Forward to the 1970s

It is said that whatever was trendy when they were in college is what people will think is in style for the rest of their lives. That must be why, in Boomer reality, "progressive" has come to mean "an idea that utterly ignores the social and cultural trends of the past 40 years." How else to explain this, from an account of the ACLU's effort to put the kibosh on abstinence programs? Some brave Maine officials have decided to forgo a federal grant for sex education because it requires an abstinence-only approach, and Maine wishes to provide "comprehensive reproductive information."
"Maine likes to be in the lead in a lot of things, and I think this is one of these times when we have," Lynn Kippax, press secretary for Maine Gov. John Baldacci, a Democrat, said yesterday.
In the lead by taking a permissive, low-standards approach to sex-ed? How very 20th century of you, darling. And what, pray tell, will "comprehensive reproductive information" provide to Maine's young citizens?
Abstinence-only programs define abstinence as "avoiding all genital contact and sexual stimulation" and teach teens how to set boundaries and practice self-control, said Libby Gray Macke, director of Project Reality in Glenview, Ill. In contrast, comprehensive sex programs teach a "complete range" of behaviors, including oral sex and mutual masturbation, as alternatives to intercourse, she said.
At the risk of being coarse, I must say I am fascinated by the progressive notion that self-abuse is something that teenagers must be taught. A bit like getting a grant to teach girls to love chocolate, no?
You know what would be a radically new approach? Helping teens develop the kind of self-control that can direct their sexual impulses outside themselves, instead of encouraging them to fall more and more deeply into the inner-directed solipsism and isolation that will leave them lonely, depressed and unable to meet anyone or sustain a relationship. But of course, you'd have to believe in the kids to take that approach --and love them enough to engage them, rather than just throwing wide the medicine chest and yawning, "take what you need and get out of my hair."