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Abstinence Doesn’t Work
October 24th, 2007 by Mike

I was dismayed to read that a school board in Maine decided to make “the pill” available to middle school students (10 year olds) without parental consent or knowledge. 1As long as a parent had signed a general consent form to have their child receive medical care at the school. In several of the “pro” interviews, the first thing the interviewee would say was, “First of all, abstinence education hasn’t worked.”Let’s get real. Of course abstinence education doesn’t work if you don’t use it. Condoms don’t work if you don’t use them. “The pill” doesn’t work if you don’t use it. So saying that abstinence doesn’t work is a specious argument.Here’s a little list of the effectiveness of abstinence, condoms, and the pill:Effectiveness against pregnancy if used:

  • Abstinence: 100%
  • Condoms: almost 100%
  • The pill: almost 100%

Effectiveness against STDs if used:

  • Abstinence: 100%
  • Condoms: almost 100%
  • The pill: 0.0%

Effectiveness against pregnancy and STDs if not used:

  • Abstinence: 0.0%
  • Condoms: 0.0%
  • The pill: 0.0%

By the way. The article regarding giving children the pill was on the same page as an article explaining why folks are lobbying the FDA to not allow children to have cold medicine. Cold medicine: no; the pill: yes. Ironic, isn’t it? 2Before you jump all over me about this, yes, I know the cold medicine was for children under 6. But then, again, how long will it be before we begin issuing the pill to 6 year olds?

Footnotes   [ + ]

1. As long as a parent had signed a general consent form to have their child receive medical care at the school.
2. Before you jump all over me about this, yes, I know the cold medicine was for children under 6. But then, again, how long will it be before we begin issuing the pill to 6 year olds?

3 Responses  
  • Scoop writes:
    October 25th, 200722:45at

    I think the quote the person interviewed was saying that they have not see the kind of results they would like from the abstinence program, not that abstinence as a personal practice doesn’t work.

  • Mike writes:
    October 26th, 200712:48at

    Actually, I think the abstinence results that the folks quoted were is much better than they were hoping for. What they really wanted was to discredit abstinence education so that their position, to pass out “the pill” would seem more reasonable.

    Despite the title of the article, I really wasn’t trying to promote abstinence education (which I am in favor of, by the way), but trying to expose the current trend of proponents of any point of view using specious arguments to promote their viewpoints.

    While I can’t see any value in passing out the pill to 10 year-olds, I do see the value in educating students in other means of protecting one’s health should those students choose not to practice the only sure method of safety.

    I don’t agree, however, that I should pay for the protection. That cost should be borne the individual and his/her parents.

    And I don’t agree that parent’s should be kept in the dark by government entities when children’s health, safety, or moral behavior is involved.

  • Scoop writes:
    October 28th, 200721:48at

    I admit it bothers me that someone might give my underage child medication without my knowledge. On the other hand, if my child, for whatever reason, does not want to tell me he or she is sexually active, I would want the child to have good birth control and information about protection from STDs. There are also unfortunately all too many cases in which the child’s sexual partner is a family member. That child needs protection that might not be forthcoming from the parent. It’s a dilemma and I’m not sure there are any totally good solutions.


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