Exchanges on Abstinence-Only Sex Education

23 Feb

In the House Appropriations Subcommittee, the Dept. of Health and Human Services testified about their budget needs.  At one point, the budget analyst projected a loss of federal funds because of the probable end of federal funding of abstinence-only sex ed.  An approximate transcription:

Q: So why is this funding ending?

A: We anticipate that the federal government will stop its $9.8 million funding this year for abstinence-only education.  We still have $1.8 million (don’t remember exact number) in state money for the program.

Then Ellen Cohen who represents the Texas Medical Center in Houston said, “If the federal government will stop funding it because it doesn’t work, why should we continue to fund it?”  A (I assume) Republican responded, “It doesn’t work? I have never heard that. ”  Then (upset at the budget analyst), “I think you should tell us if programs aren’t working so we can fund something else.”   Representative Isett (R-Lubbock) then scornfully said, “My understanding is that if you don’t have sex, you don’t get pregnant.  I don’t think there is any disputing that.”  Ellen Cohen responded (D-Houston), “Everything I have read about it shows me that these programs don’t work.”  It was then agreed that the subcommittee needed to study the issue further.

God save Texas.

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