Back before the Santa Ana Unified School District implemented a comprehensive sex-education curriculum, they were using the same ineffective Ã¢â‚¬Å“just say noÃ¢â‚¬Â bumper stickers for their war on drugs and their war on teen pregnancy.
Rosie Avila, the Santa Ana Unified Trustee that is now a Republican candidate for the 47th Congressional District, was very vocal on the topic, and her comments have stuck with me. She wrote an editorial about the topic, and she was quoted in the Register as saying Ã¢â‚¬Å“A strong belief system is more preventative than a condom.Ã¢â‚¬Â [Link]
But the truth is that Rosie and her puritan friends are blind to how ineffective their Ã¢â‚¬Å“abstinence-onlyÃ¢â‚¬Â mindset has been in Santa Ana. The evidence can be found in the fact that 6 percent of the women in the 34th State Senate District (Stanton, Anaheim, and Santa Ana) between the ages of 15 and 19 gave birth in 2004. IÃ¢â‚¬â„¢m going to write that fact again, but IÃ¢â‚¬â„¢ll bold it this time to press the importance: 6 percent of women between the ages 15 and 19 gave birth in 2004.
ItÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s ironic that the Republican party of Orange County can scare voters into voting for GOP candidates by saying things like Ã¢â‚¬Å“tax hikeÃ¢â‚¬Â and Ã¢â‚¬Å“tax and spendÃ¢â‚¬Â but their abstinence-only education is a contributing factor to the county pumping out $124 million a year in public services. IÃ¢â‚¬â„¢d much rather see a couple of bucks spent to get some condoms for these kids or to buy a better sex-ed text book.
There is good news in this story though…since the Santa Ana Unified School District adopted the comprehensive sex-education curriculum that will include talks on birth control and condoms, the areaÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s teen pregnancy rate has dropped. The truth is in the numbers.
I can see a new campaign slogan for Rosie:
[Numbers via OC Register]