Making Sense Review pdf

Making Sense Review pdf - Wishing Teen Sex Away Abstinence...

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Wishing Teen Sex Away Abstinence must be key, but not at education's expense John Young Taverner teaches a college course in which one of the activities is to call up friends and ask what they believe abstinence means sexually. “It's amazing the number of different comments that come back,” he said. In our consumer-driven society, if big is in – SUVs, super-sized meals, deficits from here to Bangkok – our current governing clique believes firmly that less is more in at least one area. Taverner is the presenter at today's “Making Sense of Abstinence” program sponsored by Planned Parenthood at the Texas Life Annex. Its thrust is that conveying the importance of abstinence entails a lot more than scare tactics and reciting pledges. That would be in sex education. Less information means more virtue. Less information means less sexual activity. Or at least that's what the adherents of abstinence-only believe. And one of the key justifications for real sex education is that the use of contraception is a life skill whether or not one holds onto that abstinence pledge through those wedding vows. They have little evidence to back up their claims. But it suffices to say these days that what one believes always trumps what is. So among the bigger-is-better trends of recent years has been Republican Congresses spending more than $1 billion on “abstinence education.” Some of the themes of abstinence-only are legitimate and worth repeating – that no sex is the only true “safe sex,” and that pregnancy and STDs aren't the only stakes involved. I put the quotes there because what is portrayed as education is sometimes no more than an attempt at indoctrination that shows little traction among the indoctrinated. To proponents, getting teens to recite an abstinence-until-marriage pledge is the essence of the quest. But a Columbia University study of 20,000 teens who recited such a pledge found that though sex was delayed for many, 88 percent ultimately violated their pledges. And a frightfully low number used condoms or other forms of birth control. This is the bottom line that indicts the abstinence-only mind-set. Yes, we want to urge abstinence. It should be the essence of sex education. But that cannot be the end- of-conversation point, because it isn't. Of sex and ‘technical virgins' Bill Taverner, director of the Center for Family Life Education for Planned Parenthood of Greater Northern New Jersey, says he's seen too often where even young people who to take literally the abstinence message engage in risky behaviors when the hormones flow. That's where the teen term “technical virgin” comes from. A technical virgin is one who hasn't had sex as the textbook defines it, but may have engaged in oral sex or other activities that might expose him or her to sexually transmitted diseases, while retaining the virgin label. But taking a pledge also can be
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This note was uploaded on 05/05/2008 for the course BIOL 1010 taught by Professor Taverner during the Spring '08 term at Fairleigh Dickinson.

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Making Sense Review pdf - Wishing Teen Sex Away Abstinence...

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