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Uploaded:2015-04-24
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In which Dr. Doe explains the terrifying nature of sex education in the United States.
Close to half of high school students in America say they've had sex, Forty-Seven percent, and eventually the vast majority of them are going to have sex in their lifetimes, ninety-nine percent. Yet only seven of our fifty states and the District of Columbia mandate medically accurate sex education for them. If all the sexually active students live in those seven states, okay! But they don't. They live across all of these states. 

Every month the Guttmacher Institute updates the policies on sex ed by state. It's a run down of what can and can't be covered in sex ed if it is offered. These states are required to stress abstinence, and these have to cover it. Abstinence being don't have sex! 

"What's sex?" 

La, la, la, la, la, la, la! The committee on government reform found eleven of thirteen abstinence curriculum's were misleading, incorrect or distorted. Ugh, what about including contraception? Well, zero states are required to stress it, eighteen and the District of Columbia do have to cover it, nineteen if you count Mississippi, even though schools have to get permission from the State Department of Education first, and sometimes we can add Tennessee. 

Their policy is based on teen pregnancy rates. If it goes above 19.5, then educators have to talk about contraception. What about all the pregnancies leading up to this number? What about the students? What about the STI prevention? Teens account for almost 10 million new infections transmitted sexually, HPV, Gonorrhea, Chlamydia, HIV and 9.4 billion dollars of taxes spent on services for teen parents and their kiddos. 

Okay, contraception can't prevent all of this, but it's more effective than ignorance. And only 18-ish states require their educational systems to teach about it. At least HIV education is required in more states. Although only these ones have to be medically accurate about it. Do you see? Do you see what my nightmares are made of?

Only these eight states prohibit biased sex education, meaning only these states must be culturally sensitive and appropriate with regards to student's race, sex and ethnicity. Yay them, but c'mon, eight states? That's fewer than the number of states required emphasize the importance of sex only in marriage. What about people who can't get married? What about people who don't wanna get married? How is this culturally inclusive? Oh yeah, only eight states have to respect that diversity. 

Only nine require acknowledgement of sexual orientation, twelve total if you include Alabama, South Carolina and Texas, where it's required for teachers to include information about sexual orientation as long as it's negative. This is my moment of silence for all of you out there in the forty-one states where bi, pan, A, homo identities are excluded from curriculum's, and for those of you who live in one of the three states that can actually shun your experiences of sexual attraction.

*sigh*

Sex shaming is a very challenging problem in our society. Why don't we talk about healthy relationships between same sex partners? Choices other than monogamy, pleasure, body image and consent? And why is it that we give a platform to the consequences of sex without giving reasonable knowledge for people to protect themselves?

I'm looking at you, Texas, Arizona, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Missouri, Ohio and Tennessee! Because one cause of these negative effects is lack of information about contraception. Fact of life. There are studies showing many more schools teach sex ed than those mandated to. But studies also show unregulated coursework around sex means it isn't always accurate or complete. Only these twenty require students to learn healthy decision making in the context of sexuality. Is the situation improving? Yes. But it is still a cesspool of ignorance and injustice. 

You can check out this website (WWW.Guttmacher.org). Stats are updated at the beginning of every month. Just a reminder that we all need to stay curious. 

Abstinence education is like telling kindergartners not to touch each other. Comprehensive sex ed is more like some of you want to touch each other. Please make sure you're not sick, you've washed your hands and the other person is okay with that. It's not difficult, people, let's go!