Speaking of idiocy in education...

As much as it pains me to agree with Ms, Carmichael, this is a great argument for charter schools or voucher schools. If you want your kids to be educated by a progressive curriculum that acknowledges things like dinosaurs or a condom, you’re free to send them to that school.

And if you want your kid to be told that women have an extra rib and that touching a condom or breast is likely to give you AIDS, then you can do that without wrecking the system for others. And even if public schools only get 8% of their funding from the government, this is a perfect example of a program that is entirely federally funded. Schools are free to do their own sex-ed, but if they want money from the feds to pay for it, they better follow the lead of the chimp in office.

This whole “only 8% of the funding for public schools comes from the government” statistic seems to be playing pretty fast and loose with the meaning of the word government. Anyone trying to use it to base an argument off of ought to rethink it.

Bush doesn’t control circulums (circuli?) in any schools.

Bush is a strong advocate of Abstinence Only and he has a lot of power over how sex education gets funded.

Sorry, I meant to say the Federal Government. Of course they get way more than 8% from “the government.”

Singular: curriculum
Plural: curricula

Hm? Don’t the school boards control what they spend their money on?

The Economist says 8% in this weeks issue.

The Dept of Edu says 8.2 on their web page.

Abstinence Only is funded by federal grants. States that receive this federal money are mandated to teach AO and are forbidden to teach about contraception, safe sex or sex outside of marriage. It amounts to federal censorship of sex education programs.

Bush is a huge cheerleader for this crap.

Diogenes, I distinctly remember a very long thread in which you argued that teens having sex with each other should be a crime. Does that Diogenes no longer work here?
My point in mentioning the local school boards is becuase they are the ones that have final say on the ciriculum. They could have picked one of the two that had completely accurate information but instead they came down with a case of dumbassness and put in blatantly wrong information in their ciriculum.

My complaints in that thread were mostly about adults having sex with teenagers. I think teenagers should be encouraged to wait until they are adults (they shouldn’t be ordered to wait until marriage, though. That’s just smuggling religion into what should be a seminar on health) but I’m also not an idiot. I know that they have to be told how to protect themselves.

Another problem with AO is that it doesn’t just discourage teens from having sex, it imports a lot of moralistic, religious indoctrination about what is acceptable for adults.

As far as school curriculums, I don’t think they’re getting offered a lot of funding for alternate programs. My impression is that it’s AO or nothing as far as the federal tit is concerned. I could be wrong about that, though.

DtC: In the thread about teenagers being arrested for being at a party, we had this brief exchange:

Seems to me you were making a direct analogy between “don’t go to drinking parties” and “don’t have sex” as the message we should be sending teenagers.

Of course we should be telling teenagers not to drink and have sex, but that’s not all we should be teaching them. We should tell them that sex has consequences and they should wait until they’re adults but IF they’re going to do it they have to know how to protect themselves. I don’t see how there’s any contradiction there. There’s a difference between urging abstinence BUT…and teaching abstinence ONLY.

BTW, I also tell adults (fertile heteros, anyway) not to have sex with anyone they wouldn’t be able to handle a pregnancy with. That’s just common sense.

AAAAAAAAANNNNNNNNNNDDDDDDD that makes you a sanctimonious, hypocritical ass, given that you’ve admitted to not following that advice. Not to mention that you entirely rule out safe, casual sex among consenting adults.

Don’t be an ass. I “rule out” nothing for adults. It’s just a bit of friendly advice, You should always be mindful that pregnancy is a possible result, even with contraception. If you do not have the ability or the will to take responsibility for an unintended pregnancy then you shouldn’t be having sex, because it might happen..

Incidentally, by “sex”, I only mean vaginal intercourse, obviously…this is a pretty narrow spectrum of activity that I’m talking about. If you are engaging in activity which has a risk of resulting in pregnancy AND you are either unwilling or unable to take responsibility for such an activity, then DON’T TAKE THE RISK.

Is that so sanctimonious?

I got the ‘abstinence’ lecture from my parents, not at school. But what I didn’t get, and wished I had, was how the heck to be abstinent without shutting down entirely. At 17, 18, 19…when simple petting sessions drove me absolutely mad in ways they just don’t anymore at 37…it’s one thing to have this voice in your head saying “You’re not supposed to be doing this” but it’s another thing to listen to it when your body is screaming YES, THIS IS EXACTLY RIGHT!

I see no problem with encouraging abstinence, because pregnancies happen, even with the best of efforts to avoid them. I see no problem with it, because no harm will come from abstinence (unless you count ‘blue balls’ as being harm), but the same cannot be said for engaging in sex. I see no problem with it, because it’s possible. Teenagers, and adults too, are capable of abstaining, even if they don’t want to. It’s doable. I think people sometimes approach sex as being as unavoidable as falling in love, like one day you just look down and realise you’re having sex with somebody! Woops! How did that happen! But if you’re going to teach abstinence as a lifestyle choice, the things to include in this would be strategies (“If you don’t want to get into a heavy petting situation, don’t put yourself in a quiet dark room with your partner - stay in well-lit, public areas with other people around”, for example) and body-awareness: "This is what arousal feels like (especially girls may need this, as it’s not so obvious as for boys). When you begin to feel like this, your ability to think straight will begin to decrease. Your body wants to have sex. It wants to procreate. You’re more likely to feel this way when you’re most fertile, anyway, because biology is smart enough to make you want sex when pregnancy is most possible. And the more aroused you get, the less you will want to say no. It’s like drinking alcohol. After a couple of drinks, you stop counting, and it’s harder and harder to stop drinking. It affects your brain. If you can think of arousal hormones as being like alcohol, you can realise when you’re getting drunk on them, and stop while you’re sober enough to stop.

I wish somebody had told me these things. Maybe I would have been more self-aware. But all I got was “Don’t” and to learn these things through experience. I turned out okay. But it might have saved me a lot of blundering, way back when.

So in other words, we should make sure that a child that happens to be born into the wrong family is prevented from learning anything that might contradict his or her parents’ beliefs?

Exactly. One of the whole points behind public education is that everybody learns things that it is in the public interest to have them know, and that they have access to this regardless of their background. The problem in this case is that ‘society’ (by which we mean the federal government) has chosen wrong, and needs to be corrected.

(By which I mean, keep public education, and change the damn policy.)

Fair enough. Thats quite a bit of contorted logic to send to teens though; You shouldn’t have sex but if you do use protection and oh by the way if we catch you’re under arrest. I think this reflects a larger societal problem. As a society we haven’t made up our collective minds to questions about sex. We have a good number of people that answer ‘yes please, as often as I can’ and an equal number of people that say ‘not outside marriage’.