Teen pregnancy and promiscuity in the United States -- what is society teaching our youth?

Many are saying that society, particularly Hollywood, is sending the wrong message to our youth. Sex seems to be everywhere. In movies, on t.v., in commercials and magazine ads, in music lyrics and music videos and the internet. You don't have to go far to be almost bombarded with sexual content. Society promotes sex and promiscuity and some are now concerned that the media is downplaying teen pregnancies. They're selling sex, but they're not selling the consequences of promiscuity and sex before marriage which can be misleading to young teens. More recently many magazines and t.v. shows have glamorized celebrity pregnancies but they again, don't show the full reality of it all. Most of these celebrities have nannies and assistants to help in raising their children, yet the media is portraying parenting as easy and almost as if a baby is the new season's handbag. So the question is: What is the impact of sex on TV on today's teens?

Here is a CNN broadcast that tackles the issue:

Another argued topic is the method of sex education. Some argue abstinence only education is not effective and others argue that promoting "safe sex" is a dangerous approach when you consider the consequences. Regardless of the approach you believe is most effective, the fact is that Abstinence is the only method that is 100% effective and safe.

Here are a few Facts on American Teens' Sexual and Reproductive Health from the Guttmacher Institute
  • Nearly half (46%) of all 15–19-year-olds in the United States have had sex at least once
  • Ten percent of all U.S. births are to teens
  • 3 in 10 girls in the United States will become pregnant by age 20
  • 30% of those teens will have a second child within 24 months.
  • The U.S. has the highest rate of teen pregnancies compared to other countries with similar status
  • Most young people have sex for the first time at about age 17, but they do not marry until their middle or late 20s. This means that young adults are at risk of unwanted pregnancy and sexually transmitted infections (STIs) for nearly a decade.
  • Each year, almost 750,000 women aged 15–19 become pregnant
  • Black and Hispanic women have the highest teen pregnancy rates
  • Nearly a third of all teen pregnancies end in abortion.

Guttmacher Institute Teen Pregnancy Outcomes:
1 Response
  1. anna Says:

    When I was a senior in h.s. and an exchange student, we were of course given the "do not do list" by exchange coordinators - no hitchhiking (incredibly common in other countries),etc.....but when it came to parties, alcohol and then sex, it was, "Well, if (an implied WHEN) you can't control yourselves, use a condom." Exact phrasing. They weren't handing them out, at least; but I remember at 17 and still a virgin feeling so incredibly insulted. Teens aren't animals. They CAN CHOOSE to control themselves! Especially if the culture and adults around them started consistently reflecting positive social mores and decision -making skills.
    You're article is right on track - it's going to take a lot more than a few abstinence education courses - as good as they are - to take sex off the pedestal society puts it on.

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