Friday, April 25, 2008

Bush administration's "abstinence-only" programs a failure, waste of taxpayer money

Over a billion dollars has been spent on abstinence only sex education that doesn't work according to experts testifying before congress. The federal government currently spends $176 million a year on abstinence-only education, which only supplements the millions more spent on abstinence-only in state and local matching grants.

Programs teaching U.S. schoolchildren to abstain from sex have not cut teen pregnancies or sexually transmitted diseases or delayed the age at which sex begins, health groups told Congress on Wednesday:
"Vast sums of federal monies continue to be directed toward these programs. And, in fact, there is evidence to suggest that some of these programs are even harmful and have negative consequences by not providing adequate information for those teens who do become sexually active." -- Dr. Margaret Blythe, American Academy of Pediatrics

So, how does our local Republican Representative John Duncan, from Dumbfuckistan (TN) respond?
" seems rather elitist that people with academic degrees in health think they know better than parents what type of sex education is appropriate. "

What use could Republicans possibly need with such silly things as education, data, and science? Another battle in the Republican War on Science (and education.)

Bush has said repeatedly that the government must only fund those programs “that work.” Study after study show these programs don't work yet Harry Wilson, a top official in the Department of Health and Human Services, told the WaPost last week “that the administration has no intention of changing funding priorities in light of the results.” Say what?

Henry Waxman astutely pointed out the idiocy of the policy:
"We are showering funds on abstinence-only programs that don't appear to work, while ignoring proven comprehensive sex education programs that can delay sex, protect teens from disease, and result in fewer teen pregnancies. ... we have no dedicated source of federal funding specifically for comprehensive classroom sex education."

This is a choice between funding ideological nonsense or effective, comprehensive lessons on sexual health. Guess which one the White House prefers? Once again, another verification of the conservative psyche: 'stay the course even though everything tells you you're wrong' ... classic. Dumb. More

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