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September 01, 2008

Ummm...

People keep insisting that Sarah Palin's abstinence-only education policy is directly relevant to her daughter's pregnancy.

Um, kinda-sorta but not really. Her policy concerns what will be taught in schools, not what will be taught at home. It's quite possible that the Palins never had a frank discussion about sex and birth control with their daughter -- but we don't know that.

Most people who object to sex ed in schools aren't against sex education -- they just want to do it themselves, and are frankly suspicious (with some good reason) that government-school sex-ed teachers will be a bit more pro-sex and bit less pro-abstinence than they'd like.

Hey, my sex ed class was pretty racy and pretty pro-sex. The teacher was a normal female gym teacher type, by which I mean she was built like Fred "Hunter" Dryer and bought her shoes from the same place he did. I remember an awful lot of "information" about sex and not very much about restraint at all.

The teacher informed a girl who asked that because semen contained only citric acid and some protein, it wasn't bad for you. Just like orange juice. The implication being (though probably unintended) that it tasted just like orange juice, too, which was the thrust of the girl's question.

Um... I think she misled the girls on that one. She kinda of forgot to mention the presence of corposine and putrisine, two chemicals associated with human decomposition.

I guess the guys sort of appreciated that particular bit of misinformation. The girls... not so much.

We also learned the rhythm method could work, fairly successfully, if you did it right and were scrupulous about counting days. Uhhh... yeah. That's a big "if" and it's kinda bullshit anyway. A woman can get pregnant during her period, for crying out loud.

Kind of interesting, there, that I'm guessing the rhythm method had to be included in the curriculum because it's one of the few forms of birth control endorsed by the Catholic Church... Hey, man, that's bad advice, quite frankly, and with all due apologies to Catholic readers. At least if your primary concern is avoiding pregnancy.

But the point is this stuff is already politicized and distorted due to religious and moral sensitivities. And, in the case of the rhythm method, kind of in a really bad way. It would be far better to teach abstinence only, I think, as far as birth control, rather than teaching that a hard-to-follow and not-very-effective rhythm method plan might protect you. That's like giving a soldier defective armor-- he's in even more danger with the defective armor than without it, because if he didn't have any armor at all, he'd know to watch his ass all the more.)

Anyway, I don't think this was a bad woman or even a politically oriented one. I just think it's hard to be all judgmental n' shit with kids. It's not "cool." The kids snigger and roll their eyes. Easier to just sort of tell them everything's cool as long as you wear a condom.

No one wants to look like a schmuck in front of 30 people.

I don't think she was out of the ordinary. I think it's just what the job turns into, even if supposedly the curriculum calls for abstinence teaching as well.

At any rate, being suspicious of government-school health educators does not mean someone is actually anti-contraception, or anti-sexual education.

I think sex-ed in schools really is more effective as far as providing frank instruction in birth control. I'm guessing that many parents are uncomfortable with the whole discussion and, to the extent they do discuss birth control, do so vaguely and without much elaboration.

On the other hand, just like the immigration debate, the government could do an awful lot to build trust on the "enforcement" side of the issue. People just don't trust union-protected teachers to go out of their way and appear "uncool" and give real warnings of about the consequences of sexual activity. To wit, if you have sex enough times -- even around 30 -- then a cumulative 1% chance of getting pregnant each go adds up to a rather serious chance of becoming pregnant over the course of that activity. (Similar to the birthday paradox -- if you have 35 randomly selected people in a room, the odds are actually 50% there'll be two people with the same birthday.)

Nevermind the fact that kids -- and adults -- aren't always safe even when they're being "mostly safe."

I have to say on balance I side with the sex-ed side of things. But I sure do understand the resistance. Pretty much all I learned in sex-ed was that sex was pretty fucking awesome, the risks were negligible if I was "careful" (and honestly, what teenaged kid isn't careful about sex?), and that my girlfriend shouldn't fear oral sex any more than she feared Sunny Delight.


As a Commenter Suggests... This whole line of questioning, it seems to me, is offered by the left as a way of discussing Bristol Palin's pregnancy as often as possible under the guise of discussing a "legitimate public health issue."

But of course they just want to say Bristol Palin is knocked up six billion times. They know they can't do that without a pretext -- there would be backlash -- so the MSM plays the game of wanting to endlessly discuss abstinence only sex education.

An issue which wasn't really particularly important until Bristol Palin got pregnant, it seems.

So I guess I fell into the trap. But there's no avoiding it. The MSM is going to keep pushing this angle until they're reasonably sure that not a single "fundie" in America is unaware that Bristol Palin is preggers.

CNN: A full-court press on the Bristol Palin Preganancy Crisis, I'm told by jenjhis, with lots of concern over public health issues.

Let's just cut to the chase so we can move on to more important matters--

Hey, Xtianist Xtremists!!! Listen Up, You Cretins!!!

Bristol Palin is pregnant, man!!! Doesn't that just burn your toast?!! Doesn't that just scotch your rum?!!

Can you believe this slovenly trull? How can you even consider voting for Sarah Palin when she turned her own daughter into a Terminator-like Sex Machine?!!

The White House? Or the Bawdy House?!!? Think about it!

Jesus would not approve.

Okay, CNN? Have I adequately transmitted your message for you? Got that out of your system?

And More of This: Vid: Bennett angry at CNN; and a very uncharacteristically red-faced Bill Kristol really fucking angry at Mort Kondracke.

Who is a great guy. One of my favorites on Fox. I hope he'll ask himself if his sudden enthusiasm to discuss the Great National Bristol Palin Pregnancy Crisis is really animated by a passion for sex-education, or if it's partly animated by a desire to lash out at a woman he doesn't seem to like very much.



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posted by Ace at 08:58 PM

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