Tuesday, August 24, 2004

OP-ED Religious/Political Immorality

When I first started this blog I had no intention of dealing with politics. It soon became obvious that one can not deal seriously with sexuality without dealing with damned politics.

What is happening in U.S. schools, in regards to sex education, is a startling example of a retrograde mind set determined to do it all wrong and damn the consequences. Of course, the consequences are borne by Americas youth, not the preachers and political hacks whose interests have nothing in common with the needs of students and education.

That is nothing unusual. That is how politicians usually work. However, the real world price of bringing religion and politics into the class room is too great to ignore.

The ideologically motivated Abstinence-Only-Until-Marriage programs that the Bush administration and its religious political allies are force feeding to American children, has nothing in common with real educational values. It teaches nothing about the complex reality of being a sexual being in the real world.

It is, quite literally, nothing more than Sunday school lessons disguised as education. It has NO place in publicly funded schools. It is a useless, dishonest approach whose results are the very opposite of the stated goals.

It also says much about the so called morality of the fundamentalists who are so eager to fill the minds of our youth with their dangerous fantasies.

Study after study demonstrates that European and Canadian youth, given the benefit of Comprehensive Sex Health Education, delay becoming sexually active longer than their American counter parts, graduates of Abstinence-Only propaganda classes.

Rates of teen pregnancies are lower for young people given the benefit of Comprehensive Sex Ed. Likewise, HIV infections and other STDs are lower among the European and Canadian youth.

That is to say, that teen pregnancies, HIV and STD rates are higher among teens exposed to Abstinence-Only programs. Abstinence_Only graduates become sexually active earlier than educated European and Canadian teens.

The salient point: Teens, given only Abstinence-Only fantasy education, are less likely to use condoms when they become sexually active. Once again, Abstinence-Only students become sexually active earlier than those given real sex education. Put those two facts together and do a wee bit of thinking, if your particular version of god allows thinking.

The only real thing bought with the $100 million per annum spent on these phony programs, are thousands of pulpits, preaching the Republican gospel.

Do American fundies really think their God would be too stupid to understand their real motives? Money and power, power and money, the ultimate 'truth' of this new American political religion.

Politics, money, and temporal power, the obsessions held in common by Christian and Muslim fundamentalists. They deserve each other but the rest of us do not.

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