Condoms: Sort of like crack?

Abstinence Clearinghouse's blog claims that giving out rubbers is like passing out crack pipes. Meanwhile, June 7 is "Protest the Pill Day '08."


Catherine Price
May 9, 2008 12:20AM (UTC)

Here's a new addition for your blog roll: Abstinence Clearinghouse. Yup. Just in case you weren't getting your abstinence fix from the main site, you can check out the daily blog (which I found out about via Feministing) and glean fascinating insights into sexuality, humanity and crack cocaine.

About that last one: In my favorite entry (so far), an author named Kayla uses a story about crack cocaine to demonstrate the negative effects of sex education. To wit:

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"Could it be -- that the distribution of crack pipes to addicts in Canadian Cities to halt the spread of the disease is actually doing more harm than good but [sic] tacitly encouraging substance abuse?

"Could it be -- that by handing out condoms to children (with partially developed brains) that society could actually be sending them the WRONG message and encourage MORE dangerous sexual behavior?"

(Side note: Are sex educators specifically targeting children with partially developed brains? Because that would be totally messed up.)

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Quoting Canadian chief superintendent Derek Ogden's opinion on distributing crack pipes, the blog says that just as "handing out crack pipes at free will ... sends the wrong message and could actually encourage the rate of crack cocaine use in the community," "freely distributing condoms to children ... is actually encouraging them to become sexual [sic] active and put themselves at risk!!!"

Sics aside, I find it hysterical that anyone would compare condoms with crack pipes. Or insinuate that the sex education advocates think we should offer rubbers to 5-year-olds as Halloween treats. Or, for that matter, say that sexual education -- i.e. teaching kids about the risks and responsibilities of sex and encouraging them to be safe if and when they decide to become sexually active -- is the equivalent of pushing drugs.

But when it comes to being crackpots, the Abstinence Clearinghouse has plenty of company -- June 7 has been named Protest the Pill Day '08 (tag line: "The pill kills babies"). (In case you didn't figure it out, June 7 marks the anniversary of the Supreme Court's Griswold v. Connecticut decision, granting people the right to privacy in access to and use of birth control pills.) The event's Web site lists helpful talking points like, you know, descriptions of how the Pill "can kill your preborn baby without you even knowing" and makes you "more susceptible to the AIDS virus."

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I mean, there are noncrazy reasons to abstain from sex (you want to wait till you're in love, you don't feel ready for it, you're 10) -- but why go that route when you can argue that the Pill will give you a cerebral hemorrhage and that Planned Parenthood "brainwashes young girls"? I can only hope that these people actually do abstain from sex. That, at least, would keep them from reproducing.


Catherine Price

Catherine Price is an award-winning journalist and author of Vitamania: How Vitamins Revolutionized the Way We Think About Food. Her written and multimedia work has appeared in publications including The Best American Science Writing, The New York Times, Popular Science, O: The Oprah Magazine, the Los Angeles Times, The San Francisco Chronicle, The Washington Post Magazine, Salon, Slate, Men’s Journal, Mother Jones, PARADE, Health Magazine, and Outside. Price lives in Philadelphia.

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