Thursday, January 21

How Conservatievs Makes Abortions Worse

Although the Conservative like to call themselves the "Party of Life" - the real facts when looked at in cold objective terms shows that they are anything but "Pro-life". Their policies of abstinence-only education which mandates that students by lied too about the effectiveness of condoms and other methods of birth-control.

According to the CDC Abortion Surveillance the actual rate of Abortions in America was virtually flat-lined during the Bush Era and Republican Control of Congress, and in the 2006 begin to increase.

The importance of this doesn't come into full relief until you see how this contrasts with what was going on just prior to it, specifically what happened between 1992-1995 while Bill Clinton was in office just before the Gingrich Congress rose to power.

Bill Clinton spearheaded initiatives focused on comprehensive - and Accurate - sex education, until he was pushed into promoting abstinence-only programs by the Gingrich Congress.

Abstinence-only programs encourage participants, typically teens, to abstain from sex and don't discuss contraception, except to point out its failings. The program got its start in the 1996 welfare-overhaul law and was later expanded by the Republican-controlled Congress.

But many say the programs haven't been proved effective. A 2007 federally funded study by Mathematica Policy Research, a nonpartisan group, found that participants in four programs had just as many sexual partners and those who did not participate and had sex at the same median age as non-participants.

Other studies have shown that 85% of teens who signed up for abstinence-only "Plegde" programs to refrain from pre-marital sex break that pledge within 18 months.

"But if you’ve got kids who’re saying, 'I’m going to abstain. I’m not gonna have sex.' So they’re not going to get pregnant. They’re not going to have a sexually transmitted disease. Isn’t that improving public health?" asks Bradley.

"Well, it would if they didn’t have sex," says Bearman. "But they do eventually have sex, and then they have unprotected sex, and that doesn’t protect you."

Based on those interviews with more than 20,000 young people who took virginity pledges, Bearman found that 88 percent of them broke their pledge and had sex before marriage.

What's worse is that in the meantime those same programs have told these kids that "condoms don't work" because they are only 98% Effective when used properly, and just 88% effective when misused. So not only are these teen still having sex, since they're been misled they're having unprotected sex - ala Bristol Palin.

"The downside is that, when they have sex, pledgers are one-third less likely to use condoms at first sex," says Bearman. "So all of the benefit of the delay in terms of pregnancy-risk and in terms of STD acquisition -- poof -- it just disappears because they’re so much less likely to use a condom at first sex."

Why do they not use condoms?

"They’ve been taught that condoms don’t work; they’re fearful of them. They don’t know how to use them," says Bearman. "Their peers don’t use them. They have no experience with them. They don’t know how to get them. They’re hard to get access to. For whatever reason they don’t use them, that has long-term consequences."

Other studies show that comprehensive sex education is far more effective than abstinence only programs.

Stoking the fire, a study published in the April edition of the Journal of Adolescent Health found that those who received comprehensive sex education were 50 percent less likely to become pregnant than those who received abstinence-only education. The study also found that those who received comprehensive sex education were 60 percent less likely to become pregnant than those who received no sex education at all.

"I do think that there's strong evidence that comprehensive sex education is more effective at preventing teen pregnancies," said Pamela Kohler, lead author of the study and program manager at the University of Washington's Center for AIDS and STD. "I think we pretty much debunked the myth that comprehensive sex education causes teenagers to have sex."

President Obama has restored funding for fully compreshensive Sex Education in, but whether the damage done by the wrong-headed ideas of Conservatives can be undone and the downward curve on the number of unwanted and unplanned pregnancies leading to abortions remains to be seen.


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