Dispatches from the Creation Wars

Fed. Gov. Settles Abstinence Lawsuit

The Federal government has settled an ACLU lawsuit by prohibiting further support for the Silver Ring Thing abstinence-only sex education program until the program is changed to eliminate the overtly religious content of the course.

Under the deal, the Silver Ring Thing program won’t be eligible for more funding unless it ensures the money won’t be used for religious purposes.

“Public funds were being used to fund a road show, really, to convert teens to Christianity,” said Julie Sternberg, an ACLU attorney.

She said the ACLU supports the program’s right to offer religious content, but not with taxpayer money.

Abstinence-only sex ed needs to end completely. It’s a total failure that will only worsen the teen pregnancy problem in America. But I’m glad to see that at least the government now realizes it can’t fund sectarian sex ed programs.

Comments

  1. #1 Roman Werpachowski
    February 24, 2006

    Abstinency-only sex education is total BS, but maybe telling teenagers they don’t necessarily have to have sex when 15 is IMHO a good idea.

  2. #2 Ed Brayton
    February 24, 2006

    Roman wrote:

    Abstinency-only sex education is total BS, but maybe telling teenagers they don’t necessarily have to have sex when 15 is IMHO a good idea.

    I would certainly agree with that.

  3. #3 Roger Tang
    February 24, 2006

    Well, I do seem to recall studies that if you give teens the options about sexual behavior, from abstinence on down to condoms and more, you not only reduce teen pregnancy, but you reduce sexual behavior in general.

    Darned if I know what’s wrong with that….

  4. #4 Roman Werpachowski
    February 24, 2006

    Well, I do seem to recall studies that if you give teens the options about sexual behavior, from abstinence on down to condoms and more, you not only reduce teen pregnancy, but you reduce sexual behavior in general.

    Sure. The more they know, they more they get bored about the stuff ;-)

  5. #5 Ocellated
    February 24, 2006

    Teach sex ed! Tell the kids what abstinence is. Tell them that it works 100% of the time, guaranteed!

    And then tell them just the littliest bit of biology. Tell them how babies are made! How diseases are caught! How sexually active people can reduce risks of these things.

    Never in my life will I understand the logic of those that want to teach abstinence only. It seems as though they seem to think that kids who wish to wait for sex until marriage will suddenly book a room at the local Motel 6 under the name John Smith if someone tells them how a condom works.

    It’s truly bizzare logic. (In fact, I think they don’t believe their own position. Rather, they know it’s a position they can use effectively politically.)

  6. #6 Roman Werpachowski
    February 24, 2006

    Never in my life will I understand the logic of those that want to teach abstinence only. It seems as though they seem to think that kids who wish to wait for sex until marriage will suddenly book a room at the local Motel 6 under the name John Smith if someone tells them how a condom works.

    Of course. Most radical moralists have a concept that young people are beasts, which cannot control themselves and have to be bridled by the society. I could recall many examples of it.

  7. #7 Hume's Ghost
    February 24, 2006

    Thanks, I blogged about Silver Ring Thing a while ago but had forgotten about them. I’m of the mind that they should not receive funding regardless of whether or not they are religious because the program is ineffective. Worse than that, its probably actually harmful.

    See here
    http://dailydoubt.blogspot.com/2005/05/more-on-silver-ring-thing.html

  8. #8 raj
    February 25, 2006

    Aside from the fact that “abstinence only” sex education doesn’t really work very well–out of wedlock births are significantly higher in red regions, particularly the Bible Belt/American South, than in blue areas–it also leads to early marriages, before the couple are really ready for it. It is “abstinence until marriage,” of course. That in turn can explain why the divorce rate is higher in the Bible Belt/American South than in, say, Massachusetts. People in MA usually don’t marry until they are significantly older than people in the Bible Belt.

  9. #9 Roman Werpachowski
    February 25, 2006

    it also leads to early marriages, before the couple are really ready for it

    Hm. What do you think is the good age to get married?

  10. #10 raj
    February 25, 2006

    Roman Werpachowski | February 25, 2006 05:08 AM

    What do you think is the good age to get married?

    As far as I’m concerned, they can marry at whatever age they want to get married. People who get married at younger ages should, however, be forwarned that, from a statistical standpoint, people who get married at younger ages normally tend to be more likely to divorce, than people who wait until they’re older.

    As long as I’m not paying for what they do and at what age they do it, I don’t really give a tinker’s damn.

  11. #11 Pieter B
    February 26, 2006

    While agreeing with raj that it’s none of our business once people have reached that age of consent, the mid-twenties would be my recommendation for “marrying age.”