Has Abstinence Education Failed?
- Wednesday, May 02, 2007
A. Have as its exclusive purpose teaching the social, psychological, and health gains to be realized by abstaining from sexual activity
B. Teach abstinence from sexual activity outside marriage as the expected standard for all school-age children
C. Teach 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. Teach that a mutually faithful, monogamous relationship in the context of marriage is the expected standard of sexual activity
E. Teach that sexual activity outside the context of marriage is likely to have harmful psychological and physical effects
F. Teach that bearing children out of wedlock is likely to have harmful consequences for the child, the child's parents, and society
G. Teach young people how to reject sexual advances and how alcohol and drug use increases vulnerability to sexual advances
H. Teach the importance of attaining self-sufficiency before engaging in sexual activity
Comprehensive sex education advocates oppose the teaching of any "values" related to sexual activity, since they regard sex as a "values-neutral" act in which the public has no compelling interest. However, according to the National Campaign to Prevent Teen Pregnancy, teen child-bearing in the US costs taxpayers $9.1 Billion per year. I think we have an interest!
So, given the values espoused under abstinence education versus the "no values" approach of "comprehensive" sex education, which approach should we employ if the stated goal of both sides is to "reduce adolescent sexual activity and its consequences?"
© 2007 by S. Michael Craven
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S. Michael Craven is the Founding Director of the Center for Christ & Culture, a ministry of the National Coalition for the Protection of Children & Families. The Center for Christ & Culture is dedicated to the renewal and reformation of society through the renewal and reformation of the Church. For more information on the Center for Christ & Culture, additional resources and other works by S. Michael Craven visit: www.battlefortruth.org
Michael lives in the Dallas area with his wife Carol and their three children.
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