Monday, December 29, 2008

What Surprise?

An article in today's Washington Post by Rob Stein reports that virginity oaths, the new rage among adolescent evangelicals, has no impact on when teenagers decide to have sex. What it does impact is how prepared they are for sex.

Those who have pledged to remain virgins until marriage, often wearing a ring to symbolize their committment to god, enter sexual relations at the same rate as those who haven't.

Here's the damaging stat to watch: What they don't do is use condoms or contraceptives at the same rate as their peers.

The headline at huffpo misses the point: Surprise: Study Shows Virginity Pledges Have No Effect On Sexual Behavior. Yes, they do effect sexual behavior. Virginity pledges increase the risk of unwanted pregnancies, STDs and AIDS because adolescents are not taught how to have safe sex. The title should be: Abstinence teaching endangers lives.

Until we start renouncing abstinance teaching - not only in our schools but around the globe - individuals will continue to engage in sex but without the resources or knowledge to protect themselves.

If the right so desperately wants to reduce the number of abortions and AIDS infections around the world, they should pay attention to how best to do so: teach prevention, not abstinence.

Is an ideology worth putting our children at risk?



Anonymous SEO Birmingham said...

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January 24, 2011 at 6:48 PM  

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