Teen Pregnancy

Topics: Human sexual behavior, Human sexuality, Sexual intercourse Pages: 8 (2977 words) Published: November 6, 2005
Did you know that the city of Lubbock is the fifth highest percentage of teen pregnancy in the country? Did you know that Texas has the highest percentage of teen pregnancy in the entire nation? I live in both Lubbock County and the state of Texas and I did not know any of these statistics. I thought, like many others, that the sex education programs were working. It is advertised in the local media that, "abstinence only programs work because if they did not work the government would not federally fund abstinence only programs in public schools." That is obviously not the case! If abstinence only programs are not working…why not try safe sex programs? Many mothers, fathers, grandparents, or legal guardians do not like the idea of safe sex or abstinence being taught to their young sons or daughters. I understand the reasoning behind that decision but the fact is, over half of parents are not willing to take on that role of teaching safe sex or abstinence and are leaving that job to schools; therefore, it is now a debate in every school district of whether it is smarter to teach safe sex or abstinence. I think because teen pregnancy is such a huge issue today, safe sex should be taught. There are many reasons for and against safe sex programs but in the end the pros outweigh the cons but it is up to the parent to make the best decision for their child. I went to a school right outside Lubbock Independent School District, where abstinence only is taught, and was taught about safe sex. My high school did not have a pregnancy rate and I believe it is because of our program. Our professors taught us everything there was to be taught scientifically about sex. The school had young adult come in and talk about their experience with teen pregnancy, sexual transmitted disease, staying abstinence and engaging in a sexual relationship at a young age. All of the speaker's testimonies were unbelievably impacting. I still remember every word. When the psychologist in sexual relation came to speak and the talk to my class about certain feeling and thoughts and questions that might be going through our minds I felt relieved that I was normal and not ashamed or different. For personal experience, the safe sex program worked

It has been said that, "Abstinence only education is one of the religious right's greatest victories (McCormick p.2)." I truly believe this statement to be true. I have recently sat in on a classroom lecture where abstinence was being taught. It was unbelievably different from what I was taught. I was not expecting such a dramatic difference but there was. I noticed that the instructor used much of his religious beliefs to help guide them. The instructor repeatedly said that, "It is such a sin to have premarital sex…so the best way to stay sin free, disease free, and child free is to not have premarital sex." Although I do agree with him, I do not agree with that method of teaching harmonious teenagers about sex. I think teenagers need to be taught all aspects of sex and having a sexual relationship. They need to be taught what happens to the body when they start going through the stages of sex and most importantly the downside to sex such as rape, teen pregnancy, and sexual transmitted diseases. It is important to know all of this because it can help a student make an honest and educational decision about having sex. I know from personal experience that the facts that I learned about sex and having a sexual relationship was the reason I stayed abstinent.

The problems with abstinence only programs are that school boards are censoring textbooks. The school board district in Franklin County, North Carolina, ordered three chapters of a health book used in a sex education class to be banished from the text book because the readings did not adhere to state mandating abstinence only education programs. The chapters that were sliced from the book were topics over AIDS and other sexually transmitted infections,...

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Campbell, Patricia J. Sex Education Books for Young Adults. New York, NY.R.R. Bowker Company, 1989.
Eade. Dr. Rhonda. Personal Interview.2003 November 19.
Grumman, David. Sexuality and the Search for Perspective. NY, NY: Reinhold Company, 1991
Galloway, Margo. Personal Interview.2003 November 1.
McCormick, Katherine Dexter, "Abstinence-Only Education: Why First Amendment Supporters Should Oppose It." Sep. 2001.2 Nov. 2003 http://www.plannedparenthood.org/library/facts/AbstinenceONly10-01.html
NCHS/CDC Public Affair." U.S. Pregnancy Rate Down from Peak; Births and Abortions on the Decline." Oct. 2003. 4 Nov. 2003.
Singer, Laura J. Sex Education on Film. New York, NY: Teachers College Pres
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