Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Nancy Pelosi on Teen Pregnancy

Teen pregnancy and sex are obviously important issues in our culture. I don't have kids or know a lot of teens, so in that respect I'm not an expert. But, I think all Christians need to be aware of this issue and how it is handled in our culture. And I tend to think that we probably need to have a little more information for teens than "just say no."

Carol Platt Liebau at Townhall is someone who has done a lot of thinking and research on this issue and is a great resource if you are interested. She had some great comments about a recent appearance by Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi:

Here is YouTube footage of Nancy Pelosi speaking to the Netroots Nation, impugning the idea of teaching children to abstain from sex as a "radical right wing view."

I've written before about the harmful and false dichotomy that people like Nancy Pelosi try to create between "abstinence education" and "comprehensive sex education." It's perfectly possible to inform young people about how their bodies work, where babies come from, and the existence of contraceptives while still teaching them that sex is something for adults -- for people who are mature enough to cope with the (often unexpected) emotional, psychological and physical ramifications (including the possibility of an STD or unwanted pregnancy) that can accompany sexual activity.

Too often, "comprehensive sex education" becomes a code term for adopting a studiously value-neutral about teen sexual activity. The approach validates, normalizes -- and occasionally even celebrates -- teen sex, which is the last message young people need to be getting. It increases the social pressures on those who want to be responsible, and implicitly ignores the emotional, psychological -- and, for people of faith -- spiritual fallout of giving too much, too soon (especially for girls).

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