"By the grace of God, the love of Jesus Christ and the power of the Holy Spirit, we pledge to keep ourselves sexually pure.
We pledge, from this day forward, to look at, listen to, think about, and participate only in activities that are true, noble, right, pure, lovely, admirable, excellent, and praiseworthy as outlined in Philippians 4:8.
We pledge to do whatever we can to encourage each other to do the same."
The purity ball is a place where daughters, age 12 and up, pledge to remain virgins until marriage and their fathers promise to help them remain chaste. The "True Love Waits" movement reports over 2.4 million teens have taken the pledge. The Bush government has funded abstinence programs to the tune of $176 million annually.
A new analysis of data, collected by the federal government's National Longitudinal Study of Adolescent Health, and published in Pediatrics, shows chastity commitments made by teens don't seem to work.
The researchers gathered detailed information from 11,000 students in grades 7 through 12 and followed them over time. They matched students on 100 variables and then compared those who took the virginity pledge with those that did not take a pledge in 1996. It didn't matter if they took the pledge or not. By 2001, they found 82% of those who took the pledge had broken it. More than half of both groups had engaged in sexual activity and they had an average of 3 sexual partners whether they took the chastity pledge or not. No difference!
They did find one difference, however. Unfortunately the kids who took the pledge were less likely to use a condom or any other form of contraception.
It's about time to re-look at government funded abstinence programs. It has already been shown that 80% of the curricula used in these programs provide distorted information about birth control and STDs with scientific errors and blurring of religion and science.
I am so looking forward to a new administration in 2009.