Sunday, March 14, 2004
US study of teenage sexual disease destroys basis of virginity crusade
Guardian Unlimited: "American teenagers who take the pledge to remain virgins until they marry have almost the same rate of sexually transmitted disease as other young people, a new study of adolescent behaviour says.
The finding destroys a key rationale for the abstinence crusade - that it prevents disease - and poses a strong challenge to a social engineering project that has been embraced by the White House.
The eight-year study of 12,000 young people by two American sociologists found that the graduates of abstinence programmes were nearly as likely as other young people to catch sexually transmitted infections such as gonorrhoea or chlamydia.
Other findings, yet to be published, also suggest that abstinence programmes do not prevent early pregnancy, Hannah Bruckner, a sociologist at Yale University and co-author of the study, said."
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