‘sex and religion’

Americans Search for a Sexual Center

People in the media ask me all the time—sexually, is the country getting more liberal or more conservative? This is similar to the question George Lakoff discusses about politics, most recently in his article in Truthout. In it, he says there are no “centrists,” because “There is no left-to-right linear spectrum in American political life.” Instead, Lakoff talks about “biconceptuals”—“progressive on certain issue areas and conservative on others.” The importance of this, says Lakoff, is that progressive values—“protection and empowerment”—are simply American values. The idea that there is a ‘center,’ he says, “marginalizes progressives and sees them as extremists, when…

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Abortion Is Not A “Woman’s Issue”

Since our Constitution forbids the establishment of an official government religion, and guarantees the right of personal decision-making regardless of one’s actual choices, it’s clear that government has no authority to criminalize abortion. If the religion you choose to follow forbids you from having an abortion, don’t have one. If you feel upset that other people have abortions, you have the right to comfort yourself with any private behaviors you wish, religious or material. Of course, this being a country that guarantees freedom of expression, everyone has the right to try to persuade others not to have an abortion. *…

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Church Offers Everyone (Mostly Useless) Marriage Advice

America’s Catholic bishops have launched a media campaign aimed at promoting and strengthening marriage. This is like an arsonist discussing fire safety while watching your house burn. Despite their obsessive campaigns to deprive men and women of condoms, despite hundreds of priests molesting thousands of kids, despite their evil work to limit sexual expression to less than half of Americans, the Church has launched the National Pastoral Initiative on Marriage. You’ll soon be seeing the Campaign’s TV ads, featuring ordinary people talking about what they do to enrich their marriages—extra hugs, carrying a wife’s purse, leaving lovenotes. There’s also a…

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Teens As A Sexually-Repressed Minority

What do you call it when the government singles out a group and denies them: * information * health care services * the right to consensual sexual activity Sounds like discrimination, doesn’t it? In fact, American teenagers are a sexually repressed minority. In half of America’s schools, teachers are not allowed to answer simple questions about the clitoris or anal sex. Teens are discouraged from using condoms through a combination of government lies and government-funded lies (see faith-based funding of socials services). In many states, teens are prevented from getting healthcare, including abortions. And worst of all, teens are jailed…

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Sexual Hypocrisy—When the Personal is Political

Randall Tobias abruptly resigned as head of the Bush administration’s foreign aid programs Friday after he was implicated in an investigation of high-priced call-girls. Ho-hum, another married Republican outed as—gasp—participating in non-marital, non-monogamous sex. The moral failure of yet another Bush appointee would hardly be worth mentioning, except that Tobias directed the Agency for International Development (USAID) and America’s global AIDS relief programs. In those capacities, he was personally responsible for implementing a condom-is-the-last-resort policy for AIDS prevention. He implemented America’s shameful international blackmail scheme–you want family planning money, you have to vigorously oppose prostitution, while promoting abstinence & monogamy.…

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Ohio Proves It Cares About Its Young

Ohio is the latest state to refuse federal funds for abstinence-only sex “education.” Five other states have announced the end of their participation: Wisconsin, Connecticut, Rhode Island, Montana and New Jersey. California, Pennsylvania, and Maine already don’t participate. The reasons for refusing the federal money are simple: the money can only be used under extremely narrow circumstances–e.g., no mention of condoms or of contraception’s success rate; programs with these criteria don’t work to substantially reduce teen pregnancy or STDs–according to the U.S. Government Accountability Office; the required matching state funds can be put to better use, enhancing teen sexual health…

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