Instead of Fixing Sex Education Laws, Missouri Legislature Settles for Warning Students About Sexting
It was April 2014, and Missouri representative Clem Smith was spitting mad. A bill he'd proposed to reform the state's abstinence-based sex education laws had been gutted during a committee hearing.
Flickr via Dim Sum! So...under Missouri sex-ed policies, would this be considered third base?
Along with other reforms, Smith had sought to amend the law that forces sex-ed teachers to mention the "emotional trauma associated with adolescent sexual activity" to their students. Instead, conservative lawmakers "put a Ginsu knife to it and chopped up 90 percent of my bill," Smith told Riverfront Times at the time. All that was left after the gutting were provisions adding information about sexting and online predators to the state's sex education laws.
For Smith, his "new" bill was a watered-down sham, a defeat posing as compromise.
Yet more than a year later, the very same watered-down bill is being heralded as a major bipartisan victory. Signed into law yesterday by Governor Jay Nixon, the Democrat-sponsored bill will ensure that Missouri's schoolchildren will finally learn about the dangers of sexting and internet predators.More »