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Essay / Research Paper Abstract
An 8 page research paper that examines the growing trend in the U.S. toward abstinence-only sex education. The writer argues that these programs are ineffective and bad public policy that actually endangers adolescents rather then coping with the problems of teen pregnancy and the rate of STDs. Bibliography lists 6 sources.
8 pages (~225 words per page)
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Unformatted sample text from the term paper:
two thirds of all girls and three quarters of all boys in the United States have engaged in sexual activity, and this activity, more often as not, has been without
effective contraception (Raffaelli, et al 315). Consequently, more then one million adolescent girls become pregnant each year and sexually active teens have the highest rate of sexually transmitted disease (STDs)
among all age groups (Raffaelli, et al 315). Given these rather alarming statistics, one would surmise that the country would be emphasizing contraceptive and safer-sex information to this very
vulnerable age group. While this would be the logical response, it ignores the highly controversial nature of this issue. Due to this emotional component, the adult population of this country
is, instead, choosing to put on bureaucratic "blinders" and adopt a stance that, while it is emotionally comfortable to many adults, ignores the reality of this situation. Across the country,
school boards are adopting abstinence-only sex education programs that stress "character" and "values" while ignoring information about contraception and safer-sex techniques (Stryker 19). In these programs, contraceptive and safe sex
information is only discussed from a standpoint of its failure rates. These programs are driving out sex education instruction that takes a more comprehensive approach. Last year the forces advocating
abstinence-only programs scored a major victory when the federal government passed the federal welfare repeal provision for abstinence education. This legislation allocates $50 million a year for the next five
years for school programs that have as their "exclusive purpose" teaching the "social, psychological, and health gains" that can be realized from abstinence (Stryker 19). School boards and parents
feel comfortable with such programs that advocate strong family values, and are pleased with the growing trend. Thus far, there is only one major problem. There is no reliable evidence