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Friday, September 12, 2008


I was having one of those days today when I forget how to take my watch off. Does this happen to you ever? You’ve taken your watch off hundreds of times, and then you just . . . forget? You pull the latch and pull it and nothing happens and you start flailing and yelling, “It’s a trap! It’s a trap! GET IT OFF ME!”

And when this happens when you are sitting at a table full of other writers who are ALREADY a little scared of you because you are on deadline . . . and there you are clawing at your watch and screaming about traps . . . well, it can be embarrassing. So when one of them calmly suggested that maybe I should take a break for a minute and update my blog, I listened.

What I found was that the post I fired off last week was quietly collecting 204 comments. 204 REALLY INTERESTING comments. So while I had many shiny things to get to, I feel compelled to respond to a few of them.

On the whole, the comments were really positive! It was great to see what you all had to say. There are many ways of looking at this situation, and I really appreciated the fact that people from all different viewpoints came to offer their views.

In fact, there was only one comment that I took any issue with, and that was this one:

sharpie said...
Gosh, this really made me sick to read. Starts off with why are we discussing Bristol and then goes on at length to blast Bristol.

Looking at the smutty pics on your side bar, I find it pretty ironic to hear one of your ilk berating a 17 year old girl for having sex!

So, you think teen moms should all have abortions if they become pregnant. Fine. Barack's mom became an unwed pregnant teen at age 17. 

What do you think of that? Of course that's different. 

I do know one place where your judgmental lecture might do some good. Why don't you go stand on a street corner in an inner city neighborhood and tell every single unwed teenager that if she doesn't have an abortion, she doesn't get any foodstamps.
That might actually do some good.

Normally, I would skip a comment like this. It’s not that I have a problem with someone disagreeing with or criticizing me—but Sharpie appears to be responding to some post that he/she has constructed in his/her own head. No one is berating Bristol—in fact, the opposite. (See the title of the post, FREE BRISTOL PALIN, for clarification.) And the part that says, “So, you think teen moms should all have abortions if they become pregnant” is kind of easily dismissed by the fact that I said I wasn’t talking about abortion at all. But something in the comment struck me as worth mentioning, as someone of my ilk.


“Barack's mom became an unwed pregnant teen at age 17. 
What do you think of that? Of course that's different.”

Sharpie said this while operating under the idea that I was yelling at Bristol, which again, fails the Reading Comprehension part of the exercise. But as it turns out, I have very definite feelings on this! This is the real reason I am quoting Sharpie at all. He/she has provided me with a convenient way of slipping in a piece of information that is quite relevant to this discussion.

I am the byproduct of not one, but TWO unplanned teen pregnancies. TWO.

Both of my biological grandmothers were unwed teens. I knew one of them; the other is an unknown woman from a southern state. My parents' existence, and by default my existence, is based on whole string of errors and lack of resources from way-back-when. I am FRANKEN-UNWEDTEEN-STEIN.

Both of my parents were processed through “the system,” one through adoption and one through foster care. One of my parents got very lucky and was adopted by a wonderful family. One grew up in poverty, under miserable and practically Dickensian conditions. That particular parent of mine happens to be gifted with loads of natural smarts and clawed out of a pretty deep hole. Make no mistake—all of it made an impression and definitely affected their life.

So trust me, Sharpie, I’m not judging Bristol Palin or her ilk. I AM MADE OF that ilk.


We’re all the product of strange chances. Almost everyone’s parents have the story of the random encounter or blind date or whatever happenstance threw them together. Some people happened to be older and married when they got pregnant. Some did not. No one checks for documentation before you’re allowed out of the womb. Biology simply requires that some little sperm swim fast enough to a little egg—and boom! Out you come. Like an Eggo waffle from a toaster, except less crispy and hopefully not covered in delicious syrup.

My point is . . . now that you’re here, you have some control over your life. Because of their backgrounds, both of my parents went to extreme lengths to make sure I got a good education. Education arms you. It gives you the information you need to make some choices in your life, rather than just getting smacked around by fate.

This is why I think “abstinence only” education is a joke surrounded by a thick coating of fraud. Abstinence only denies your biology reality. Abstinence only deprives you of important information that could profoundly alter your life. Comprehensive sex education is sort of the “owner’s manual” that you need. It’s necessary because many parents don’t know how to or refuse to teach about the reproductive system. It is NOT a class on “how to get some.” It’s a class on what to do when you’ve got some, whenever that is. And that sometime, for you, may be the day you get married! All sex education means is that, WHENEVER in your life you start having sex, you will have some basic working knowledge of WHAT ALL THE PARTS DO and how to protect yourself from pregnancy and disease, because, like I was saying last time, IT’S NOT REALLY THAT COMPLICATED.

In fact, as esteemed sex educator Sue Johanson just pointed out in an interview, ALL sex education emphasizes abstinence. And anything with the word “only” in the title doesn’t really sound all that educational. Anything that actually comes out and says “WE ARE LEAVING INFORMATION OUT” has no place on a curriculum. It means that someone has decided that something is “inappropriate,” the something in this case being how your body works.

Which, in my opinion, is sick. It’s not useful to have someone slapping you on the wrist and saying, “Sex is dirty and bad and SO ARE YOU.” None of that is true.

Taking the discussion in another way . . .

gracewanderer said...
"Bristol Palin has no choices."

What about the choice she made to have sex in the first place? Is it really so hard to exercise a bit of self control?

Of course by saying that I've cast myself in the role of "religious conservative nutjob" which is not the case at all. I just think that our side (because I agree with you! really!) tends to throw the baby out with the bath water, and that people really, really should be taught to exercise self control. Not just by yelling that if you do X we'll cast you out, but by actually teaching methods and practices for developing better self control. That is, to some extent, what makes us human after all.

You don’t sound like a nutjob to me, Grace. It’s a very good question. When I said Bristol Palin had no choices, I meant that she has no choices now . . . now that’s she’s pregnant and her mother is running for Vice President on a ticket that has a strong social agenda for things like abstinence-only education and is powerfully anti-abortion. Now that she’s in the public eye in the middle of a political storm, there is very little Bristol Palin can actually do about her situation except WHATEVER SHE IS TOLD because she symbolizes a much larger movement. Which is pretty unfair to her.

As to whether or not she should have been having sex at all . . . that’s a harder question. Allow me to stumble through it. I mean, you’ve already come this far.

I don’t think the self-control is what makes us human. The urges are human—the self-control comes from something a bit bigger, like society. The human body is ready for sex long before society as a whole feels that sex is appropriate or advisable, which is a large part of the reason high school is such a good time! There you are, trying to memorize the top three exports of India or master Trigonometry . . . meanwhile, your body is just pumping out loads of chemicals designed to make you want to seek out mates. It’s DRUGGING YOU UP. No one has told your body that having a baby at thirteen is a bad idea. It has a really old instruction manual and is slow to adopt updates and just follows the program.

We all learn to control and master these feelings the chemicals produce because, for the most part, we want to learn enough about the exports of India and Trigonometry so that they will LET US OUT OF HIGH SCHOOL. At some point, though, the intellect decides to sit down and have a little talk with the Department of Biological Urges to see if some agreement can be reached. Because it WILL NOT DO to be running around the halls, drooling and chasing after each other. We impose order. It doesn’t mean the urges are bad. It just means they have to be managed so we can do other things with our lives.

I don’t think there’s any way of determining when EXACTLY is the right time for someone to have sex. I think this happens at different times for different people. I think you have to have a powerful voice coming from INSIDE telling you that you are ready to have sex. And I think one of the signs that you are ready is that you are thinking about the consequences beforehand—physical, social, mental, the works. You have to have the confidence not to give in and have sex just because someone is pressuring you to. (Because it’s perfectly normal and acceptable NOT to want to.) And you have to be armed with sufficient knowledge about how to deal with sex.

And if no one is going to teach you, Libba Bray and I are going to drive around the country and explain it ourselves. This is probably not the best solution, as I know for certain that one of us—probably BOTH of us—will try to blow up the condoms and twist them into balloon animal shapes. And I’ll have to keep calling my mom and asking her all kinds of anatomy questions, and once I’m on the phone with my mom, it’s often hard to get off, so you’ll all just be standing around and waiting while she tells me about the cat and the backyard.

But all right. There is only so much of this I can do when there are so many pressing Abba/book/shiny related issues on the horizon. I have SO MANY THINGS to tell you. I have NEWS! SEKRITS!

I also don’t mean to say that this will be my last political blog of the season, either. They’ll just have a new, exciting venue. That will all be part of the news in the next post.

So let me give out the final Suite Scarlett of the summer. Please do not think this will be the last book I give away this year. If you have been reading this blog for a while, you know that I go holiday crazy, so by late November I’ll be gearing up to give away LOADS of stuff. And I have this pile of Let It Snows to distribute as well.

So . . . today’s Suite Scarlett goes to Maple-America.

The comments remain as open as ever. What’s your take on all this? What’s your ilk?

Labels: , ,


Blogger NightDrive said...

Hmmmmmmmmmmmm...mmmmm...mmmm...mm. I love these discussions because they get me thinking and since I'm not in school I dont get too many chances to do that. I still really agree with everything youre saying, but I can see things from the other side and kinda agree with them too. Haha.

So when you said "I don’t think the self-control is what makes us human. The urges are human—the self-control comes from something a bit bigger, like society." Theres a part of me that says that the urges are human, yes, but its the self control that puts us in the intelligent category.

But then you kinda said that as well in the next paragraph. So I baisically just ended up nodding along with your blog. As I tend to be doing if Im not laughing hysterically(because thats what your blogs do to me = P)

Yay you!

10:31 AM  
Blogger Hollishillis said...

Your ilk is so sexy maureen. no harrassment intended.


11:25 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

ARE YOUR FREAKIN SERIOUS???!!! (excuse me while i go do my happy dance while wearing a pair of pants on my head!)

ahhh! i'm saved! THANKYOU! I will send me information asap! (as soon as i figure out my adress...)

anyway, i agree with you on like everything, it's that person's choice on whether or not they're ready to have sex. and you should totally think about whether or not your ready for such a big step in your life. having sex not only effects you, it effects the people around you too. GO CHOICE! (and you guys wear that condom! and you ladies use that birth control!)

12:41 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

the reson i don't know my adress is because i've had no need for it before, but now i do! too bad it's in the middle of the night and my house is asleep... ugh! now i have to wait until morning to email you!!! this sucks... now i won't be able to sleep! and i'll probably go to the post office everyday... anyway,
Maureen, your a genius when it comes to all this political stuff i don't really understand(or cared about until you posted your blog...) but i'm starting to get it! yes, yes i am!

1:06 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hi :) Sometimes I think that counter arguments in politics are ridiculous. It's something like, how can you believe something when it's so incredibly, obviously wrong?! Of course, politics don't really work like that. Though each side is convinced that the other side is just a group of babbling idiots who have no idea what's right for the country, neither party is really looking at themselves and saying, "wait, let's look at why they hate us, and maybe we can try to find some truth in it." I'm not saying that there's truth in Republicans hating Democrats, or Democrats hating Republicans. Both sides have huge stereotypes associated with them though, and that will always lead to all sorts of unfair assumptions.

So, I think your topic was really interesting. I agree with you, wholeheartedly. I don't *really* understand why people don't want to agree with you, too, but I think that there's something more to it than religious beliefs or too many morals.

2:34 PM  
Blogger Cat said...

You and John Green should make a show discussing politics. Really.

Because you and him always seem to be able to put it in a way that I (and a lot of other young people) can understand.

3:12 PM  
Blogger Megan said...

I feel so sorry for Bristol. Poor girl gets pregnant and the whole country has to be talking about it.

On the other hand, you should really watch this video, it's the most amazing thing ever!!!


3:48 PM  
Blogger Mel Francis said...

And anything with the word “only” in the title doesn’t really sound all that educational. Anything that actually comes out and says “WE ARE LEAVING INFORMATION OUT” has no place on a curriculum. It means that someone has decided that something is “inappropriate,” the something in this case being how your body works.

Amen, sistah.

Seriously, the only way to make a good decision/choice is to be informed. If you are uninformed about what parts you have and what they do then there is no way you can make a good decision. You can get lucky and not get pregnant or an STD or you can be another statistic.

The direction America is heading frightens me. All I can do is vote my social conscience and educate my kids. It's a good thing I have no problems discussing sex with them. Actually, I think I've discussed it so much they'll probably choose abstinence because they won't want to talk about their sex life with me! LOL

4:45 PM  
Blogger Heather Harper said...

I'm 36 and have no recollection of sex education other than the 5th grade film about boys and girls changing bodies and the slasher films I watched where only virgins got to live.

I'm all for full disclosure sex education, but I do feel abstinence should be offered proper consideration in a class because it is the safest way to keep oneself from contracting an STD or having an unwanted pregnancy.

5:32 PM  
Blogger Romantic Heretic said...

It's one of the odd dichotomies about that part of the political spectrum now known as 'The Right'.

They go on endlessly about freedom, yet they seem to want to restrict it.

One way is through outright use of the law, as in wanting to make abortion illegal again. Or for that matter any form of birth control.

Another way, and to my mind more heinous, is promotion of ignorance. If you don't know what your choices are and don't know what the effect of those choices is how free are you?

5:57 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

OK, so not so political but I have tragic news:

ABBA Museum Opening Postponed in Stockholm

The June 4, 2009, opening of ABBA the Museum in Stockholm has been postponed. The renovation of the 100-year-old Stora Tullhuset -- the location of the museum -- will take longer than expected. The builders are reviewing their plans, and the ABBA museum “will take a while longer than expected,” says Ulf Westman, founder of ABBA the Museum. As a first step in this new process, the museum management has agreed with the building-owner Stockholms Hamnar (Ports of Stockholm) to cancel the present agreement. This provides an opportunity to find new solutions and to keep all doors open at this stage. It remains to be seen whether the museum ultimately will be located in the original premises of Stora Tullhuset. The interest in the museum is large the world over and new investors are entering the project, which will secure its financial future. There will be an ABBA museum, although it may take a while longer than expected. For more information, call 011 46-70-496 40 20, email ulf@abbamuseum.com or visit www.abbamuseum.com.

6:02 PM  
Blogger Khyrinthia said...

"And if no one is going to teach you, Libba Bray and I are going to drive around the country and explain it ourselves."


6:14 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I feel very bad for the poor girl. I may not personally be proabortion, but I am prochoice, the girl cant even give it up for adoption when she's finished having the baby. She is stuck with a child she may or may not want for the rest of her life. it sucks for her

6:55 PM  
Anonymous Flareod said...

I think one thing that people don't realise about comprehensive sexual education is that it doesn't necessarily make people more likely to have sex! (In fact, statistics would show that abstinence-only programs have about the same rate of "success" when it comes to people not having sex.) On top of this, it provides people with the information to make an informed choice about how to decrease the chance of pregnancy.

One of the (many) reasons I am pro-comprehensive sex-ed is that it can also help people to understand that contraception is not 100% fool-proof. I mean, I'm sure more than one person has been told by one of their mates that if they just slap a condom on the end of their manly-bits then they definitely, always will NOT get their girlfriend pregnant. After all, you would have to be living under a rock not have at least heard of various contraceptive devices – but without properly understanding how they work and how they can be used, one is almost running the same risks as if they were to have sex without contraception. In other words, kids are still hearing about contraceptives, but aren’t properly informed about them – which can lead to all sorts of trouble. I can’t help but get flashbacks to that scene in “Knocked Up” where all the guys are sitting around saying things like “well if she’s on top she can’t get pregnant” etc.

All that said, I don’t want to be mistaken for someone who is anti-contraception. I just believe that uninformed use of contraceptives can be almost as bad as not using contraceptives at all.

7:05 PM  
Anonymous Julia Rios said...

I'd like to see a sex ed video presentations starring you and Libba Bray. I bet you would make it fun and interesting so teens would pay attention and get some of the important information they space out on in the ones that are boring. My ilk is a cat. She sits on my hands while I try to type.

8:53 PM  
Anonymous Haddy-la said...

i think it really briliant stuff that your bloging is common sensetastic. i dont know when you haave sex-ed agian in my school system all i know is its in 6th grade it would be fantastic if you and Libba Bray came to my middle school hillaariouse

12:01 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Yes, you and Libba should totally run Sex Ed classes, LOL.

These are excellent, thought-provoking blogs! Promoting discussion is never a bad thing, as long as people can disagree civilly. Anyway, you make excellent points.

Also, I finished Suite Scarlett the other day- awesome. I love that there was a theatre aspect, being a theatre major (and geek) myself.


12:12 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'm a future teacher of High School English. I look forward the the job a lot, but there is one part (besides the whole, these kids' future love of literature depends on how good a job I do) that I dread. That part is being in the high school setting, around hormonal teenagers, watching the consequences of an abstinence only America, grow (in the form of pregnant teenage bellies) in front of me. It happens all the time, to kids of so many different classes and backgrounds. And as an educator, I really can do nothing, at this point, about it, except say "Abstinence only, students, abstinence only!" without putting my [future] teaching position at risk. So much for the first amendment.

On that same topic, I've heard from countless girls who say that they don't know what else to do with their lives other than have kids so what not start now? That's another thing that needs some light shown on it: teaching teenage girls who are from lower income families with no history of higher education that there are more opportunities for them than just having kids.

12:25 AM  
Blogger WannabeWriter said...

You should be my sex-ed teacher. Heck, you should be all of my teachers. Then I would probably adore school ... at least one-hundredth more than I do now.

Balloon condoms sound fun. At least more fun than sliding them onto bananas or whatever we're going to have to do when I get to health next semester.

I still don't see where I stand here. Because, yeah, Bristol knew there was a chance she'd get pregnant, and yeah, she knew the consequences. But she's human, and her choices can't always be about what her mom's going to do. People in the public eye aren't the only people getting pregnant out there. Bristol's not going to have to brand a huge P in the middle of her forehead. She's not some huge sinner who will be banished to the depths of hell. Gosh, she's just a girl who made a choice and is probably beating herself up over it enough already.

Free Bristol Palin. And make a t-shirt about it.


12:33 AM  
Anonymous Jessica Day George said...

My, you do come from some handsome ilk! Look at that thick pelt, and those antlers! Majestic!

Also, another loud Amen, Hallelujah to your latest post.

Please, Sharpie, try to read things over more carefully before you comment next time.

1:22 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'm less than thrilled by your last two posts. I'm actually pretty offended and scared by what others are commenting. I just wanted to let you know that I'm boycotting you. Not trying to be mean, I'm just "one of those Christians" that y'all seem to love to bash.

1:31 AM  
Anonymous angela said...

Great post,Maureen.
It addressed a lot of issues and clarified what wasn't in the first post. I'm extremely glad we are back to Abba and shiny thinks for the time being. But political posts once in a while make me happy,because they make me think.
Kudos to you.

1:39 AM  
Anonymous angela [again] said...

Anonymous said...

I'm less than thrilled by your last two posts. I'm actually pretty offended and scared by what others are commenting. I just wanted to let you know that I'm boycotting you. Not trying to be mean, I'm just "one of those Christians" that y'all seem to love to bash.

2:01 PM

^ Wow. In response to this,
I am a Christian as well "anonymous" I don't believe in pre-marital sex. There is no bashing of Christians going on here. Bristol had sex. Bristol's pregnant. Bristol's mom is apparently a strong Christian and on the ballot for Vice President. Sarah Palin is a Christian. Ms Johnson was expressing her views no the subject and I believe if you were "one of those Christians" you wouldn't throw Bristol out on the street. I believe that the right thing to do would be accept what she has done and support her in her obvious time of need.

So go ahead, boycott, but if you are going to boycott, boycott because you don't like the books[even though IMO they're amazing] don't boycott because you mis-comprehended the post and it's purpose.

1:44 AM  
Blogger LibraryHermit said...

I think you're right about sex education. All I've ever been taught is "Don't have sex" and "Sex is bad." My old Catholic school is shocked that I now go to a private school that "talks about condoms."

1:53 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Please go around do health education classes with Libba Bray. That would make my life complete.

2:18 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...


the ABBA museum has been POSTPONED!! indefintiely! i read about it in the entertainment section of my local newspaper. of course i thought of you immediatly. my exact thoughts were "oh god, MJ will not be happy about this." anywho, great postasusualy :)

can't wait for more SEKRETS and SHINY THINGS.


2:25 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

darn, someone beat me to the punch of the ABBA delay. oh well. -sigh- i felt special, cuz i got what you were talking about RIGHT WHEN I READ IT. WITHOUT THINKING TOO MUCH! but that might be the opposite of what you are trying to do. make us htink, i mean.


2:29 AM  
Anonymous oboefae said...

Aww, see, now you've almost made me hope they'll continue not teaching us, because I'd rather see the condom/balloon animal-making party.

2:58 AM  
Anonymous Karen said...

I thought this post would have lots of shiny things...?

Yay for Let It Snow!

3:48 AM  
Blogger Chelsea said...

I love how you use your sarcasm for humor. It's at that perfect point where it's hilarious and appropriate mockery, but it's not rude. My purple ilk and I applaud you.

Some people read things and completely miss the point of them. I don't think your last blog criticized Bristol Palin at all, and I don't see how anyone would get that from what you wrote.

You are hilarious. Please come to my school with Libba and teach us sex ed, because our health teachers teach abstinence only. Also, I'd really like to learn how to make a balloon animal.

4:14 AM  
Anonymous Cloie said...

Whats an ILK? That looked like an elk to me.................

5:16 AM  
Anonymous Emanuel said...

Maureen: 1
sharpie: 0

5:45 AM  
Anonymous Brittany said...

Thank you for posting these blogs. I'm a bit older than many YA readers (at least I assume I am), seeing as I'm a senior in college, and I think it's so important for people to breech such topics. Especially someone who can reach so many people than I can personally.

Personally, I know a lot of different people who all took different approaches to sex. Some of my friends had sex when they were teens, some waited until college, and others are choosing to abstain entirely. I completely respect all their decisions - it's their decision in the end either way. The important thing is all of them were very familiar with their options.

My school had a very rational health teacher who realized kids are probably going to have sex no matter what adults do or say. She told us about birth control and said we could talk to her in private about any of our concerns. A lot of girls took her up on that. I wish people would open their eyes and see how important it is to talk to teens. If we've learned anything the last few months, it's that no matter who your parents are or how you were raised sex is out there. It's a situation young people deal with all the time. They might as well be informed.


5:54 AM  
Anonymous Noel said...

I was unplanned as well! Let's be ilk-friends!

5:57 AM  
Blogger Nina said...

@cat: I second that motion. Seriously. If we had more teen-oriented political discussions, maybe more people my age would actually start to care about their futures. I think you and John are perfect for the job!

5:57 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'm glad that your posts are so informative, and that it's helping people become more aware of the issues in our society. I myself try to be as polictically aware as possible.

BUT I am sitting on the edge of my seat waiting for SHINY THINGS, and SEKRITS!!! I need them!

So your hint toward something that would create places for BOTH of these important things intrigues me greatly. I am excited.

And my ilk is not an ilk at all. MY ilk is a dear.

6:01 AM  
Anonymous cetacean said...

My ilk is the fact that you and Libba Bray will probably not go on your country-wide tour to preach about sex. Which sucks.

6:13 AM  
Anonymous Pam said...

You wrote: When I said Bristol Palin had no choices, I meant that she has no choices now . . . now that’s she’s pregnant and her mother is running for Vice President on a ticket that has a strong social agenda for things like abstinence-only education and is powerfully anti-abortion.

The agenda you proclaim is that of the Republican Party is as disingenuous as portraying Obama's platform as strongly for sex-with-anyone-anytime and as only about being pro-abortion.

I also believe it's a stretch to say that now Bristol doesn't have a choice. She was already 5 months pregnant at the time her mother accepted her place on the ticket. Don't you think 5 months indicates she'd already made her decision regarding her pregnancy long before her mother made her decision to accept the vice presidential nomination?

I love your blog. (I wish I could control the bunnies!) But I do have trouble understanding why most animal rights activists and vegetarians are pro-abortion.

I've been a Christian conservative for a long time. And in all that time, I have never heard anyone trying to promote an abstinence-only agenda for sex education. There may be disagreement at what ages we should introduce children to what topics, but like with disagreements about the teaching of evolution, the censorship on this comes from the left. Trying to introduce anything else into the discussion -- whether it's alternatives to the "we all evolved from the same slurpy slice of slime" or an euphemistic-driven agenda that promotes abortion as birth control -- those on the right are the ones who have to overcome censorship to get our opinions introduced into the discussion. (For the record, I don't believe the earth was created in 6 24-hour days. I do believe all things in nature evolve, but I also believe that rather than those missing links that science has yet to find, it's more likely that somewhere in that mix a Creator was involved. I also don't think sex is dirty! But I do believe that anyone's freedom ends when it will impose on the freedom of another, and that includes that which will interfere with an unborn child's freedom of his or her chance for a life.)

For the record: The senate has an 18% approval rating and the current Governor of Alaska has an approval rating in the 90s. Anyone looking for productive change will keep that in mind. ;)

6:14 AM  
Blogger betty said...

I am trying to think of an insightful comment but my brain has gone to mush, like pancakes with syrup that have been left on the counter for to long. Today is definitely one of those days that I would forget how to take off my watch, if I actually wore one. I hate waking up early.

6:40 AM  
Anonymous Summer said...

help there's a mosquito trying to attack me!!
anyway. my math teacher kind of looks like Libba Bray, except Libba Bray isn't gross. or Canadian.

oh my gosh I can't wait for Let It Snow! my friend works at a book store (!!!) and they said that they were going to order it. she recognized the name "John Green" so she told me. I'm so excited!!

6:53 AM  
Blogger Keziah said...

Great blog. I'm a Christian and personally believe in abstinence, but I think it's ridiculous to refuse to teach high schoolers how to use contraceptives. So many Republicans are pro-life, yet don't want to teach teenagers how to avoid unwanted pregnancies in the first place I even wrote a research paper for my (Christian) school about how ineffective abstinence only is.

I feel so bad for Bristol. I think the media should leave her alone. She has nothing to do with her mom running for vice president.

Interestingly enough, Sarah Palin is not against comprehensive sex education (http://thenewagenda.net/2008/09/10/sarah-palin-sex-education/). I've heard so many people criticizing her for it, saying how 'if her daughter doesn't even listen to her how can she be VP,' but it turns out she is "pro-contraception," in her words.

7:01 AM  
Blogger Callidora said...

I totally agree.
I also think that society needs to change and thus change what schools are teaching. Let's try and be helpful. Obviously teaching abstinence isn't being helpful to everyone. Maybe teaching about birth control will be.

8:29 AM  
Anonymous Julia said...

I have to be in class in 12 minutes and it's on the other side of the campus... but I just want to say I agree, and that where I come from sex is one of those things that is sort of ignored. And I think that's bad. Because honestly isn't gonna happen.
I gtg.

4:21 PM  
Anonymous Alisa said...

i really appreciated your response, maureen! very well thought out.

my ilk? i was terrified of what my parents would think when i told them i was pregnant at 17. though they weren't exactly overjoyed, it came out close to my wedding day that i was continuing a sekrit family tradition. third generation, in fact.

but one thing, i think, needs to be said about the whole 17 and a mom thing. you carry it around with you forever. other people look down on you. you may not be able to have a "REAL" wedding because guess what you have to provide for someone else now. you will, someday, reach an age where you go, "omg, i grew up way too fast! i wanna be a kid again! wah!!" but by the time that happens, you will have a teenager! gah!

and, it's way harder to finish high school, or go to college, and that makes it harder to stay out of poverty.

so, yeah, it's my ilk, and i've reached the place where i'm not ashamed (though it does annoy me whenever people get that judgy look in their eyes when they do the math). how does the fact that i happened to be pregnant when i got married take away from the last 14 1/2 years of marital bliss?

that said, i know that people don't always end up so blessed.

wow, i went on a long time, heh.

p.s. i've talked to my teenager about sex, and contraception. and he is uncomfortable and horrified with the things that come out of my mouth. it IS hard to tell your kids about this stuff. but i'd rather have that uncomfortable discussion than have him terrified and grow up too fast because he had a hormone frenzy.

12:25 AM  
Blogger meganlucinda said...

I pretty much agree with everything that you said. You have this awesome power to turn things that would normally be boring into the most entertaining blog posts.
You are most definately, made of awesome. :D

Do you think it's weird that I'm a 15 year old Scottish teenager, but I'm in love with American politics? :D

1:27 AM  
Blogger Cat said...

Your elk/ilk pictures had me laughing. Out loud. I don't think anyone heard me...but that happens every time I read your blog.

I love reading everyones' viewpoints in the comments regarding your post...you've started quite a debate here. It's a good thing I had sex-ed classes. My parents never ever ever told me anything about sex. No, when I was in 4th grade I found an anatomy book and was promptly horrified and tramuatized beyond belief. My parents never told me about "that time of the month." Or tampons. I learned that from my friends. And sex-ed doesn't make people horny or anthing, it's a very tortured experience in which you sit in a classroom listening to your science teacher talk about condoms and the boys one table over snickering nervously. Then you learn about STDs and teen pregnancy and HIV and decide to never have sex until you're 30. Because at that point you feel kind of sick.

I enjoyed your blog and the elk/ilk pictures:]

3:00 AM  
Anonymous Emily said...

Okay. I gotta say, I agree with the whole abstinence only teaching thing is bad. Believe me, I'm all for condoms and birthcontrol. I'm also for saving myself for marriage. See, I kinda have this belief that MOST of the time, teenagers really, really, REALLY should not be having sex. I think it screws with you, so to speak. There's a certain maturity you have to obtain before you can handle sex and generally, I don't think you reach that for a long time. I'm pretty Christian, so maybe this sounds psycho-religious, but sex, as defined by the Big Guy who created it, is supposed to be a holy union between a MAN and a WOMAN. And so if you happen to do that holy union before you're ready or before you're married (though, I DO agree, sometimes not the same thing) BAD things will come of it. Not fire and brimstone, but heartbreak and that whole "holy s*** I'm not a virgin anymore!". But it does happen that teenagers have sex-a lot of sex too-and that a baby might possibly come of that. If so, I personally think that as YOU were the one to get that baby in yourself (along with the help of a guy) YOU should be the one to take responsibility for the kid rather than skulk away and kill a child. But hey, that's just me. I don't think marriage is necessary, although I do believe that kids should grow up with two great parents rather than one great one and a great set of grandparents. Y'know, ideally. So they probably shouldn't be getting married, unless that was their own personel decision. But like I've said before, we have no idea what went on in that house, so we can't be quick to judge.
...Why are my comments always so long?
And by the way, I loved your rant on your "ilk". I think we need more people who are strong and open-minded.

4:09 AM  
Blogger cme.joyce said...

Hi Maureen!
I just feel the need to respond to some of these posts, (warning if you are very conservative you might not agree with what's being said) So I go to a school that has a very open sex-ed policy, I've had the class twice already, the first time I had it I was in the fifth grade. To respond to what Heather Harper said: she said that she just wishes that abstinence was an option in the comprehensive sex-ed class, but the thing is, heck yes it is an option in the class. Sure the teachers explain the different types of birth control and how to use them to stop pregnancy and STD's BUT then they say "however the only way to completely 100 percent stop a pregnancy from happening is from not having sex" which is completely true! The are offering the option of using birth control but they also are telling us a fact about the only sure way to not get pregnant and maybe their are kids in the class who are thinking "Gee I just have natural bad luck, with my luck the condom will break, so I'm not going to have sex with my significant other" which is fine, but there might also be someone in the class who thinks "Gee I really love my significant other, we've been together for a long time now and have let each other know about our feelings, I think it would really be great if we had sex, but we'll use a condom and I'm on the pill" which is fine also!!!!! See Heather Harper, the options are there, it's just up to the students to decide what is right for them.
My other response is to anonymous who said that s/he is boycotting your blog Maureen because they don't agree with you my question is "WHAT IS THERE NOT TO AGREE WITH??????" All Maureen is saying is that Bristol Palin must be in a difficult position seeing as how she's 17 pregnant and just happens to be the daughter of the nominee for republican vice-president! That is a hard position to be in not in the least because the media will tear you apart! And anonymous I'm guessing that you are against comprehensive sex-education, but on your wedding night (which is when I'm guessing the first time you have sex will be, if it's not you are a hypocrite) will you not think "I don't know if I want to get pregnant right away wait! what do I do now, how do we stop me from getting pregnant?" And if you do want kids right away that's your choice, but I'm guessing that sometime in your marriage you might think "It would be nice if we could have sex and there was no chance that in nine months we'd have another person in our family" well then how do you know what to do????? Your parents????? I'm guessing that's not a conversation that you want to have with them! The classes are so that WHEN and only when you're ready to have sex you know the options for either having or not having children.
ok. rant over.

4:31 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I want to say Thank You Maureen.
To be candid, I AM a teenager who recently made the decision she is ready for sex.
Hold your horses!
I said I made the decision, not that it had been followed through yet. Because I understood the whole time thing.
I hate when people use the fact that they don't want their parents to know as the reason they don't get on birth control.
If you can't drive, or none of your friends can even drive to an anonymous clinic to get the prescription, then you might be a little young to need it. And if you aren't even responsible enough to have a job to have money to buy condoms, sex is out of the question.
I have gone through all these things, just to avoid a situation like the poor Palin girl is in.
I want to have sex because I feel that I deserve to have that (hopefully fun) experience in my life. I feel that I am properly informed, and am ready for this milestone. I am 16, which might be young for some, or old for others. But its like you said: We all mature at a different rate.
So thank you Maureen for reinforcing my feeling that I am doing the right thing.

6:03 AM  
Anonymous Chelsea Larraine R. said...

There will be more political posts? -es muy interesante- My commentation on the post before got devoured, and it was quite a nice debatable post. My AP teachers would be proud.

My ilk just happenes to be the accidental ilk. I was the Saint Patrick's Day accident. Couldn't be happier though. ^.^

I also seem to be one of the few whose parental units taught me to RESPECT MY ELDERS. Trust me, we're polish. We may not be able to whack the wooden spoon as hard as the italians, but we have dead aim. I've seen my nona boomerang a spoon behinde her back. And it HURT.

Back on track though, the other day I decided to swing by my old AP European History Class. The teacher said I could come to sift through last year's tests, and maybe help get the class on track. This guy made me <3 history again, so I swung down after AP Physics (Haaate by the way).

So, the new brand of midgets are MAD quiet. AP is not the class to be quiet in. Partly because you will have the most interesting conversations/debates there, and also because it's the only way to get feedback. If he asks you a question or to do something, ANSWER HIM. The only way you'll have a scnowball's chance in Florida of passing the AP is to get feedback on what you write/think. The work there is 90% independant, so you need to speak up for help.

I was telling them as much from my spot at his desk, when a girl says really loudly, 'God, shut up'

Now I'm not much more older than these kids, a year or two maybe, but bear in mind I'VE passed the class, I'VE taken the AP, and I was one of 14 in a class of 100 to actually pass it.

It just irked me SO much.

-end rant-

Looking forward to your political thoughts and debate fodder,

Chelsea Larraine

6:41 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I really agree with you on your point is that you're ready, you have already thought about physical, mental, social, etc.

6:48 AM  
Anonymous Summer Marie said...

Maureen, you are made of so much awesome, it's insane.

MY SUITE SCARLETT ARRIVED TODAY!!! OMG THANK YOU SOOOOO MUCH!!! I'll probably finish it by tomorrow!

7:34 AM  
Blogger Melody said...

I'm 36. They gave us the health talk in 5th grade. When I moved in 9th grade they had sex ed that your parents had to sign permission for. I moved again and never got to take the class. (We moved because we were getting a house built not because of the class.) Well the last school waited until the end of senior year to teach sex ed. By that time lots of girls were already knocked-up. All the kids wondered why they waited so late.

Oh yeah, I have that watch problem too.

9:01 AM  
Blogger Jen said...

I agree with almost everything you said. I just found out yesterday that one of my friends from the catholic school I went to had a baby. I can almost guarantee you that she wasn't well informed about birth control. We had sex-ed at school, but they never told us anything about birth control.

Although I don't think that not being informed it the only reason so many girls are getting pregnant. My parents' friends' daughter said that her friends made a pact to all get pregnant. I don't think that those girls realize that it will change their lives.

It's not just private schools that don't tell you the facts, though. At my public high school, we don't have a sex ed class. I do remember my gym teacher telling us to use condoms and birth control, but no one ever really told us about it. I definitely think this is a problem. You can't even walk through the hallways at my school without seeing a pregnant girl.

I really hope schools start to offer real sex ed classes, before to many more girls get pregnant.

4:13 PM  
Blogger Plucky the Dragon said...

Wow. Intense. You handle these kinds of things really well, Maureen. I would never know what to say about stuff like this. I'd be all, "Erm...danish, anyone?" and run away as fast as I could. Props to you, though.

7:00 PM  
Blogger Maria D'Isidoro said...

I agree to a possibly unreasonable extent. My friend first had sex when she was 16 and that was fine with her. The earth did not open and swallow her up, she didn't get pregnant -thank you sex ed- , she did not even get coal in her stocking for Christmas. We are 19 now, and I have still not had sex. This is also just fine. I'm not saving myself for marriage or anything so decided as that because I don't know who I'll meet and how I'll feel about them. I like keeping my options open. Obviously, I have not found anyone who sets my hormones to jumping yet. But thankfully, because I've had several years of very comprehensive sex education, and been lucky enough to have a mother who doesn't get squeamish when I start asking tough questions, I'll know how to be safe when that person comes along. In essence, sex ed provides the helmet and knee pads as you ride that bicycle called sex. You CAN ride without them, but if you fall, there's nothing there to keep you from getting cut or bruised.
-Maria D

7:23 PM  
Blogger Maria D'Isidoro said...

Though sex ed with MJ and Libba is so boss, there are no words. :D
You MUST come to Baltimore. You have no choice. :DDD

7:25 PM  
Blogger Breezee said...

I feel bad for Bristol Palin...
So I'll start off by saying that I'm not fond of abortion. It's not something I would ever consider, but other people can do what they want. Whatever. That's cool with me.
But what if Bristol wanted to have an abortion? That poor girl. The headlines that would spawn would be epic.
I think we should give her a hug. She probably needs one.

6:35 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

i think my stance on abortion was stolen by obama, as i've been saying this for years - we may all not agree on abortion, but we all want less abortions to be even needed.

but this isn't about that, this is about sex ed.

i went to catholic school until college. my k-12 school was attached to the church where junipero serra is buried. it's the seat of the bishop. we went to mass every sunday, and as a school, every month. during lent, we did literal stations of the cross every friday, and we held corpus christi mass outside - kneeling on really yucky cobblestone. my school/church was so big, the last pope came to visit and said mass there (he touched my hand!) and it was awesome.

and we had a class called "religion and family life" from 4th grade on. in it, we talked about sex. yup. in sixth grade, we spent about a month on how our reproductive systems work and condoms were brought in - to show us how tiny those little spermy-dudes are. my most scarring homework ever was in fourth grade, when we had to talk to our parents about pre-marital sex. i was a late bloomer, i didn't hit puberty til high school, so this was way above me. and instead of "no sex until marriage, missy!", i got "well, when you're in a healthy relationship with respect and honesty, sex can feel really good . . ." and i'm like, NO, DAD, NO, I DON'T WANT TO HEAR IT!! but i think the fact that sex was a topic that wasn't taboo in the family so early on was INFINITELY awesome.

then i go to an all girls catholic school. again with the church business. again with nuns running around. sophomore year we have "human development" where we answer questions like "what is a clitoris and what does it do?" and ms. zimmer and ms. bremmer did the condom on banana thing. and the stuff we read in english was certainly steeped in sex - you can't read the classics, really, without it being there. (the bluest eye sticks out a lot, as does house of the spirits - which has the weird s&m count in it, not to mention the number of rapes in that book.)

but we were always told - abstinence is the only 100% guarantee. we were told to respect our bodies. we also weren't told to be afraid of it, or that we were going to go to hell if we did.

i think this is largely because the nuns, in their infinite wisdom, knew that by making something taboo, you only increase interest in it. if you know everything (or a whole lot) about something, it removes the mystery and the rebelliousness of the act.

my graduating class had 66 students. a third of us are married now, three have kids, and the majority of us are still in school/building fitness empires/not ready to settle down yet. but we all have healthy views on sex and the responsibility that goes along with it.

i didn't have sex until i was 22, and it was a decision i didn't take lightly. but we are sexual creatures (my sex education continued at my all women's college where we had "sex week" every year, full of seminars on safe sex, sex with same sex partners, s&m, fantasy, what to do if . . ., AND how to masturbate - complete with visits from the toys in babeland store.

so, all that is to say: religion and comprehensive sex-ed CAN go hand-in-hand - quite nicely, in fact. we need to stop with the fear-mongering in all aspects of our social spheres, because it always backfires.

i'm voting democrat this year for a lot of reasons (my hometown is pretty republican and small, so when it got out that i interned not only with feinstein but HILLARY, i was quite the town spectacle) - but mostly, this year, i'm voting because i'm tired of someone telling me i should vote a certain way because of fear. i've had enough of that. sept. 11 was a terrible, terrible day for me, and i'm just really now getting over all of it. i'm tired of being afraid of anyone who doesn't look like me, or having sex, or my own church, or what happens if i get knocked up after getting raped. i'm tired of being afraid of being judged because i take psychiatric meds, that the world hates me because i'm american, that if i say certain things, i'm clearly not a feminist.

i'm done with fear in the political rhetoric. fear does not bring change or progress. it brings fight or flight - none of which require actual thought.

and to bristol - i'm so sorry, honey. i wish you weren't a prop in the political machine right now, and i hope you somehow manage to be yourself, happily.

10:06 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Seeing as I really should be doing homework for the five classes I've got tomorrow and am not going to finish any of it anyways, I just wanted to stick up my little flag and give a little wave to you for being so awesome. I don't like politicians or bureacracies, and political machines of any kind make me ill. I'm glad of the two unwed teen pregnancies that resulted in your awesomeness, and hope that other people can wrap their heads around the idea that pro-choice doesn't mean pro-abortion. Just a choice, which, I think, is our well-deserved right. After all, plenty of men have made some pretty screwed up choices in the past, and most of those ended in whole populations destroyed.
Life throws a lot at you. Sometimes we need that little bit of control, even if we never plan to take advantage of it.

11:06 AM  
Anonymous Hillary! said...

I almost got in trouble for passing out greeting cards with condoms during Christmas at school. They ley me off because I was *only* giving them to the people I ate lunch with. So it was all a *joke*. Hardy har har.

I know I have helped some of my friens in the sex education department just by telling them how exactly sex works, because all they know is abstinence. But I also like to scare them with horrific stories about syphilis and ghonorrhea and chlamidya and HIV and AIDS and...I know alot.

10:56 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I don't understand. Sure, Bristol Palin's choice was influenced by her mom. But then, if I were to get pregnant, my choices would be influenced by my parents. Just like anyone else's choices.

I feel sorry for her because now she's in the public eye. But how is that the Republican ticket's fault as people seem to be making it out to be? They picked her mother for vice-president. The media is doing the rest.

You and Libba Bray seem to have the unique talent of making me feel incredibly small and stupid.

1:59 AM  
Blogger Mal said...

This may be a little off topic but why do people think that the covers of your books have slutty girls on them? Apparently wearing tank tops and jeans make you slutty?? Well, I guess I'm slutty. The cover that comes close to slutty is Girl at Sea and I still don't think that's slutty. It's the summer! You're allowed to wear shorts.
....maybe it's because three of the girls are showing a slit of belly? Maybe they just have long torsos...as a girl with a long torso I have been known to show a little slit of belly. That does not make me slutty.
I would just like you to know that your covers are not slutty and don't let anyone else tell you otherwise!!

7:12 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I believe in your standpoints, I mean this will not go away, ever. Yuo can't just shut it in a dark closet and forget it.

I think that, for anything big, if you know the consequences and fully know what you're getting in to, then why not.

And as a side note, I would totally go to one of your Sex Education classes because they would be the most hilarious time. Anywhere with you and Libba Bray would be the most fun time of the year.

8:11 AM  
Blogger Maria D'Isidoro said...

Anonymous, I'm curious what it is that has made you feel small and stupid. Seeing as both can do a number on your self esteem, I'd like to help where I can. But on to your grievances.
I don't view this as the Republican party's fault necessarily, but Sarah Palin's treatment of her daughter in this instance worries me. It shows callousness to an extreme, that she is denying her own daughter the chance to decide what's right for her body. There is no leniency for circumstance, as is also evidenced by her stance against allowing abortions even for victims of rape and charging them to pay for their own rape kits.
If it's Bristol Palin's decision to keep her baby, that is fine. But we have no way to know that. Her mothers politics are so strong that we have no ability to know what her own opinion is. I would feel much better if Sarah Palin had simply said that her daughters decision was her own, and that while she may not agree with it -if Bristol had decided to give it up- but that she had a right to decide the fate of her own body. This is not to say that I think all teen pregnancies should end in abortions. My mother had one when she was in college and had been raped and beaten by her ex boyfriend. She's told me about it. It is a horrible decision to have to make and not one to be made lightly, but for that very reason it should be the mother who makes it, not any form of government legislation.
The Republican party is not any different from how I've always viewed it. I worry about Sarah Palin alone, who represents a form of Feminism that is so contrary to everything I feel that it frightens me. She represents a female type whom is only welcomed into power so long as she is still desirable, a.k.a., as long as men can feel that they still have power over her.
Do women vote for John McCain or George Bush because they can imagine being in a relationship with them? Not that I've heard of. And yet, there are men who have come out and said that they will vote for Palin because they feel comfortable with her, because they can imagine sleeping with her. I fear not the Republican party, but the sentiments she seems to encourage and pass as politically correct.

Pelosi in 2012.

9:46 PM  
Blogger NightDrive said...

This is unrelated(as I have already said my piece.) But I have now read all your blogs....I think. I have gone through every month and read every single one I saw. And they were all fantastic.

(Im hoping I didnt miss one becasue I started with the most recent ones and then went wait...this doesnt make sense. So I went back and read from the beginning. I hope I didnt get to some blogs that I had read and missed a big section in the recent ones, if that makes sense)

But I digress. I loved every single one of your blogs. Im excited for more.

Just thought Id share! = D

11:42 AM  
Blogger red threads said...

i love your ilk :)

7:28 PM  
Blogger beautifulmirage said...

I read this post and the other, Free Bristol Palin, and surprise surprise, the first comment was about catholic doctrine. I immediately stopped reading comments then and there simply because I am tired of my entire religion being blamed for things like teen pregnancy. Not that it was actually catholic bashing, but that's often how those things degrade... back to my point, as far as the catholic church goes - I was raised by one very strict catholic and a father who preferred to simply not go up against my mother in the religion department, so he pretty much said nothing except that boys like boobs (and other such comments). And despite her religious zealously, she bought me birth control when I was thinking of sex and even took out the banana and showed me what to do with a condom. My priest explained it to me best when he said that catholic religious doctrine takes a very long time to change. It was written in an era when there was no birth control, the biggest form was pull out if you think its "that time." So in general, especially since women had no rights, it wasn't a good idea to have sex. Under no circumstances was that intended to mean don't talk about sex. That's an issue that has evolved with our current political climate. Which leads me to the part where I agree with you whole heartedly that Bristol's situation sucks hardcore. She's being forced into a decision by her mother's political agenda and I personally would not blame her one bit if she tried to go off the map for the rest of her pregnancy, if only to be allowed to breathe.

12:57 AM  
Blogger beautifulmirage said...

Oh one last thing, I, stupidly, started to read the rape kits comment above me and remembered something - oh yeah, I'm studying to be a forensic chemist with a specialty in genetics. In other words, rape kits are what I do. Read up on them before you judge Palin too harshly, she tried to bill the insurance not the people themselves. I'm not saying she was right by any means, but rather make sure you know how expensive and ridiculously extensive the testing can be before you say the state needs to pay for every penny of it, especially considering our national financial situation.

1:01 AM  
Blogger Liz said...

I have put off commenting, but now I cannot help myself: Ilk!

3:54 AM  
Anonymous londen said...

strong subjects. But I cant help agreeing with you. Abstinence only teaching is ridiculous. What does that solve? err nothing. If teenagers want to have sex they will, abstinense teaching will do nothing. Even if you say sex is evil and if you do it you'll go to hell and burn there for all eternity! (insert evil laugh here)it wont do anything. if you eduacate a teenager about sex they will be less likley to have sex, and if they do they will probably use a condom or some sort of birth control. and i also think parents need to talk to their kids more about it, its an unsettling subject but its important. Sorry about all the grammar errors im writing all this in a rush.

4:16 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The last two posts have been so amazing! I completely agree- some of the ways schools treat the topic is so ridiculous, that it's practically setting us up to fail! I mean, it's not like staying away from that topic is going to keep us from making mistakes. We'll make mistakes either way. But if they're teaching us, at least we'll know how to stay clear of things like teen pregnancy!

4:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

What are 'Let it Snows'?

4:01 PM  
Blogger Erin said...

I think I have said this many times, but I'll say it again. You are my hero. I adore you more than I adore redheaded boys, and I adore them a lot. Not only are you smart and funny and opinionated, you are an author, and you watch movies and silly Youtube videos and you have an inner raccoon.

But that's beside the point. I really enjoyed these last two posts. Now, I'm all pro-abstinence, one of those crazy Mormons you hear about who are actually not all that crazy, but anyway--those who choose to have sex in the first place, need to be responsible. A lot of these people are the selfsame people who complain about the nation's debt; they complain about Social Security (all of a sudden my brain told me that's not the program I'm looking for but I think it is), but the fact is, the cousins of the S.S. program are the ones who are helping out teen mothers who ARE DOING THE SAME THINGS THEY ARE DOING.

5:53 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

This probably would have been much better for your original post, but I didn't get to read it until after reading this one. =/

Anyway! You were talking about teaching only abstinence being entirely bogus and I completely agree with you! I think it's ridiculous that parents believe their children will be such little angels that they will never ever know anything about sex unless it's being put into their heads by a group of people who have been taught the facts, etc. This issue is extremely close to me in the fact that I'm part of a high school organization called "Teen PEP", "Teen Prevention Education Program". We basically suggest abstinence, but since we know not all are going to follow, we also teach about condoms, the pill, etc. We've recently been under attack by a parent group in our neighbor who feels apparently the same way as your school did.Just wanted to let you know that your latest blog really put a fight in me to make sure this program stays and respect others opinions about it, while keeping my own. Thanks!

Also, if I could have anyone drive to Jersey to help us with our program, it would definitely be you and Libba. <3

7:19 PM  
Blogger Lindsey said...

So I read the previous blog and restrained myself from commenting as it's such a controversial topic. I grew up in a town where we did receive abstinence only sex education- We had a lot of missionary children as their headquarters was in our district so that played a big role in it. The entire town is extremely conservative. For an example: My mother still calls birth control pills period regulator pills because she refuses to admit that I could be taking them to control my births. Mind you, I'm 22.

Any ways- back to the topic at hand. My best friend was pregnant at prom our sophomore year. As you can see it worked out really well.

Because students are already exposed to alternative methods of birth control on tv and other sources, it's silly not to tell them more at school, the place they're supposed to be learning how to be a more responsible human being (that may have been cut with No Child Left Behind though). Students need to know all of their options in case they are sexually active just like they need to know all the ways to find the circumference of a circle in math class in case it comes up on the SAT.

4:52 AM  
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