I've had a chance to skim the sucker and here goes:
First off, I have to start with the fact that I have been raging against the wrong machine. I have no problem with abstinence. Confession here -- I am abstinent. It is my choice and a good one for me at that.
There are two key words missing from what I have been talking about in these previous posts and those are "until" and "marriage".
Problems I have with abstinence until marriage (AUM - ironic isn't it...):
1. Some of us aren't going to get married. The AUM groups believe that you should never have sex.
2. Some of us cannot legally get married. These are the sodomites and lesbos and perverted queers who are many of my favorite people, not to mention probably your hairdresser. And I'm speaking to you, Leslee Unruh - cute haircut.
3. Why be abstinent until marriage? Here's where (I think) it gets interesting.
All programs that receive AUM funds must adhere to the definition of abstinence education which specifies, in part, that “a mutually faithful monogamous relationship in the context of marriage is the expected standard of all human sexual activity” and that “sexual activity outside the context of marriage is likely to have harmful psychological and physical effects.”
I would like to direct your attention to the part about "standard of all human sexual activity".
This statement indicates that homosexuality is abnormal and of all things, unexpected. (OMG, Johnny is queer!). Not only is it deviant, as our definition informs us, but it is also dangerous.
And here, I am going to agree. Sexuality is dangerous.
- You might get your heart broken
- You might get herpes
- You might have a terrible time
- You might get taken advantage of
Abstinence until marriage is not the panacea that Muffy and Bobby are being led to believe. Abstinence until marriage will not guarantee you the perfect life partner or a happy marriage or disease free life. Furthermore, daddy cannot protect his baby from any harm by having his daughter pledge her purity to him at a dance where you eat wedding cake while signing virginity pledges. Yet, the Abstinence Clearinghouse, a major resource for those receiving federal abstinence until marriage funding, distributes close to 700 “Purity Ball Planner” booklets a year and points out that the tips in the booklet include “printing out the vows on beautiful paper” and “serving wedding cake for dessert.
In 19 freakin' 48, Alfred Kinsey wrote:
"The world is not to be divided into sheep and goats. It is a fundamental of taxonomy that nature rarely deals with discrete categories... The living world is a continuum in each and every one of its aspects."
So, if we are not just sheep and goats, perhaps we are not all heterosexually oriented and doin' it in the missionary position starting exactly on the day we pledge our undying love and obedience to some
What they are not telling us is that 80% of them did it before the ring was firmly slammed shut onto their fingers. A recent Guttmacher Institute study showed that premarital sex has been universal for decades and that among those turning 15 between 1954 and 1963, 82% had had premarital sex by age 30, and 88% had done so by age 44. (Accessed 6/27/07).
Hypocrisy perhaps? Or just wanting better for their children than they had? Or perhaps they hear dollar bills falling like snow in Aspen.
Between 1996 and federal Fiscal Year 2006, Congress funneled over $1.5 billion dollars (through both federal and state matching funds) to abstinence-only-until-marriage programs. (SIECUS)
“All of a sudden, abstinence is a business,” Unruh told a reporter in 2002 as she noted that more than 900 new abstinence-only-until-marriage organizations emerged in the last decade. (accessed 6/27/07).
According to research done by SIECUS, a cadre of national abstinence-only-until-marriage speakers, charging anywhere from $1,000–$5,000 per presentation, are at the fingertips of school districts, local county health departments, faith-based organizations, and others who have hundreds of thousands of federal dollars to spend every year. Whether receiving federal funds themselves or not, many of these entrepreneurs advertise to federal grantees that their products, presentations, and novelty items meet the federal government’s requirements for use in abstinence-only-until-marriage programs.
Meanwhile - over here in reality-land, these people show a total disregard for sound public health practices and responsible spending. They are using the facade of public health to promote religion (most specifically, Christianity though not entirely), marriage with no other options presented, anti-gay bias, anti-choice politics and distortions about actual scientific public health issues.
SIECUS' analysis of the issues is incredibly thorough and I could go on and on but read the report for yourself. I highly recommend it.