As a modern woman who values her reproductive rights and the education of sexual health, I’m ALL ABOUT today’s young folks taking sex ed classes— but not when they’re sexist, bigoted and alllll sorts of wrong.
A secondary school in Singapore, Hwa Chong Institution, held a mandatory sex education session recently sponsored by Focus on the Family, a Colorado Springs-based non-profit known for preaching abstinence and anti-gay rhetoric. One whistle-blower, a brave teen named Agatha Tan, was so appalled by the sexist and bigoted materials provided in the course that she wrote a thoughtful open letter to her principal complaining about the class, and posted it to Facebook. So why was she so appalled? Prepare to facepalm for days… Keep reading »
In middle school, I took a cooking class and a “life skills” class, each of which promised to prepare me for fancy grown-up tasks like adequately feeding myself, running a household and holding a baby the right way. Instead, I learned a slew of pointless tasks that did nothing to prepare me for grownup-dom. High school was no better. I went to great schools growing up, and in Home Ec, our awesome teachers were just doing the best they could with the crappy curriculum they had to work with. Still, those “life skills” lessons left me and dry. I’ve since become a domestic goddess in some areas of my life (I can sew like a boss), but I’m still muddling through learning some basic skills that my 7th grade teachers promised I’d know by the end of the semester. After the jump, some useless junk I learned in Home Ec and how they failed me.
Keep reading »
It’s freshman year of college, and Janie and Dave are best friends. They do everything together – hang out in their dorm rooms, go to the dining hall, walk around campus. Their friendship is great, until one night, they decide to head to a “fraternity party.”
At the party, Janie and Dave drink alcohol. When they decide to leave, Dave walks Janie back to her dorm room – to be sure she gets there ok, of course. Once inside, Dave confesses that he loves Janie. He starts to kiss her and gets on top of her. Janie is confused, saying that she’s not sure about this…
I’m sure you can fill in the rest.
This is the plot of a play in which I once starred, called quite aptly “The Date Rape Play.” It was the summer before my junior year of college. I was cast in the play — and, crucially, paid $200 — in order to perform it for groups of incoming freshman, who Needed to Know About Date Rape. The play was written by an adult trying desperately to be “down” with the way the kids talked and acted. Sample lines included: “Have you heard about the date rape drug, Rohypnol?,” “I don’t know, I’m worried people will be drinking alcohol there,” and “You got the look girl, work it!” My fellow theater kid friends and I thought it was the best thing we’d ever seen. Keep reading »
When that one kid back in high school told us that he’d heard that you could get pregnant from blow jobs or that the chlorine in hot tubs means you can’t catch STDs, we were smart enough to call bullshit. But it turns out that we probably shouldn’t have been so quick to laugh and tell him what a virgin he was, because some of those ridiculous sex myths turned out to be terrifyingly close to the truth. Read all six on Cracked….
NPR recently reported that thirty years ago, Denmark, SC, had one of the state’s highest teen pregnancy rates. Due to comprehensive sex education starting in middle school, students in Denmark, SC now have the lowest pregnancy rates in South Carolina. For the United States as a whole, it is a tiny step; yet a step in the right direction because the United States has one of the highest teen pregnancy rates in the industrialized world despite easier access to birth control and sex education. Read more on Your Tango…