The North Dakota Senate passed legislation Monday that would make abstinence education the only form of sex ed allowed in public schools. The amended bill now returns to the House.
Under the measure, students would learn the social, psychological and health gains that come with abstinence.
“When we talk about alcohol or tobacco, we don’t tell our kids, ‘You shouldn’t smoke and you shouldn’t drink before you are of a rightful age, but if you can’t control that urge, here’s the correct way to smoke or drink,'” Republican Sen. Terry Wanzek told The Associated Press.
“I think it’s very important that we send a clear message to our children, what is the foolproof way to prevent these (sexually transmitted) diseases, and to prevent pregnancies.”
In Colorado, public officials are taking a drastically different approach to sex ed. A new website from the taxpayer-funded Department of Health aims to “help young people understand the consequences of unprotected sex while educating about sexually transmitted infections and methods of protection.”
On the site, four teen actors and two doctors provide pre-recorded answers to questions about sex.
When the viewer asks about the best way to protect oneself from sexually transmitted infections, one of the doctors replies: “We each have our own way of dealing with this. … If you’re just hooking up casually, you definitely need to use a condom.” Abstinence is mentioned last.
The website also directs teens to outside groups and resources, including a Denver partnership that includes Planned Parenthood and a gay-activist group.
FOR MORE INFORMATION
Jim Daly’s Blog: The Sexy Side of Virginity