the same people. If you want a starker example, consider the fight over bathhouses in the early days of AIDS. (I was in the Bay Area at the height of the AIDS epidemic, in the mid-to-late 80s, and this debate raged on and on.) Some people correctly concluded that anonymous, promiscuous sex was sending a lot of people to a particularly gruesome death. Some people also thought that anonymous, promiscuous sex was a pretty shitty substitute for what sex ought to be. Sometimes the same people argued both points. Why is this confusing?

Posted by: waterfowl on April 22, 2006 at 2:24 PM | PERMALINK

I really wish we could quarantine all conservatives on some island somewhere where they can endlessly make laws forbidding each other to do things, and bankrupting themselves in the process. And leave the rest of us alone.
Posted by: Alan on April 22, 2006 at 1:54 PM | PERMALINK

The Fletcher Memorial home for incurable tyrants and kings.

Posted by: osama_been_forgotten on April 22, 2006 at 2:32 PM | PERMALINK

If "The War on Sex" is "based in [sic] fake moralism," perhaps you would be kind enough to explain wherein the moralism is fake.

I should think that would be quite obvious to anyone who is able to see through the hypocrisy of right wing "moralizing" being passed off as "morals".

Posted by: Joshua Norton on April 22, 2006 at 2:37 PM | PERMALINK

Abstinance keeps women from trading sex for security, one of the major causes of mental illness and depression.

Women need to trade sex for pleasure, or for making famies. They need to understand that financial security has nothing to do with some dumbshit, uneducated, jealous momma's boy.

Posted by: Matt on April 22, 2006 at 2:37 PM | PERMALINK

And assuming you mean by "Terraism" what I think you meant to type, if "killing thousands of random people to make a political statement is wrong" is "fake moralism," count me among the fake moralists, please.

Yes! Invading a country and causing the deaths of tens of thousands of innocent civillians just to make the political statement that "America is tough" is not moral. Fake or otherwise.

Posted by: osama_been_forgotten on April 22, 2006 at 2:53 PM | PERMALINK

frankly0

"...sexual stimulation between TWO PERSONS including, but not limited to, sexual intercourse."

You forgot the key part of the definition, the fact that it specifies two people.

Hooray for group sex!

Posted by: Samba00 on April 22, 2006 at 2:55 PM | PERMALINK

I'll admit adoption is my personal soapbox, but aren't well-off right-wing whitefolks (i.e., pro-abstinence types) the same ones currently bitching about a "shortage" of healthy white infants available for adoption?

If you buy into the (Republican) party line and don't obtain birth control, but have sex anyway and get knocked up, shouldn't you suffer for your sin? And don't you owe it to some well-off, infertile couple you've never met to carry the zygote to term (because abortion is evil) so you can sell it to them, thereby saving it and you the horrible, horrible stigma of single/Welfare motherhood and bastardy?

Sheeee-it.

Private adoption is big business. Now that more and more "little sluts" feel free to keep their own children, the price of a healthy white newborn has escalated to tens of thousands of dollars. It was so much easier to adopt during the 50s and 60s when women and girls who broke the "abstinence only" rule were easily convinced to just shut up and hand over the kid because they felt they had done something horribly wrong.

Girls, if you must have sex, do it in all ignorance of your own body and its cycles! Be a brood sow for Jesus!

Posted by: Laurel on April 22, 2006 at 2:58 PM | PERMALINK

That is, no petting of any kind, not even, presumably, getting to second base, and, of course, regardless of your age.

This is presumably a response to the phenemonon of scads of good fundamentalist youth going crazy in the oral- and digital-sex department while proudly continuing to wave the banner of virginity. Seen the reports on the increase of STDs contracted through oral-genital contact? Apparently they've tracked a lot of that to the still-a-virgin crowd.

waterfowl:

Making no comment on the sustainability of Alan's argument re terrorism and morality: "terra" and "terraism" are now ubiquitous references, coined in mockery of the president's patent inability to pronounce the word "terror."

Posted by: shortstop on April 22, 2006 at 3:00 PM | PERMALINK

Good one, Shortstop!! Digital-sex is soooo much better when there's a "silver ring" attached to that "thing."

Posted by: Laurel on April 22, 2006 at 3:06 PM | PERMALINK

Good one, Shortstop!! Digital sex is soooo much better when there's a "silver ring" attached to that "thing."

Posted by: Laurel on April 22, 2006 at 3:07 PM | PERMALINK

Appy polly lodgies for the double post. Shucks, it isn't THAT much better.

Posted by: Laurel on April 22, 2006 at 3:09 PM | PERMALINK

Gee, can I get STDs through digital sex?

Well, at least if one of my fingers turns black and falls off, I've got 9 more.

And I can always turn to the toes!

Posted by: frankly0 on April 22, 2006 at 3:12 PM | PERMALINK

I just have to ask Walter a question: did he ever really believe that public health considerations were behind this in the first place? Did anyone? Seriously?

Teen pregnancy is a public health issue, right?

Posted by: Nicholas Beaudrot on April 22, 2006 at 3:35 PM | PERMALINK

Good one, Shortstop!! Digital sex is soooo much better when there's a "silver ring" attached to that "thing."

Digital sex? Whatever happened to good old analog sex?

Posted by: Stefan on April 22, 2006 at 3:46 PM | PERMALINK

This is presumably a response to the phenemonon of scads of good fundamentalist youth going crazy in the oral- and digital-sex department while proudly continuing to wave the banner of virginity. Seen the reports on the increase of STDs contracted through oral-genital contact? Apparently they've tracked a lot of that to the still-a-virgin crowd.

Not to mention the scads of good Christian girls who've discovered the joys of getting fucked in the ass, so they can have sex yet still maintain their technical status as a "virgin."

Posted by: Stefan on April 22, 2006 at 3:48 PM | PERMALINK

... enforcing social conformity...

Which, when practiced by the "left" is derided as "Political Correctness," or when it's really bad, "Political Correctness run amok." My, how those righties squeal when someone tries to steal their act!

Posted by: tom on April 22, 2006 at 3:49 PM | PERMALINK

Joshua Norton,

I should think that would be quite obvious to anyone who is able to see through the hypocrisy of right wing "moralizing" being passed off as "morals".

If you mean that there are a lot of right-wingers who don't practice what they preach, I agree with you. If you mean that the large fraction of the American public that thinks that ideally sex and marriage and family ought to be all part of one thing is "hypocritical" because there exist adultery and promiscuity and the like even among people who think these are sins, I don't. It's practically the definition of a Christian that s/he believes in a moral code, but can't live up to it.

o_b_f,

Yes! Invading a country and causing the deaths of tens of thousands of innocent civillians just to make the political statement that "America is tough" is not moral. Fake or otherwise.

Did you have in mind Afghanistan, or Iraq? Look, I'm not happy with the conflict in either country (who is?), but the idea that either war was just "we'll show 'em who's boss" is BS. At minimum you will have to fight this out with the "OOOOOIL!" folks, who certainly don't think this was "just" a "political statement." Whereas 9/11 makes sense only as a political statement. A rather short, if not sweet, one, running roughly, "We hate you, and we'll kill as many of you as we possibly can."

shortstop: Thanks for the clarification re "Terraism." Your idea of "ubiquity" is a little narrower than mine, because I'd never seen this before, and yet I read a fair amount. Are we talking Kos/Atrios/MoveOn ubiquity? That would explain it. I've been hanging out in all the wrong places, and didn't know that mocking regional pronunciation styles was the new "in thing." You might try looking into the insidious enunciation of Tony Blair. He pronounces consonants so that you can actually hear them. It's . . . it's downright UNAMERICAN. ;-)

Posted by: waterfowl on April 22, 2006 at 3:49 PM | PERMALINK

Hmmmm...

Maybe there is a silver lining in every prig's bonnet.

Think of it this way:

Abstinence means fewer consuming Americans, and that means the planet's ecosystems will be healthier.

Arguably, American abstinence is a good thing.

Suggestion: Environmentalists ought to start shouting side by side with the prigs about the joys of no America sex.

Lol.

Posted by: koreyel on April 22, 2006 at 3:51 PM | PERMALINK

Abstinence means fewer consuming Americans, and that means the planet's ecosystems will be healthier.

Sadly no.

Abstinence means more teens walking around not taking the pill, not carrying condoms. Human behavior being what it is; sex happens, whether they intend to have sex or not. Therefore, Abstinence means more unintended pregnancies and STD's.

Posted by: osama_been_forgotten on April 22, 2006 at 3:53 PM | PERMALINK

Abstinence-only sex education makes as much sense as abstinence-only driver's education:

Teacher: Kids, the only 100% effective way not to get into a car crash is not to drive. Just don't get behind that wheel, ever.

Student: What if wear a seat belt?

Teacher: Like I said, don't even get in the car. Just walk everyhwere, and you reduce your risk of a car crash to zero.

Student: But that's crazy. You and everyone else knows we're all going to drive someday. You're not even going to teach us how to do it safely? Isn't this supposed to be driver's ed?

Teacher: If I teach you how to drive safely, that will only put ideas in your head and encourage you to drive someday, and then you'll crash. Maybe not today, maybe not tomorrow, but you'll get in an accident someday, and you'll hate yourself for it the rest of your life....

Posted by: Stefan on April 22, 2006 at 3:54 PM | PERMALINK

Teen pregnancy is a public health issue, right?
Posted by: Nicholas Beaudrot

Correct. ... which is why ignorant and ineffective abstinance only programs are frowned upon by medical professionals.

... to say nothing of america's absolutely morally bankrupt stance on international AIDS help, condom education, and their efforts to limit sex-worker aid to abstinance-only Xtian fundamentalist propaganda. ... and their continued refusal to support HPV vaccinations.

... need I go on? these fuckers care not one whit about public health, which has metrics which can be quantified and specialists which can be consulted. they care about their immoral, anti-woman agenda, and not much else.

Posted by: Nads on April 22, 2006 at 3:54 PM | PERMALINK

waterfowl:

The morality is entirely sincere. I took Alan's post to be the usual hyperbolic and metaporic rhetoric, and it worked fine for me on that level.

The deal is that public health issues are always judged in instrumental terms. Public health policy inevitably revolves around a greatest-good-for-the-greatest-number calculus.

So it's fine to say that everybody should take a shower every day and avoid eating unwashed vegetables, etc. You might even have an education program to get people to do that.

But at the end of the day, you have to deal with the way people actually behave. And radical chastity until marriage is simply an unrealistic behavior for the vast majority of people.

Because the morality of chaste behavior is unattainable, you then design public health alternatives that take that behvior into account (safe sex campaigns). Where the moral hypocrisy comes from is in using shame as a tool against the unchaste, to "save" the much smaller number of chaste.

That's what makes an abstinence-only public health policy immoral. Shaming is an expression of malice, and malice is immoral.

Bob

Posted by: rmck1 on April 22, 2006 at 3:55 PM | PERMALINK

Waterfowl: "Some people correctly concluded that anonymous, promiscuous sex was sending a lot of people to a particularly gruesome death."

There are inherent risks, perhaps heightened by, but by no means exclusive to 'anonymous, promiscuous' sex. 'Gruesome death' is in no way inevitable if participants in any form of sexual activity have the instinct, knowledge and means to engage in safe sex. To deny sex education puts every sexual participant at risk, whether 'anonymous, promiscuous' or deeply monogomous.

"Some people also thought that anonymous, promiscuous sex was a pretty shitty substitute for what sex ought to be."

This is subjective, and hardly the basis for restricting the liberty of others to decide so for themselves.

Posted by: Chris on April 22, 2006 at 3:56 PM | PERMALINK

Teen pregnancy is a public health issue, right?

Can you name any other public health issue in which medical professionals think the answer is less education and less knowledge?

Posted by: Stefan on April 22, 2006 at 3:58 PM | PERMALINK

Did you have in mind Afghanistan, or Iraq? Look, I'm not happy with the conflict in either country (who is?), but the idea that either war was just "we'll show 'em who's boss" is BS.

No it isn't.

Posted by: osama_been_forgotten on April 22, 2006 at 3:58 PM | PERMALINK

Some people also thought that anonymous, promiscuous sex was a pretty shitty substitute for what sex ought to be.

Not if you do it right, it's not....

Posted by: Stefan on April 22, 2006 at 4:00 PM | PERMALINK

"Shaming is an expression of malice, and malice is immoral."

Damn Bob. You're as clever as my teenagers! You just can't shame people anymore.

Posted by: little ole jim from red country on April 22, 2006 at 4:00 PM | PERMALINK

Laurel,

Girls, if you must have sex, do it in all ignorance of your own body and its cycles! Be a brood sow for Jesus!

Right. Laurel, I think a girl capable of getting pregnant will have discovered the "cycles," and if you were to compare a woman on the Pill or using a condom/diaphragm/spermicide combo or whatever with a Catholic or Eastern Orthodox woman tracking her menstrual cycle daily, you might possibly discover which was the more "ignoran[t] of [her] own body and its cycles." I haven't tried the Catholic/Orthodox methods, for what it's worth, but an utter idiot can see that they involve more careful observation of the female reproductive cycle than do slapping on some latex or sticking something up your cervix or down your throat.

Posted by: waterfowl on April 22, 2006 at 4:01 PM | PERMALINK

"Some people correctly concluded that anonymous, promiscuous sex was sending a lot of people to a particularly gruesome death."

Hey, some people correctly concluded that invading Iraq was sending a lot of people to a particularly gruesome death, but somehow the Bush regime never seemed to listen to them.

Posted by: Stefan on April 22, 2006 at 4:03 PM | PERMALINK

waterfowl:

And as others have noted, the old dispensation created a lot of emotional misery for many people. Trading sex for security is no guarantee of either security or fulfilling sex with a lifelong love.

Don't forget that lifelong monogamy is a relatively recent cultural ideal, which arose with the industrial bourgeoiseie.

Bob

Posted by: rmck1 on April 22, 2006 at 4:03 PM | PERMALINK

I've asked a few questions about sex education at our public high school and, most definitely, "anonymous, promiscuous sex" is discouraged. I don't think we need help from Bush in that regard.

Posted by: little ole jim from red country on April 22, 2006 at 4:05 PM | PERMALINK

I look forward to the NRA introducing its new abstinence-only gun safety classes....

Posted by: Stefan on April 22, 2006 at 4:05 PM | PERMALINK

waterfowl:

Forget cycles. How about total ignorance of the function and (for men) even the existence of the clitoris.

Pretty goddamned commonplace before Alfred Kinsey.

Bob

Posted by: rmck1 on April 22, 2006 at 4:07 PM | PERMALINK

Stefan:

You're on a roll today, bro :)

Bob

Posted by: rmck1 on April 22, 2006 at 4:08 PM | PERMALINK

I haven't tried the Catholic/Orthodox methods, for what it's worth, but an utter idiot can see that they involve more careful observation of the female reproductive cycle than do slapping on some latex or sticking something up your cervix or down your throat.
Posted by: waterfowl

and even an utter idiot can tell the the latter methods worked better than the former.

Posted by: Nads on April 22, 2006 at 4:10 PM | PERMALINK

How about total ignorance of the function and (for men) even the existence of the clitoris.

The what now? ;)

Posted by: Windhorse on April 22, 2006 at 4:10 PM | PERMALINK

Of course "abstinence education" is sold as a public health measure. There just isn't any evidence that it actually works as one.

Posted by: modus potus on April 22, 2006 at 4:12 PM | PERMALINK

Bob,

Don't forget that lifelong monogamy is a relatively recent cultural ideal, which arose with the industrial bourgeoiseie.

Right. That explains why Henry VIII (that noted industrial bourgeois) had such a devil of a time getting divorced. Funny, in general, that you'd put the ascendency of monogamy just when serial marriages (ended by divorce rather than widowhood) first became common.

Posted by: waterfowl on April 22, 2006 at 4:12 PM | PERMALINK

Windhorse:

A new brand of mouthnwash that reduces the sex drive in unmarried people :)

Bob

Posted by: rmck1 on April 22, 2006 at 4:16 PM | PERMALINK

Nads,

and even an utter idiot can tell the the latter methods (condoms, diaphragms, the Pill, IUDs) worked better than the former (NFP & relatives).

As you like. Just not having sex does better than either, and the only point of dispute there is whether some women are in a position to avoid having sex. There is rape; there is incest; there are subtler kinds of coercion.

Not having used NFP or its relatives, I don't know what its efficacy is, except in the anecdotal sense that a large number of women using such methods seem happy with them. But if the question is which approach makes women more aware of their cycles and more intimate with their own bodies, I think the answer is pretty damn obvious, and not in the favor of medicalized birth control.

Posted by: waterfowl on April 22, 2006 at 4:18 PM | PERMALINK

The fact the woman on the 'rhythmn method' is well-nigh certain to get pregnant due to the woeful inefficiency of that method practiced however so carefully relative to hormonal b/c seems to me to be pretty clear evidence that knowing is, indeed, only half the battle. The power to have control of your own body is the other half of that battle and that is also something the morally bankrupt morality police want to take from us.

Posted by: winna on April 22, 2006 at 4:19 PM | PERMALINK

serial marriages were common for men in the past because women so often died from complications related to pregnancy and childbirth.

Posted by: spacebaby on April 22, 2006 at 4:21 PM | PERMALINK

waterfowl:

But how much difficulty and social opproprobrium did the ol' pudgy, lute-playing (you know he wrote Greensleaves, right?) hock muncher have in attaining mistresses, eh?

Virtually none at all.

The Catholics might have made divorce verboten, but it had virtually no effect on the actual conduct of sexual relations, especially regarding the ol' Double Standard.

Bob

Posted by: rmck1 on April 22, 2006 at 4:22 PM | PERMALINK

Right. That explains why Henry VIII (that noted industrial bourgeois) had such a devil of a time getting divorced. Funny, in general, that you'd put the ascendency of monogamy just when serial marriages (ended by divorce rather than widowhood) first became common.

Nothing funny about it. The fact that divorce was unavailable meant that monogamy as an ideal was less valued, because it was of course unlikely that people would continue to have sex with just one person for the rest of their lives. Lots of men stayed married, but they availed themselves of affairs and of the countless prostitutes. (During the Victorian era in 1866 New York, for example, there were an estimated 20,000 prostitutes in the city -- equal to one-fortieth of the city's population).

It was precisely the rise of the divorce and the end of the idea of the lifelong marriage that gave rise to the monogamous ideal, since you were now expected to marry out of love and not out of economic and/or social or familial self-interest.

Posted by: Stefan on April 22, 2006 at 4:22 PM | PERMALINK

Bob,

I have always wondered why, many decades after the vaginal orgasm was proclaimed a myth, we have "The Vagina Monologues." Any guesses? Was it just something so petty as the idea of substituting "Vagina Day" for "Valentine's Day"?

Posted by: waterfowl on April 22, 2006 at 4:23 PM | PERMALINK

"I look forward to the NRA introducing its new abstinence-only gun safety classes...."

Yeah, their gonna call this class Avoiding The Cheney Syndrome"

Posted by: little ole jim from red country on April 22, 2006 at 4:27 PM | PERMALINK

Vaginal orgasms are so rare.

This gal I know, long time friends, but she has this two year jealous, momma's boy idiot, paranoid boyfriend, you guys know the type don't you? You know, you get a little on the second date, then when you pair up you have this fear that she will see another male twice! You whole relationship revolves around the guy having some arm ornament.

Anyway, this gal wants to pair up with me. What does that mean, I say? You know, get together, she puts the moves on. What is the deal, I say, my house is empty, your are my best freind, just grab an empty bedroom.

She persists, so, (she hooked a little in her younger days), so I say, if sex is all that important, let's you and I get a motel room and I will pay your for it, I say, I will buy one sex act.

We get to the motel room, I say, is anythng on the table? She says yes, I say, OK, let me see you masterbate. She would not do it explicitly, but she showed me all the moves up to, but not quite the orgasm. Said she wouldn't do that for her boyfriend, but she liked doing it for me.

Life is funny.

Her boyfriend as anti-Matt rules in their relationship. I kept asking why don't we go shopping, hang around? She never told me why, then I find out about the anti-matt rules from her friends, after two years!

Me, ever the clueless, I say, well lets not have sex, that is all he worries about. This gets me in big trouble with her.

I never got this, middle aged, no one is making new babies, the kids are teenagers, if you cannot trust your partner around the opposite sex, then you are fucked.

Really gals, get a fucking job.


Posted by: Matt on April 22, 2006 at 4:28 PM | PERMALINK

Win Dubya speaks on th' nuklar famly, y'all sh'd listen g'd! He hes uh moral-'ty a-gen-duh!

Just another instance of Bush and his incoherent values. In this case, ignore the constitution, forget state independence, disregard individual rights, refute any scientific research, trample over any diversity of views.

The moral order will be imposed by imperial command from the white palace.

Or y'all bern in hill, ya heer!

Posted by: notthere on April 22, 2006 at 4:28 PM | PERMALINK

opproprobrium = opprobrium. I think I'm going blind (well you know what *that* might mean, eh? :)

Serial marriages due to death in childbirth, yes.

That's why marrying for love -- which grew out of medieval courtly ideals -- rather than for more practical reason (family, property, etc.) didn't become a *common* cultural ideal until public health improved enough to equalize life expectancies in the mid 19th century.

Bob

Posted by: rmck1 on April 22, 2006 at 4:29 PM | PERMALINK

Matt you really need to post stuff like that on Penthouse forum. We don't whack off to Kevin Drum here.

Posted by: redacted on April 22, 2006 at 4:30 PM | PERMALINK

Don't know what the big issue is. Federal funding of programs have has social engineering strings tied to them for years. You just don't care about the ones that support your own views.

All that aside, on the subject of "reversing the sexual revolution:"

Look at the social statistics over the past forty years, especially for minorities, and tell me that throwing the nuclear family into the dumpster was a good thing.

The answers to many of our social and poverty issues are behavioral. Simply put: Stay in school, don't have children outside of marriage, don't marry as a teenager.

Behavioral approaches, as opposed to the culture of victimhood, are not popular in some circles.

Posted by: tbrosz on April 22, 2006 at 4:30 PM | PERMALINK

tbrosz: behavorial approaches, yes, but information about how to avoid pregnacy is good. Stay in school, don't have children ourside of marriage, don't marry as a teenager AND, for crying out loud, if you do have sex, here's what you need to know about protection.

Posted by: little ole jim from red country on April 22, 2006 at 4:36 PM | PERMALINK

tbrosz:

Save sex education *is* a behavioral approach (as opposed to a moral one).

Bob

Posted by: rmck1 on April 22, 2006 at 4:40 PM | PERMALINK

Behavioral approaches, as opposed to the culture of victimhood, are not popular in some circles.
Posted by: tbrosz

but the "behavioral approaches" you seem to be advocating deny education and reward ignorance. The CDC removed info about condom effectiveness, and also removed studies showing there was no increase in sexual activity among teenagers who had been taught about condoms.

people are dying for this ideology ... I have reason to hate it. ... and for someone who works with scientists, I'm constantly surprised how willing you are to ignore data. But then, repub hypocrisy doesn't surprise me, anymore.

Posted by: Nads on April 22, 2006 at 4:41 PM | PERMALINK

I come from the abstinence generation of the 50's. Yeah, right! We did wait a little longer but by college, we were either married (way too early but sex dragged us in) or participating in sexual expression (and feeling very guilty but not stopping us at all). We'd had no sex education from school or home and were definitely on our own (no pill) with pregnancy and sexually transmitted diseases. Most of us were not into multiple, multiple partners because of all of the above.

Seems to me abstinence is a silly concept but then so is " if it feels good, do it as early as possible". I'd like to see us drift back into a better balanced position of sexual expression in kids. Start later, enjoy sex with only those you really care about in a monogomous way, even though it may be serial and treat it, yourself and your partner special. Otherwise we are just animals in heat with no higher consciousness. That seems like bad Karma.

Posted by: Rain39 on April 22, 2006 at 4:44 PM | PERMALINK

Matt:

Have you ever read William T. Volmann?

waterfowl:

I dunno the Vagina Monologues, but I don't think there's all that much "petty" about the central idea. Surely you're not suggesting that it should have been called The Clitoris Monologues :)

I think one of the ideas is that since The Cock is such a huge component of cultural mythology, metaphor and iconography, that the V Monologues were just trying to do the same for female anatomy.

Although the clitoris technically *is* the analgous organ, the ol' birth canal is prolly more capable of (ahem) bearing the symbolic weight.

Bob

Posted by: rmck1 on April 22, 2006 at 4:46 PM | PERMALINK

I think Tbores is one of those lucky guys who had to 'save himself' until he was married. No wonder he's so bitter.

Posted by: Splish Splash on April 22, 2006 at 4:47 PM | PERMALINK

Bob:

"Have you ever read William T. Volmann?"

Thanks for the tip, always like new interesting authors.

Posted by: Matt on April 22, 2006 at 4:56 PM | PERMALINK

Well, just wait until I produce the hit play

The Testicle Diatribes

Posted by: Not Eve on April 22, 2006 at 5:01 PM | PERMALINK

The Testicle Diatribes

Funny stuff!

Posted by: Windhorse on April 22, 2006 at 5:08 PM | PERMALINK

What we know: kids who get abstinence-based sex ed put off having sex (ordinary Tab A-Slot B intercourse) for about 18 months, on average. I don't think this is a bad thing.

HOWEVER, when they do have sex, they are less likely to use condoms, and more likely to get STDs, compared to kids who get comprehensive sex ed. I think abstinence based sex ed f*cks with their heads in ways that may negate the value of putting off sex for 18 months.

And I am not even going to say *anything* about how a lot of abstinence-based sex ed programs are fronts for evangelical Christian organizations, or how gay kids are *completely* left out of the equation when they are told that the only "approved" sex happens in (heterosexual) marriage.

I just really do not understand why people are so uptight about their kids learning stuff.

Posted by: quietann on April 22, 2006 at 5:09 PM | PERMALINK

Or, for the middle-aged man, The Angina Monologues.

Posted by: Stefan on April 22, 2006 at 5:11 PM | PERMALINK

The answers to many of our social and poverty issues are behavioral. Simply put: Stay in school, don't have children outside of marriage, don't marry as a teenager.

And let's not forget some other rules. Simply put: don't go AWOL from your military commitments, don't drink and drive, don't lie the country into a war, don't piss away the surplus and then borrow the rest from Chinese Communist bankers, don't shoot old men in the face with a shotgun, don't betray national intelligence secrets to settle partisan political scores, take responsibility for your mistakes, etc.

Just a few simple rules that make life so much nicer for the rest of us. But then again Republicans usually reject these behavorial approaches in favor of their culture of victimhood.

Posted by: Stefan on April 22, 2006 at 5:16 PM | PERMALINK

For some of us, Stefan, we object to the notion of the federal government poking its nose into State matters - sex education should never be taught in school.

Posted by: Don P. on April 22, 2006 at 5:26 PM | PERMALINK

quietann:

I just really do not understand why people are so uptight about their kids learning stuff.

How about schools teach "safe-S&M" too? "Conscientious cannibalism"? Pretty soon I will find something even YOU would be uptight with kids learning in MANDATORY State schools.

Posted by: Don P. on April 22, 2006 at 5:33 PM | PERMALINK

Don P.:

Sex education should never be taught in school?

How about driver education?

Bob

Posted by: rmck1 on April 22, 2006 at 5:34 PM | PERMALINK

Hm. My posts don't usually draw that much reaction, so I guess I'll follow up. I hesitate because everything I have to write about this has been writ many times before.

The problem with the War on Drugs, and
The problem with the War on Sex, and
The problem with the War on TERROR (ok, "Terraism " isn't exactly the way they say it), and
The problem with the (undeclared and I forgot to mention) War on Homos,

is largely the same. They are vehicles for weak minded and scared people to get laws passed to stop OTHER people from doing things they don't like. You never hear people say "I want you to pass this law to stop me from doing something." They want to enforce their fake "morals" on everyone else.

You don't like drugs? Don't do them.

You don't like gay marriage? Well, don't marry someone of your own sex. Duh.

You don't think people should have sex except after marriage and only in the missionary position? OK, go for it. I'll do it my way you don't have to watch.

You don't like terrorists? Then stop making them. That is what Bush's "War On Terror" does, aside from making Halliburton really rich.

What is most immoral about all these "moral" jihads is that they don't even do what they putatively say they want to do. People still do drugs, have sex, and blow things up.

Name one War on Adjective-of-your-choice that has ever worked.

Posted by: Alan on April 22, 2006 at 6:22 PM | PERMALINK

With all the talk about abstince only education, can anyone tell me what it actually is? "If you don't do it, you won't get it" takes about ten minuytes. Maybe you can fill up an entire class period with gross slides of veneral diseases. Then what?
I've seen enough Dr. Phil to know that it might be possible to teach techniques to help young girls who don't want to have sex resist pressure, but if anyone has invented any techniques in the last, say, 3,000 years, to persuade horny, willing young men and women not to have sex, then this is news to me.
And to think that when I was a lad it was the conservatives who boasted about their sober, realistic take on human nature.

Posted by: C.J.Colucci on April 22, 2006 at 6:24 PM | PERMALINK

Why do conservatives find the act of physical love between a man and a woman to be pornographic, but not the act of killing innocent people?

What does it say about the psyche of conservatives that equate sex with evil, but do not see the evil in dropping nuclear weapons on innocent Iranian people?

Posted by: Stephen Kriz on April 22, 2006 at 6:26 PM | PERMALINK

For some of us, Stefan, we object to the notion of the federal government poking its nose into State matters - sex education should never be taught in school.
Posted by: Don P.

if religious fundamentalist wackjob parents did a better job educating their kids, it wouldn't have to be.

Posted by: Nads on April 22, 2006 at 6:45 PM | PERMALINK

You think abstinence education is creepy? Here's something from
the subculture from whence it came. I quote from a friend's email:

Have you guys heard about the Sexual Purity Ball
--http://digbysblog.blogspot.co 8587 -- the formal
event in which daughters gaze deeply into their fathers'
eyes and pledge that their sex parts are off-limits until
marriage? I didn't think it could get any creepier than that,
but then I found The Vision Forum's 2006 Father and Daughter
Retreat: http://www.visionforum4413434223272805

> Vision Forum's 2006 Father Daughter Retreat in Pine Mountain,
> Georgia ... This event drew more than 500 people at a cost of
> $595.00 for each father/daughter pair and $185 for each
> additional daughter. Daughters ranged in age from as young as
> 5 to women in their 20s.

> The father's most sacred duty is "[the daughter's] protection
> and preservation from childhood to virtuous womanhood ... he
> leads her, woos her, and wins her ... he seeks to raise her
> as an industrious, family-affirming, children-loving woman of
> God." The daughter in turn ideally "looks to her father as a
> as an industrious, family-affirming, children-loving woman of
> God." The daughter in turn ideally "looks to her father as a
> loving picture of leadership, of devotion, and of care."

> There [was] also a game in which the daughters were
> blindfolded to "see how well daughters could follow the voice
> command of their fathers in and around an obstacle course."

=-=-=-=-=-=-=

What ... no jumping for treats?

Bob

Posted by: rmck1 on April 22, 2006 at 6:46 PM | PERMALINK

franklyO: Gee, can I get STDs through digital sex?

Silly, that's why I said "oral-genital" ("Look, Mom! I'm still a virgin!") about the STD transmittal part.

Stefan: Digital sex? Whatever happened to good old analog sex?

The good news is that sex is not like clothes or haircuts...as new fashions in coming come in, the tried-and-true ones remain every bit as stylin'!

Stefan again: Not to mention the scads of good Christian girls who've discovered the joys of getting fucked in the ass, so they can have sex yet still maintain their technical status as a "virgin."

Yeah, I didn't mention that, but of course it's part of the same phenomenon to which I was referring.

waterfowl: I've been hanging out in all the wrong places, and didn't know that mocking regional pronunciation styles was the new "in thing." You might try looking into the insidious enunciation of Tony Blair. He pronounces consonants so that you can actually hear them. It's . . . it's downright UNAMERICAN. ;-)

Who said anything about regionalism? We're mocking George W. Bush (for more on this, see "nucular" and about half the words in any given speech). The reference to Tony Blair seems a little forced, doesn't it? You might just acknowledge you (oopsy) lectured someone over a joke you didn't get and be done with it, you know.

Wind: The what now? ;)

That made me laugh really hard.

Posted by: shortstop on April 22, 2006 at 6:51 PM | PERMALINK

Shit, mangled the quote. Again:

> Vision Forum's 2006 Father Daughter Retreat in Pine Mountain,
> Georgia ... This event drew more than 500 people at a cost of
>
> $595.00 for each father/daughter pair and $185 for each
> additional daughter. Daughters ranged in age from as young as
> 5 to women in their 20s.

> The father's most sacred duty is "[the daughter's] protection
> and preservation from childhood to virtuous womanhood ... he
> leads her, woos her, and wins her ... he seeks to raise her
> as an industrious, family-affirming, children-loving woman of
> God." The daughter in turn ideally "looks to her father as a
> loving picture of leadership, of devotion, and of care."

> There [was] also a game in which the daughters were
> blindfolded to "see how well daughters could follow the voice
> command of their fathers in and around an obstacle course."

Posted by: rmck1 on April 22, 2006 at 6:52 PM | PERMALINK

Stefan AGAIN: (During the Victorian era in 1866 New York, for example, there were an estimated 20,000 prostitutes in the city -- equal to one-fortieth of the city's population).

Someone's been reading my old grad advisor's books! Interesting, aren't they?

Posted by: shortstop on April 22, 2006 at 6:55 PM | PERMALINK

he seeks to raise her
> as an industrious, family-affirming, children-loving woman of
> God."

hm. Sounds like her husband will be working for my daughter. He'll have a secure future, because she'll always need her toilets cleaned.

Posted by: osama_been_forgotten on April 22, 2006 at 6:56 PM | PERMALINK

We don't whack off to Kevin Drum here.

Speak for yourself!

Posted by: Al, tbrosz, Charlie, Don P, BigRiver, Frequency Kenneth, Norman Rogers, Jay, conspiracy nut, et. al on April 22, 2006 at 6:57 PM | PERMALINK

Why do conservatives find the act of physical love between a man and a woman to be pornographic, but not the act of killing innocent people?
Posted by: Stephen Kriz on April 22, 2006 at 6:26 PM | PERMALINK

Oh, the images and news of killing people should always remain embargoed (ie. Pornographic). That's why they get rid of whistleblowers who try to tell the truth about what's happenening.


War on Drugs?
War on Terror?
War on Sex?

We should call it what it is.

Jihad on Drugs.
Jihad on Terror.
Jihad on Sex.

Dictated by Fatwahs from the American Taliban: James Dobson, Pat Robertson, George Bush, John McCain, and yes, you too, Joe Lieberman.

Posted by: osama_been_forgotten on April 22, 2006 at 7:02 PM | PERMALINK

Cause people with STDs don't get married?

Posted by: BS on April 22, 2006 at 7:33 PM | PERMALINK

I agree that preaching abstinence to a bunch of revved up teens is a bit of a pipe dream. But if it saves 0.00001% from getting HIV, it's still a good idea.

For the record, using contraception should also be advocated for teens.

I don't see this as a political issue. Contraception and abstinence are both good ideas, and should both be advocated.

Posted by: sportsfan79 on April 22, 2006 at 7:57 PM | PERMALINK

sportsfan79:

> I agree that preaching abstinence to a bunch of revved
> up teens is a bit of a pipe dream. But if it saves
> 0.00001% from getting HIV, it's still a good idea.

It doesn't. It, in fact, has a perverse effect. If it worked,
we wouldn't be having this discussion, because everybody opposes
not just STDs and unwanted pregnancies, but emotionally unhealthy
sexual attitudes, as well. It's not like the Sexual Revolution
as it was originally conceived didn't undergo a major backlash.

> For the record, using contraception
> should also be advocated for teens.

Ahh, but you see, it won't. That's the whole point. Abstinence
education is based precisely on the idea of withholding and/or
sharply (and inaccurately) critiquing those forms of protection,
because they believe that if they proactively teach them, it's
tantamount to advocacy, which undercuts the abstinence message.

You can't tell a kid "you can use a condom and your chances of
getting a STD and making a girl pregnant are sharply reduced"
while also telling them that they shouldn't have sex at all.

And since the morality argument doesn't ring true to teens (no
harm, no foul without bad consequences), they have to push the
scare tactics and exaggerate the threat to get the message across.

> I don't see this as a political issue.

Well then, you're not thinking about it deeply enough.

> Contraception and abstinence are both
> good ideas, and should both be advocated.

You can't abstain while using a condom.

Here's why this doesn't work: The abstinence message is not
about public health, it's about existential morality. Abstinence
educators believe that if they "save" a handful of teens from
engaging in immoral behavior (and that includes having sex
while avoiding bad consequences), then the far larger number
of students who will fall into bad sexual consequences through
not being taught how to proect themselves *doesn't matter*.
They, after all, had the same degree of moral agency and chose
not to exercise it, so it's approprate that they pay the piper.

This has exactly zero to do with effective public health policy.

Bob

Posted by: rmck1 on April 22, 2006 at 8:56 PM | PERMALINK

proect = protect

Posted by: rmck1 on April 22, 2006 at 8:59 PM | PERMALINK

jim:

tbrosz: behavorial approaches, yes, but information about how to avoid pregnacy is good. Stay in school, don't have children ourside of marriage, don't marry as a teenager AND, for crying out loud, if you do have sex, here's what you need to know about protection.

Works for me. Just remember that constantly emphasizing the latter while ignoring the former doesn't work well either.

Posted by: tbrosz on April 22, 2006 at 9:13 PM | PERMALINK

tbrosz:

Well, this is the straw man beloved of abstinence educators -- the idea that teaching about protection somehow nullifies any larger message about deferring gratification. As if teens need any sort of encouragement -- or as if romantic love respected that distinction.

If you start emphasizing the abstinence side, you become forced to radically deemphasize protection -- because if you wind up in a position to use it, you've failed by definition.

And a kid, confronted with this and honestly wrestling with it, tells the teacher but I'm weak ... I'm tempted ... my girlfriend wants it and we're in love, what do I do? ... the only possible answer the abstinance people can offer is to tell them to turn in some way to religion.

Pray. Ask God to help you.

There is simply no other alternative in that circumstance.

Bob

Posted by: rmck1 on April 22, 2006 at 9:25 PM | PERMALINK

Here's why this doesn't work: The abstinence message is not about public health, it's about existential morality. Abstinence educators believe that if they "save" a handful of teens from engaging in immoral behavior (and that includes having sex while avoiding bad consequences), then the far larger number
of students who will fall into bad sexual consequences through not being taught how to proect themselves *doesn't matter*.
They, after all, had the same degree of moral agency and chose not to exercise it, so it's approprate that they pay the piper.

========================================

rmck1:

As usual, you are too politically jaded to think clearly.

For only a moment, if you can look past the "Us" vs. "Them" mentality, you will see that abstinence is a good idea, and contraception is also a good idea. Most moderate parents understand this and teach this idea in essence.

It is no more correct for public school teachers to ask their third graders to draw posters about contraception (as in my niece's ultra-liberal school in Minneapolis), than it is for fundamentalists to teach abstinence only without discussing protection. Neither group is right, and both are damaging to kids, IMO.

As I said, people who actually have children know that both messages are important.

Posted by: sportsfan79 on April 22, 2006 at 10:49 PM | PERMALINK

Since the fall of Baghdad and the initiation of the rebuilding of Iraq, the company with close ties to Vice President Cheney, Halliburton, through subsidiary Kellog, Brown, & Root (KBR), has been awarded contracts worth in the range of $10 to $12 billion. Approximately twenty-five percent (25%) of this amount was awarded as a no-bid contract. The bulk of the remaining contracts were negotiated as cost-plus contracts which guarantees a profit margin regardless of strict and effective cost management and oversight. Halliburton has been under intense scrutiny and criticism for accounting errors and other questionable appropriation procedures. The government in 2004, under intense pressure from Halliburton critics, also withheld the payment of $186 million in payments for food services in 2004 after accusations that the company had billed more meals than actually provided. The company was also fined $7.5 million in 2004 by the Securities and Exchange Commission for failing to disclose a change in accounting practices. It was reported in January 2006 that Halliburton intends to sell a minority share in KBR through a stock IPO. News of the reported offering sent share prices up nearly 5 percent to slightly less than $80 dollars per share.

The program to rebuild Iraq has garnered extensive criticism from political opponents of the President and Vice President, but also from lesser sized contractors who felt shut out of the process. Iraqi contractors also voiced concerns. Local companies, with Iraqi employees in need of work after the fall of the Hussein regime, were often excluded from the contracting process, thereby limiting the amount of reconstruction funding available to actually impact and improve the devastated Iraqi economy. The administration has maintained that very few contractors were equipped to take on the significant tasks needed to rebuild Iraq. Further, they argued that KBR, by taking on the projects, was working under extreme conditions at great risk to their employees which warranted monetary consideration under the contracts. Consequently, the vast majority of contracts were awarded to KBR while most of the remaining awards went to a handful of large American companies.

During this same time frame the President announced a $15 billion dollar initiative over five years to combat HIV. The program has been slow to mobilize and received international criticism when far short of the expected first $3 billion was allocated during the first year. The administration defended the slow funding, contending that a network to provide services and distribute medications needed to be implemented before the money could be used effectively. Many in the HIV funding and services community disagreed with this assessment but, aside from criticism, little could be done to accelerate the administrations position. Funding has since accelerated in the subsequent years, albeit not to the levels anticipated when the program was announced, however the criticism has shifted to a new front. Critics now contend that the administrations focus on funding abstinence programs rather that condom usage, coupled with the preferential awarding of contracts to religious groups, has the potential to limit the effectiveness of the much needed resources.

An aggressive effort is underway to find new religious and church based partners that share the administrations message of abstinence. Awarding money to new groups with little AIDS experience has been met with skepticism by a number of the larger, secular, and more established providers. Currently, nearly a quarter of the funding is going to these smaller fledgling organizations and experts warn that their lack of AIDS experience and expertise may diminish the impact of long sought and much needed funding dollars. There are indications that the administration, rather than considering these concerns, intends to expand their directive. The New Partners Initiative has earmarked $200 million for church and community groups. Some of these groups have experience in Africa but not necessarily with HIV and others have no governmental grant history. While the results of this AIDS initiative remain inconclusive, its undeniably an important and significant effort in the fight against AIDS. Progress has been made and few would assert that the program is failing or will eventually fail. However, there are many AIDS experts who contend that the abstinence emphasis doesnt address the social and cultural realities of many of the regions receiving such assistance. This criticism is muted by the fact that any funding is seen as an improvement.

The rebuilding of Iraq and the Global HIV/AIDS Initiative offer two examples of the Bush administration that demonstrate the frustration many feel when trying to distinguish fact from fabrication. The discordance in the approach to these two issues leaves one questioning the motivations, intentions, and sincerity of an administration that likes to portray itself as steadfast in its principles. One program rewards experience and proven abilities; the other program discounts experience and ability. One program consolidates services in a few large corporations; the other program seeks numerous small service providers. Both programs appear to show favoritismone to well connected business associatesthe other to ideological partners.

The contradictions in the management of the rebuilding of Iraq and the Global HIV/AIDS Initiative are apparent and legitimate indictments of this administrations incongruent and inconsistent actions. However effective the data, it is an impotent weapon in the political battle to defeat this administration. Granted, the data tells a story and, at a minimum, points out the discrepancies in the oft spoken sound bites that have become the hallmark of this Presidency. From these examples, one can make the case for a number of conclusionsthis President demonstrates blatant cronyism, there is a predisposition to work with connected insiders and manipulate contracted arrangements, they are burgeoning theocrats who have blurred the lines between church and state, their actions are incompetent, bias is being institutionalized, their actions are corrupt. At the very least, something is wrong.

read more observations here:

www.thoughttheater.com

Posted by: Daniel DiRito on April 22, 2006 at 11:03 PM | PERMALINK

This advice is blatantly ridiculous for students who expect to enter the professional class and may delay marriage till 30 and over.

I don't think it's inflicted on students in the schools that send kids to the Ivies. Is it? Or do educators merely count on obsessive studying / extracurriculars to ensure the abstinence? The pre-professional high school junior has no free time in which to screw around.

I attended a private high school before the Imitation of Saint Anthony came down the pike, so I can't say, but I do know that my work-load and geekdom prevented me from screwing.

Posted by: sara on April 22, 2006 at 11:11 PM | PERMALINK

sportsfan:

> As usual, you are too politically jaded to think clearly.

"Politically jaded?" WTF could that even *mean* ...

> For only a moment, if you can look past the "Us" vs. "Them"
> mentality, you will see that abstinence is a good idea, and
> contraception is also a good idea. Most moderate parents
> understand this and teach this idea in essence.

Sure. It's precisely the message I got in health classes in
middle and high school in the early 70s. Nobody (save some
bizarre ultraliberal coven somewhere) teaches sex education
while neglecting to teach that abstinence makes the hard grow
fonder, as it were :) Just, you know, basic common sense.

> It is no more correct for public school teachers to ask
> their third graders to draw posters about contraception
> (as in my niece's ultra-liberal school in Minneapolis),

Surely I can't be all that jaded if my innocent eyes find
that one of the stranger things I've ever read on a blog ...

*imagining a seven-year-old's drawing of a condom*

And this, of course, is a big problem with the way the right
argues these issues. The norm shouldn't be judged by the absurd.

> than it is for fundamentalists to teach abstinence
> only without discussing protection. Neither group
> is right, and both are damaging to kids, IMO.

Well then, you simply don't understand the way abstinence
education is taught. You're recommending 70s-style
health ed -- when teachers were still old-school and
too embarrassed by the subject to ever advocate sex.

> As I said, people who actually have children

Ahhh ... nothing spells a secure position like argument ad hominem.

> know that both messages are important.

Have a peek at an abstinence curriculum and get back to us, k?

Bob

Posted by: rmck1 on April 22, 2006 at 11:17 PM | PERMALINK

"..abstinence is a good idea."

I am not sure about this. Strictly from a biological perspective, puberty means something, and the biological basis does not go away just because we would pretend it does.

Certainly, regular vaginal sex for post puberty adolescents makes no sense, for reason often stated. Masturbation in children, and under relaxed circumstances, nudity and petting is not all that bad.

The problem the morality freaks have is equating sex with the family unit, when in fact, it is mostly vaginal sex that drives the family unit. Vaginal sex is the final outcome of nesting behavior.

But when the morality freaks do not distiguish between family nesting and sexual play, then they cause the deranged teenager to participate in pseudo nesting when all the appropriate supporting functions are not there yet. This is a major cause of problems, pseudo marriages that have no future.

I mean, how many parents have had to deal with teenagers getting closely coupled and fucking up their future because these mis-informed teenagers think a relationship must simulate marriage?


Posted by: Matt on April 23, 2006 at 12:02 AM | PERMALINK


obf: Human behavior being what it is; sex happens, whether they intend to have sex or not. Therefore, Abstinence means more unintended pregnancies and STD's.

U.S. Reaches Record High Number of Out-of-Wedlock Births

Issue No.: 25
by: Bridget Maher

According to a new report from the National Center for Health Statistics, in 2004 the United States reached a record number of out-of-wedlock births (nearly 1.5 million babies), an increase of four percent from 2003.

In 2004, 35.7 percent of all births were to unwed mothers. Among women age 20-24, 55 percent of births were to unmarried women.


Posted by: thisspaceavailable on April 23, 2006 at 8:26 AM | PERMALINK

Had only Bush practised abstinence on the American public.

Posted by: stupid git on April 23, 2006 at 11:37 AM | PERMALINK

A PEEK INTO MR. PROON'S EIGHTH GRADE ABSTINENCE EDUCATION CLASS

*hand raised* "Yes Billy?"

"Mr. Proon, lately I've been having these dreams where I wake up, you know, and my ... *gulp* ... p-penis is all hard. Is that bad?"

"No, Billy, not at all. It's natural."

"Well, it's more than that, Mr. Proon."

"It's okay, Billy. You can tell us. Being honest about our feelings is important, and please don't feel embarrassed. That's why we have this class."

"Well ... last week I dreamed I was with a girl ... "

*gasps and knowing snickers*

"Yeah, I'll bet it was Michelle, huh."

"James, be quiet and let Billy talk."

"... and we ... well, it wasn't too clear, but remember when you showed us those diagrams? It was sort of like that, and then I felt, well, really really good. It was the best feeling I ever had in my life, in fact. And then I woke up and my underpants were wet with this gooey kind of stuff that felt like snot."

*class erupts into red-faced laughter*

"Class ... quiet down, that's enough. Well, Billy ... that's because it *was* snot."

*gasps*

"It was what's called a seminal discharge. And seminal fluid -- the stuff that carries the sperm that we talked about last week -- is primarily mucus, just like what comes out of your nose."

*more gasps, one girl is heard to exclaim "Ewwww!"

"That's right, girls. I'd think about that if I were you. Your natural revulsion is why we don't use seminal fluid for anything other than when a married man and his wife get pregnant."

"So that means that I ... b-blew my penis, like I'd blow my nose?"

*James laughs so hard he falls off his chair*

"James, I've had enough of your disruptiveness. One more outburst and you're going to the principal's office again. I wouldn't put it that way, Billy. But essentially ... yes. That's what happened."

"But I think the girl in the dream actually did it, or the thought of her doing it made it happen. B-blew my penis, that is."

*whole class in hysterics once again. Mr. Proon sternly raises his hand for silence*

"A-and we're not supposed to be doing those kinds of things until we're married, like you've always taught us. But in the dream I wanted to *so badly* ... and it felt *so good*. So I guess what I'm asking is ... are these feelings *wrong*, Mr. Proon?"

*long sigh from Mr. Proon. A knowing, kindly, fatherly look into Billy's eyes*

"No Billy ... what you had is called a nocturnal emission, or, more commonly, a wet dream. It's nature's way of announcing to the world that you're biologically ready to be a father. And because it's natural, it can't be wrong in itself. It's only wrong when we let these powerful feelings lead us into bad choices. But I wouldn't take it so seriously, Billy. We're not responsible for our feelings. Only our actions."

"So I can't get an STD?"

"No, Billy, having a wet dream won't give you an STD."

"Will my sister get pregnant if she empties the wastebasket and touches the Kleenex?"

*James mutters under his breath "Billy, you fucking doofus"*

"No, Billy. Your sister is a fine young woman and it was a pleasure to have taught her two years ago. Nothing bad will happen to you from a wet dream. In fact, it might help take the pressure off and make those powerful feelings less intense for a while."

*another hand shoots up*

"Yes, George?"

"Mr. Proon, not that I'd ever do anything like this myself, but I hear that it's common for boys our age to, you know, umm ...

*class looks expectantly at George, waiting for the punchline*

"... play with themselves."

*suppressed cynical snickering*

"You know ... to make what happened in Billy's dream happen while you're awake."

*Mr. Proon, uncomfortably* "Yes I know it's a common practice."

"Do you play with yourself, Mr. Proon?"

*class shrieks; Mr. Proon, with red-faced rigidity* "No. ... I ... am ... married."

*James, barely audible* "Yeah, and your wife's a friggin' cow*

(to be continued ... }

Bob

Posted by: rmck1 on April 23, 2006 at 2:57 PM | PERMALINK

THE NEXT PERIOD IN PROON'S ABSTINENCE EDUCATION CLASS

"Okay, ladies and gentlemen ... I'd like to clear up the
misunderstanding we had last period about, as you now know,
masturbation, before the fight broke out. It's very important
that you understand this properly, but at the same time know that
just because I teach abstinence -- deferred gratification, really
-- doesn't mean that I'm going to try to scare you or con you.

First off, it *is* a common practice. And yes, occasionally,
even I do it, truth be told. But very, very infrequently when
I've been separated for a while from my beloved wife and family."

*quiet murmurs*

"Now I'm here to tell you that the old wives' tales are not true.
Your grandparents might remember these things, especially those
from parochial schools. But no, masturbation won't make you go
blind, or grow hair on your palms, or stunt your growth, or even
take away your physical vigor anymore than making love with your
husband or wife would. It's only a biological process, after all.

But all this being said ... it's not a practice that I can seriously
recommend. President Clinton lost a surgeon general over that, and
times certainly have changed. You remember who she was ... anyone?"

"Dr. Jocelyn Elders."

"Very good, Michelle."

"And just because the scuffle broke out among the boys, and a boy
brought up the subject, and girls are quieter about these kind of
things, doesn't mean that you young ladies don't do it as often.

*wagging eyebrows, rolling eyes from the boys, feral glances
at the girls, who look away and down, some blushing fiercely*

"Now let me explain why we don't recommend this practice, or that
if you must indulge, you do it as infrequently as can be managed.

First off, while it's not directly physically addictive like
marijuana and cigarettes, it does bring about compulsive behavior.
The more you do it, the more you want to do it, kinda thing. And
since our goal is to keep you folks from making horrible, life-
wrecking choices before you're ready to settle down and make that
really special, lifetime committment, well then we don't believe
that torturing yourselves with willed sexual fantasies is helpful.

I see Billy is looking confused. Wet dreams excepted, young man.
Those are fantasies that you don't bring on, they just happen.

What we, as educators with your well-being uppermost in our minds,
recommend, is that you channel that energy into pursuits that are
more healthy and have positive outcomes. Sporting events. Outdoor
activities. Those of you who are religious, your church. Community
service. Visiting a hospital. Things that bring a smile to ..."

"Beating the snot out of some know-it-all punk"

"James, you were almost suspended last week. Enough!"

"Question ... yes, Elaine?"

"Mr. Proon, didn't you just say that, umm, doing it doesn't take
way your vigor?"

"That's right. It was a common belief in the
Victorian era that masturbation led to physical
dissipation, and science has disproved that."

"Well then, why do we need to 'channel' this energy, if the
energy stays the same? Wouldn't it be more like ... exercise
... where the more you did it, the more energy you developed?"

*loud murmuring, boys' heads flipping to the foxy, goth-y Elaine*

"Young lady, didn't the principal have a word with you yet about
that nose ring? *Ahem* ... I'm also your science teacher. Recall
your physics. Energy is neither created nor destroyed. We feel
that you're better off using your finite resources in a way that
doesn't cause you to lose yourself in yearning for the unattainable."

"But what about Elaine's question?" *science nerd Frank interjects*

"I think I answered it." *smugly*

"No sir, not about exercise. Maybe it's not exactly running
track and field, but isn't it a form of it? I mean, your heart
rate goes up and everything ... "

"You seem, as usual Mr. Phillips, to be excessively informed on
this subject. Yes, young man, it is, technically speaking, a
form of exercise, just as is vigorously making love to your
spouse. But so are the schoolyard depredations of James here ..."

*casting a withering scowl at the notorious class cutup and bully*

" ... and none of you -- I hope -- would dare call
beating up younger and weaker kids a healthy activity."

"Hey, old man ... "

"One more word, James, and I'll finally get to
pull the trigger on you. You know the agreement."

"Now as I was saying ... oh, yes, George?"

"Mr. Proon, can I ask you a personal question -- directly
pertaining to the class, I mean?"

*Proon surveys the room, proud of the way his honest but
firm answers and iron demeanor has kept discipline so far*

"Yes, go ahead, George. But I reserve
the right not to answer, of course."

"How often do you and your wife make love?"

BELL RINGS

"Class dismissed"

Bob

Posted by: rmck1 on April 23, 2006 at 7:11 PM | PERMALINK




 

 

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