A while back, the Administration for Children and Families released new guidelines for organizations that want government grants for abstinence-only sex ed programs. The blogosphere has been twittering ever since at the very narrow definition of "abstinence:"
Abstinence curricula must have a clear definition of sexual abstinence which must be consistent with the following: 'Abstinence means voluntarily choosing not to engage in sexual activity until marriage. Sexual activity refers to any type of genital contact or sexual stimulation between two persons including, but not limited to, sexual intercourse.'As you can see from these lengthy threads at The Volokh Conspiracy and Think Progress, both the right and left have expended considerable effort poking fun at that language. To be honest, I don't get it. We've known for years that Dubya supported abstinence only sex ed. Did anyone really think that any definition of "abstinence" would include some kind of sexual activity (proclivity for numerous abstinence kids to "stay pure" by having only oral and anal sex notwithstanding) aside from man-on-woman (literally) within the confines of heterosexual marriage?
I agree that the idea of teaching that to kids is nuts, but I guess I'm just not surprised enough to be outraged.
On a somewhat related tangent, the Vatican is considering relaxing its dogma against using condoms. Alas, condom use will only be permitted for married couples where one of the folks is already infected with HIV.