according to Section 510(b) of Title V of the Social Security Act, P.L. 104–193, abstinence education must follow these guidelines:

(A) Has as its exclusive purpose, teaching the social, psychological, and health gains to be realized by abstaining from sexual activity;

(B) Teaches abstinence from sexual activity outside marriage as the expected standard for all school age children;

(C) Teaches that abstinence from sexual activity is the only certain way to avoid out-of-wedlock pregnancy, sexually transmitted diseases, and other associated health problems;

(D) Teaches that a mutually faithful monogamous relationship in context of marriage is the expected standard of human sexual activity;

(E) Teaches that sexual activity outside of the context of marriage is likely to have harmful psychological and physical effects;

(F) Teaches that bearing children out-of-wedlock is likely to have harmful consequences for the child, the child’s parents, and society;

(G) Teaches young people how to reject sexual advances and how alcohol and drug use increases vulnerability to sexual advances; and

(H) Teaches the importance of attaining self-sufficiency before engaging in sexual activity.”

some of this seems reasonable, doesn`t it, in black and white. however there are no guidelines on the implementation and as with almost everything else currently going on in the US, it`s all about fear. noteworthy is the absence of any guidelines stipulating health information or alternative lifestyle choices, as well as pointing a recriminatory finger at single parents.

according to Advocates for Youth:

Recent research by Advocates for Youth has shown abstinence-only sex education programs to be a dismal failure both in terms of not decreasing sexual activity and in terms of increased risk for teenagers who later do decide to become sexual. But the biggest risk of abstinence-only sex education may be the subtext in many of their programs. Tamara Krenin, president and chief executive of the Sexuality Information and Education Council of the United States (SIECUS) confirms; “…abstinence-only education is often fear-based…” The message is that sexuality is to be feared and fought against; it is dangerous, embarrassing, risky and emotionally painful.

this for me comes back to personal responsibility, i i don`t think my children`s sexual education should be for them to either discover on their own or be shaped by a moral bias that i don`t share.

the boychick just turned nine and i had the first of what i would like to be many chats about the subject. we covered the concept and mechanics of sex,  the fact that not relationships happen between men and women and that HIV/AIDS is not a plague from God to punish homosexuals. it`s a very liberal outlook, but this is our outlook, his opinions may change or he may hear different information as he gets older, but he has a foundation and information to compare and analysis against.

the analogy i gave him, is like going into a test with incorrect or incomplete information, you`ll never pass. what i didn`t tell him, but was in the back of my mind is what you don`t know can kill you.

my point in all this, if we don`t equip our children with the right tools and information to make their own better informed decisions, how are they supposed to survive? it`s obvious the spoon-feeding and removing our opportunities to use our common sense as adults isn`t working.

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