Growing up in a small suburb of Tulsa was an experience one might want to soon forget. I grew up in Glenpool, Oklahoma for the first eighteen years of my life. It was a small, poor suburb with only one school. Despite all the churches in Glenpool, which numbered eleven at my last count about five years ago, and all the lives that were hindered by bearing a child at a young age, teenage pregnancy ran rampant at Glenpool. I remember at least 22 girls that were pregnant in their teens, and most of those were just the ones that were in my grade or went through with childbirth. There is no knowing just how many abortions, or escaped school-wide knowledge about the pregnancy had. These 22 were just the ones that walked the halls swollen and tired, trying to complete high school while they were pregnant or that were notably absent after having dropped out. One of the girls I remember being pregnant was infamous for having her first pregnancy while she was in seventh grade. She had two additional children by the time she graduated.
[...] Dutch policy for sex education recognizes that sexual responsibility does not equal sexual abstinence. Weaver also says that by emphasizing abstinence, it endorses that all sexual health problems are reduced to sexual activity itself instead of poorly informed or unprotected sexual activity (182). The approach the U.S. is making is obviously misguided. Abstinence only curricula also uses appalling tactics utilizing fear as a deterrent, what Representative Lois Capps of California calls "terror techniques" (Rose 1208). A disturbing video displayed to middle school audiences called "No Second Chance" intersperses the idea of premarital sex with images of men dying of AIDS. [...]
[...] Abstinence only has proven an ineffective method, the effects only lasting a short term of 6 months (Borawski 432). Weaver points out, however, that Dutch students, on the other hand, who receive extensive sexual education show that skills based sex education does not lead to younger sexually active teens or an increase in the number of sexual partners. The Netherlands has some of the lowest pregnancy and STI rates, yet only of students surveyed thought premarital sex was wrong or immoral. [...]
[...] They need to pull their heads out of the religious sand they bury them in and see that their methods are not working and will not work and that it is time for something new. Works Cited American Civil Liberties Union. "Coalition Letter to House and Senate Leaders Urging Review of Abstinence-Only-Until-Marriage Programs." 28 January 2005.
[...] "Faith-Based versus Fact-Based Social Policy: The Case of Teenage Pregnancy Prevention." Social Work 50.3 (2005): 280-282. Richardson, Todd B. "Providing a Sexual Health Service for Young People in the School Setting." Nursing Standard 20.24 (2006): 41-44. Robinson, Judy Gibbs. "Sex Program Aims to Help Teens." The Oklahoman 30 July 2006.
[...] One study suggests using medical students because they will work for free often times while doctors are often too busy or expensive (Twine 139). Since the study by Waxman in 2004 reported that only 2 of the 13 commonly used curricula were accurate (Rose 1208), curricula needs to be scientifically based instead of politically and ideologically motivated (Marx 282). The courses should be required to be taught in schools by the federal government, as such criteria has been enacted in the countries of the Netherlands, France, and Australia and been very effective. [...]
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