Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Solving problems the stupid way

Teenage pregnancy is generally a pretty bad thing.  It is correlated with all kinds of unfortunate situations like poverty and incarceration and reducing it seems like a good strategy for a politician.  I watched a speech by Mitt Romney to the NAACP (National Association for the Advancement of Colored People) where he talked about the importance of getting people to complete high school and wait until at least age 21 to get married and have children.  Sounds good right?  We are to believe that Romney is really working for coloured people mired in poverty it would seem.

Until you look at what he actually wants to do.

In the same speech he expounded on his support for traditional marriage (homosexuality isn't going to produce a lot of teenage pregnancies last I checked), and his stance against abortion (which is a pretty damn important way to prevent children actually being born to teenage parents).  He also pounded his religious fundamentalism pretty hard so his overall stance becomes:

Men and women should only be in relationships with each other.
They should not be given information about sex or pregnancy.
They should not have access to medicine that can prevent pregnancy.
Tell teenagers to simply not have sex.

Result:  Teenage pregnancies won't happen!

That 'just don't have sex' talk had better be seriously magical!  Putting a bunch of uneducated teenagers with no contraception together and hoping no babies result is a lot like banking on the lottery as a retirement plan. Perhaps I should give Romney some credit.  Maybe he has some kind of wild, crazy strategy to curb teenage pregnancy that doesn't involve doing any of the things that we know reduce teenage pregnancy.  Maybe he will wave his magic Presidential wand or perhaps invoke the power of "GOD SAYS DON'T HAVE SEX".  These new and innovative strategies might work, or perhaps we could try doing things more like:

Allowing homosexuals the same rights as heterosexuals.
Teach children about sex and contraception.
Make contraception available.
Stop incarcerating huge swaths of people for victimless crimes so that children actually have fathers around and communities can break the cycle of poverty.

If only the Republicans would apply their 'less government regulation' schtick to education and birth control they would be both more consistent and less evil.

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