Apparently this “news” is unknown to a large portion of America, particularly those who find it necessary to inject their moral principles into politics, education, and well, everything. Whenever I’m asked the inevitable question about which kinds of people are most obsessed with sex and sexuality, my answer no longer includes sex addicts or nymphomaniacs. Now, my answer is simply the Christian Right and some Muslims. Yes, there are some people who get highly annoyed with the fact that I put those two groups together, but I’d rather be honest than popular.
The reason why I’m bringing this up now is because of the recent spate of unnecessary legislation and hand-wringing surrounding sex and gender identity in general. The latter is only mentioned here because there are a few people out there who are making the argument for “potty laws” on the basis of public safety, ostensibly protecting the masses from molestation in public facilities. Religious backlash against colleges offering “sex week” programming is what really got me annoyed, particularly on the University of Tennessee campus – events that got the attention of the nation thanks to Todd Starnes from Fox News. The premise of the article by Starnes is that it is absolutely unacceptable for taxpayer dollars to be spent on sex week activities, and his arguments are punctuated by pulling out the theoretically most controversial topics covered during the week. Of course, he definitely doesn’t point out that the vast majority of the content offered during UT’s Sex Week involved medical and scientific information to interested students – much of it was billed as “information you may have missed in your abstinence-only sex-ed classes.”
It is no secret that the US is behind other industrialized nations when it comes to sex, and thanks to MTV, I don’t need to bore you all with all those statistics. However, I will point out the glaring irony here – we have more unintended pregnancies, abortions, teen moms, and teens with STDs than any other industrialized nation, thanks to the fact that we let religious people decide how we educate our children about sex. We are the most schizophrenic nation because we hyper-sexualize everything, even down to baby clothing, but can’t manage to teach our kids how to engage in sexual acts without feeling like they’re doing something “dirty.” In case you’re wondering, that’s the equivalent of having someone who cannot resist eating everything in charge of Weight Watchers.
Starnes and his ilk are absolutely wrong about taxpayer dollars being misspent on sex-ed, especially in the case of Sex Week activities on college campuses. I wish it wasn’t necessary to have this remedial training in interpersonal relationships, sex, consent, rape prevention, self-respect, empathy, and tolerance, to name a few “evil things” that are taught during these seminars. The problem isn’t the kids learning about sex – the problem is with the squeamish supposed-adults who are whimpering over the fact that someone else is learning how to do something they obviously have been sorely missing throughout their lifetimes. Seriously, if there was ever anyone who really needed to get laid, these people are it! Please, step away, get some therapy, and stop setting up the next generation to need mental help, too!