CWA of South Dakota Sends Letter to Governor Rounds Expressing Appreciation for His Support of Abstinence Education
May 21, 2008
Governor M. Michael Rounds
500 East Capitol
Pierre, South Dakota 57501
Dear Governor Rounds,
It appears some South Dakota “women’s” groups have asked you to initiate a new state effort to reduce unwanted pregnancies. We believe that these groups do not speak for the majority of South Dakota women. Concerned Women for America of South Dakota appreciates your stance on life issues and your efforts to promote abstinence-until-marriage programs through your acceptance of federal Title V funding for those programs.
While Democracy in Action and the other groups stated that their focus is reducing unintended pregnancies, their solution is condom-based or “comprehensive” sex education. However, CWA believes the common sense approach is to teach youth the dangers of sex outside of marriage and give them the tools to avoid promiscuity and teach the benefits of staying pure until marriage.
A study released by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) finds that at least one in four teens has a sexually transmitted disease (STD). Even more shocking was the news that South Dakota teenage girls rate higher than the national average in promiscuity and in having four or more different sexual partners.
The CDC reported to Congress that condoms do not protect against human papillomavirus (HPV) which is the most common STD and is the primary cause of nearly all cervical cancer. The CDC further stated that HPV is spread through skin-to-skin contact and that the condom provides minimal protection. The CDC recommends that “the most effective approach to preventing infection is abstaining from sexual activity.”
For every dollar the government spends on abstinence-until-marriage programs, it spends $12 for “comprehensive condom-based” sex education. The American Journal of Health Behavior (January/February 2008) indicates that students in abstinence programs are 50 percent less likely to engage in sex. On the other hand, “comprehensive” programs that have been used for decades in public schools were found by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services to have no influence on behavior. It’s obvious to surmise which program is failing our youth and contributing to the skyrocketing STD rate. Condom-based sex education merely encourages sexual activity rather than setting high attainable values-based standards.
A 2004 Zogby poll revealed that 90 percent of parents want their children’s sex education classes to teach that abstinence until marriage is the only way to prevent STDs, unwanted pregnancies and deep regret.
Certainly media, culture and lack of parental involvement all contribute to youth promiscuity, but it is ludicrous for groups that profit from teenage sexual activity to promote “protection” (which does not protect from most STDs) or to point a finger at abstinence education which has proven results. Abstinent teens don’t spend time in their facilities.
The 1700 members of CWA of South Dakota and CWA’s 500,000 members nationwide urge you to continue your values-based stance regarding abstinence education and the funding for such programs. Hopefully, Congress will increase funding for abstinence-until-marriage programs as President Bush has requested, and more South Dakota youth can hear the common sense message that safe sex is no sex until marriage.
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
July 1, 2008
FOR MORE INFORMATION
WOMEN’S GROUP SUPPORTS GOV. ROUNDS’ ACCEPTANCE OF ABSTINENCE GRANTS
New Holland, South Dakota - Concerned Women for America (CWA) of South Dakota sent a letter dated May 22, 2008, to Governor Rounds expressing their appreciation to Gov. Rounds for his efforts to promote abstinence-until-marriage programs through acceptance of federal Title V funding. “Since twelve times more dollars are spent on condom-based sex education than on abstinence education, these federal dollars are welcomed,” said Linda Schauer, State Director.
“The major difference between the two sex education methods is that condom-based ‘comprehensive’ sex education is not values based. Yet, sex involves values—especially the values of commitment, love and intimacy. The valueless teaching of condom-based programs gives the message that sex is a casual recreation with no lasting consequences as long as one uses ‘protection.’ The result is the skyrocketing rate of sexually transmitted diseases (STD) which proves that ‘comprehensive-based’ programs increase promiscuity which in turn put youth at risk for STDs,” continued Mrs. Schauer
A high school in Gloucester, Massachusetts, is dealing with apparently “planned” pregnancies where seventeen teens purposely got pregnant while many other girls were disappointed that their pregnancy test came back negative. Giving contraception would not have gotten to the root issue in Gloucester--broken families and lack of love and parental affection. Abstinence programs deal with the whole person and how to address the need to be loved and not look for it in the wrong places. They promote goal setting to achieve a productive and fruitful life.
A new study by RAND, the nation’s largest independent health policy research program, shows that children who have standards and are challenged to live up to them ultimately make better and healthier decisions. Adolescents desire and need standards and thrive when more is expected of them because they know they are loved and someone cares about them. Although abstinence education has proven successful, it is not currently reaching its potential because parents and society refuse to expect much of anything from young people today. Our society flouts discipline and self-control while irresponsibly promoting an “it’s all about me” attitude.
Placing all studies aside, common sense tells us that abstinence until marriage is an attainable choice that absolutely prevents STDs, deep regret, and leads to a happier marriage.
1015 Fifteenth St. N.W., Suite 1100
Washington, D.C. 20005
Phone: (202) 488-7000
Fax: (202) 488-0806