The Moderate Washingtonian

Outlook on politics and elections in the state of Washington from an overall centrist viewpoint. My views tend to be libertarian in nature, but at the same time are largely nonpartisan.

09 December 2006

Tom tackles sex education

Sen.-elect Rodney Tom is prepared to act fast to deliver sex education in schools that is, you know, actually sex education, or so says the Slog. He promises one of his first acts will be to re-introduce a bill he originally sponsored as a Republican member of the House, which would mandate that "medically-accurate sex education" be taught in public schools. I, for one, am pleased to see the senator starting his Democratic career off on the right foot. One of the more-obnoxious parts of the recent right-wing crusade on social freedoms is this belief in abstinence-only education, which essentially sets teenagers up for a mess of troubles when they don't know a thing about STDs or proper contraception. Abstinence certainly has a place in sex education, but preaching its benefits with the assumption everybody is going to heed is foolhardy, and I'm happy to see Tom ready to tackle this again next session.

6 Comments:

At 11:09 AM, Anonymous peter said...

sex education is all fine and good, but why mandate it? Local control of schools is the best thing for all. I imagine there will be a lot of school districts who will have to redirect resources to pay for this, and they will have to forgo things like before and after school care.

 
At 3:27 AM, Blogger TMW said...

The obvious answer for why to mandate in my mind is simple uniformity. Why should a student in Yakima County be less prepared than a student in King County? Teenagers are going to have sex regardless, so it's best to make sure the risks and information are in place first. As for budgeting, so be it. This is a rather important point of concern, and if school districts must trim budgeting elsewhere I think it's worth it. At the same time, I'm not sure it would cost a significant amount extra to do this, considering sex education is already in place and this is normalizing the curriculum.

 
At 8:29 AM, Anonymous peter said...

If you really want uniform standards then you should be in favor of the WASL, not sex education...Do you really think teaching kid's about sex is more important than holding them and the school districts to high standards? Studies show if a child is succeeding in the classroom he/she is far less likely to have unprotected sex. And I hate it when legislator's throw out this "medically accurate" business.

 
At 9:19 AM, Blogger TMW said...

I am in favour of the WASL, and voted twice for Terry Bergeson.

 
At 11:10 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I am in favor of WASL and did not vote for Terry Bergeson. What does that have to do with Rodney Tom's campaign pledges? Mr. Tom is a politician who makes campaign promises and then delivers. You know where he stands on the issues. He votes as he speaks.

 
At 11:47 PM, Blogger TMW said...

It doesn't directly relate to Rodney's pledge, Peter brought the discussion to the WASL and considering Bergeson was vulnerable in 2004 because of her support of it, I simply stated my past support for her. As for Rodney, I've made no secret that I'm a big fan of his, as as long as he continues to vote as he speaks he'll have my support. I hope that as a member of the Democratic Caucus he does not stray from the fiscal and economic conservatism he could be counted on while a Republican.

 

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