The sex ed debate, what age is to young ?



Soaring rates of sexually transmitted diseases among teens are adding urgency to the debate over sex education. Conservatives claim the alarming statistics illustrate why abstinence should be the single mantra when it comes to sex ed. Liberals counter that the increase in disease is the strongest case for more detailed information. Caught in the middle are America’s kids, who are more vulnerable than ever to potentially deadly diseases.

In the debate over sex education, one thing is undisputed: The average kid today is immersed in sexual imagery. A generation that has grown up on the sordid details of the Starr Report, watched thong-clad teens gyrate on Spring Break cable specials, or read the cover of nearly any women’s magazine in the grocery check-out line is familiar with the facts of life.

But young people face a barrage of confusing messages. Along with titillating images from the media, some kids are told to “just say no” to sex. In school, others are taught how to put condoms on bananas in preparation for the real thing, and still other children receive no information whatsoever.

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