Gang rape, child abuse, molestation, marital rape. None of these make the public bat an eyelash.
Mention a three letter word - SEX - and they all start waving the flag of indian culture and morality!
What is it about this word that makes the adults and ministers (note that they are two different categories and not necessarily the same) squirm in their seats?
An enlightened and thankfully aware official wants to introduce a much needed sex ed program in schools. The next day he succumbs to the morality police, one of whom actually has enough stupid in his head to say (and i paraphrase here) that sex education will plant wrong ideas in the heads of youngsters and crimes against women will increase!!
Objections and arguments against sex ed this time round include the same ones that were spouted a couple of years back too. Children will be encouraged to experiment, they will get wrong ideas in their heads, it will spoil the culture and morals that we Indians are proud of blah blah blah.
What are these people talking about? What do they think sex ed involves? A lecture on the best positions? pick up lines?
They hear the word sex and their brains either go into denial or into overdrive. As adults they forget that they way they think of sex isnt necessarily the only way to think of it. They assume that just because the word 'sex' stimulates certain ideas and thoughts in their heads it will do the same for the young.
Teenagers today are bombarded with sexual stimuli all the time through media. As befits their age they are curious. This curiosity leads to experimentation. Experimentation without the correct information and knowledge is the worst kind.
But where do they get answers? the correct information? Teachers don't have the time or the inclination, parents are too embarassed and forget how they conceived their children, older siblings are too busy getting their own answers.
This leaves friends who are as clueless, furtive flipping of pages of glossy books at big book stores, and the google search engine which offers acess to unlimited porn at the click of a button.
All sex ed is seeking to do is provide answers to questions in a classroom without the children having to google sex and get a warped understanding of a basic biological process. It is seeking to help children understand the changes their bodies are going through. Understanding helps develop respect for their bodies and others' bodies. Sex ed is seeking to help reduce reckless experimentation by offering information that the children want and are unable to get anywhere. It is seking to reduce the incidence of STD's and teenage pregnancy.
Sex education is all about the forwarned being forearmed.
At the end of it all, those who oppose sex education in schools are probably the ones who are most in need of it. So instead of sex education in schools, maybe sex education at the parliament might not be such a bad idea.