J Walking

Interesting new data out on teen birth rates and teen sexual activity:

Birth rate decline was particularly steep among Black, non-Hispanic and Asian or Pacific Islander adolescents, ages 15-17, according to the Federal Interagency Forum on Child and Family Statistics, which released on Friday its first in a series of annual reports on the condition of children in America.
The use of condoms among sexually active girls has increased to 56 percent in 2005 compared to 38 percent in 1991. At the same time, fewer students also reported ever having had sexual intercourse with 47 percent of high school students in 2005 saying they had sex compared to 54 percent in 1991. The rate remained the same between 2003 and 2005.

Maybe everyone is right. The abstinence folks can say that their message is working. That is a good thing. Teens need to be doing lots of different thing but sex isn’t one of them. It is also proof that we are more than animals – we can say no to sex.
The birth control people are right. If teens are going to be having sex they need to know how to protect themselves and the only way to do that is through education. The idea that giving teens information about sex will only encourage them to have sex is absur – akin to saying that kids shouldn’t be educated about drugs because it may cause them to use.
This is big news and good news.

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