The Summer of Teen Pregnancy
According to a recent Chicago Tribune article, the United States has the highest teen pregnancy rate among developed nations. While teens birth rates dropped more than 30% from 1991-2005, there was a 3% increase in teen pregnancies in 2005. That leads to the natural question, “Why is the teen pregnancy rate increasing again?” The bigger question is, “Why is our culture suddenly fascinated with the sex lives of adolescents?” At the movies, we laughed, cried, cheered, and jeered as Juno MacGuff waddled the halls of her high school. Next came NBC’s Baby Borrowers which documented high school couples playing house. Following that is the new drama from ABC Family with its story line of a pregnant high school student, The Secret Life of the American Teenager. (Read resource review) Has this new found fascination with teenage sexuality lead to students willfully getting pregnant? That’s what was speculated by some at a Gloucester, Massachusetts high school where 7 girls got pregnant. Of course, later it was denied that there was a pregnancy pact. But not before the zoom lens of the media asked every kid in town if it were true. For discussion: Do you think that the summer of teen pregnancy in the media will have a positive or negative effect on teen pregnancy rates? Where do you think sex education is missing the mark? How is your youth group teaching kids about sex? How are you opening doors to reach out to pregnant teenagers?
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