NewsFri Jul 20, 2007 - 12:15 pm EST
Obama Supports Sex-Education in Kindergarten, Romney Strikes Back
By Elizabeth O’Brien
COLORADO SPRINGS, July 20, 2007 (LifeSiteNews.com) - As the presidential vote approaches, Democratic candidate Barack Obama and Republican candidate Mitt Romney are pitted against each other over the issue of the appropriateness of sex-education for kindergarten students.
Pro-abortion Senator Barack Obama addressed a Planned Parenthood Action Fund group on Tuesday, saying, "It’s the right thing to do," to provide "age-appropriate sex education, science-based sex education in schools." Obama said he believes that children need information when they are young so that they can protect themselves from sexual predators.
Romney struck back while campaigning in Colorado Springs, asking, "How much sex education is age appropriate for a 5-year-old?" Romney stated, "In my view, zero is the right amount. Instead of teaching about sex education in kindergarten to 5-year-olds let’s clean up the ocean of filth, the cesspool in which our children are swimming."
"Let’s let our 5-year olds be 5-year olds," said Romney’s spokesman Eric Fehrnstrom. "When students are old enough for sex education they should be taught abstinence as part of their health curriculum and that marriage should come before babies."
Obama defended himself saying, "All I said was that I support the same laws that exist in Massachusetts and New Hampshire, in which local communities and parents can make decisions to provide children with the information they need to deal with sexual predators," the Boston Globe reports. As Illinois State Senator, Obama approved legislation that would allow sex-education in kindergarten rather than grades 6 to 12 only.
During his governorship of Massachusetts, Romney actively supported abstinence education in addition to sex-education (see http://www.boston.com/news/education/k_12/articles/2005/12/21/state_to_push_abstinence_in_schools/). On the other hand, ABC also reports that in a 2002 Planned Parenthood questionnaire, Romney checked yes to the following question: "Do you support the teaching of responsible, age-appropriate, factually accurate health and sexuality education, including information about both abstinence and contraception, in public schools?"
Romney, who professes to have had a demonstrative, but recent turn-around in his moral views, has called himself "firmly pro-life". Despite this and his present conservative stand against Obama on the matter of sex-education, Romney has met with considerable suspicion from conservatives and is being forced to work hard to reassure many voters who are uneasy due to a history of waffling on traditional values.
See ABC News coverage:
The Romney Report: An Analysis of Republican Mitt Romney’s Legacy on Life and Family
Part 1: Romney and his Pro-life Position
The Romney Report: An In-Depth Analysis of Mitt Romney’s Legacy on Life and Family Continued: Part II
Senators Clinton, Obama, say "Homosexuality is Moral"
"Talking about Touching" Sex-Ed Opponent Fr. Altier Writes to Spirit Daily