A necessary option July 8, 2014
Sex education in school is about how to do it responsibly
You know the country that India is most beginning to resemble? The United States of America. Case in point, our health minister’s opinion on how to handle sex education in schools. His idea is that we don’t need it and should instead rely on teaching kids Indian values. Wee, we have finally become a first world nation because in America many conservative politicians, including the brilliant-minted George W Bush, have been pushing for basically the same thing-abstinence-only education in school. Great! I cannot wait for us to get our own Disneyland. Here is what I believe the problem is. I don’t think our health minister knows exactly what ‘sex education’ means. I think he think that it means teachers will be teaching kids HOW to have sex. I hate to break this to yeah, but everyone knows how to do it, yet there are definitely some who do it better but we all know how. It’s an instinct that we are born with, like knowing how to breathe. So no, sex education isn’t there to tell us how to, it’s there to tell us how to REPONSIBLY.
Cold, hard facts have probed that the less we tell our kind and the more taboo we make the conversation around sex, the worse off they will be. Compared to other developed nations America has amongst the highest rate of teen pregnancies, young women in the US are sexually active at a younger age and they tend to have a relatively higher number of sex partners. Interestingly, the Netherlands, a country where you can smoke weed and visit a prostitute without fear of being judged or jailed, has amongst the most sexually healthy teens. They wait longer, use contraception properly and have sex with fewer people.
Okay, so clearly we ain’t ever gonna be as cool as the Dutch but what is it that us the US of A is a very religious country and it appears that all religion have the same sex education message-no sex before marriage. While this may have been a workable solution in the 1800s it is not so today. The number of years between attaining sexual maturity and eventually getting married is on the rise, I got married at 31, if I had waited till then to have sex I would have imploded. The idea of abstinence doesn’t work; look at alcohol consumption in Gujrat. Has anybody stopped drinking? Nope, the Gujarat daaru is as easily available as dhokla and while this is all right for the rich and powerful, they call their bottlegger and he gets them whatever they want. How is it working out for the poor? Not well. Thanks to this prohibition nonsense they are forced to depend on questionable sources for their product and very often and up drinking what is basically poison. Telling people that they can’t do something has never and will never work, especially when those people are teenagers.
The truth is that morals and values go only so far. After appoint you have to use pragmatism to keep you children safe from STD and unwanted pregnancies because quite frankly the ‘pull and pray’ method isn’t going to cut it. Many of us are just plain lucky that we didn’t have to deal with the unpleasantness of an abortion or worse. We need sex education so young people are less at risk. So they can learn the facts, set up their boundaries without fear of being called a prude or a ho and find happiness and hoy in their sexuality, be it heterosexual, homosexual or anything in between. Mister Health Minister, and all those who support his point of new, just because you didn’t have the opportunity to choose a better, healthier, more fulfilling sex life, please let’s not ruin theirs.
As narrated by Radhika Vaz TOI