Wisconsin GOP Pushes Abstinence-Only Bill

Wisconsin Republicans aren’t just going after the pill, they’ve re-energized around a push to overturn the Healthy Youth Act which requires comprehensive sexual education in favor of abstinence-only education.

The push first emerged last year when Wisconsin State Senator Mary Lazich introduced the repeal effort, a bill that passed the Wisconsin Senate 17-15 just before the 2011 holiday break. Now a companion bill with nearly identical language must mast the Assembly and if it does Republican Gov. Scott Walker is all but certain to sign it.

AB 337 is the bill making its way through the Assembly and specifically removes from the existing law discussion of puberty, pregnancy, parenting, body image, gender stereotypes, contraceptive education include health benefits and proper use.

Not only does the bill remove safe-sex education it specifically modifies the definition for what is considered “medically accurate information” to a broad definition that grants religious conservatives cover to teach medically inaccurate information in support of their abstinence-only agenda.

The bill is expected to easily pass the Assembly.

Abstinence-only education efforts have been a tremendous public health failure. Their ineffectiveness at preventing teenage pregnancy and reducing the spread of disease is well documented and accepted by everyone but religious conservatives. Yet here we are again, debating whether science or religion will dictate health policy.

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Photo from robertelyov via flickr.

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191 comments

Mary K.
Mary K.3 years ago

Keep in mind, the repub/tparty is putting in place their army. The repub/tparty is: against #GOPWarOnWomen, #GOPWarOnChildren, #GOPWarOnPeopleOfColor, #GOPWarOnEducation, #GOPWarOnScience, #GOPWarOnGays, #GOPWarOnUnions, #GOPWarOnGovernmentWorkers, #GOPWarOnLiberals, #GOPWarOnTruth, #GOPWarOnDemocracy, #GOPWarOnImmigrants, #GOPWarOnPOTUSandFLOTUS. The repub/tparty has labeled teachers as "bad" people.

The main agenda of the repub/tparty is to condemn any facet of life that is not in keeping with their faux religious teachings. Are they interested in giving you a decent wage? NO. A better education? NO. Better health care? No. Security in later years? NO.

If a repub/tparty gains an elected seat, their Big Money funders, i.e., Koch Bros., DeVos Family, billionaires all, etc. will push ever harder to legislate on morality. Are we children to be led to a slaughter? That is the agenda of the repub/tparty. Be very wary of the repub/tparty flowering rhetoric. Vote Democratic in all elections - the party that wants for you what you want for yourself and your family.

Mary K.
Mary K.3 years ago

Keep in mind, the repub/tparty is putting in place their army. The repub/tparty is: against #GOPWarOnWomen, #GOPWarOnChildren, #GOPWarOnPeopleOfColor, #GOPWarOnEducation, #GOPWarOnScience, #GOPWarOnGays, #GOPWarOnUnions, #GOPWarOnGovernmentWorkers, #GOPWarOnLiberals, #GOPWarOnTruth, #GOPWarOnDemocracy, #GOPWarOnImmigrants, #GOPWarOnPOTUSandFLOTUS. The repub/tparty has labeled teachers as "bad" people.

The main agenda of the repub/tparty is to condemn any facet of life that is not in keeping with their faux religious teachings. Are they interested in giving you a decent wage? NO. A better education? NO. Better health care? No. Security in later years? NO.

If a repub/tparty gains an elected seat, their Big Money funders, i.e., Koch Bros., DeVos Family, billionaires all, etc. will push ever harder to legislate on morality. Are we children to be led to a slaughter? That is the agenda of the repub/tparty. Be very wary of the repub/tparty flowering rhetoric. Vote Democratic in all elections - the party that wants for you what you want for yourself and your family.

Eternal Gardener
Eternal Gardener3 years ago

Noted.

William Y.
William Y.3 years ago

@ Ardith A. Since when to school children & teenagers take male enhancement pills. This bill is about sex education.

Ardith Arrington
Ardith Arrington3 years ago

I would like them to not only practice abstinence but no recreational sex, either! Take away their "male enhancement" pills, too!!!

Melva H.
Melva H.3 years ago

Really good comments on this subject! I think Chad A. had a short, very clear wrapup of the situation. I intend to copy his response and post it on as many sites as I can, along with sending it to my district's Congressmen. Not that they will understand or be allowed to embrace it, but who knows? - maybe it will spark one of the dead cells in their brain and give them a thought of what Fairness and Common Sense entails.

Chad A.
Chad Anderson3 years ago

Parents can say whatever they want about sex in the privacy of their own homes. Why does sex ed have to meet the lowest common denominator of what the least tolerant are willing to say instead of teaching facts and the most current science?

Jacquie S.
Jacquie S.3 years ago

the end of what I wrote in the previous slot.

What we need is to educate our youth, and give them reason to care about themselves, and their partners enough to make good decisions.

Jacquie S.
Jacquie S.3 years ago

Due to the fact human sexual habits represent a kind of free for all, it is very challenging to deal with this subject in a rational way. The fact is that we don't merely practice sex as a way to produce the next generation, our species indulges in recreational sex. It is currently more popular than ever, and it is highly unlikely to respond to religious indignation, or legislation. It has not ever done so before, not without creating a veritable underground swarm of activity. In the 1800's in Calvinist Scotland there were women called "cowlies" for their upturned collars. These women made house calls whenever possible, and for a population that numbered nearly 100,000 devout Calvinists, there were more than enough cowlies to make the residents very happy indeed. Put up a barrier to really popular, and important, recreational activity, and it is more than likely to become hidden from sight, but just as popular, or moreso, than ever.

As it turns out, I was one of the technicians at Rockefeller University in 1957, that did lab work which contributed to the research on the 1st birth control pill. Actually, it was for the Population Council, one of the Rockefeller Foundation grants, whose labs were located at the University. It's not the perfect solution of the management of our population, although it may have helped to some degree. Abstinence would be nice if it worked, but it doesn't not here, not anywhere else in the world. What we need is to educate our youth, and give

Ann B.
Ann B.3 years ago

what is wrong with these people. The more you push the young are going to just rebel.