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Sex Education in Public Schools

            Sexual education is important to the wellbeing of our nation's youth. It has been said that knowledge is power. If the students throughout the United States are not properly educated on the consequences of sexual activity then they cannot be blamed for the repercussions that will follow unsafe sex. Sexual Education is required in most schools in the United States. However, there are individuals who argue against it. Many individuals believe that the education system does not give enough emphasis on abstinence, and therefore should be taught at home. They argue that be teaching youth the facts of intercourse instead of solely abstinence, they are encouraging teenagers to have sex. This has been a controversial issue for many years. With teen pregnancy and sexually transmitted disease rates skyrocketing, proper sex education is needed rather than teaching strictly abstinence. .
             Teaching abstinence may work for some of today's youth, but it will not work for all of them. Many teenagers will have sex simply to rebel against their parents and teachers who are telling them what not to do. The well-known television show 16 and Pregnant is a fantastic example of individuals who were taught abstinence, but became pregnant regardless. The show debuted in 2009 and is filmed like a documentary. The camera follows teenager girls who have gotten pregnant. Originally, critics of the show argued that this television show would increase sexual activity among teenagers. Fortunately, the television series did exactly the opposite. According to the Washington Post, 16 and Pregnant led to a 5.7% reduction in teen births (Goldstein). That is a whopping 20,000 fewer teen births a year. The United States has the highest teen pregnancy rate in the world. It was recorded in 2012 that out of 1000 teenage girls, 29.4 gave birth in the United States between the ages of 15 and 19. However, twenty years prior to these studies 8 teenage females gave birth in the United States out of 1000.

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