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March 27, 2005

Comments

Ryan

Nice work, Heather. You and Michael are approaching watch-blog nirvana with this kind of stuff. Very engaging in my book.

I hope you'd forward your message to Planned Parenthood and other community-based advocacy groups that are under direct attack by groups like the Abstinence Clearinghouse (AC).

From my own (anecdotal, of course!) experience, comprehensive sex-ed works. It no more encourages sexual activity than other health classes promote drug use. Teaching a kid about the effects of cocaine, hallucinogens, etc. on their bodies is analogous to telling them what having intercourse will.

I know this your article was more about how these people are liars, but I think a lot of self-described liberals feel strongly about this issue in general. Not only will the next generation be directly affected by American Taliban groups like AC, but their misguided crusade against human sexuality may lead to a public health crisis (something their supporters have trouble admitting/imagining).

Cheryl

I seem to recall that some group of behavioral scientists at one time got together and analyzed the difference in IQ between republican presidents and democratic presidents, as evidenced by their written works, their public speaches and their use of vocabulary. Clinton was one of the smartest and Bush Jr. was one of the dumbest, with Republicans taking a sound drubbing all around.

The problem with trying to convince people by using statistical analysis is that you have to have a brain to understand what the data is trying to tell you. In this respect the majority of Republicans are hopeless. Let them sleep. Simple answers for simpletons.

heather

Ryan, that's a good idea about forwarding my letter to advocacy groups. Thanks.

Cheryl--the problem is that they're not sleeping, are they? they can understand these things, they just choose not to.

Incertus

If they were sleeping, no problem. The problem is that whether they're deliberately misrepresenting the data or they're doing so out of ignnorance, they're foisting their faulty interpretations on the rest of us, and as they're in power, that has dire consequences on society as a whole.

Cheryl

they can understand these things, they just choose not to.

I disagree. They are stupid, plain and simple.

Cheryl

More examples of the stupidity of Republican born-again-yesterday lemmings from Theocracy Watch:

At 2:54 a.m. on a Friday in March, the House cut veterans benefits by three votes.

At 2:39 a.m. on a Friday in April, the House slashed education and health care by five votes.

At 1:56 a.m. on a Friday in May, the House passed the Leave No Millionaire Behind tax-cut bill by a handful of votes.

At 2:33 a.m. on a Friday in June, the House passed the Medicare privatization and prescription drug bill by one vote.

At 12:57 a.m. on a Friday in July, the House eviscerated Head Start by one vote.

And then, after returning from summer recess, at 12:12 a.m. on a Friday in October, the House voted $87 billion for Iraq. Always in the middle of the night. Always after the press had passed their deadlines. Always after the American people had turned off the news and gone to bed.

The most sweeping changes to medicare in its 38 year history were forced through the House at 5:55 on a Saturday morning.

Steve

Heather:

Yours is the first challenge to the substance of the Abstinence Clearinghouse's ongoing disinformation campaign that I've seen. What's truly frightening is that until a year ago, they had a grant from U.S. HHS to provide training and technical assistance to abstinence-only grantees and monitor the use of abstinence-only funds. It speaks volumes that HHS would consider Leslie Unruh, AC's attack-dog president, to be qualified to administer a national grant.

Also check out HHS' ongoing effort to suppress its own study of whether abstinence programs work, at http://www.inthesetimes.com/site/main/article/1917/

Steve

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