Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Three reasons to reject sex-ed lessons

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Although The Gazette could find no logical reason for rejecting the new Montgomery County Public Schools sex-ed lessons, I suggest three:

First, the American Academy of Pediatrics warns that American teenagers are acquiring sexually transmitted diseases in epidemic proportions. MCPS introduces anal sex and provides training on proper condom use, but fails to acknowledge the enormous heightened health risks associated with anal sex for both homosexuals and heterosexuals even with a condom.

Second, the lessons teach that any range of negative attitudes toward homosexuality is homophobia. There is no allowance for concerns over health risks (documented by the AAP), and there is certainly no allowance for religious objections, however respectfully they are articulated. Is any concern about homosexuality really hateful and diseased?

Third, the previous flexibility that allowed parents to opt their children out of all or part of the curriculum has been eliminated. Now any 10th grader opting out of the four days of homosexuality instruction will be entirely excluded from the Family Life and Human Development Unit and spend three weeks studying decision making and other general health topics. Also, anyone not viewing the condom video (one day) will spend three weeks learning mainly about obesity.

Martha Schaerr, Derwood