Medicare Part E: Chastity Belts

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Finally, Congress has found a more futile use of taxpayer funds than the Iraq War: Preventing twenty-somethings from bumping uglies.

"The National Center for Health Statistics says well over 90% of adults ages 20-29 have had sexual intercourse.

But Wade Horn, assistant secretary for children and families at the Department of Health and Human Services, said the revision is aimed at 19- to 29-year-olds because more unmarried women in that age group are having children.

Government data released last month show that 998,262 births in 2004 were to unmarried women 19-29, the ages with the most births to unmarried women.

"The message is 'It's better to wait until you're married to bear or father children,' " Horn said. "The only 100% effective way of getting there is abstinence."

$50 million is expected to head to the states, so they can make sure irresponsible 28-year old women aren't have unmarried sex. Can government PR wizzes convert the more than 90 percent of adults who do it? Stay tuned!

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  1. The National Center for Health Statistics says well over 90% of adults ages 20-29 have had sexual intercourse.

    Only 90%??? I’m guessing the words “World of Warcraft” come into play here.

  2. Oops–I guess “well over 90%” means “99.99995%, rounded down.”

  3. Sorry Karl, just because you couldn’t get any till you were 33 doesn’t mean everyone else has to wack off so much in the shower that every time it rains they get an erection.

  4. I would be horrified to live in a country full of 28 year old male virgins. Talk about pent up aggression.

  5. Cab:

    28 year old male virgins are about the least threatening people in existence, in my experience.

  6. Wade Horn? You can’t make this stuff up.

  7. Is that what government’s good for? …public service messages?

    Still, I suppose, given the choice between government and the Ad Council, I’d probably take the Ad Council.

    You know, that might actually make a pretty good pitch to voters…

    “Hey everybody, let’s get rid of all these government agencies–let’s just use the Ad Council!”

  8. P.S. – point.

  9. Postmodern Sleaze: You know what’s full of 28-year-old male virgins? The Middle East. Think they’re nonthreatening? Be a woman walking down the street with your head unveiled.

    Fuck if I want to see that here.

  10. “28 year old male virgins are about the least threatening people in existence, in my experience.”

    it varies. the misogyny is pretty overwhelming at times, even when it’s bent around some anti-sex faux respect angle.

    but in terms of shooting up someplace, eh, probably not.

  11. “The only 100% effective way of getting there is abstinence.”

    To be fair. Birth control, and abortion can produce a 100% success rate as well. Not that I am promoting anything, just saying you can have your cake and eat it too, which of course is preferable for both parties.

  12. What are the slighly-less-than-10% that haven’t had sex by age 30 doing???

    Oh, this must be the Scary Halloween Post. Much better than Lovecraft. Really much scarier.

  13. jb:

    I wasn’t thinking of the middle eastern variety; I was thinking of the American variety. They tend to inhabit game and comic book stores and not smell very good, so yes, I don’t think we need more of them here, either. But I wouldn’t expect to see armies of angry geeks rioting in the streets, either.

  14. You know what’s full of 28-year-old male virgins? The Middle East.

    That’s not true. In Saudi Arabia, for example, 98.6% of men marry, and the average mean age at marriage is 25.6. It’s a great stereotype to throw out there, though. Let’s call them camel-jockeys, too, or should we move on to disparaging other ethnic groups? I’ve heard that Puerto Ricans are quite dangerous with the knives.

  15. Highnumber-Not as dangerous as Phillipinos.

    Just sayin’.

  16. Isn’t the “government-program-sex-boondoggle” usually Kerry’s beat?

  17. “”The message is ‘It’s better to wait until you’re married to bear or father children,’ ” Horn said. “The only 100% effective way of getting there is abstinence.”

    Hello, 1950. It’s very nice to meet you.

    WHAT. THE. FUCK?

    It’s not bad enough that my tax dollars actually fund “The National Center for Health Statistics”. (If we aren’t able to gather statistics at the expense of the taxpayer, then the terrorists will have won) Now they’re pumping money to the states based on their myopic desires to live in some Leave-It-To-Beaver utopia?

    Off-topic a little bit, but I was at a wedding the other day, and even though neither the bride or groom is very religious, the preacher launched this amazing diatribe prior to the vows that read like a Focus On The Family speech sprinkled with a little Jerry Falwell. This is a wedding, and he’s actually lecturing the audience on creationism, homosexuality, abortion, the nuclear family, procreating, etc. My jaw hit the floor…this is a wedding, not a goddamned lecture. Anyway.

  18. NOT HAVING SEX DOESN’T MAKE PEOPLE MORE IRRITABLE OR AGgRESSIVE, YOU ASSWIPES!!!!!!!

  19. If only we could impress upon the government the benefits of abstinence; as in abstaining from passing any more imbecilic laws.

    On the other hand, I might as well claim authorship of “Just Don’t Do It” and sit here waiting for my multi-million dollar check from HHS.

  20. I wonder at what age Mr. Horn thinks it would be okay to have sex, or even raise a child, outside of wedlock. For instance, what if you’re a completely repulsive human being, physically and mentally, and nobody will marry you? So, here you are, 40 years old, and not married. Is abstinence still the “only way”? Do you think that the government can stop holding our goddamned hands THEN? Condescending fucker.

  21. This is a wedding, and he’s actually lecturing the audience on creationism, homosexuality, abortion, the nuclear family, procreating, etc. My jaw hit the floor…this is a wedding, not a goddamned lecture. Anyway.

    He’s a preacher, Evan. Everything is a lecture.

  22. Highnumber: OK, to be fair, I’ve only been to Egypt. And I don’t know whether the hordes of catcallers were 25.6 or 28. But I challenge you to walk through the khan al-khalili while female, or with a female, and not be targeted by or witness a tidal wave of ogling like nothing you’ve experienced outside a frat party in the States.

    Postmodern Sleaze: The current American 28-year-old virgin males are virgins for very different reasons than the 28-year-old virgin males would be if this program was successful. If no one was having sex, the virgin population would be much more obnoxious.

  23. “He’s a preacher, Evan. Everything is a lecture.”

    Yeah, but does being a preacher excuse you from having any tact or good taste whatsoever? But, hell, I guess it WAS a pretty creative move to be able to work an attack on evolution into a wedding speech.

  24. “and not be targeted by or witness a tidal wave of ogling like nothing you’ve experienced outside a frat party in the States.”

    Now you’re disparaging frat guys, many of us are quite nice but I’ve heard that Mexicans litter.

  25. Stevo:

    What’s with the angry ALL CAPS? Haven’t gotten much lately – eh?

    The real point is that “Just Say No” has had such a great impact the TWOD that they’ve decided to try it in the TWOS. Brilliant!

  26. As a general rule I agree that, ‘It’s better to wait until you’re married to bear or father children,’

    But I wonder if they’ve figured out why, in an age when there is not only birth control but several different forms of it, unmarried women are getting pregnant.

    I’m going to assume (so feel free to correct me if I’m wrong) that rape and contraceptive failure are a small percentage of the total number of pregnancies targeted.

    After you factor those out, the reasons for the pregnancies pretty much come down to 3 options…
    1. Ignorance (they don’t know about birth control)
    2. Stupidity (they may know but can’t understand the ramifications)
    3. Desire (They simply want to get pregnant)

    (Feel free to add more, BTW. Won’t change my point.)

    I’m a marketing professional. Care to guess what I think are the major flaws in this program? Starts with understanding your target market(s).

  27. I think these far-righters are afraid of orgasms because they’re simply unable to make their wives have any.

  28. I challenge you to walk through the khan al-khalili while female

    Ah, now that would be a challenge. 🙂

    jb,

    I am a bit sensitive to prejudices, especially against Middle Easterners right now.
    I figure that anywhere you go, people have premarital sex. No matter how strict a society is, most people are going to sneak a shag or two or three or…before heading to the proverbial altar. Probably the rude guys were a bit surprised to see you(?) in that string bikini, so they got a little excited. I’ll bet they went out that night and threw one in the girlfriend while thinking of you. That ought to warm your cockles, eh?

  29. The National Center for Health Statistics says well over 90% of adults ages 20-29 have had sexual intercourse.

    The females of this species simply attend Notre Dame.

  30. jb,
    That’s khan al khalili. Have you seen the average woman walking through there? You’ll find the same sort of environment in places in the US with few attractive/breathing females. Heck, the comments I’ve been told friends hear from construction sites are pretty bad.

    Go to a nightclub in Cairo or go to the beaches on the Red/Med Seas. Fewer catcallers, more attractive women.

  31. The National Center for Health Statistics says well over 90% of adults ages 20-29 have had sexual intercourse.

    [Circa 1995, a 20-year-old Akira rolls d100…]

    Awwwww Crap!

    Of course, that’s BEFORE you add the modifiers:

    -25% for being fat.
    -50% for being ugly
    -75% for playing role-play games.

    The odds were always against me.

  32. The National Center for Health Statistics says well over 90% of adults ages 20-29 have had sexual intercourse.

    Note “adults,” not “unmarried adults.” I wonder what percentage of this group is married?

    Last year, 46 states applied for the federal abstinence-education money, to fund programs in schools, neighborhood clubs and faith-based organizations.

    This doesn’t signify that the states back the abstinance-only message. I’d guess most states apply for every grant they can, regardless of whether the funds were particularly necessary. They’d be foolish not to.

    Of course we could “solve” the whole abstinance problem by returning to the tradition of everyone getting married within a year of puberty. That seems marginally less ridiculous than asking men and women to abstain from exercising one of the most basic biological urges for a decade and a half.

  33. And I thought I was the only 27 year old virgin left. They didn’t even ask me.

    I don’t think I have much pent-up aggression. That or I am this close to climbing a clocktower.

    People had premarital sex in 1950, they have it today, they had it in 1790. Why worry about it? Educate people on how to not have children if they don’t want them, and let them choose. All you do is make it more likely those having sex have kids. For the few that want to wait for marriage, let us be the dorks and geeks we are without diluting the mixture.

  34. They’d do the nation a bigger service if they spent the $50 mil on getting the last 10% hooked up.

    Certainly that’d be a 10% drop in national stress, with resulting health benefits.

  35. If the shoe fits, wear it…I’m not implicating all frat guys, just saying that frat parties are where to go to get ogled.

  36. “The message is ‘It’s better to wait until you’re married to bear or father children,’ ” Horn said. “The only 100% effective way of getting there is abstinence.”

    Apparently this guy has never heard about homosexuality.

    On that note, I’d guess that maybe 2 or 3% of that 10% are lesbians. If anal intercourse doesn’t count as sexual intercourse, then I’d say a full half of that 10% might be due to homosexuals.

  37. On that note, if you’re 29 and still a virgin, it’s because you want to be a virgin. Or at least not willing to spend the money and risk the STDs associated with seeing a prostitute.

  38. Let’s see now. The gummint is claiming that abstinence from sex is 100% effective at preventing pregnancy. Do W’s Catholic supporters know that the Bush Administration is claiming that Mary was no virgin?

  39. Or at least not willing to spend the money and risk the STDs associated with seeing a prostitute.

    Or risk getting their ass thrown in prison, losing their job, and being publically humiliated when your photo shows up on the “known Johns” list in the papers.

    Not everyone has the advantage of living in Neveda.

  40. Edit: …when their photo… Nevada.

    Too early the the morning to make political/social commentary.

  41. “And I thought I was the only 27 year old virgin left.”

    How the hell do you make it to 27 without getting laid? I mean, some of us were more blessed asthetically and socially than others but holy shit!

  42. I would be horrified to live in a country full of 28 year old male virgins. Talk about pent up aggression.

    Welcome to the Middle East

  43. jb,

    my outrage over disparaging comments about frat guys was in total jest. Frat guys are a fair target. We are in on the joke, we’re assholes but we know we’re assholes.

  44. I would be horrified to live in a country full of 28 year old male virgins. Talk about pent up aggression…Welcome to the Middle East

    Jeebus, GILMORE!
    Disproved. Disproved. Disproved already. See above. Read carefully.

  45. Disproved? Argued, perhaps. Disproved for Saudi Arabia, hardly representative of the Middle East as a whole. Highnumber, you overrate your arguments.

  46. Disproved? Argued, perhaps.

    Nonetheless, it is a good idea to read the whole thread before throwing out a hacky one-liner.

  47. jb,

    If you like, you can read and compare here:
    http://www.un.org/esa/population/publications/worldmarriage/worldmarriagepatterns2000.pdf
    I chose Saudi Arabia as my example simply because they are certainly the Middle East, not because they marry more or at a younger age. Sorry I didn’t post the report yesterday. I thought the issue was dead.

  48. Those stats show up to 24 (in Egypt, 11.9% of men), and after 45 (98.6%). No data on 28-year-olds (except that the average mean age at marriage is about 28). No explanation of the variance or mode. No analysis based on class or wealth, in a society where those are important determinants of access to marriage. And the data is 10 years old.

    I’m not sure what you think this proves.

  49. jb,

    You can waste your time finding a better study. That’s all I got.

    Regardless, I’ll bet that young Egyptian men are not saving themselves for marriage.

    You’re the one who stated that the Middle East is full of 28 year-old virgins. Can you show me some evidence to back up your statement?

  50. No, young Egyptian women are saving themselves for marriage. It equates to the same thing.

    All I’ve got is anecdotal evidence, from having been in Egypt for a while and knowing people who are from there/live there, to the point that there are a lot of mid-20s unattached Egyptian men who do quite a lot of ogling/harassing of women of a similar age.

    I’ll ask around and see if there are any better studies, and if I find any I’ll post them.

  51. Mo responded with some anecdotal evidence, too. The ogle factor drops when you enter a more sophisticated area, he said.
    Anyway, guys who have had sex continue to ogle. Trust me.
    Egyptian women saving themselves for marriage (if they really are) does not equal Egyptian men saving themselves for marriage.

    Anyway, this is silly. Let’s be friends.

  52. jb and highnumber,
    The anecdotal evidence I know is primarily from university students and friends of my family. From what I know there are a lot of virgins in name only, but like everywhere else, there are lots of false claims and young men and women just as willing to get down and dirty.

    Though to be fair, most of my knowledge is based on the upper ends of the socio-economic scale who have greater access to things like birth control, abortions and tend to be more enlightened about such things.

  53. How the hell do you make it to 27 without getting laid? I mean, some of us were more blessed asthetically and socially than others but holy shit!

    Easily,

    1. Have a horrific adolscence were the girls would laugh in your face if you asked them out or set their boyfriends on you if they caught your geeky eyes upon them. Have one of your high school tormentors tell you that you couldn’t get a “$2 whore to fuck you even if you paid her $2 million.”

    2. Grow up in a Catholic family run by a dominating father who won’t let you date until your 18, discorages you from dating while you live with the family during college, and threatens to kill you if he ever finds out you had sex before marriage,

    3. Date a woman who has her vulva spot-welded shut and so frigid that you could perform cyrogenic experiments in her vagina. Yet, you’re so desperate for female companionship, you hang around with her for a year and a half while she tells you that intercourse would “hurt too much” and that sex was something that “higher beings would nver do.”

    4. Have none of the attributes that ever attracts women: Money, good looks, a 6+ dick, etc.

    Yes, I’m bitter.

  54. Or,
    Decide that you want to wait for marriage, but eitehr have the luck to be attracted to girls who were already engaged, or not have the courage to ask them out.

    My high school years weren’t as bad as yours but they don’t make my top 10 list.

  55. Not everyone has the advantage of living in Neveda.

    Dude, Canada. About as legislated up there as strip clubs. Or Mexico, not legislated at all, practically. Or call an escort service in the nearest big city. They may say that you might get refused, but in practice it never happens, trust me. There are always ways to get what you want, just stop whining and go fight for it.

  56. I seem to remember a thread in the past that posited that libertarians had more sex than other political groups.

    This thread throws some serious doubts on this assumption. What are the chances in this small a community of finding two 27 year old virgins? (Okay, I know…10% if we assume 100 individuals, but still).

  57. Don’t think I was whining. And I really don’t want it that way.

  58. Wasn’t talking about you.

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