It has been a momentous week in the United States as the Supreme Court came to its decision about the legitimacy or otherwise of Obamacare. We have articles by Gerard Bradley and Dwight Duncan on our front page on the related issue of the contraceptive mandate that the Catholic bishops and various Catholic institutions are fighting all the way to the Supreme Court if necessary, for the sake of religious freedom. We are with them all the way on that.
Meanwhile one American has been causing her own stir a thousand miles away (so to speak) in New Zealand and Australia. Psychiatrist Dr Miriam Grossman has been giving talks in Auckland, Melbourne and Sydney on sex education and what young people are NOT being told about the risks of early and uncommitted sex. I was at a family forum in Auckland yesterday where Dr Grossman spoke and I can tell you that she is not firebrand or fanatic. She presents easily verifiable facts, often published on government websites and the like, about biology and psychology in a calm and methodical manner -- facts which every young person has a right to know for the sake of their physical and mental health.
This is nothing to do with religion; nothing to do with sexual morality; it is about health -- about why you shouldn’t give a 15-year-old girl the idea that she might be ready for sex without explaining to her how her body is not mature enough to resist infections that are so prevalent today, or how its chemistry will attach her to the boy who only wanted to hook up once, and make her miserable. But do you know what? The health and education establishments are not really interested in the health and happiness of young people; what they are really interested in is their own ideology.
In Auckland Dr Grossman got a small amount of coverage in the leading media; a handful of schools sent people to her talk for teachers and school administrators; her offer to publicly debate the facts was not taken up by anyone. By the time she arrived in Melbourne today national radio had framed her in a highly negative way. So much for freedom of information, the free exchange of ideas that journalism is meant to be about. And so much the more important are those grassroots organisations that persevere in getting the word out, regardless. Good on them. MercatorNet is in that business too.
If you were pinning your hopes on brains cans to understand the minds of sex educators (for example) I’m afraid that Denyse O’Leary’s article may disappoint you -- but it will also enlighten you. And wouldn’t we all like to know what makes Vladimir Putin tick -- George Friedman’s article this week show’s the Russian president at work on the world stage. As for philosopher Alain de Botton's (im)modest proposal to create "better porn", well, see what Zac Alstin thinks of it.