* The Illinois Family Institute was pretty darned angry about the passage yesterday of medical marijuana, but they were even angrier about another bill that passed the House today. From an action alert…
The Illinois House of Representatives passed the disastrous “Comprehensive”Sex Education (HB 2675) this afternoon by a vote of 66–52. This bill would mandate that public school who teach sex education teach “comprehensive” sex education in grades 6-12. That may sound reasonable until you read what the national go-to organization for sex-ed curriculum, SEICUS, lists as “age-appropriate.”
Illinois law currently mandates that schools teach abstinence until marriage. Teaching “comprehensive” sex education is currently optional as a local school decision. This bill was sponsored by State Representative Camille Lilly (D-Chicago) and heavily promoted by Planned Parenthood and the ACLU of Illinois.
Click HERE to see how your state representative voted on this anti-family legislation. It is important to note that State Representatives David Reis (R-Olney), Tom Morrison (R-Palatine), Pam Roth (R-Morris), and Dwight Kay(R-Edwardsville) raised strong objections to the bill during floor debate.
HB 2675 is completely unnecessary and an intrusion into local control. Public schools in Illinois already have the ability to teach “comprehensive” sex education if they wish. Local public school administrators do not need a mandate from Springfield telling them they must teach comprehensive sex education when the preponderance of evidence suggests, and the U.S. Congress agrees, that authentic abstinence education is successful. […]
Contraception-centered sex-education curricula encourage children and youth into early sexual experimentation. They mislead youth and create a false hope that condoms will provide sufficient protection from the physical, emotional and social consequences of early sexual activity. Authentic abstinence education programs provide youth with life and character skills, not condom skills. Sexual activity among youth is far too costly for adolescents, families, society and taxpayers.
Passing HB 2675 would mandate the teaching of curricula that most parents and taxpayers would find objectionable. Please take a moment to contact your state senator to urge him/her to stand in opposition to this bill.
* Rep. Morrison, mentioned above, repeatedly asked whether the bill was an initiative of Planned Parenthood (his questions begin at the one hour, 47-minute mark of this video). He was told it was an initiative of several groups.
Morrison said he was curious why Planned Parenthood would be a supporter of the bill. He noted that the group is a “major abortion provider in this state and in this country.” And then he said…
It’s not a stretch to realize that young people as they engage in more sexual activity are going to be in situations where they’re going to be pregnant, where they’re going to turn to an abortion provider liked Planned Parenthood
So, Planned Parenthood wants comprehensive sex ed because they want the cash for providing the resulting abortions?
* Rep. Dwight Kay asked (starting at about the two hour 15-minute mark) the sponsor why she didn’t introduce a bill dealing with drugs in schools. “We ought to be teaching about how to avoid drug addiction,” Kay said. “I’m wondering about why we’re not talking about that?” The sponsor, Rep. Lilly, said she really appreciated Kay’s” passion,” and said she’d be glad to consider such a bill if Kay ever introduced one. Rep. Kay has not introduced such a bill this year, according to the ILGA website.
* Here’s what is really going on with the bill…
The bill, sponsored by Rep. Camille Lilly (D-Chicago), emphasizes “that abstinence from sexual intercourse is a responsible and positive decision and is the only protection that is 100 percent effective against unwanted teenage pregnancy, sexually transmitted diseases, and [AIDS] when transmitted sexually.”
Despite Republican concerns that the measure goes too far in taking local control away from schools and that some children may be too young to be taught sex education, the bill passed by a 66-52 margin and now moves to the Senate. […]
Lilly said local school districts would determine their own curricula using guidelines set by the Illinois State Board of Education that are “developmentally and age-appropriate, medically accurate and complete.” She said sixth graders, for instance, could learn to identify reproductive parts, while students couldn’t learn about contraceptives until high school.
“We do not want sex education to be taught to children at an inappropriate age,” Lilly said. “This legislation brings standards to what is going to be taught and approved by each of the individual educational boards.”
Lilly’s bill would also allow parents to remove their children from the class for any reason with a written objection.
“The school and the school officials approve every curriculum here in their particular school system,” Lilly said. “And also the parents have the ability to opt out of whatever was approved by the school officials.”
* From the bill’s synopsis…
Makes changes to provide that each class or course in comprehensive sex education offered in any of grades 6 through 12 shall include instruction on both abstinence and contraception for the prevention of pregnancy and sexually transmitted diseases, including HIV/AIDS. Makes changes to provide that all classes that teach sex education and discuss sexual intercourse in grades 6 through 12 shall emphasize that abstinence from sexual intercourse is a responsible and positive decision and is the only protection that is 100% effective against unwanted teenage pregnancy, sexually transmitted diseases, and acquired immune deficiency syndrome (AIDS) when transmitted sexually. Makes changes to provide that all classes that teach sex education and discuss sexual intercourse in grades 6 through 12 shall satisfy specified criteria. Provides that an opportunity shall be afforded to individuals (not just parents or guardians) to examine the instructional materials to be used in the class or course. Provides that the State Board of Education shall make available resource materials. Provides that school districts that do not currently provide sex education are not required to teach sex education. Provides that if a sex education class or course is offered in any of grades 6 through 12, the school district may choose and adapt the developmentally and age-appropriate, medically accurate, evidence-based, and complete sex education curriculum that meets the specific needs of its community. Provides that the Comprehensive Health Education Program shall include the educational area of evidence-based and medically accurate information regarding sexual abstinence (instead of the area of sexual abstinence until marriage). [Emphasis added.]
It’s not a mandate, so public schools which don’t currently teach sex ed don’t have to. Parents can opt out (that’s in the underlying statute), which is a very good thing. Abstinence is part of the curriculum. Private schools are not included. Citizens, not just parents, can examine the instructional materials. And, by the way, the statute hasn’t been updated in almost thirty years.
* There is always good reason to have a healthy skepticism of any and all legislation debated by the General Assembly. This bill is no different. At all. In any way.
But a healthy skepticism doesn’t include bizarre conspiracy theories, red herrings and false statements.
* The roll call is here.
House Republican Leader Tom Cross and GOP Rep. Kay Hatcher both voted “Yes.”