August 29, 2015

Ohio Republicans propose restrictions on sex ed that promotes “gateway activity”

Today, Republicans on the Ohio House Finance Committee voted to adopt changes to the two-year state budget that will significantly restrict the teaching of sexual education in the state, mandating an abstinence-only approach.

According to a description provided by the Committee Chairman, Representative Ron Amstutz, the measure would:

prohibit the teaching of sexual education coursework that endorses non-abstinence as an acceptable behavior or promotes sexual gateway activity.

What’s sexual gateway activity? The summary included with the amendment (full text) defines it as sexual contact with erogenous zones, as defined in Ohio’s criminal statutes as follows:

ORC 2907.01(B) “Sexual contact” means any touching of an erogenous zone of another, including without limitation the thigh, genitals, buttock, pubic region, or, if the person is a female, a breast, for the purpose of sexually arousing or gratifying either person.


Discouraged behavior, according to new Ohio budget language.

The language also states that class instruction in Ohio may not provide materials that condone sexual activity among unmarried students. It even allows a parent to sue if an educator violates the restrictive provisions in the law.

In short, the state budget now mandates that Ohio adopt an abstinence-only approach to sex education program.

But abstinence education doesn’t work. Research shows this. Teen pregnancies are highest in states with abstinence-only sex education. By contrast, teens who have had comprehensive sex education are 60 percent less likely to become pregnant.

In a state budget that already defunds Planned Parenthood and directs tax dollars to Crisis Pregnancy Centers that lie to women, Ohio lawmakers are moving the state in the wrong direction for Ohio’s women and young people.


  1. Jacqueline Broderick-Patton says:

    How bout we let our health experts and educators decide the best way to teach student’s about sexual health. Why not use evidence based curriculum, something that supports what it is we are trying to accomplish. Keeping kids safe and healthy,right? Good sound information is not the enemy here, ignorance is. Or worse yet sacrificing student’s health and well-being in order to promote personal beliefs and ideology.

  2. Alyssa Hi says:

    I just… I don’t know what to say, I really don’t. Just the stupidity and ignorance in this is just… I am not voting for any of the people who approved this, Can we have a list or something. I don’t know how to get that information.

    Anyone have any ideas for what to do about this?

    • Mr. Captious says:

      That’s easy. Avoid the Repugnican ticket altogether.

    • Handwaver says:

      It’s really easy….the people promoting this kind of ignorant, backwards, theocratic nonsense ( along with creationism etc.) are called Republicans. Look around you – any state that has a Republican majority is hatching these kinds of ideas. (Throw in union busting and installing a big business corporate plutocracy, and you’ve hit the trifecta of Republican agendas)
      Stop voting these people into office if you want to retain any freedom and working/middle class dignity!

      • Alyssa Hi says:

        I am NOT segregating an entire group of people because of a couple of bad eggs. I want names and I want credible information not bias and hate. I may be a Democrat but that doesn’t mean I have to hate everyone that isn’t.

        Oh and FYI you DO know who was the first republican president right?
        Abraham Lincoln. You know, honest Abe, savior of the union, freer of the slaves?

        We need to pull everyone together not rip the country in half. There are just as many rotten democrats as there are republicans if you are foolish enough to only take the word of one side you are digging your own grave.

        Does everyone have that down? Okay, good, mini rant over.

        • Alyssa, thank you very much for taking a sensible approach to opposing those who would take our freedoms. Blanketing an entier group is wrong. I have a republican friend who will be OUTRAGED when he hears about this. Its not about party its about ideology, one side is theocratic the other is conservative. Conservative is ok, Theocratic (seeking to be like a theocracy) is not.

  3. Stephanie B says:

    Does this leave any room for volunteers? I know the RSVP program taught all of the sex ed courses from 5-8th grade, what will happen to them? Does this affect private schools? Any chance this budget could be vetoed or challenged in any way?

  4. Ok, let me guess here- over 70% of inner-city births are out of wedlock and the STD rate and AIDS rate is highest among inner-city teenagers why is it unrealistic to tell them that the SUREST way to keep from contracting an STD or get pregnant is not to fuck?

    • Alyssa Hi says:

      Because regardless of what authority figures tell them teenagers are GOING to have sex. While abstinence IS the surest way to prevent pregnancy and STD’s, it is not the ONLY way and teenagers need to be aware of that. All this bill is doing is preventing those teenagers from learning that from a credible source and possibly keeping them from learning that all together.

  5. Urgent: Recalls needed says:

    I don’t know if there’s a mechanism in Ohio for recalling your representatives but if there is you people need to get on it, quick. For that matter we should be doing the same all around the country. Toss ‘em out. Don’t just wait for the next election cycle to “not vote for them”.

    Better yet, run for a local office yourself and confront this nonsense head-on. Get on your town council, talk to the press every day, publicize what’s going on and educate your neighbors. You don’t build a house from the roof downwards. You start with the foundation. Ours is rotten to the core and needs to go.

    And for those of you blaming Republicans for all the country’s woes: we have 2 parties, yes, but one may as well call them the Gambinos and the Genovese, because they’re nothing but 2 arms of one big Mafia. It’s a shame there isn’t a law requiring them to wear the corporate logos of their sponsors on their suits every day. If there were you’d quickly see that there’s really only one Party, and it ain’t representing you unless you’re one of these new Corporate “persons”.

    Time to rebuild the house.

    • Alyssa Hi says:

      I’m 19, I can’t run for office and don’t know enough about politics to make any difference besides voting. All I know are the issues and where I stand. That’s why I was asking for assistance.
      Sorry, I felt the need to defend myself somewhat.

  6. It’s like a truck full of stupidity was unloaded there…

  7. Or here’s an idea: How about we take sex ed out of school entirely and leave it up to the parents to teach what they want to their kids? I don’t want my children to learn the “abstinence only” sex ed, but if that is all the school offers then that’s what they’ll learn there, but I’m completely capable of teaching my kids about safe sex and STD’s. I remember my parents, at every chance they got, always said stuff like “no glove no love” and what not, and taught me about STD’s. I didn’t have a sex-ed in school, and I didn’t need it because I had responsible parents, People are leaving teaching our kids everything up to teachers and schools. Next thing you know we’re going to be expecting them to potty train our kids, teach them to tie their shoes, and how to ride a bike.

    • Alyssa Hi says:

      That’s a fine choice for you, but the sad truth is that not all kids get sex ed from their parents. Some parents shield their kids from the world so much that they don’t even know what sex is and other parents are just neglectful and don’t think it’s important enough to tell their kids.
      The bottom line is, some parents aren’t responsible, and it’s not fair or just to deny kids useful knowledge because of it.
      Teaching sex ed in schools may not be the ideal approach to making sure all teenagers get this information but it’s the best one we have.
      As for schools teaching kids to tie their shoes and use the potty; some schools are forced to do just that because some parents are just not responsible enough to teach their kids that themselves. We may be coming to that eventually, but things like sex ed are not why.


  1. […] is a female, a breast, for the purpose of sexually arousing or gratifying either person."…eway-activity/ I guess these folks are in that "Other" 1%….and there are hundreds of other links […]

  2. […] education in Ohio, limiting it to abstinence-only education and prohibiting the teaching of ‘gateway sexual activity.’  This language, similar to a bill passed in Tennessee, would go so far as to allow a parent to […]

Speak Your Mind