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"Why Monogamy Matters"

Discussion in 'Sports and News' started by Dick Whitman, Mar 7, 2011.

  1. Dick Whitman

    Dick Whitman Well-Known Member

    Thought about posting this on the Huckabee thread, but thought that it wasn't quite aligned enough.


    Douthat cites some research that shows that young Americans are waiting longer to have sex, linking it (I think) to the abstinence movement. Much like Huckabee, it is an attempt by a social conservative to give a policy foundation to a movement we reflexively see as pushing religion on us. An interesting read, if nothing else, and I wouldn't mind reading the book he cites to.

    Yes, in 1950 as in 2011, most people didn’t go virgins to their marriage beds. But earlier generations of Americans waited longer to have sex, took fewer sexual partners across their lifetimes, and were more likely to see sleeping together as a way station on the road to wedlock.

    And they may have been happier for it. That’s the conclusion suggested by two sociologists, Mark Regnerus and Jeremy Uecker, in their recent book, “Premarital Sex in America.” Their research, which looks at sexual behavior among contemporary young adults, finds a significant correlation between sexual restraint and emotional well-being, between monogamy and happiness — and between promiscuity and depression.
  2. outofplace

    outofplace Well-Known Member

    Fixed that for you. Intentions matter, whether you like it or not.
  3. Dick Whitman

    Dick Whitman Well-Known Member


    To me, it is either sound policy or not sound policy. Why do motives matter? You keep saying they do, but not why they do.

    All I care about are results (and, also, whether the policy is Constitutional, though you've got to be a blind, inbred idiot to run afoul of the Establishment Clause).

    BTW, my personal philosophy to not really question people's motives, for the most part, comes from Joe Biden's autobiography. He talked in there about how that was a guiding principle of his, and how much it helped him out - it clears away all the noise and lets you argue about what matters. It made so much sense to me.
  4. Baron Scicluna

    Baron Scicluna Well-Known Member

    I'd also think that sex education in schools (you know, the stuff that the religious right whines about) is also lowering the trend.

    Classes are now giving teens those mechanical babies to take home for a few nights. Those sleepless nights are making a pretty strong impression.
  5. Azrael

    Azrael Active Member

    Nobody's having less "sex." They're having less vaginal sex. More oral, more anal. I'm sure Ross Douthat is too polite to mention it. Otherwise, why the epidemic of teen STDs? Abstinence instruction does nothing but leave American kids ignorant about sex and infection and condoms.


    One in four teenage girls in the U.S. has an STD, according to the Centers for Disease Control. In Wisconsin, the rate of four of the most commonly reported STDs among teens jumped 53 percent between 1997 and 2007. Females and minorities, especially African-Americans, have been hit hard. And these are numbers that have been reported; actual cases may be much higher. But it remains a hidden epidemic, not just because many STDs have no symptoms, but because of the stigma and politics that complicate efforts to fight them.


  6. Bob Cook

    Bob Cook Active Member

    George Michael sez: sex is best when it's one-on-one.
  7. Double J

    Double J Active Member

    I remember how he tried to defuse that controversy by making a number of statements about monogamy, which of course is something he's never actually practised even to this day.
  8. outofplace

    outofplace Well-Known Member

    First of all, when one person pushes their religious-based morality on others, it damn sure matters in this country. You aren't part of a religious minority, are you? If you were, perhaps you would have a better understanding of that problem.

    Secondly, pushing mongamy is one thing. Pushing marriage before sex is another. Pushing abstinence is another. The problem with pushing abstinence is that it is so often done at the expense of proper sex education, which is flat-out stupid.
  9. Dick Whitman

    Dick Whitman Well-Known Member

    So, motivations are so tough to ferret out that, to me, it isn't worth the energy. It's a fool's errand. If Mike Huckabee says that he wants marriage because marriage is good for children, and here's the social science to support it, why should I care if that's pretext? How does it alter the equation at all? I will take him at his word and move on. That's the only efficient way to meet the stance.

    If that policy idea is set on a flimsy foundation - say, religion - then that'll come out in the wash. The policy will be flawed, and that will be a winnable argument on the merits.

    People anchor a lot of their morality in religion. For example: "Thou shalt not kill." Some people want an objective source. But as long as they take the next step, which is explaining why their moral/value works in the real world, then I have no problem with it.

    Yeah, see, this is a policy argument.
  10. outofplace

    outofplace Well-Known Member

    Actually, plenty of people can figure out that killing is bad without G-d telling them so, so please stop leaning on that argument. It is one of the dumber ones used by the crowd that thinks it is okay for religion to guide government.

    Huckabee's motivations aren't hard to ferret out at all. Neither are those of most of the people pushing abstinence while fighting against proper sex education.
  11. Dick Whitman

    Dick Whitman Well-Known Member

    I don't think it's OK for religion to guide government. "God says so" is not a policy basis. "Single mothers do not collect child support and therefore drain public dollars" is a policy argument. The fact that the two sources are in concurrence is utterly meaningless to the larger question of whether it is good policy or bad policy.
  12. Alma

    Alma Well-Known Member

    You think abstinence education leads to a uptick in oral and anal sex? That would require proving that abstinence education primarily promotes abstinence to prevent pregnancy. Which, in my experience, it does not.

    I'd argue that culture - TV, magazines, the Internet, movies - has overwhelmed <i>any</i> gains that <i>any</i> form of education could make on kids having unprotected sex in, um, <i>any</i> orifice with <i>any</i> person. A small handful of network head and TV/Movie/Reality Shows writers have decided that kids will have sex no matter what, that hormones rule, and the depicting it in as many ways as possible is the best way of being truthful.

    What if your child told you they were going to have sex and you said no. But then your child said "but you let me watch 12 shows where kids have sex all the time!" What would be a parent's answer to that?
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