News Roundup for 7/20/09

Bristol Palin with baby
I blame that "rock and also roll music" young people listen to

-Headline of the day-
"Teen pregnancy and disease rates rose sharply during Bush years, agency finds."

My headline would've been "Jesus sucks at preventing STDs, pregnancy."

According to the Guardian, "In a report that will surprise few of Bush's critics on the issue, the Centres for Disease Control says years of falling rates of teenage pregnancies and sexually transmitted disease infections under previous administrations were reversed or stalled in the Bush years." The report tells us that while teen STDs and pregnancies "had been in decline since 1991," they're "up sharply in more than half of American states since 2005."

Which half of the states are the worst off? The Bible Belt, of course.

"The CDC says that southern states, where there is often the greatest emphasis on abstinence and religion, tend to have the highest rates of teenage pregnancy and STDs," we're told. Turns out that what I always say is right -- at least, in terms of teen sex -- the only difference between praying and doing nothing is intent.

Still, the abstinence-only types aren't admitting defeat... Well, they are, actually. They're just saying that it's not Bush's fault. It's your fault, you pervert, with your buttshaking on the TV and your Britney Spears and your Desperate Houswives and your porno on the internets and stuff.

"It is ridiculous to say that a programme we nominally invest in has failed when it fails to overcome the most sexualised culture in world history. Education that emphasises abstinence as the best option for teens makes up a minuscule part of overall sex education in the United States," says Kristi Hamrick, a spokeswoman for some ineffective organization called American Values. "In every other area of public policy -- food, drugs, alcohol -- we tell children what is the best choice. It seems very bizarre that the sex education establishment rejects the idea that we should talk to kids about what is best for them. We don't take vodka to drivers education because children will drink and drive."

No, we just advertise vodka on that same TV machine you're blaming for all the sex, Kristi. Just to clear things up -- because you seem to be confused on this point -- watching some pop-model shake her ass on TV in our "most sexualised culture in world history" doesn't actually count as having sex. Just like watching a vodka commercial doesn't actually get you hammered. And, while we're at it, let's not pretend that the United States wasn't super-interested in sex before George W. Bush showed up, OK? Because that's just a wee bit insane.

Your argument sucks as bad as your sex ed policy. They both have a few bugs in them. Why don't you guys take a few decades to work out the kinks in your brilliant policy and then get back to us. Until then, we'll go back to the hellish, un-Christian nightmare that was actually working. (Guardian)

"Obama speech on healthCareReform Absolutely nothing new Waste of time saying we are going to get that done Baucus and I know that But doRITE"
-Sen. Chuck Grassley's latest stream-of-consciousness Twitter poem.

So what do you think, is that the result of vodka or whiskey? (Wonkette)

-Maybe we should consider a pre-emptive strike-
When religious extremists promises violence, I guess what makes them a "terrorist" is the language they speak. If it's Arabic or Farsi, then y'got yerself a terr'ist. If the religious whacko's speaking English, you've got a patriot.

At least, that seems to be the case with extremist anti-abortion activist Randall Terry. Terry warns that if national health care includes money to "fund the murder of babies by abortion... - either explicitly or implicitly -- there could be horrific consequences."

How horrific? Like the '60s. Or the civil war which, in Randy's mind, seems to be pretty much the same thing. "If they attempt to fund abortion, it is tantamount to the government putting a gun to taxpayers' heads to force them to pay for the brutal murder of an innocent child," he said in a statement. "There are many of us who will not comply."

A couple of points here: 1., no one's talking about doing that, so simmer down you psychopath. 2., every time this issue of paying for abortion comes up, the same question pops into my head -- what the hell makes you so special? We've been paying to kill innocent post-born people for years and I don't remember you making a big stink about that. Apparently, that killing -- i.e., the non-hypothetical kind -- you're cool with. Millions of Americans are already paying for real killing they don't support, so excuse me if I'm not duly impressed with your juvenile shitfit over a program to fund abortion that doesn't actually exist.

Not that we have anything to worry about with Terry's "civil war." He announces that he'll be holding a joint press conference tomorrow with the following household names:

Randall Terry, Founder. Operation Rescue
Missy Smith, President, W.A.K.E.U.P.
Ruby Nicdao, Chairman, Life Guard,
Dick Retta, President, Our Mother for Life
A Catholic Priest
A leader from the "tea party movement."
And more...

So it'll be Randall Terry, No One, Nobody, Who Knows, a random priest, a nutjob with an "OBAMA=HITLER" sign, plus the Professor and Mary Ann.

Wow, how completely unimpressive. Maybe if they could round it out with a powerhouse intellect like Joe the Freakin' Plumber... (Christian Newswire, via Right Wing Watch)

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