As if we needed further proof that the Bush Administration sees itself as the moral watchdogs of all Americans, word came out the other day that the Department of Health and Human Services released revised guidelines for states seeking grants that specifically state that unmarried people up to 29 years of age should be targeted with abstinence only messages:
The federal government’s “no sex without marriage” message isn’t just for kids anymore.
Now the government is targeting unmarried adults up to age 29 as part of its abstinence-only programs, which include millions of dollars in federal money that will be available to the states under revised federal grant guidelines for 2007.
The government says the change is a clarification. But critics say it’s a clear signal of a more directed policy targeting the sexual behavior of adults.
“They’ve stepped over the line of common sense,” said James Wagoner, president of Advocates for Youth, a Washington, D.C.-based non-profit that supports sex education. “To be preaching abstinence when 90% of people are having sex is in essence to lose touch with reality. It’s an ideological campaign. It has nothing to do with public health.”
My first reaction when I read this was outright laughter. The National Center for Health Statistics puts the percentage of adults ages 20-29 who have had sex in the “well over 90%” range. My next reaction was anger. Apparently the U.S. Government thinks you’re old enough to die in a war at 18 and old enough to drink at 21, but not old enough to decide when to have sex (unless you’re married) until you’re 30.
Bush can go “Cheney” himself.