Safe Sex Not No Sex

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Safe Sex Not No Sex
       With increasing teen pregnancies and high Sexual Transmitted Infection (STI’s) rates, our school system is flawed with its Title V Abstinence-Only-Until-Marriage Program (abstinence-only). Even though abstinence is the only absolute way to avoid unwanted pregnancy and STI’s, it is incorrect to say it is the only way to avoid them. Our education system should abolish the abstinence-only program and incorporate comprehensive sexuality education, promoting safe sex and birth control education.        The abstinence-only program has an eight point definition. That clearly states what is to be taught and is not to be contradicted. The Family and Youth Bureau list the following as some of the program out line: Projects support decisions to abstain from sexual activity by providing abstinence programming as defined by Section 510(b) of the Social Security Act, which states abstinence education must: A.   Teach abstinence from sexual activity outside marriage as the expected standard for all school age children; B.   Teach that a mutually faithful monogamous relationship in the context of marriage is the expected standard of human sexual activity; C.   Teach that sexual activity outside of the context of marriage is likely to have harmful psychological and physical effects; These are only three of the most concerning points of the program outline. Given the placed definition it leaves a wide range of youth not having the proper needed health information. There are many types of families and situations that make up our world and clearly stating that within marriage is the only acceptable way to be sexually active is outdated and contradictory to the American family reality.        American families are increasingly becoming more non-traditional.  For example, when I walk down my four block street I can count on one hand how many “traditional” families there are. “[American] married couples with children account for less than a quarter of all households. More than 30 percent of households are single person households” (Coontz). Other groups of young individuals, such as lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and those who are questioning their sexuality (LGBTQ) are completely left out of any helpful and healthy education under the abstinence-only program. Teen moms are ostracized because they have children out-of-wedlock. This isn’t really what we want for our youth is it? An alternative and more effective approach to the Title V Abstinence-Only-Until-Marriage program is to teach our children that it would be best to wait until marriage or until they find that one person that they are committed to having a monogamous relationship with. Sex is a part of life and the best thing to teach our youth is how to protect themselves from infection and pregnancy.        A Comprehensive Sex Education program is a more effective way in teaching our youth about sex, how to prevent pregnancy, and STI’s.Sex is a part of life and the best thing to teach our youth is how to protect themselves from infection and pregnancy. This includes teaching not only about abstinence, but also contraception, including emergency contraception; reproductive choice; lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender (LGBT), and questioning issues; as well as, of course, anatomy; development; puberty; relationships; and all of the other issues one would expect to be covered in a traditional sexuality education class. Furthermore, comprehensive sexuality education should be science-based and medically accurate. (Malone) This type of program would incorporate many areas of sex and sexual health and will provide a well-rounded range of information to the youth. Within this program our adolescents will be taught that abstinence is the only absolute way not to get pregnant or contract STI’s. If they are going to be sexually active however, they will also be taught what their options are in protecting themselves and others from those issues. I believe that...
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