There are days that I'm pretty okay with living south of the Mason-Dixon line, and then there are days that I get so unbelievably pissed the fuck off that I just want to stab some one in the eye.
Apparently, I'm rather lucky to have kids in the Mississippi public school system right now, because previously there was no Sex Ed curriculum allowed by the state. New this year, they've begun teaching it in 6th grade. Like most of the South, the options were either a completely useless attempt at stopping teen sex altogether or the subject just wasn't mentioned. Neither of which actually addresses the reality of the matter.
Be honest with yourself, how old were you when you had your first sexual encounter... No, really honest. It's okay, there won't be a pop quiz later. According to the Kinsey Institute, the average age for men is ~16 and for women it's ~17, with more than 25% of BOTH having had their first sexual experience by age 15, or younger, and how many of these do we figure are educated? Well, happily, the same study caught that tid bit also. I'm talking about 'Safe-Sex', which in my opinion is kind of a misnomer since there's no such thing as 'safe', just 'safER'.
Let me put my outrage in context for you. I have a 5 year old daughter, and a 9 year old son. If the numbers from this study are correct, then that would imply that out of ten occurrences, my son is going to fuck up twice, and not use a rubber, if he has sex between 14 and 17... on average, and my daughter will be in a much worse boat. ~4 out of ten fuck ups. Well... what the hell does that mean?
Out of every 1000 women in Mississippi, between 15 and 19, about 64 of them will get pregnant. That's the highest teen pregnancy rate in the COUNTRY! Fuck fuck fuck! DOUBLE FUCK! Matter of fact, seven states in the south reported 5% or more of teenage girls would get pregnant before they were 19. Holy SHIT! Now, add to that the fact that the biggest offenders there, are also part of the same group of states that gives NO information about contraception.
Now, as a father, I have two choices while I live in the state of Mississippi... I can either chain my daughter in her room until she's thirty, and vacuum seal my son's penis, or... I can do this weird new thing that folks are trying out... It's called Being A Parent.
Obviously I'm not going to convince my kids to never have sex. The studies don't lie. Kids who make 'virgin' promises are just as likely to have sex as kids who don't. The only difference really, is that the kids who get the proper education and information on the subject are less likely to end up makin' babies, because condom use increases when kids are educated instead of having the subject hidden from them. So I made a power point for them, and I'll update it appropriately as they get older. They already know what to expect from puberty, and once we reach that hurdle, I'll roll out the 'Sex' talk, and include all manner of bland visual aids, just like the ones I had when I went to school, in Washington State... where they started sex ed in the 2nd grade.
It's fortunate that I haven't relied on public schools to provide pertinent and accurate information for the last fifteen years, because if I did this whole subject might come as a bit of a shock to me.