Planned parenthood is a positive force
People often mistake the Bay area as being an enclave of free thinkers and artists. After all, San Francisco brought us the Folsom Street Fair, Kink.com and cardamom ice cream. But the Bay Area, and a great portion of California, can be super-conservative despite its liberal-minded neighbors.
The latest in the immortal pissing contest of liberals vs. conservatives is happening in the Acalanes Union High School District. By partnering with Planned Parenthood for sex-education classes, it set off a modern-day “Scarlet Letter.” Instead of an “A,” the two Ps you think of when it burns when you pee became a rallying point for slut-shaming. Can you slut-shame an entire organization?
Camille Giglio, an Acales district parent, formed NOISE (No to Irresponsible Sex Education) Coalition to get Planned Parenthood out of schools. The problem is that these people are reacting to the organization’s name and reputation. For example, Giglio told KPIX 5, “Planned Parenthood is a business. It’s a business that sells sex. It’s a way to get clientele and to sexualize young people and turn them into lifelong clients.” Does she not realize that Planned Parenthood is a not-for-profit? It’s hard to imagine how an organization could profit from providing a last-resort for the uninsured, uneducated or under-parented.
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Ironically, Planned Parenthood is where people go when their parents do not educate them about sex. This makes them uniquely qualified to provide guidance to children before they get into trouble. It’s strange that the battle to police reproductive rights has gone local and down to the high-school level. The class in question included valuable information about consent and teaching kids to make responsible sexual decisions. The prospect of teaching 13-year-olds how to engage in healthy sex is the point of contention. Kids were given questionnaires about valuable questions to ask like, “Is this OK?” and “Can I kiss you?” Given the fact that rape is still a huge issue, especially among teenagers and college students, it’s strange there would be detractors.
The sex-education class was more than just a frank and educational explanation of sexual health and consent. It also taught children about the complexities of gender identity and sexuality. It taught the students the differences of gender expression, sexual orientation and transgendered identities. This is important given the great number of gay bashings and transgender murders that are still prevalent in the news.
In some distant alternate universe, had these people just said they hated abortions, they would at least have more integrity and a stronger argument. The best part is children and parents could opt-out of the class. But the folks at NOISE are not happy with other people’s children being educated. The prospect of their children being ostracized for not being able to attend somehow is a sound reason to not educate an entire generation of children.
Let’s be honest, this whole “let’s be precious with our babies” is the reason that there’s an entire age group empowered by their own entitlement and inherent special-ness.
Basically, a bunch of older folks shouldn’t dictate how we teach all children about sexuality. After all, they already made their mistakes, so why not give those mistakes, or miracles, a chance at a healthy sexuality free from gender policing, sexual assault and sexually transmitted diseases. They can keep their children ignorant, however, it’s a public health issue. It’s easy to realize kids will have sex and ratchet dance songs about boning and readily available pornography are more likely to push kids into engaging in sex than education.
Without a proper understanding of the physical and emotional ramifications associated with sex, aren’t we leaving children in a more dangerous and precarious situation?