Thursday, June 25, 2009

Signs of our Society's Decline

It is ironic that I should feel moved to post this blog, because on my personal blog I posted one that felt near the opposite just a few hours ago.

A guilty pleasure of mine is to head over to Texts From Last Night online. Sometimes they are really funny, and they are often offensive, but sometimes they are entirely too tragic for me to understand why someone would willingly share these things. Although, I suppose the real concern is that they sent them to someone in the first place.

They give me an insight into the culture of our youth. Granted, I should not pretend that these messages represent all teenagers and young adults. In fact, these may only represent a small percentage of our population, but some of these are serious red flags, even if they only encompass a small demographic.

Case in point. This message was posted this morning:
(847): This is the first month I have not taken plan B to get my period in over a year
(847): And somehow that makes me sad knowing I haven't had raunchy unprotected sex in a month

These are the values and priorities of our youth, at least the party-culture. And people always want to assume all young men are wanton trolls, but that young women have a higher standard of virtue... perhaps we should stop looking at it that way? From what I have heard and read, young women are becoming just as lustful and reckless as the stereotype of their counterparts.

And it is this recklessness that concerns, more than the lustful behavior. Yes, from a moral perspective, I am highly concerned about the sexual behavior and allowances of our youth. What I want to evaluate, though, is the complete lack of self-protection. Constantly putting drugs and alcohol into their bodies, sleeping with several different partners, choosing "lazy contraception" (Plan B, abortion, etc) over thinking ahead and preventing problems...

I know that one does not completely excuse or explain the other, but this seems to tie back exactly to the lack of sexual education in our country! Not the promiscuity, necessarily (though possibly), but certainly the recklessness.

We have got to do something! We need to be reading, voting, writing, SCREAMING at the top of our lungs!

Monday, June 22, 2009

The Best Use of Bribery - Hip-Hop for HIV tests

This week in Houston, TX, the NAACP, along with Planned Parenthood and other foundations, are going to bribe young Houstonians into getting HIV and syphilis tests, as well as sexual health education.
And I am loving it!
Sure, I wish we didn't have to resort to bribery to get things done, but hey, I'm just ecstatic they are doing SOMETHING proactive, and probably very helpful!
Anyone 15 to 40 with photo identification (driver’s license or a state, military or school ID)
• What: Free HIV and syphilis rapid tests plus sessions on sexually transmitted disease prevention
• When: 7 a.m. to 10 p.m., Monday through Thursday
• Where: NAACP Family Technology Center, 4203 Fannin
Information: 713-794-9020
The goal — targeted to National HIV Testing Day on Saturday — is to screen 1,200 people daily from today through Thursday at the NAACP Family Technology Center and another 10,000 in the next two weeks at Planned Parenthood, St. Hope Foundation and other partner agencies.
Everyone who goes in to take these tests, as well as an hour of education, will receive tickets to a concert in the George R Brown Center, with a long list of performers. The entertainers include someone named Bun B (from Port Arthur) and LeToya Luckett, who apparently used to be in Destiny's Child... for that week that they had four members. Whatever, it is still a free concert!
I am so proud to be a Houstonian, because they are taking action against an epidemic of ignorance. There is simply too much information for people to know everything they need to for their own health, especially with declining (and sometimes non-existent) sex education. This seems to be a larger problem with the black youth of America, which is the most bitter irony, because they are much more likely, biologically, to adopt these diseases:
"African-Americans bear the heaviest burden of the nation’s HIV/AIDS crisis. The U.S. population is roughly 12 percent black, but African-Americans account for 46 percent of the 1 million people living with HIV nationwide, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reports.
"Those hit hardest in Houston are young and black, which is why the mass testing targets African-American youths."
People do not realize the staggering statistics that go along with these diseases, especially in areas with limited education:
"In 2008, 14 clinic patients tested HIV-positive. There have been three more this year. The youngest was 15; the oldest was 24. Before, an average year turned up five young adults with the virus."
Please, spread the word of this effort, so that we can protect our youth. Hopefully, this will seriously open the eyes and minds of many, urging them to better protect themselves and those they love.
You can read more about this event at The Chron.