In the 1960s the first debates over sex education started. In the past decades, people have been fighting for and against abstinence education which is filled with many religious based perspective and dishonest “facts”. More current research shows that this approach does not fully prevent sexual activity and often encourages poor choices as youth are not properly educated; however, millions of federal and state dollars are being pumped into the public education system to support such work. In light of the social movement of gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender and questioning individuals pushing for rights and recognition, the sexual education plan degrades their relationships and calls only sexual activity between a married, male-female couple legitimate and morally correct. The work of the conservatives in the 60s has brought about a sex education system that passes moral judgments and does not focus on honest facts; if the conservatives “win” again in the light of sex education and non-heterosexuals, we could see future generations of youth being incorrectly and incompletely educated. In this presentation I argue that there are clear correlations between the work in the 60s and the current advocacies and that we should learn from our past to design a successful plan for the future that does not discount the worth of certain communities or place moral judgment on others.
Cassandra Gerroll, ’04 Mt. Vernon, IA
Majors: Psychology and Sociology
Sponsor: Tina Fetner