Friday, November 26, 2004

My Fight

For everyone who dismissively sniffed "easy for you to say," at my "Pick A Fight" entry (knowing I was spending the holiday with only like-minded friends) I'm here to report that when the moment, the issue, the gauntlet was thrown down on the dining room table, I DID NOT BACK DOWN. The issue: Which of the sexes are more easily swayed by fashion, style and marketing into making purchases of new items? Specifically, shoes for women and racing skis for men. Is one sex more resistant to marketing than the other? After two helpings of everything on the table and two glasses of champagne, it wasn't much of an argument on either side. But, hell, a strong defense of women's shoes is always a worthwhile fight and, dammit, I earned at least one more glass of champagne for the effort. More money for abstinence programs - $30 million more - was included in a Congressional spending bill last weekend. Meanwhile, a study on the effectiveness of abstinence-only sex education has been delayed until 2006. The Bush administration's response? "We don't need a study . . .," said Wade Horn, assistant secretary of Health and Human Services. Well, Mr. Horn, perhaps you do need a study, especially in view of statistics released by your own Health and Human Services department. Statistics such as : The United States has the highest teenage pregnancy rate of all developed countries, AND about 1 million teenagers become pregnant each year; 95% of those pregnancies are unintended.


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