Sunday, 12 September 2010

Morning Scepticism: Abstinence

Abstinence-only education seems to come down to two underlying principles. 1. Teens shouldn't have sex. 2. Knowledge about sex will encourage it. While the first principle is a moral issue, the second principle is evidentially false to the point of being dangerous. It's as if hormones are taken as some minor pesky irritant but largely inconsequential to the decision making process involving sex... are abstinence proponents eunuchs?

3 comments:

Richard T said...

3. Lack of knowledge can cause more harm than good if a teen compromises point 1.

Knowledge may or may not encourage but it should at least make the practice safer.

I think the biggest gripe I have heard of sex education though is that it only deals with the physical and not the emotional.

Kel said...

Surely it's a job for parents, and not teachers, to deal with the emotional aspects of it. Especially given that the emotional needs for an individual don't necessarily fit in with others, it seems far too much to expect of a teacher to go beyond the informative and into the interpretative.

It would seem strange to give that role to someone who is somewhat impersonal and doesn't have that strong emotional bond of trust. That seems a job fit only for a parent or guardian.

Richard T said...

Damn straight the parents should teach all this but I don't think that when warning of the dangers of sex that leaving it just at the physical is all that should be done. The more the merrier I say.