Sex education is more important than gun education

Story by Bridget Cooke , Staff Writer

A grant funded by the National Rifle Association may go toward the education of first graders if a bill is passed in the state of Missouri.

What will this grant fund, you may ask? Why, the training for what to do in the instance that one of these children finds an unattended gun. Just lying around, of course.

Gun control is important. It is a hot issue currently, which is why this news may have gotten enough attention for someone outside of the state of Missouri to see it.

The problem with this bill is that it is a mandate by government to decide that children must be taught something that can so easily be explained by responsible parents.

Why is it that we need the NRA’s hand in teaching children something so simple? There needs to be grant money involved which will directly fund kids’ learning experiences in school.

It is important to teach children safety, but individual parents in Missouri are probably just as capable of mandating to their children that they do not touch guns as the teachers are.

More pressing issues need to be taken care of throughout the country, and especially Missouri, which also has a mandate that abstinence-only education is the standard in the middle and high schools.

According to Advocates for Youth, Missouri has the highest population of adolescents with sexually transmitted infections and the lowest rate of condom use. Their teen birth rate is also higher than that of the national average. Fifty-one out of every one hundred teenagers becomes pregnant compared to the twelve out of 100,000 gun deaths annually within the state.

So instead of trying to press the legislation of a lobby group upon its children, perhaps the state government should try harder in teaching them how to better protect their own health. This is a pressing issue throughout the United States.

In Wisconsin, sex education is only encouraged, not required, and abstinence must be stressed to the students.
Even when this course is offered (from personal experience, I can say eigth grade health only ever consisted of learning the inner workings of the ear canal) there are no specific lesson requirements about forms of

And while some schools may offer health education, student enrollment is completely voluntary under Wisconsin statutes and the health problems curricula covers other topics such as basic human development, and the problems correlated with alcohol, tobacco, and mental health.

This is a pretty vague education outline for a state with 45 percent of its high schoolers having admitted to already be sexually active or having had sex before, while 36 percent of this same student body did not use a condom the last time they engaged in sexual activity.

Instead of worrying about the small percentage of those harmed by mishandled firearms, legislation should instead be taking action in arming America’s youth against the burden of a lifelong disease or the stress of taking care of a child while trying to attend high school.

We need an open conversation to educate, not a locked door policy that should have been abandoned long ago.