Tuesday, July 24, 2007

Desperately seeking a good metaphor!

One of the topics that has come up in my course is the hypocrisy and humour inherent in abstinence only sex-ed programs.

The hypocrisy is relatively self-evident. Not only are educators turning a blind eye to to the realities of contemporary adolescense in their insistence that chastity will be considered a viable option by teenagers (you can't compete with MTV, teachers!), but the bulk of the responsibility is placed on girls to keep their "gift unopened", as though it doesn't take two to tango. I also love the good ol' virgin-slut dichotomy, which never seems to quite disappear!

The humour, however, comes from their pathetic search for a metaphor.

Most recently publicized was the tape metaphor. The director of the Virginity Rules program brings out a tape dispenser, and takes off two fresh pieces. He claims that sex was created to bond to people together. However, he demonstrates all the dirt and diseases one picks up by hussying it up by sticking the tape to the floor and wall, picking up all sorts of lint and dirt (which is clearly the best symbol from chlymidia I've ever heard!). Then, *gasp*, when you get married... the tape doesn't stick together, because the two people were so casual with their priceless adhensiveness.

Similarly, in one class, girls are given an unwrapped candy bar to pass around the room. After twenty-odd people have handled it, and it is all melted and sticky, it is then compared to a wrapped up candy bar. Girls are then asked which of the candy bars they would like to give to their husbands- the nasty, used up one, or the one that is still pristine and wrapped.

Am I the only one who thinks that keeping your candy bar wrapped might serve a far better metaphor for men and protected sex?


Yoda said...

I can't speak for others, but I would really, really not like to have a virgin to marry! For sure, I'll have sex with her before!! I mean, how can people get married before they know how good they are together in bed?

So, by the very definition, if everyone wants to check out their sexual compatibility, then there will be people who'd have had sex with multiple people whom they're married to.

I guess the same kids in the class should be given a box which is closed shut and can contain either candy or a bunch of mothballs. They can either choose to take the sticky candy bar or to risk everything with the closed box. Which one would they marry?

eric313 said...

yes, Princess

The world is a nutty place. Candybar wrapper, indeed.

You can't pass around a dirty paintbucket in a classroom. The metaphor is too strong, and somebody will get whitewashed before it's all over. Probably the person in the front row.

Lord Chimmy said...

I guess they figure that guys aren't going to listen anyway. And, they're probably right.

Ant said...

Geez. Is there a religious context here?

First thing that strikes me is the highly judgemental tone - what kind of message does that send out about self-esteem to those who are starting to get urges (like, um, all of them). Second, it underlines the bizarrely "christian" notion that sex should be equated with guilt and sin. Third, it's a really stupid way of not thinking through the problem - it's like Prohibition in the 30's or something. They're making it worse if anything...

Ooh, this makes me mad.

Beth said...

You are not the only one who thinks the keeping your candy bar wrapped metaphor is better suited for males. That's exactly what I thought when reading the paragraph re: passing around the "candy bar."
This sex-ed abstinence thing really pisses me off - it is so out of touch with reality.

Airam said...

This was seminar that took place now?? In 2007????

The Duke said...

If the tape is sticky when its not used and the unwrapped candy bar is best,

Why do they get passed around in the first place?

Obviously to trick is to be a good lay.

Gender problems solved!

LMizzle said...

HAHAHA!!!! Oh man, handing around a used candy bar is so hilarious!!!

I'd be like, uhhhh, why is our sex ed teacher passing chocolate around???

Ultra Toast Mosha God said...

So, the message is; If you are a piece of tape, wear tape-condoms and you will be able to fulfill your purpose in life.

Succinct AND memorable.

How do these people do it?

Indiana James said...

HA HA HA HA HA Yes, keeping that wrapped is a good thing, though the whole candy bar notion could get painful if taken literally. : P