Friday, June 20, 2008

baby momma explosion oh my

So this article tells us that a group of teenage girls in Gloucester MA may have agreed to get pregnant together so they can raise their kids. Every article about these girls has mentioned Lynn Spears, Britney's little sis, who just had a baby, and may (although there is no evidence to suggest this) have inspired these girls. Having babies is cool, right?

What these articles don't mention is that Gloucester cut sex ed funding to one year during high school! The times article does mention that there was a controversy over whether to give high school students contraception without parents' permission, and big surprise, the school district decided not to go there.

Basically, why are we surprised when teenage girls, especially with few economic opportunities, who are not given good sex ed decide to have babies? Do people think of teenage mothers in racial terms, so they are shocked when a bunch of white girls go this route - as if teenage pregnancy is cultural practice only found in the ghetto? The snarky comment about how some of the fathers are - shocker - in their 20s... and one is... get this - a 24 year old homeless man.

I, and many people I know, would rather sleep with a 24 year old homeless man than the studliest 16 year old any day of the year.

On another note - the most effective piece of sex ed I ever got was when our teacher told us that raising a child costs something like 2 million dollars... that got all of us to shut our legs for another few years.

This was an incoherent rant - but my take home policy point is that funding sex ed is cheaper than funding child care (although there should be both) and people shouldn't pretend that teenagers wanting to have kids is some terrible abnormal disease.