Intentions vs. Effects

A guest editorial by Julianne Young, published in the Blackfoot Morning News

Representative Julie VanOrden insists that the implementation of Comprehensive Sexuality Education in Idaho is not the intent of House Bill 579. But does ‘intent’ really matter, or should ‘effect’ be our primary concern? Representative VanOrden chose to work with a Boise State student and a liberal Boise State professor, Dr. Sarah Fry, on this bill that, according to its purpose statement, would “remove antiquated language” from Idaho state code and consolidate the remaining sections of state law addressing sex education in Idaho schools.


The stated goal of both Representative VanOrden and the Boise State consortium is the reduction of teen pregnancy. During the hearing for H 579 both Dr. Sara Fry and an associate of hers, Joy McKinnon, who spoke as a representative of the liberal feminist group NOW, made comments indicating that the removal of this family- and-morality-centered language was a step in a plan that, for their purposes, included the adoption of Comprehensive Sexuality Education (CSE). They implied that CSE would be the magic bullet to reduce Idaho’s teen pregnancy rates.


But what is CSE? It is the new K-12 sex education which is being pushed by big-money organizations like Planned Parenthood (and the federal government—using our tax dollars) all across the United States and all around the world. According to Planned Parenthood’s own summary of CSE, foundational to CSE is a belief that children have a right to sexual pleasure and information. CSE seeks to desensitize children to sexual subject matter by introducing young children to graphic sexual material and discussions. It is designed to normalize transgenderism and a whole range of sexual behaviors, including masturbation, homosexuality, etc. Lastly, because sexual ‘freedom’ is the highest held value of CSE, it teaches a subtle hatred toward the institutions of religion and the patriarchal family.


CSE claims success in reducing teen pregnancy—or at least live births, and perhaps it has in some instances. CSE heavily promotes birth control and abortion and teaches kids as young as 12-years-old how they can get these things ‘on the public dollar’ from Planned Parenthood without parental consent. But shouldn’t we count the cost? If teen pregnancy is reduced but morality is abandoned, STDs soar, and unfettered sexuality decimates the family as the fundamental unit of society, what have we gained?


Of course, when confronted with CSE, Representative VanOrden agrees that this is certainly not what we want children taught in our schools. This is not her intent, she claims. Thanks to many concerned Idahoans, Representative VanOrden’s bill, H 579, is dead for this year. Yet, she has made it clear that she plans to continue working with the same Boise State consortium over the summer and re-introduce the bill next year. She refuses to acknowledge concerns that the proposed changes weaken parental control over what is taught in schools, and she refuses to consider an ‘opt-in’ requirement, which would require schools to notify parents before teaching kids about sexuality.


When push comes to shove, intent really matters very little. Few teen-age girls ‘intend’ to get pregnant when they climb into the back-seat of a car. Yet, that lack of ‘intent’ cannot erase the real effects of real choices. Good intention, or a lack of bad intentions, will not reverse the harm done to Idaho children and families if Representative VanOrden succeeds in her endeavor


Knowing that Representative VanOrden intends to pursue this issue next year and having seen her attempt to push it through in less than 48 hours this year, Idahoans would do well to be educated on this important issue in advance.