Sex Ed Fight Continues

The pro-abortion lobbyists behind the sex-ed bills we defeated this year haven’t given up the fight. But they know that FIC hasn’t either. From the June 23rd Journal Inquirer:

Those ‘usual suspects’ include Peter Wolfgang, Executive Director of the Family Institute of Connecticut.

“The bill was written in a very vague manner, so it was never clear how the money was going to be spent,” Wolfgang said. “It seemed pretty clear that abstinence was not going to be the main thrust of this bill.”

The bill’s language, however, was not Wolfgang’s only concern; the Family Institute supports abstinence-only education in public schools.

The fact that many teenagers will already have sex does not mean they should be taught about sex, as far as opponents are concerned.

“Kids are going to do drugs anyway, does that mean we should give them the drugs?” Wolfgang asked hypothetically…

“If the parents are tongue-tied, we ought to provide tools for them to fulfill their natural role in educating their children on these matters,” Wolfgang said, although he maintained that sex education in schools should be limited to an abstinence-only approach.

Read the whole article here.

6 Responses to “Sex Ed Fight Continues”

  1. on 29 Jun 2008 at 9:27 amtommi

    I find this puzzling:

    In the previous posting, re: the father commission, Dave made the (somewhat insulting) comment that Americans are a “freedom-loving” people, as opposed to those citizens of the UK who are, apparently, not.

    Dave based his comment on the actions of a teacher in Scotland, who denied students the right to make Father’s Day cards. (As we all know, the actions of one teacher in one school do indeed mirror the beliefs of an entire nation. Or two. Or three.)

    Whilst I am not sure that the degree to which a nation celebrates of Father’s Day is the proper measurement of a nation’s regard for freedom, or of fatherhood, for that matter (perhaps there is a study Dave is privy to) — I do find an interesting contradiction here.

    If “freedom” is put at peril because certain children are not allowed to make Father’s Day cards in order to spare the feelings of children who do not have fathers to hand, then how is it that freedom will not be put at peril if you put a halt to teaching comprehensive sex education in public schools so as to spare the sensibilities of those who believe abstinence is the only way?

    Further, how is it “freedom” to force the teaching of *only* abstinence on people?

    Children are not forced to attend sex education classes in Connecticut public schools. Parents who believe in comprehensive sex education send their children to class. Parents who don’t believe in it have the freedom to opt out and teach their children anything they want. Seems as if everyone has the freedom to do what best suits them already. Why are you trying to remove that freedom?

  2. on 29 Jun 2008 at 10:15 pmDave


    It’s clear we have quite different perspectives on the meaning of freedom for a country’s citizens. When I speak of freedom here, I mean to emphasize our individual liberty to be free from unwarranted and unnecessary government interference. Intertwined with this is our right to self-determination, which is crucial to limiting or correcting the over-reaching powers of government which may arise from time to time.

    In the UK, this understanding of freedom has been twisted by the flawed implementation of so-called “citizenship education” programs, which have essentially become an authoritarian propaganda tool of inducing conformance. The root of the problem is that these programs establish a set of values that students are expected to hold without having subjected those values to a public debate. Citizenship education has become a compulsory subject in UK schools, ensuring that the next generation is taught a system of values chosen and dictated by the state. Perhaps we Americans need to be enlightened about this “new-fangled thinking”, but it doesn’t sound like the freedom that I know and love.

    Turning back to the focus of this subject thread – specifically as it pertains to “sex education” programs – our liberty includes the right for our children to be free from indoctrination which masquerades as education; and likewise to be free from the burden of additional taxes that fund such indoctrination. Moreover, it includes the right for parents rather than schools to determine when and how it is appropriate for this subject to be addressed, since it encompasses very serious life choices about morality and (for some) religious beliefs and values. Attempting to reason that freedom requires we embrace the government-sponsored teaching of any and every point of view of human sexuality to impressionable youth, and that all such views are equally meritorious, is to turn the very concept of individual liberty upon its head. Liberty exists for the benefit of the people to be free from undue government influence; it does not exist to grant latitude to the government for meddling in matters outside its rightful purpose.

    As I wrote quite some time ago on this blog:

    As a parent, what I find objectionable in present-day “sex education” programs within our schools is the element of indoctrination. If the curriculum remained focused exclusively on factual matters such as human anatomy, without attempting to inculcate values of moral relativism in our children, then it would be serving its proper educational role as it once did before the 1960s.

    The problem, of course, is that modern “sex ed” programs are designed as tools of propaganda. As described by Dr. Mary Calderone, former medical director of Planned Parenthood, first president of the Sexuality Information and Education Council of the US (SIECUS) and the architect of modern sex education, today’s programs are designed to enable the schools to “pry children away from old views and values, especially from biblical and other traditional forms of sexual morality.”

    And what has this so-called innovation provided in terms of results, during the past 4 decades? Epidemic rates of STDs among teens, out-of-wedlock teen pregnancies, and psychological trauma. An explosion in teenage sexuality and promiscuity, inspired by an “anything goes” attitude that is rooted in new beliefs – that supreme moral authority resides in one’s own personal choice, and that this freedom trumps any absolute moral standards based on societal norms or traditions. And once you’ve peeled away the outward signs of moral decay, at its heart this brainwashing all comes down to a belief that there is no absolute standard of “right and wrong”, and that each person can define for themselves what is “right and wrong” as they see fit. In this death spiral towards moral chaos, our children are being misled to set aside the wisdom of past generations, through which our previous moral standards were developed for the collective good.

    Moreover, the damage being done to society by programs such as these leads to much suffering. Children born of children, who are then raised without the support of both a mother and a father. An increased financial burden on the rest of society, as we cope with the impact to public health and welfare. A dysfunctional society that can no longer compete effectively with the rest of the world. And we wonder why our children are falling behind relative to educational standards of accomplishment. Perhaps if the schools would focus the more of their energy on teaching, and less on attempting to sway hearts and minds, some of this damage could be reversed.

    You say that you find my prior comments insulting. However, what I find particularly insulting is when someone comes to us from another state or country and presumes to interject themselves in a debate that is primarily one for the people of Connecticut to decide.

    I stand by my remarks about the schools in Scotland which banned students from making Father’s Day cards. It may seem a small matter, but it is yet another sign of “politically correct thinking” gone amok. Far from being a single teacher, “thousands of primary pupils were prevented from making Father’s Day cards at school for fear of embarrassing classmates who live with single mothers and lesbians” according to a June 23rd story by The Daily Telegraph (established in 1855 and currently the most widely read newspaper in the UK). The same story confirms that “the Father’s Day card ban has been introduced by schools in Glasgow, Edinburgh, East Renfrewshire, Dumfries and Galloway and Clackmannshire.” You are being disingenuous in describing this is as the works of a single teacher, or perhaps only a few, and consequently you undermine your credibility here.

    As to the rights of parents to “opt out” of their child’s exposure to sex education in the public schools, many of us do question the honesty and candor of schools in this matter. How much is being taught to our children without parental disclosure? Certainly the Massachusetts case of David Parker evokes a degree of skepticism, particularly since there was already a law (Chapter 71, Section 32A) on the books in that state requiring parental notification and “opting out” of teacher-initiated discussions of sexuality -yet it wasn’t enough to help this father protect his child. And arguably our laws here in Connecticut are even weaker, because while we have an “opt out” clause in CGS 10-16e … we don’t have any parental notification requirements that are codified.

  3. on 30 Jun 2008 at 8:32 amDavid

    Dave, I agree with much of what you say and certainly that the UK has gone over the edge on many things. One question though, what does Father’s day have to do with education? Shouldn’t the time be spent imparting useful wisdom to the children that they can use to survive and advance? Is it right to “indoctrinate” children with the idea that every family MUST has a father and mother to be a real one? And if it is then what do you do for children who don’t fit that mold – those who live in the horrifying conditions that automatically result from a non-mom/dad configuration in their homes? Is that really the way to teach children to honor and respect their parents, or the people raising them?

    “In this death spiral towards moral chaos, our children are being misled to set aside the wisdom of past generations, through which our previous moral standards were developed for the collective good.”

    So is all the “wisdom of past generations” good, moral and life giving. Hardly! So who gets to decide what should stay and what should go? Without challenges, and at times, rejection of such “wisdom” the human race would NEVER have progressed. You look back to some mythical time when everything was wonderful and moral and Christian. It ain’t there, never happened, never will. I know you didn’t say Christian but that underlies everything that is said on here. I’m not advocating anarchy and acknowledge we are in serious trouble, though certainly not for all the reasons you do. I’m not claiming to have all the answers but I do know that an attempt to return to the days of sex being some dirty little secret is NOT one of them.

    You want parents (meaning of course mother a mother/father combination because all others are inferior) to be the only source of teaching about sex. Fine, one my my classmates in the 70s learned about sex from her father, then she had his baby. Good thing the evil gov’t wasn’t indoctrinating kids back then eh? What about parents that have no moral structure, never mind one that you would consider correct? What about fathers whose idea of morality is treating women like something you scrape of your shoe – use, abuse and then dump them? Who think that fathering a child is a badge of honor, or think that homosexuals are sick, disgusting “immoral” animals to be used as targets. How many parents who believe as you do are actually able to teach respect for the person no matter what you think of their sexual orientation? Actually, not many would even use those words because they buy the whole “behavior” nonsense. And I’ll tell you from years of experience in “conservative” churches that most are not. When the leader of an international church (and one that claims to be the only true church) stands up and makes foul proclamations about non-“traditional” families how is any of his followers going to be able to pass anything resembling respect on to their children? Same question for those who belong to any of the hundreds/thousands of mega-churches run by self-proclaimed bishops, apostles or whatever arrogant title they choose. A parent cannot teach something that they don’t even have in them. You throw around the word brainwashing when it comes to gov’t schools, well they aren’t the only source of such mind abuse.

    Sex education should not be used to impose one set of moral beliefs over another but it certainly should be used to teach respect of self and others that many parents are incapable of or choose not to do. Without that tool children/young adults can never be expected to make the decisions that are best for them AND society. In many places it fails to do that and needs to be corrected but there is far more chance of chaos in what you advocate. Perhaps not chaos in society as a whole because mindless adherence to the “wisdom of past generations” does produce a sense of order, on the surface anyway. But for those outside the “norm” the result is most certainly chaos and a complete inability to live their own lives free of oppression and condemnation. THAT is not good for anyone. There are many causes of the situation that exists today but blaming sex education is blindness and denial.

  4. on 30 Jun 2008 at 8:55 amDavid

    one clarification – the fact that the sentence that speaks of parents who believe that homosexuals as targets is followed by one that says “parents who believe as you” is NOT an implication, accusation or even the slightest suggestion that you are part of that group.

    “although he maintained that sex education in schools should be limited to an abstinence-only approach”

    right, because that has always worked so well. It is foolish and wrong not to include abstinence in any sex ed curriculum and not to clearly draw attention to the fact that it IS the only sure way of protecting against pregnancy and STDs BUT to ignore the fact that children should also be taught the possible consequences of sexual experimentation and promiscuity (both physical and emotional) and the tools to minimize these consequences is dangerous and detrimental to all of society. Just say no NEVER works without also helping them to find the self-respect and strength to say no. The it’s a sin line is bound to fail when they can take a look at their parents and their churches and see that various “sins” are abounding and accepted, perhaps even celebrated. Constantly blaming the gov’t, the schools, the liberals etc is one of the worst forms of blindness and does nothing to rectify a situation that desperately needs it.

    Rest assured I’m not saying that Planned Parenthood is qualified or has any “right” to dictate these things either. I guess I have this impossible dream that secular AND religious beliefs can be honored and a compromise that benefits all will happen.

  5. on 30 Jun 2008 at 10:16 amDave


    It isn’t indoctrination to recognize a fact. Every child had a father and mother, as required by the nature of human biology. What would you have us do – abolish Mother’s Day and Father’s Day and replace them with some kind of generic “Parent’s Day” instead?

    Children whose fathers or mothers are no longer participating in their upbringing nevertheless have an opportunity to consider appreciation for whoever else is taking up the role and responsibility of the absent parent, and perhaps to remember past relationship with the absent parent. These opportunities for reflection also serve an introspective purpose about one’s own future role as a parent, should one choose to bring a child into this world. The tradition of these holidays consequently leads us to contemplate the “past, present and future” of motherhood and fatherhood.

    I can’t believe you would seriously ask what this has to with education. Schools are about preparing our youth for their future life as adults, and the vocations that they will pursue. Among all the varied jobs they may hold, the ones most likely to be held in common by them are “father” and “mother”. If we cannot acknowledge this simple truth – that our next generation will come into existence through those who choose to become fathers and mothers – then what, pray tell, is the point of any “sex education” within our schools? Truly responsible “sex education” programs will emphasize that sex means not only making babies, but the duties and responsibilities that fall upon those who making this adult choice in their lives; and that children ought not to engage themselves prematurely in this adult behavior because they are not ready for the consequences.

  6. on 14 Jul 2008 at 4:03 pmDavid

    “Schools are about preparing our youth for their future life as adults”

    But that’s not what you are saying. You want them to be molded in one certain way. That is not preparing them for life as adults, that is indoctrinating. Absolutely the need to be taught responsibility and given the tools to make healthy decisions is necessary and should be part of a health/sex education curriculum but. And you strongly oppose teaching information that is crucial to making those decisions, including the acknowledgment of homosexuality.

    “Children whose fathers or mothers are no longer participating in their upbringing nevertheless have an opportunity to consider appreciation for whoever else is taking up the role and responsibility of the absent parent, and perhaps to remember past relationship with the absent parent.”

    No, what specifying father’s or mother’s day does is deny the appreciation of anyone who is not the child’s mother or father. All caregivers should be celebrated.

    Using David Parker as an example seriously undermines your credibility. His behavior has been appalling and has little to do with protecting his child and everything to do with pushing a political viewpoint. Using children in such a manner is repulsive and certainly isn’t something that they should learn on their way to adulthood.

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