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Sexualization of Children
a.k.a "Sex Education"

by Michael L. Gonzalez

September 27, 2000


Did you hear the news brief that has been making the rounds in the national media?  Most headlines read something like this "Parents want more sex education for their children."  I know what you're thinking:  gee, I don't know any parents who want to see kids getting a higher dose of what public schools are already forcing on kids in the way of sexualization. 

The news stories are saying that kids are learning enough about how the biology works, but that the kids need to hear more about how to use condoms, and this would include a dose of "education" every year of their school life, over and over and over again.  That's right, a further sexualization of the kids.  The sense of urgency, according to the report, is the escalating epidemic of sexually transmitted diseases (STDs). 

The New York Times covered this by printing an AP news story (the following are only excerpts):

Students Learn Of AIDS Threat
By THE ASSOCIATED PRESS
September 26, 2000

A survey of 1,501 students and their parents, plus 1,300 educators, found that students learn in school the "birds and bees" basics of how babies are conceived. Most also learn how sex partners can contract diseases. And --because of state policies -- many teachers stress abstinence as a way to prevent HIV/AIDS, other STDs and unplanned pregnancy. What's missing, say teachers, students and their parents, are lessons that would help young people avoid such situations in the first place.

Yes, you did read that correctly:  it says that kids are being taught abstinence, but what's missing are lessons to help the kids avoid the situations that lead to STDs.  Hello, isn't abstinence 100% effective at stopping STDs?

But the report, conducted by nonprofit health researchers at the Kaiser Family Foundation and released Tuesday, found that parents want their children to learn more about birth control and safe sex, more than their children reportedly learn.

Now reluctant school officials should be more willing to expand their programs, said Ramon Cortines, a former superintendent who now directs a school reform research project at Stanford University. 

"We tend to be responsive to the politics of rhetoric," he said. "We now have better information than who can yell the loudest." 

"Sex education is often debated at the political and advocacy kind of levels, but rarely does it get down to real world discussions," Tina Hoff, Kaiser's chief public health researcher. She said the study is meant to further research on the issue, not invoke changes in any particular state or school board's policies.

OK, time out!  Let's take a look at the source of this study, the Kaiser Family Foundation.

Click on the above and read for yourself just what this organization supports.  You will find that it's basically an organization bent on sexualizing children.  Take a look at any of the articles on their web site.  Read their complete report on this study/survey.

This organization berates the abstinence programs which are growing by leaps and bounds in public schools.  You can see the bias in this organization by noting the extreme effort they make to demonstrate that republican lawmakers pass legislation which provides financial incentives to public schools to teach abstinence programs.  They go on to attempt to demonstrate that the abstinence programs do not "work."

This is very ironic, of course, as it's very obvious that abstinence works to prevent transmission of STDs.  However, more importantly, abstinence works in another very crucial way that these organizations couldn't care less about:  long-lasting, satisfying marriages.

Continuing the above AP news story:

Another survey, released today by reproductive-rights advocates, said teachers in such classes [ones that include the abstinence message] are less likely to introduce information about obtaining birth control, as well as abortion and sexual orientation. The Alan Guttmacher Institute said according to its survey -- exclusively of teachers of these courses -- that one in four instructors say they are being told not to teach contraception and focus instead on the abstinence message. 

"Teachers are covering far less ... than they believe is needed," said institute president Sara Seims. "Abstinence messages are very important, but clearly the coverage of contraceptive topics is also crucial." 

The Guttmacher Institute receives most of its funding from large foundations, though a small amount comes from Planned Parenthood of America. 

HA!  It is to laugh!  When I performed at Internet Search on this Guttmacher Institute, look at the summary paragraph that was provided by Lycos (a popular, secular, search engine):

The Alan Guttmacher Institute.   Affiliate of pro-choice Planned Parenthood Federation of America.  Researches issues related to sexuality, reproduction, contraception, and abortion. Publishes a journal called Family Planning Perspectives. 

Isn't is just like the liberal media to print an obviously biased study and then present it as pure science, and they go to great lengths to say that it really isn't a part of Planned Parenthood (if you're not aware, Planned Parenthood clinics perform the vast majority of abortions in the U.S. and was founded by Margaret Sanger whose origins in abortion are a little scary).

Here are some of the headline articles on the home page of The Guttmacher Institute:

Trend Toward Abstinence-Only Sex Ed Means Many U.S. Teenagers Are Not Getting Vital Messages About Contraception (9/2000) 

Nine in 10 Religious Leaders in Jordan Believe That Family Planning Is in Accordance With Islam (9/2000) 

Shift Toward Safer, More Protective Sexual Behavior Among Teens Confirmed By Similar Findings In Four National Surveys (7/2000) 

More like this: Society/ Issues/ Abortion/ Pro-Choice/ Organizations

And here's their own summary of their purpose:

The Alan Guttmacher Institute is a nonprofit organization devoted to ensuring access to the information and services that individuals need to exercise their rights and responsibilities concerning sexual activity, reproduction and family formation. To achieve this goal, the Institute undertakes demographic research and publishes its own and others' scientifically collected data.

From USA Today:

Parents want specifics in teen sex ed
Sept. 26, 2000 
By Karen S. Peterson

Two reports out Wednesday consider one of the most sensitive issues in public schools: sex education. 

Parents are not shifting responsibility for sex education to schools, says Tina Hoff of the Kaiser Family Foundation, an independent national health care organization sponsoring the study of more than 4,000 public secondary school students and their parents, plus sex education teachers and principals. "I think these are issues that parents want to talk to kids about, and they want schools to reinforce what they say."

A majority of educators (61% of teachers, 58% of principals) say their schools teach a "comprehensive" approach, encouraging the young to wait to have sex but urging the use of contraception and safe-sex methods if they don't; one-third say their main message is abstinence only. But while many teachers say the main message is abstinence only, students don't agree: Only 18% say abstinence is stressed.

Parents' attitudes about abstinence-only teaching are similarly complex. Many of the same parents (33%) who want their children to be told to postpone sex until marriage also want them to be taught to use condoms and other forms of birth control.

Looks like Christians have a lot of work to do; we must convince parents that it is reasonable to present kids with an expectation that they can abstain--it is possible, and it is common.

The second report compares two studies, done about a decade apart, of sex ed teachers in public secondary schools. It finds that the abstinence-only message gained ground among sex ed teachers between 1988 (2%) and 1999 (23%). And while some topics--including the AIDS virus, abstinence, condom use and how to resist peer pressure to have sex--are taught earlier now, most are still taught less often and in later grades than teachers think they should be.

"Instruction in all grades is less likely to cover birth control, abortion and sexual orientation than in the 1980s," says David Landry of the study's sponsor, the Alan Guttmacher Institute, a non-profit organization focusing on reproductive research. One-third of teachers say they are careful of what they teach because of the possibility of negative community reaction.

The reports show "we have not gotten as far in sex education as the American public would like," says Tamara Kreinin of the Sexuality Information and Education Council of the United States. 

Oh, there's no question about how far we've gotten in sex education and as you can see from the statistics and the writings by these pro-abortion organizations, that the U.S. is moving more toward abstinence, and that is what really bothers these organizations.  They don't want to see a swing back to traditional Judeo-Christian moral standards, and abstinence is a flag that, as far as they're concerned, has the Bible emblazoned on it.

Yes! The Junior and Senior High Students Are Choosing The Most Excellent Way of Living The Majority!  As you can see from these interesting statistics from the U.S. Center for Disease Control, Surveillance Summaries, June 9, 2000

51.1% -- the majority -- of all students have not had sexual intercourse during their lifetime. 

Nationwide, only 8.3% of students had initiated sexual intercourse before age 13.  Overall, male students (12.2%) were significantly more likely than female students (4.4%) to have initiated sexual intercourse before age 13. 

Nationwide, 16.2% of all students that had sexual intercourse during their lifetime have had 4 or more sexual partners.  Male students (19.3%) were significantly more likely than female students (13.1%) to have have 4 or more sexual partners.

Nationwide, 61.7% of all students had been sexually abstinent during the three months preceding the survey.  Among students who had had sexual intercourse during their lifetime, 27.3% had been sexually abstinent during the three months preceding the survey.

Among currently sexually active students nationwide, 24.8% had used alcohol or drugs at last sexual intercourse. 

Society can do better than this, but certainly these figures don't paint the picture of the success of abstinence as grim as the sexualization advocates would show it.

The following is posted at the Family Research Council (excerpts below)

THE WHOLE STORY ON SEX
by Heather Farish 
February 1999

At a January symposium titled "European Approaches to Adolescent Sexual Behavior and Responsibility," in Washington, D.C., condom-tossers, sex experts and population control enthusiasts extolled the virtues of so-called "safe sex." Under the guise of making AIDS and teen pregnancy as rare as a live armadillo on a Texas highway, this conference, sponsored by Advocates for Youth (AFY), was nothing short of a condomfest. Claiming that France, Germany and the Netherlands -- countries noted for their liberal stance on sexuality have lower abortion, pregnancy, and sexually transmitted disease (STD) rates among teenagers than the United States, AFY suggests America become more like our European neighbors. After all, they say, these countries are proof that easy access to condoms and other birth control measures do not encourage promiscuity, but rather provide a "healthy perspective" on human sexuality.

Putting aside questions about the aforementioned countries' methods of acquiring data (the United States has a relatively sophisticated system in place), we should ask ourselves if we really want to become more European. Going the way of the Dutch, for example, means legalized prostitution, pervasive pornography and a rise in pedophilia (some Dutch bookstores even have pedophilia sections). We are alarmingly shortsighted if we cannot see that an increase in sexual deviancy is linked to what these countries consider a "healthy perspective" on sex. If one-night stands or 13-year-olds having sex is okay -- as long as certain precautions are taken, of course --then what is wrong with using sex for money or even preying upon little children? Upon what basis can one call pedophilia out of bounds when the limits to the playing field are not clearly marked?

Encouragingly, it seems that more and more of America's teens and even young adults do not want to go European. In other words, they are choosing the only 100 percent reliable safe-sex method: abstinence until marriage. 

The freethinkers of the world can delude themselves into thinking that teens cannot rein in their hormones, but the reality is that the same teenagers who can control a two-ton vehicle can also control their bodies. Just look at the 500,000 teenagers who have signed "True Love Waits" cards, the young people who wear chastity rings, and the engaged couples who have vowed to save their first kiss for their wedding day.

These teens have seen what thirty years of "free love" has created. According to the Medical Institute for Sexual Health (MISH), approximately 12 million new cases of STDs occur annually, 3 million of them among teenagers. Each year, nearly one million teenagers become pregnant, about one-third of whom decide to abort their babies. More than 80 percent of mothers 17 years old or younger end up in poverty and reliant on welfare.

If the whole story were told, teens would hear about the ineffectiveness of condoms in protecting against AIDS (up to a 31 percent failure rate). Condoms are not fail-proof in preventing pregnancy, either. 

A 1993 Voter/Consumer Research poll of 1,000 adults found that the people most apt to report that they are satisfied with their current sex life are married individuals who "strongly" believe sex outside marriage is wrong.

Although abstinence is supposedly taught in public schools using federal dollars, any week-long course on the subject is diluted by sex-laden sitcoms, bed-hopping celebrities, and leaders who don't know the definition of sex. Abstinence programs are not failing teens; we are.

When will we realize that teens don't need more birth control options? They need family members, church leaders, teachers and friends encouraging them to respect their bodies and to demand the same respect from those with whom they interact. Communicating to teens that they deserve the best out of life will require more effort from us, but the rewards will be long-lasting. Perhaps they will even cause the French to envy us.

Many statistics are provided on the effectiveness of the sexualization advocates' methods of controlling STDs and pregnancy at the website of the following article from the Family Research Council.

THE DISASTROUS RESULTS OF CONDOM DISTRIBUTION PROGRAMS 
by John D. Hartigan 

The theory generally advanced to justify distributing condoms to teenagers is that this will protect them against pregnancy and HIV infection if they choose to be sexually active. However, study after study shows that this policy just doesn't work in practice. In real life, handing out condoms to teenagers is a prescription for disaster.

The main reason for this is that teenagers are simply too impulsive and undisciplined to use condoms with the rigorous care needed to avoid failure. A 1988 survey conducted in the United States revealed that more than 27 percent of all never-married, low-income teenage girls who depend on condoms for birth control become pregnant in their first year of condom use.

To make matters worse, supplying teenagers with condoms inevitably produces a marked increase in their sexual activity. For example, when San Francisco's Balboa High School started giving students coupons that they could exchange for condoms at a nearby city dispensary, the percentage of female students engaging in sexual [at the podium] intercourse jumped by one-fourth in just two years.

Similarly, a study of adolescents taking part in a three-year condom promotion experiment in Switzerland showed that the proportion of girls under the age of 17 engaging in sexual activity increased by almost two-thirds --from 36 to 57 percent.

. . . the time has come for educators and health officials to abandon their blind faith in condoms and face the fact that supplying youngsters with condoms does not reduce teenage pregnancies or HIV infections. On the contrary, all the available evidence shows that condom distribution will only worsen the consequences of teenagers' sexual activity. Clearly, another approach needs to be taken if our young people are going to be protected from the scourges of teen pregnancy, sexually-transmitted diseases, and HIV.

If you need some resources for abstinence programs, here are some good websites for Christian sex education for kids:

Teen Straight Talk

Sexual Purity, Premarital Sex and Abstinence

Conclusion

OK, so we see that there are a plethora of organizations that want to sexualize children.  A logical question is, What have they to gain by sexualizing children?  These organizations certainly appear to be altruistic and well-meaning in their motivations, so why do they want children to have sex before marriage, and at such young ages (puberty appears to be the target age).

I certainly don't have an absolute answer, but I could make a guess.  Let's look at the logic that would lead a person to want children to have sex:

1.  I have discarded the Judeo-Christian basis of morals, thus, it's not wrong to have sex outside of marriage (marriage is defined as a covenant relationship between one man and one woman in the presence of God).

2.  Sex is a natural urge that is difficult or impossible to control.

3.  The principle of freedom and personal autonomy demands that everyone has the right to have sex with anyone, at any time, at any age.

4.  I had/have sex outside of marriage, and I know I'm OK, so it must be OK, good, etc.

You might guess that I put the most significant reason last.  The first three reasons evolve out of a set of beliefs for standards, whereas the last one is a personal reason--a reason that a person will own for themselves.  We can easily refute the first reason as being inconsistent with our religion.  We can refute the second one by clearly distinguishing the difference between animals and humans, in that humans can control natural urges, otherwise there could never be any hope of a civil society.  We can refute the third one by the simple statement that even in a free society, there must be rules for living, and especially rules to protect the innocent children.

However, the fourth reason above as to why so many people want sex to be more free, and at any age, is quite different than the first three.  This fourth reason has an emotional basis, not a rational basis.  This fourth reason is a natural reaction to a feeling of guilt and shame.

When Christians can help a person understand that God forgives, and that Christ died for the sins of every one of us, and when the person confesses the sinful past, and repents, then this feeling of guilt and shame can be set aside, and no longer does the person have to justify past behavior and attempt to feel better by forcing that sinful behavior onto others.

With a faith in Jesus Christ, all of the reasons above for sexualizing children can be set aside.

 

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