A letter to the editor was written the other week about sex education in public schools. For the most part, I agree. The gentleman (whose name is unimportant as this is not an attack), on one hand, expressed that sexual activity should be between married couples (He and I will get slack for this one, but oh well).
He also expressed that sexual education should be taught in a stable environment which the family provides. This is also true. I won’t spend much time on the more than fair point that not all children have and may need loving teachers to educate, especially considering the need in protecting our kids from sexual predators. But it must be done in a carefully constructed, appropriate manner. Herein lies the main concern, that the State of New Jersey is not being careful nor appropriate.
The writer noted that according to the New Jersey Student Learning Standards — Comprehensive Health and Physical Education, that by the end of second grade, children are told they can pick whatever gender that have just been taught to express themselves in, and the Journal’s editor rightly corrected that the standards do not say this, but rather state “Discuss the range of ways people express their gender and how gender-role stereotypes may limit behavior.” The writer’s point was that this was introducing gender identity to second graders, and this is probably true; perhaps the journal should have acknowledged this was his point but that would be editorializing, so perhaps both the writer and editor needed to be more accurate. Second graders don’t need to know about this; that’s a parent’s decision.
The writer is accurate in stating that by the end of fifth, students should know was masturbation is and that pregnancy can be achieved through a variety of methods. Should fifth graders know about this? There are many important aspects from the Learning Standards such as ways to handle stress and conflict, so one could say I’m being nitpicky, but I fully understand, and have, similar concerns of many parents that schools are trying to circumnavigate parents and there is evidence of that if you’re paying attention. Do I have these concerns in my home districts? Not really as I’ve spoken to many parents in the school system already.
Frankly, though, my main disagreement with the writer comes at the end of his letter, that “any activity done that arises sexual pleasure and prevents children is perverted and discourages family by removing the primary purpose of family which is the children.” It’s the first half that is 100% incorrect, in some respects. I’m assuming the writer has a Judeo-Christian background (I know what assuming does), as do I. However, God created sex to be enjoyed by married couples, and not just for procreation. It is about becoming one flesh, as stated in Genesis 2, the first book of the Bible; it doesn’t mention children in this verse, though later God says be fruitful and multiply. Paul did say not marrying was more beneficial, for God’s kingdom, but if you can’t control yourself, to get married to not. Can’t control yourself for what, not having kids? This is in 1 Corinthians 7.
Part of the reason for writing this, again, is not to criticize, but convey truth. The other reason is because Christians are often seen as haters, boring, and killjoys. Enjoying sex with your spouse is far from all of that.