Pupils will get the wrong message about sex education

  • Follow Opinion columns

Apparently the Richmond County Board of Education is working with the Richmond County Board of Health, which is working with Planned Parenthood -- as evidenced by the groups' presence at the September BOE meeting I attended.

I am concerned with a prospective alliance between the school board and Planned Parenthood. The long-term consequences to our students of having the abortion and condom message in our schools can be devastating to those who hear the message.

If members of the Richmond County school board are really working with Planned Parenthood -- why?

According to Planned Parenthood's website: "To reduce risk for STD/HIV and pregnancy risk related behaviors, young adolescents not only need knowledge and perception of personal vulnerability, but also positive attitudes towards condom use, skills and confidence in their ability to use condoms. The Making Proud Choices! Curriculum is designed to meet those needs."

BUT ACCORDING to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website: "Recommendations for prevention of STD, including HIV infection, should emphasize that risk of infection is most effectively reduced through abstinence or sexual intercourse with a mutually faithful uninfected partner. Condoms do not provide absolute protection from any infection ... ." Several years ago a spokesman from the CDC spoke to faculty at what was then Augusta Technical Institute. His statement to us was that telling teenagers that condoms provided safe sex was deceptive and gave them false security.

Planned Parenthood's website states: "Abortion is a safe and legal way for women to end pregnancy." What Planned Parenthood fails to address are the emotional aftereffects of abortions. Studies have shown:

- The suicide rate after an abortion was three times the general suicide rate and six times that associated with birth. The rate for women following a live birth was 5.9 per 100,000; following miscarriage, 18.1; following abortion, 34.7.

- Abortion -- and its acceptance of the violence of killing the unborn -- lowered a parent's psychic resistance to violence and abuse of the children born later.

- Those having an abortion had elevated rates of subsequent mental-health problems, including depression, anxiety, suicidal behaviors and substance-use disorders.

- Regardless of whether a baby was stillborn, lived briefly, was spontaneously aborted or aborted by choice, there is a need for the mother to go through a grieving period.

- Teens are more vulnerable than adults to suffer distress after an abortion.

WHEN I TAUGHT at Cross Creek High School in Richmond County, a student shared with me that she was pregnant. She cried as I held her and prayed for her and her baby. The next day she came in stone-faced. "Don't worry about it. My boyfriend is going to have it taken care of," she said -- and he did. The "baby problem" was gone, but as I watched the rest of the semester, this beautiful young lady slid into a depression that I could not reach through. Funny -- Planned Parenthood never mentions this possibility on their website.

I have personally reviewed the Aspire sex-education curriculum that the school board decided not to allow to be taught in health classes at Butler High School and Sego Middle School. Aspire is an excellent tool, teaching teens how to make wise decisions in all areas of their lives, including sexual involvement. Unlike Planned Parenthood's program, it does not promote the use of condoms, but stresses instead the valuing of oneself as being important enough to make the right decisions in life -- including abstinence until marriage.

Before the Richmond County school board continues working with the Board of Health, its members need to remember that our students are at a vulnerable age, and the quick fixes proposed by Planned Parenthood can have devastating effects later on in life. The school board should protect our young people -- not sell them out for an unhealthy alliance with Planned Parenthood via the Board of Health.

(The writer is a retired math teacher. She lives in Augusta.)

Comments (54) Add comment
ADVISORY: Users are solely responsible for opinions they post here and for following agreed-upon rules of civility. Posts and comments do not reflect the views of this site. Posts and comments are automatically checked for inappropriate language, but readers might find some comments offensive or inaccurate. If you believe a comment violates our rules, click the "Flag as offensive" link below the comment.
Insider Information
4009
Points
Insider Information 10/09/10 - 11:14 pm
0
0
Planned Parenthood is a

Planned Parenthood is a business, and, like any business, it wants more "customers." Planned Parenthood wanting teens not to get pregnant is like McDonald's wanting people to eat at Burger King.
There is a reason Planned Parenthood prays on young black women.
Don't believe me? Watch the founder of Planned Parenthood talk in her own words about wiping out the black race in Maafa 21.

soldout
1280
Points
soldout 10/09/10 - 10:53 pm
0
0
Great letter and so true.

Great letter and so true. Planned parenthood is not the friend of life in any form. Their record of encouraging the killing of un-born babies will not be treated well by history. No way to win with sin.

Biggun
0
Points
Biggun 10/09/10 - 11:59 pm
0
0
It's good to have the two

It's good to have the two different programs that are being considered compared in this letter to the editor. Parents should be able to choose which one they want taught to their kids.

Rhetor
1007
Points
Rhetor 10/10/10 - 06:50 am
0
0
Do you have even the

Do you have even the slightest actual evidence that the School Board is working with planned parenthood? Or is this just more of the typical Tea Party-type paranoia?

johnston.cliff
2
Points
johnston.cliff 10/10/10 - 08:02 am
0
0
Abortion has been promoted in

Abortion has been promoted in government schools since the '70s and homosexuality since the '90s. Government schools have been about social engineering since they were organized under the Department of Education. One size fits all is the ultimate goal.

TrukinRanger
1748
Points
TrukinRanger 10/10/10 - 09:02 am
0
0
How NOT so funny... the "does
Unpublished

How NOT so funny... the "does not promote the use of condoms, but stresses instead the valuing of oneself as being important enough to make the right decisions in life -- including abstinence until marriage" has been working so well.... NOT. Since parents quit doing their jobs and left it up to society to raise their kids- that approach is useless. Now it's past time to be proactive and teach your little "darlings" to protect themselves with any means necessary. Your Little House on the Prarie mentality is what has kept these children from learning what REALLY happens in day to day life.

MajorPaul
0
Points
MajorPaul 10/10/10 - 09:11 am
0
0
The nurse can not give your

The nurse can not give your child an aspirin at school without your OK, but they can get her an abortion and not even tell you. If your girl breaks her leg playing volleyball, the Dr cant do anything until you come in and sign a paper, but they can kill your grandkid, and you will never know about it.
Anyone see a problem with this?

johnston.cliff
2
Points
johnston.cliff 10/10/10 - 09:42 am
0
0
MajorPaul, TruckinRanger sees

MajorPaul, TruckinRanger sees no problem with this. He calls it reality. I, however, must admit I don't understand TruckinRanger's reality.

corgimom
32141
Points
corgimom 10/10/10 - 09:54 am
0
0
Anyone see a problem with a

Anyone see a problem with a girl being raped by her father or brother and becoming pregnant?

Anyone see a problem with a girl being afraid to tell her parents that she's having sex, let alone get pregnant- but the parents refuse to see that they play a major part in that situation?

Anyone see a problem that teen pregnancy in Richmond County is at epidemic proportions- meaning that lots of teenagers are having unprotected sex- but people refuse to face that reality?

I wonder, where was that retired math teacher when her student was out having unprotected sex and getting pregnant?

Nobody in their right mind would want a teenager to have sex, let alone get pregnant, or have an abortion. But the reality is that IT"S HAPPENING.

The same people that scream so loudly against sex education are then the ones that scream about welfare, disruptive behavior in schools, and crime- which is, in almost all cases, a given when you have a teenage mother give birth to a child. A child cannot raise a child. A teenager giving birth to an out of wedlock child is a sure way to poverty and dysfunction.

It is all connected. And it has to stop.

It is ludicrous to think that a parent encourages their child to have sex. They don't. And it is ludicrous to think that a school program that "stresses instead the valuing of oneself as being important enough to make the right decisions in life -- including abstinence until marriage." will be effective, when years of parental teachings don't work.

And what people like Sharon Smith DON"T GET, is that for many people, marriage isn't a priority, so teaching "abstinence until marriage" is worthless. Marriage is not considered important for many, especially in the urban black community, and especially in a society that promotes and encourages illegitimate births with welfare payments. The idea of "abstinence until marriage" isn't their norm, isn't going to be their norm, and won't be just because Sharon Smith thinks that's the way it should be. Kids in those situtations laugh at people like Sharon Smith with their "abstinence until marriage" messages.

corgimom
32141
Points
corgimom 10/10/10 - 09:56 am
0
0
Cliff, that's just the

Cliff, that's just the problem. People like you DON"T UNDERSTAND that not everybody thinks like you do.

But, guess what- they don't have to.

Doggone Constiutional rights again, you know?

geminibuddha
0
Points
geminibuddha 10/10/10 - 10:03 am
0
0
I have to disagree with the

I have to disagree with the general idea of what I believe this article is saying. My biggest complaint about teaching teenage sexual education is that young girls are taught about "the pill" and with no emphasis on the importance of condom use if they do decide to have sex. Birth control pills are only effective against unwanted pregnancy...they do not prevent HIV infection. Condoms are effective when used properly. Most young women think they are "covered" by taking "the pill" and don't bother with condoms. This puts their lives at significant risk. Placing your safety in "having sex with a faithful partner", is also a risky proposition since there is NO way to assure that young men are faithful. You can't be there 100% of the time. I know that is jaded...but reality is what it is these days. I can speak from this because I used to be a young man once. Like it or not, schools have to pick up some...SOME of the slack in the sexual education which is neglected at home. Ultimately a teen's behavior reflects to some degree their parents views. HIV is no joke. Any help the schools can give is not a social agenda but a social service.

momster59
0
Points
momster59 10/10/10 - 10:23 am
0
0
First of all, kids in GA & SC

First of all, kids in GA & SC are not allowed to be counseled by the nurse to get an abortion in schools. Second, to even be part of a sex ed course the parents must sign permission.

That said, working in a high school, I can tell you that sex education is not being taught in the home and kids are having sex. Every year I get multiple pregnant girls. Students are getting STD's and passing them on to each other because they are still having sex. While I agree that sex education should come from the home, many parents do not understand the risks of and themselves engage in risky sexual behaviors. It is absolutely heartbreaking to see a former student who is now an adult and reveals they have HIV that they contracted in their teen years.

This cycle needs to be stopped somehow. Our school's nurse is top notch, emphasizing the reason to be sexually responsible - STD's and their long term consequences, breaking sexual myths (remember our press who "didn't have sex" with ML?), and pregnancy prevention. Abstinence should be stressed as the best policy, but considering many of these kids are already engaging in risky sexual behavior before they step a foot in a sex ed classroom, then all options should be discussed.

Insider Information
4009
Points
Insider Information 10/10/10 - 10:32 am
0
0
To borrow from

To borrow from Corgimom...
Anyone see a problem with genocide?
Anyone see a problem with targeting black people for extinction?
Planned Parenthood sees no problem at all. In fact, that is why it was founded. Facts are facts. Sometimes we don't like to face them, but they are still true.
Planned Parenthood was one of the local businesses listed in receiving part of the $7.5 million teen pregnancy grant last week.
There is a reason Planned Parenthood sets up shop in low-income, high-minority areas.
Until you watch Maafa 21 and see the founder in her own words, you won't understand.

Insider Information
4009
Points
Insider Information 10/10/10 - 10:35 am
0
0
Planned Parenthood working to

Planned Parenthood working to reduce teen pregnancy is like...
McDonald's working to reduce childhood obesity,
Jack Daniels working to reduce teen drinking,
AT&T working to reduce texting and driving,
Marlboro working to reduce under age smoking.

faithson
5156
Points
faithson 10/10/10 - 10:49 am
0
0
Children who show themselves

Children who show themselves to be sexually irresponsible are no diffrent than children who are indiffrent to the authority of our laws, they both are a drain on our communities social resources. We incarcerate the ones who break our laws, why would we not take some kind of action as a consequence of being irresponsible 'sexually' ?

momster59
0
Points
momster59 10/10/10 - 11:09 am
0
0
faithson - do you have no

faithson - do you have no children? Were you never a teenager? Teens brains are not wired like the brains of adults. They need structure, guidance and compassion. There are children from perfectly nice, middle class families who engage in sexually risky behavior. One mistake and they can get pregnant or get a STD, HIV being the worse case. Are you really saying we should just throw away our children rather than educate them?

dstewartsr
20389
Points
dstewartsr 10/10/10 - 11:46 am
0
0
"Anyone see a problem with a

"Anyone see a problem with a girl...?" Yes, we do; that is precisely what this board is discussing, although that salient fact once again went right over your head, apparently. Looking down your nose, you seem to miss a lot, it seems. Snotty remarks and restating the obvious as a mode of debate exposes your smug attitude, but contributes nothing (as usual) other than your unjustified belief in your own superiority.

" ...(W)here was that retired math teacher when her student was out having unprotected sex and getting pregnant?" Unless she was Ms Smith's child or ward, what does that question contribute? Where were YOU when all that was happening?

"... (P)eople like Sharon Smith DON"T GET, is that for many people, marriage isn't a priority, so teaching "abstinence until marriage" is worthless." Your comment would be true-- if your readers had not even minimal comprehension skills; the entire LTE is addressing the problem that these young women are trapped in such a culture that places schools in loco parentis, and the schools are doing an abysmal job.

"Doggone Constiutional rights again, you know?" Do you get a nickle every time you post that as a non-sequitur answer to an argument you don't understand?

grouse
1635
Points
grouse 10/10/10 - 12:08 pm
0
0
Teenagers are going to have
Unpublished

Teenagers are going to have sex. They need to know the facts. Use contraception and the odds are greatly in favor of not getting pregnant. Abstinence ? Re-read my first sentence. I contend that much of the emotional upheaval experienced by some of the young women who have had abortions is exacerbated, encouraged, foster by the guilt-loving followers followers of religion who prey on vulnerable emotions and cause further harm by romanticizing the fetus.

Insider Information
4009
Points
Insider Information 10/10/10 - 01:25 pm
0
0
grouse, religion aside, a

grouse, religion aside, a human being is a human being and murder is murder.
At one time in this country, we enslaved an entire race, beating them and owning them. The law allowed it because under the law black people were "property."
What we call things may make immoral behavior legal, but it does not change the facts. Black people are people, and fetuses are human beings.
You can repeat 2+2=5 over and over again, but scientifically that is wrong. The same is true here.

Rhetor
1007
Points
Rhetor 10/10/10 - 02:41 pm
0
0
These posts are becoming

These posts are becoming increasingly surrealistic. No public school in the country has a curriculum that promotes abortion. That is not only false, but ludicrous. Second, once again, I repeat: do any of you have any actual evidence that Planned Parenthood is involved with any local school district? Obviusly not. Conservative paranoia does not give a good reason for any policy decision.

ameliaf
0
Points
ameliaf 10/10/10 - 03:17 pm
0
0
Oh, for heaven's sake.

Oh, for heaven's sake. Condoms reduce the risk of pregnancy and the risk of STDs. Abstinence eliminates the risk but only for those who will accept and live with the abstinence message.

If you want your kids to only consider the abstinence message, then make that point with them. But, schools can supply information that will reduce teenage pregnancies and the transmission of STD's by talking about both abstinence and condoms and that is GOOD.

Your message is not the only message because it doesn't stop the problem - teenagers have been having sex since just about forever and they will keep on having sex for just about forever. The condom message won't stop pregnancies or STDs. But both messages together may reduce the problem.

corgimom
32141
Points
corgimom 10/10/10 - 03:41 pm
0
0
Children who show themselves

Children who show themselves to be sexually irresponsible are no diffrent than children who are indiffrent to the authority of our laws, they both are a drain on our communities social resources. We incarcerate the ones who break our laws, why would we not take some kind of action as a consequence of being irresponsible 'sexually' ?

Because then you would imprison about 95% of the population.

Insider Information
4009
Points
Insider Information 10/10/10 - 03:43 pm
0
0
Kids are going to drink

Kids are going to drink alcohol, so let's teach them to wear a seat belt if they drink and drive.
Kids are going to smoke cigarettes, so let's teach them to smoke cigarettes with filters.
Kids are going to join gangs and shoot each other, so let's teach them to be better shots so innocent people aren't killed.
I love the logic.

Insider Information
4009
Points
Insider Information 10/10/10 - 03:45 pm
0
0
By the way, Rhetor, the

By the way, Rhetor, the letter writer says she was at the school board meeting and she saw that there seems to be cooperation between the BOE and Planned Parenthood.
Were you at the meeting and see something else?

corgimom
32141
Points
corgimom 10/10/10 - 03:57 pm
0
0
" ...(W)here was that retired

" ...(W)here was that retired math teacher when her student was out having unprotected sex and getting pregnant?" Unless she was Ms Smith's child or ward, what does that question contribute? Where were YOU when all that was happening?

How about that retired math teacher had NO BUSINESS assuming that child was depressed because she had an abortion. A math teacher isn't a doctor or a psychologist, and it is arrogant- not to mention illegal- to diagnose childrens' mental health and the reasons for it, based on a math class.

But since I have no idea when that happened, dstewart, I really couldn't tell you where I was at, and what an absurd question to ask me. Maybe I was couselling a 7-month-pregnant 15 year old who didn't want to tell her parents that she was pregnant and hadn't received any prenatal care. And yes, I have done that.

But that's not important, is it?

Pretty darn interesting that you say I look down my nose and am snotty. Considering your absurd question to me, I'd say the shoe fits YOUR foot, not mine.

I understand the argument just fine, and again, how absurd that you think that I don't. But too bad you feel the need for everyone to agree with you. I don't.

And it's also too bad that you have such anger issues with people that disagree with you. Good luck with that.

I have to admit, dstewart, that I read that letter 3 times, and I didn't see mention that young women (forget about the young men, I guess those girls get pregnant by themselves) are "trapped" in such a culture that places schools in loco parentis, and the schools are doing an abysmal job.

I saw, instead, a woman that thinks that everyone should think like she does, and act like she does, and ignores reality and people's legal right to have sex over the age of consent. And I guess, based on your reaction to what I said- where my post wasn't even addressed to you, but no matter- you feel the same way as she does.

I think that's great that you agree with her. I think it's great that you don't agree with me. But all I know is that pregnancy and STD's among teenagers in RC are at epidemic proportions, and telling teenagers "wait till marriage" is not in the realm of reality. We tell teenagers not to smoke, drink, commit crimes, or drop out of school- and see how far that gets?

Doggone Constitution again, dstewart. What are you gonna DO about those rights that everyone has?

corgimom
32141
Points
corgimom 10/10/10 - 03:58 pm
0
0
"By the way, Rhetor, the

"By the way, Rhetor, the letter writer says she was at the school board meeting and she saw that there seems to be cooperation between the BOE and Planned Parenthood."

I hope that they do cooperate. Somebody needs to face reality.

Is it illegal for them to cooperate?

Biggun
0
Points
Biggun 10/10/10 - 03:59 pm
0
0
I wonder if it is even

I wonder if it is even possible to fix this mess. This ain't civilized. Children belong with both their parents until their grown and they parents ought to be married to each other. Four things ruint things, in my opinon. Killing prayer in school, it don't matter what kind. Giving welfare to people who keep popping out kids to get more money. Abortion on demand. Easy divorce.

Just my opinion.

corgimom
32141
Points
corgimom 10/10/10 - 04:02 pm
0
0
"grouse, religion aside, a

"grouse, religion aside, a human being is a human being and murder is murder."

Insider Informatio-Ok, pony up. Let's hear about your deep concern for the embryos that are killed in IVF clinics. Either they are human beings at conception, or they aren't, or killing an embryo is murder, or it isn't.

Oh, that's different? See where that argument leads you?

faithson
5156
Points
faithson 10/10/10 - 04:24 pm
0
0
'consequence of being

'consequence of being irresponsible 'sexually' ?', which to my mind is getting pregnant without any social support except the 'government', no husband, no church, no family... these women should be deemed 'sexually irresponsible' as they show no concern for the child or children they bring into this world... no abortions, just forced birth control. The men should also be held accountable and be forced to pay the same price these women do. A man who imprenates women like a feral cat should be dealt with like a feral cat. I don't hold much for these guys who love to 'do it', but don't deal with the aftermath.

InChristLove
22472
Points
InChristLove 10/10/10 - 04:28 pm
0
0
"but as I watched the rest of

"but as I watched the rest of the semester, this beautiful young lady slid into a depression that I could not reach through."

I believe Ms. Smith had a right to assume the young lady was depressed due to the abortion. Evidently by her own statement that she could not reach through this girls depression, she must have had several discussions with this young lady as to why she was so depressed.

There is a major issue with teen pregnancy but until parents take responsibility and talk with their teens this problem will only continue. I'm not saying that even talking with your teen will prevent sexual activity or even an unwanted pregnancy but at least when your young daughter or young son finds themselves about to become parents, they will at least discuss the issue with you and decisions can be made in which all family members mentally can be prepared for.

Maybe if we start emphasizing the use of condoms to protect from STDs and AIDS instead of pregnancy, the teens out there will start using them. They think pregnancy will never happen but if you mention AIDS maybe that will scare the bejesus out of them.

Back to Top

Search Augusta jobs