We were big fans of Laurie Abraham even before she stopped by our book club and drank red wine with us while we interrogated her about her book, The Husbands and Wives Club: A Year in the Life of a Couples’ Therapy Group. She’s a smart and thoughtful (and funny) writer about some of our favorite topics: sex, relationships, therapy, communication between the sexes, monogamy and its discontents. So we were thrilled to see her cover story in last week’s New York Times Magazine, on another of our favorite topics: sex ed (and not the abstinence-only kind, thank you very much)…
No, we’re not talking about the relative appeal of sex in clogs. We’ve long sung the praises of Holland’s approach to sex, and, in particular, its approach to sex education. Holland has results that we can all agree are worth aspiring to (even bat shit crazy Michele Bachmann).
Rick “Hair Helmet” Perry – he’s everywhere lately! (But we’re with Jon Stewart: why he gets so much attention while consistent third-placer Ron Paul gets nil is beyond us.) So we’re overdosing a bit on the big P – and the more we hear, the more frightened we get. Check out this YouTube clip where he struggles to answer a legitimate question: why does Texas continue to teach abstinence-only programs when they don’t work, since Texas has one of the highest rates of teen pregnancy in the nation? (The Young Turks give the clip some context.) You’ll get serious flashbacks to George W: the little laugh, the head shake, the grasping at straws. And no, that’s not your video buffering — he actually freezes several times as his brain tries to defy rationality and logic. If that’s not enough of Perry’s ass-backwards views on sexuality for you, check out the section on homosexuality from his 2008 book “On My Honor,” his defense of the Boys Scouts’ “American values” (read: prejudice).
Sex chat at the water cooler can lead to depression and low productivity, study finds.
A Florida boy is pulled from class for wearing high heels.
Justin Bieber proves exactly why we shouldn’t really be asking 16-year-old himbo pop starlets to weigh in on the abortion debate.
Congresswomen share their personal stories for the first time in the Planned Parenthood funding debate. (And because we don’t even pretend to be objective around these parts, click here to tell your reps that the defunding is outrageous and wrong.)
Okay, we admit it: When we first read about an abstinence video game in development down in Florida, we were ready to jump all over what a ridiculous idea it was. As if abstinence-only education needed to be removed even further from reality! As if abstinence-only education really deserved another $434,000 federal dollars! Etc.
You might have seen the headlines this week that read “Rise in Teen Pregnancy Rates.” Of course what’s missing from that title is the fact that these are not real-time figures they’re talking about. The 3% rise in teen pregnancies among 15-to-19-year-olds increased between 2005 and 2006 — the first jump since 1990. We’re sure there are multiple causes for the jump, but you cannot discount the impact of 1.5 billion dollars worth of abstinence-only programs pushed over the past 10 years, especially during the two Bush terms — programs that have been proven time and again not to work.
Have a friend who needs a little reminder about safer sex? Send her a note on one of these handmade cards, featuring vintage sex ed info. True, the information about birth control is a little dated (there’ve been more than a few updates in birth control technology since 1972)–but it’s still a cute and clever…