Despite evidence that abstinence-only education actually increases rates of teenage pregnancy and sexually-transmitted infections, only 13 states require such education to be medically accurate (“As Colorado Moves to Bar Abstinence-Only Sex Education, Teenagers Take the Lead,” The New York Times, Feb. 21). That’s appalling when the consequences are fully understood.
Unfortunately, too many parents incorrectly assume that teaching the truth about sex will result in their children engaging in intimate practices. California passed the Healthy Youth Act in 2016, which required schools to teach the truth about the subject, even though some parents attacked the act as being pornographic.
It’s amazing that the U.S. persists in its prudishness about sex, particularly because kids mature much earlier than in past generations and are exposed to sexual images on an unprecedented scale. Other countries are far more realistic. For example, Sweden treats sex as important as other subjects. It insists on truthfulness. Too bad the U.S. does not follow Sweden. Our young people would be better served and tragedies could be avoided.
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