What goes on in abstinence-only sex ed classes besides a whole lot of not talking about contraception? Slut shaming! At least, that’s what’s happening in one Boulder, Colorado middle school, where parents are questioning the merits of a demonstration where students were asked to spit food in glasses of water and then told that drinking the dirty water was sort of like sleeping with a slutty person. A slutty person who somehow has genitals made of chewed up food.
According to the Boulder Daily Camera, the presentation occurred at Southern Hills Middle School. Students in a health class were given a snack and asked to mix some of the snack in with their water, and then exchange glasses. Then, they were asked if they’d like to drink the dirty water. The idea here is that if you put stuff in your vagina, no one will like you because your vagina is dirty and gross and maybe even smelly.
Unsurprisingly some parents are upset, saying that the presentation is a kind of shitty way to present sex as something unclean. And also unsurprisingly, Brad Seng, the guy behind the mastication demonstration, has no idea how it could be in any way construed as offensive. He says, “One of the first things I say is that it’s not that sex is bad or is a dirty activity to be engaging in. That’s not it at all. It’s about encouraging young people to make healthy lifestyle decisions. Our method is grounded in truth and non-judgmental.”
I bet he thought The Scarlet Letter was a fun book about life in a small town and a woman who learned a gentle, fair lesson about keeping her pantaloons on.
But it gets better! The group that employs Seng when he’s not in schools teaching girls that sex will ruin them forever is a crisis pregnancy center, one of those fun places that tells women that they’re going to die of Jesus-induced punishment breast cancer if they have an abortion. They’re a Christian group. Which has led some parents to wonder if the school’s violating the establishment clause by failing to keep churchy stuff out of schools.
If Seng’s group is actually slut shaming and pushing a religious agenda, let’s hope school officials do the right thing and appeal to a science rather than feelings-based health class, because if you let a church group into a sex ed class, even once, it’s sort of like your sex ed class is full of chewed up food.