Feminism | Posted by Aya on 04/1/2016
This Is What Happens When We Don’t Teach Teens Comprehensive Sex Education
We need better sex ed.
In February, President Obama took an important stand for sexual health in the United States: He eradicated funding for abstinence-only sex education in his 2017 budget proposal — a decision backed by countless studies, expert opinions and anecdotal accounts of just how ineffective this type of “education” is. But even on the (unfortunately) off chance that our Republican-dominated Congress passes this program — which has cost almost $2 billion in federal spending — the damage of abstinence-only sex education on my generation is already evident.
As a college freshman, I have witnessed and experienced many examples of such damaging effects firsthand. This can manifest in unfair and frustrating ways, like the “pleasure” or “orgasm” gap that results in women not getting off as …
Feminism | Posted by Roberta Nin Feliz on 02/1/2016
Why We Need To Teach Students About Rape Culture
We need to educate students about rape culture.
Being an outspoken feminist in my high school has been a challenging experience. While many of my peers are aware of major social justice news and violations, like that surrounding Black Lives Matters and ISIS, far too many are still ignorant about the feminist movement or women’s rights more generally. This became particularly clear to me in a recent English class, as we discussed Toni Morrison’s The Bluest Eye and rape culture’s effect on the main character.
Rape culture is “a complex set of beliefs that encourages male sexual aggression and supports violence against women,” Emilie Buchwald writes in her book Transforming a Rape Culture. “It is a society where violence is seen as sexy and sexuality as violent,” she continues. “In …
Feminism | Posted by Amber0sine on 11/3/2015
The Importance of Comprehensive Sex Education in Faith Communities
Growing up, neither my parents nor anybody in my religious community spoke honestly about women’s sexual wants or needs. I was taught to follow a single rule: to remain pure until I got married and could satisfy my future husband’s sexual needs. To this day, my parents still regard sex as an act that happens only between a husband and wife and believe those who act otherwise are condemned to a lifetime of shame and damnation. While most of my peers had at least an inkling about what sex was by the time they reached adolescence, therefore, I remained uninformed.
That changed in fifth grade. My school held a seminar about “what happens when a girl becomes a woman.” We were handed permission slips and told to get …
Feminism | Posted by Claudia A. on 06/8/2015
The Case For Comprehensive, Positive Sex Education
Growing up, I was neither educated nor had positive conversations about sex. It was a taboo topic in my family. My mother especially refused to discuss it (even when I brought it up) and my father completely ignored the topic altogether. The closest we ever came to discussing it was when I would head out of the house with my boyfriend and my mom would remark: “Rebequita, no seas estupida” (Rebecca, don’t be stupid) or “Rebequita, no te dejes tocar” (Rebecca, don’t let yourself be touched). It was as if she expected me to somehow know everything about sex without ever talking about it.
My parents should have had this conversation with me, though, because my school wasn’t any better. My sex ed classes did not acknowledge that …
Pop-Culture | Posted by Julie Z on 02/9/2013
Saturday Vids: Karen B. K. Chan Wins Sex Education
This video is the kind of honest talk about sex that should be taught in high school. Karen and The Sex Ed Project win.
Feminism | Posted by Kaitlyn K on 08/25/2012
Saturday Vids: Teach Safe Touch
Teach Safe Touch advocates for the health and dignity of all by challenging the current Minnesota sex education curriculum to include masturbation as a safe-sex alternative.
We created Teach Safe Touch to promote healthy and fulfilled sexual identities. Our mission is to engage, inform, and mobilize our community to challenge limiting sexuality education for our youth. We know that healthy choices and respectful behavior are the products of a mind which has been nourished by knowledge and confidence in oneself. Teach Safe Touch exists to create opportunities for everyone to enjoy the benefits of healthy sexual expression, self-assurance, and a guilt-free dialogue.
We created a petition to challenge the Minnesota legislature to include a more comprehensive sex-ed curriculum and to include language on masturbation in this comprehensive curriculum. We created …
Feminism | Posted by Talia F on 06/8/2012
Teen Sex and Feminism
A Purity Ball
What issue is ever quite as controversial as sex? How to have it, why to have it, who’s having it, who shouldn’t be, what should happen afterwards. Sex is always divisive to begin with; it’s one of the basic things necessary for the survival of the human race, and it’s also considered one of the foremost pleasures in this life. Every culture, society, and religion has specific rules pertaining to it. It can make or break careers, reputations, and relationships; it can be a bargaining tool, a reward, or a trap; people do stupid things for it; abstaining from it is a big deal.
Let’s put it this way: human beings are obsessed with sex. Really, really obsessed with sex.
For as long as people have been …
Feminism | Posted by Colleen L on 03/16/2012
Why I’m Against Abstinence-Only Sex Education
abstinence-only sex education
Is it a widespread tendency of conservative politicians to both promote abstinence-only sex education, which research shows contributes significantly to increasing teen pregnancy rates, and be anti-abortion. As Bristol Palin’s pregnancy in 2008 strikingly demonstrated, holding these seemingly contradictory beliefs even holds strong in the face of teen pregnancies galore (almost 1 million per year in the U.S. — the highest rate of any industrialized nation) as a direct result of abstinence-only education. Rick Santorum, Mitt Romney, and Newt Gingrich are all staunchly pro-abstinence-only education and anti-abortion.
So what’s the problem here?
Let’s start with the basics. Research has proven abstinence-only education is not only ineffective, but in fact detrimental, because it puts teens who decide to become sexually active at a much higher risk for …