These days, those of us seeking to speak up for biblical values in the culture are being told to tone down our rhetoric. And I agree that often we do ourselves and the cause of Christ few favors when we use overheated language, when we exaggerate, or verbally beat up our opponents. Speaking the truth in love is always a good policy, especially in our highly polarized times.
But I can’t help but feel enraged — righteously, I hope — when children are made the guinea pigs in social experiments. And unfortunately that’s just what’s happening every day through groups such as Planned Parenthood. And it’s happening with federal tax dollars adding to not just the budget deficit, but to a kind of moral deficit.
For example, the Affordable Care Act includes the provision of $75 million annually to fund so-called comprehensive sex-education programs. These programs are designed to indoctrinate young people in the kind of relativistic morality that creates so many problems in families, businesses and schools.
Take just one example. The federal Personal Responsibility Education Program, or PREP, has given $20 million to a coalition of six Planned Parenthood affiliates in Montana, Oregon, Idaho, Washington, and Alaska. While the program claims that it teaches abstinence, it defines “abstinence” as avoiding activities that carry the risk of pregnancy or STDs. That is, abstinence has been redefined, at taxpayer expense, to mean something completely different from actual abstinence. And students are provided with cash incentives to encourage them to attend.
Paul Rondeau of the Washington Times is right when he says that these organizations are marketing “sex to our children in our schools under the guise of sex education, anti-bullying, diversity and tolerance.” If they succeed in instilling their worldview, he adds, the children become their long-term customers looking for contraceptives, STD testing and, of course, abortions.
And this isn’t just his opinion. Last year the American Life League released a video called “Hooking Kids on Sex” that went viral before YouTube pulled it. The video showed how Planned Parenthood and other groups routinely encourage kids to experiment in ways that I will refrain from mentioning.
The video’s moderator, Michael Hichborn, said quite rightly that it’s the strategy of a drug dealer. “If a dirty old man showed these things to a 10-year-old in a park, he would be arrested,” Hichborn noted. “But when Planned Parenthood shows them to kids in a classroom, it gets government money.”
And it’s been going on for quite some time despite criticism. In 2000, a state-funded workshop at Tufts University for young people from 14 to 21 caused a controversy when one of the speakers endorsed a practice that is much too vulgar to name or describe here, but suffice it to say that it has nothing to do with reproduction. After a public outcry when this obscenity was discovered — and you have to wonder how many outrages go undetected — a conference sponsor, simply dismissed it as a “glitch.”
As much as we hope to graciously and confidently advocate for a Christian worldview in an increasingly secular West, we cannot paper over the daily battle for the minds, hearts and bodies of our young people, often using our own money. It’s enough to make you mad — and maybe in cases like this one that’s a good thing, provided it’s tempered with compassion and prayer for those lost in the deadly morass of secularism.
Eric Metaxas is a co-host of BreakPoint Radio and a best-selling author whose biographies, children's books, and popular apologetics have been translated into more than a dozen languages.
BreakPoint commentary airs each weekday on more than one thousand outlets with an estimated listening audience of one million people. BreakPoint provides a Christian perspective on today's news and trends via radio, interactive media, and print.
Publication date: April 17, 2013