Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Teenage Mutant Sex Fiends

They're all doing it. Teenagers across the land are slipping out with purloined copies of the Kama Sutra and engaging in sex in greater numbers than ever before. They're also no doubt enjoying it, the randy little beggars.

Except the data seems to suggest otherwise.

While a recent report did show an increase in teenage pregnancy for the first time in more than a decade, statistics paint a different story when it comes to teenagers and sexual activity, according to this NY Times article.

Today, fewer than half of all high school students have had sex: 47.8 percent as of 2007, according to the National Youth Risk Behavior Survey, down from 54.1 percent in 1991.

A less recent report suggests that teenagers are also waiting longer to have sex than they did in the past. A 2002 report from the Department of Health and Human Services found that 30 percent of 15- to 17-year-old girls had experienced sex, down from 38 percent in 1995. During the same period, the percentage of sexually experienced boys in that age group dropped to 31 percent from 43 percent.

“There’s no doubt that the public perception is that things are getting worse, and that kids are having sex younger and are much wilder than they ever were,” said Kathleen A. Bogle, an assistant professor of sociology and criminal justice at La Salle University. “But when you look at the data, that’s not the case.”

Then why the increase in teenage pregnancy?

The latest rise in teenage pregnancy rates is cause for concern. But it very likely reflects changing patterns in contraceptive use rather than a major change in sexual behavior. The reality is that the rate of teenage childbearing has fallen steeply since the late 1950s. The declines aren’t explained by the increasing availability of abortions: teenage abortion rates have also dropped.

“There is a group of kids who engage in sexual behavior, but it’s not really significantly different than previous generations,” said Maria Kefalas, an associate professor of sociology at St. Joseph’s University in Philadelphia and co-author of “Promises I Can Keep: Why Poor Women Put Motherhood Before Marriage” (University of California Press, 2005). “This creeping up of teen pregnancy is not because so many more kids are having sex, but most likely because more kids aren’t using contraception.”
[Emphasis added]

How unsurprising in this day of "abstinence only" sex education where the mention of condoms and birth control pills is forbidden. Twelve years of the Religious Reich left us with that legacy, one that could be erased if certain people in Washington, DC and in the various state legislatures around the country showed any common sense and common decency.

While their hairstyles are beginning to wear on my last nerve, the kids, eh, they're all right.

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Anonymous Anonymous said...

Kids, um, young adults will always be the same. Curiosity, along with many other human emotions will never stop. Again, we have to ask ourselves why do we send people to Washington? Do they even care what the real world is about?

They are all for the free market when it benefits themselves. Otherwise, they want to legislate to be re-elected by those that catch only clips of campaign slogans.

Wonderful, blog.

PeasantPart, Shovel Ready

4:08 AM  

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