Hilary White, Rome Correspondent

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UK sex-ed mania hits the Scouts

Hilary White, Rome Correspondent

LONDON, April 6, 2011 (LifeSiteNews.com) – In 1908, when Lord Baden-Powel founded the international scouting movement, he adopted the motto, “Be prepared.” But now it’s 2011, and the Scouts are moving on, with the UK branch announcing a sex education program intended to help young people prepare for sex by instructing them on condom use and “safe sex.” 

The British Scout Association announced this week that its optional program is to be offered to local scouting groups aimed at 14- to 18-year-olds around the country. The UK, the Association says, has the highest rates of sexually transmitted diseases and teenage pregnancies in Europe, so condoms and more sex-ed for scouts is the obvious answer.

One critic of the program, however, Patricia Morgan, a writer and campaigner for parental rights, pointed out that the UK’s massive push for sex-ed has coincided with the worsening of the problem.

“We have done nothing since the introduction of the Teenage Pregnancy Strategy in 1998 but force-feed young children and teenagers information they do not need about sex, and the result has been ever higher teenage pregnancies and soaring rates of sexually transmitted diseases,” she observed.

“Local Scout groups are not the right environment for even more sexualisation of our children,” she said.

“Parents send their children to these kind of activities to enjoy themselves and have fun in very healthy and innocent ways, not to come home with a pocketful of condoms.”

In 2009, Morgan, the author of the book, “The War between the State and the Family,” wrote of the Labour government’s 1999 promise to halve teen pregnancies by 2010, “The blind faith placed in money, latex and chemistry, with no questions asked, has let everyone down.”

The British Scout Association works with about 40,000 people in the target age range. Scout leader Matt Mills told the BBC that their program will be different from the ones that young people already receive in their schools. School programs, he said, “focus on the mechanics of sex and the biology behind it. The kind we’re talking about is relationships mainly, and sexual health.”

The material, Mills said, cover “sexuality, STIs and abstinence.”

The program’s connection to the abortion movement is clear from the title alone, “My Body, My Choice,” which is one of the favorite slogans of the abortion movement. It was developed for the Scouts by the pro-abortion and homosexuality-promoting organization Brook, which recently advised the UK government to start children on compulsory sex education at age four . The same group insisted that the government strip parents of the right to withhold their children from school sex-ed classes.

The program includes activities such as a “condom quiz” and a “sexually transmitted infections” card game. One game, “fluid exchange,” uses plastic cups and food coloring to demonstrate how quickly fluid and infection can spread.

One of the program’s leaflets tells scouts, “If you do decide to have sex you need to have thought about contraception first.

“There are lots of methods of contraception, including pills, patches, implants and injections, but only not having sex and condoms protect against both pregnancy and sexually transmitted infections (STIs).

“Jonnies, Jimmies, rubbers, love gloves – whatever you call them – condoms are very important. They come in all different shapes, sizes and flavours – and they are FREE. Get them from specialist young people’s services, contraception and sexual health clinics, Brook Centres and from lots of youth services, GPs, schools and colleges.”

Among the “myths” the leaflet “busts” is, “Masturbation is not harmful; it can just be a normal part of growing up.” In a nod to “abstinence,” the leaflet advises, “you might be surprised to know that about 70 per cent of young people wait until they are 16 or over before they have sex. Deciding to have sex for the first time is a big decision, so it’s definitely worth waiting until you feel sure you are ready.” The UK’s age of legal consent for sexual activity is 16.

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