News & Politics

Chastity Clubs: Bringing the Hymens to Harvard

You are not Gandhi or Nelson Mandela for choosing not to have sex.
I have very little to say about this article, other than:

1. Talking about condoms and safer sex is not the same thing as demonizing abstinence, and if you're under that impression, I sure hope that you were a legacy admission to Harvard, because otherwise that's just embarrassing.

2. You look dumb when you complain that "there is just one lifestyle that doesn't get recognition" and that's abstinence. Abstinence gets recognition to the tune of more than $140 million in federal funding every year. Abstinence is discussed constantly. It is brought up in every single sex ed program. It is the subject of Congressional investigations and debates. It is studied by researchers. It is discussed in the classroom, in churches, in homes, in the news, and on blogs. Abstinence-until-marriage is discussed perhaps more than any other lifestyle choice made by less than five percent of the population.

3. You look even dumber when you complain about how mean and alienating the comprehensive sex ed folks are, and then you say stuff like pre-marital sex "deeply compromises human dignity" and leads to "personal unhappiness and social harm." I can recognize that it is hard to remain abstinent, especially in the face of a very sexualized culture. I appreciate and applaud the personal strength of individuals who decide abstinence in the best choice for them. But what I can't support is the constant attacks on sexually active people. People who have sex do not feel a constant need to tell abstinent people that their human dignity has been compromised, or that they're dirty, or that they are secretly unhappy, or that they're headed for total life ruin. I can understand how abstinent people may feel like society regards them as freaks because it seems like everyone else is having sex, but, statistically, most adults do have sex before marriage. It doesn't mean you're a freak if you don't, but it does mean you're making a different choice than 95 percent of the population. You can't really expect that the choices made by the overwhelming majority won't be normalized; you can, however, expect that your choices be recognized and respected. Unfortunately, the most vocal abstinence crusaders don't do that. They instead choose to tell the rest of us that we're making bad decisions and that we're compromising our dignity as human beings. That's far more fucked up and judgmental than anything I've ever heard a sexually active person say about abstinent folks.
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