Stella Foster's "Random" Thoughts On Sex Ed
By Margaret Lyons in News on May 27, 2008 10:05PM
Stella Foster's column in the Sun-Times continues to defy reason. We know, we know, what do we expect, but:
A RANDOM THOUGHT: Introducing sex education in schools was not a bright idea. . . . it interferes and distracts a young person from thinking about education to just thinking about doing the nasty. Self-esteem classes should be taught instead.
The ellipses is from the column, not us cutting anything out.
It's not a random thought. Foster has run similar musings in at least two previous columns, one in 2004 and one six months ago. But if we're going to use "random" the way the ladies of The Hills do, to mean unpleasant and unwanted, then yeah. Random!
From March 30, 2004:
THE RECENT reports of teens and pre-teens engaging in oral sex is sending shock waves across the country and leaving parents stunned. I ask why are parents so shocked to find out that kids, some as young as 11 and 12, think that as long as it is not intercourse, it's OK?
Back in the day, oral sex was considered to be way too much information and very taboo. In these modern times with sex, sex and more sex being talked about and displayed via the electronic media, everyday TV commercials, music videos (like rapper Nelly's new and beyond vulgar music video "Tip Drill"), video games, etc., kids have become jaded and emotionless.
Sex education seems to be a joke in the school system and, in my opinion, interjects sex in children's heads, when they aren't even thinking about it. What do they do for homework?
This society and parents lost control of the moral fiber of kids when it became OK and no stigma attached to a teenage girl having a baby with no consequences and the boy gets away with no financial responsibility.
Maybe the stigma against teen pregnancy briefly disappeared in 2004, by it was back in full force at the end of 2007, particularly at the Sun-Times. From Foster's December 20, 2007:
THE NEWS of actress Jamie Lynn Spears' pregnancy can't be that shocking to America. Jamie, the 16-year-old star of Nickelodeon's "Zoey 101" show and sister of slutima pop tart Britney Spears, has just joined the ranks of the young and unwedded like the 800,000 or more teens that get pregnant every year in this country. So folks . . . don't get your panties or shorts in a bunch . . . because it has been done before. This country pushes sex down kids' throats on a daily basis through reality shows, advertising, music videos, games, etc. And sex education in schools is a total waste of time and money. After all, what do they do for homework?
YOU CAN'T expect the Spears girls' parents to really parent. . . . They are way too busy trying to stay in the good graces of their cash cow girls! This country's morals went out the window years ago when parents started accepting that their kids, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, on up, were having sex in school and all over the place . . . and they didn't give them stiff consequences for promiscuous behavior. So, no reason to freak over the Spears' girls being freaks. Yeah, I said it!
Yeah, calling people sluts and freaks--that's not stigma, right?
According to the 2007 "Emerging Answers" report from the National Campaign to Prevent Teen and Unplanned Pregnancy, "Patterns of results across the studies demonstrate two findings very clearly. First, a substantial percentage of abstinence, sex, and STD/HIV education programs significantly reduced one or more types of risky sexual behavior. Second, the programs did not increase sexual behavior among young people, as some people had feared." In other words, sex education works. And it doesn't lead to more sex.
For whatever it's worth, the homework I had to do for sex education involved writing out charts of methods of contraception, making corny videos and posters about safe sex and reproductive health, and memorizing STDs and their symptoms. Other Chicagoist staffers had to raise a fake baby with a class partner, write reports on STDs, and make lists of things to do other than sex. It was about as useful as the rest of the homework kids do in high school--some of if very, some of it not so much.