Sunday, 30 January 2011

Corrupting the majority for the sake of the minority...

James Preece has posted a link to Patricia Wocial's TV appearance about sex education in school. Patricia is very sensible, and many of the comments very supportive.

But I think it instructive to look at those with opposed views. For example:

It's all well and good for Patricia to be saying that loving parents should teach their lovely children about lovely sex. But what about kids without parents? What about kids who have parents who are unwilling to talk about the subject, or are not exactly 'experts', to put it nicely.

This is the argument that is repeatedly used, and has some face-validity. However to design progammes for everyone based on the minority is potentially very problematic. In fact it seems to me to be a main driver of our current problems with teenage promiscuity (leading to STDs, abortions and other tragedies) and marital breakdown.

The argument goes that in a few cases something terrible happens (eg a girl gets pregnant because she didn't know that's how babies are made); therefore we must minimise that risk by teaching EVERYONE all there is to know about how babies are made.

Or some marriages really do break down irretrievably. Therefore we must avoid moralising or stigmatising, and make it as easy and acceptable as possible for people to divorce.

In both cases, the small minority argument drives a policy that exacerbates the problem - so we now have a huge number of promiscuous teenagers (as opposed to the very small numbers before all this 'enlightened' practice was introduced) and catastrophic rates of marriage and relationship breakdown.


Jackie Parkes MJ said...

I agree ..

Patricius said...

I am reminded of how the chief success of the AIDS awareness campaign in the 1980s was in getting the word "condoms" onto the school playground.

Ben Trovato said...

Jackie: thanks for your comment.

Patricius: I fear it did more than get the word into the playgrounds...