Saturday, April 14, 2012

Tennessee Senate Bill Warns Against “Gateway Sexual Activity”

Senators in Tennessee approved an update to their abstinence-based sex education laws by warning against “gateway sexual activity.” Though such activity is not defined, it has been interpreted as anything that could lead to sex, including holding hands and kissing. Sponsored by Republican state Senator Jack Johnson, Senate Bill 3310 prohibits discussion of contraception and “any gateway sexual activity or health message that encourages students to experiment with non-coital sexual activity." Planned Parenthood director of education Elokin CaPese cites statistics of youth sexual activity in objecting that such a curriculum is ineffective, unrealistic and not health-based. Nonetheless, the bill promotes “abstinence, regardless of a student's current or prior sexual activity”–and legal consequences for teachers who stray from this message. Watch:

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