Mexico adds sex to school syllabus
Biology texts confront church teachings and long-standing sexual mores
The Houston Chronicle reported today that:
MEXICO CITY - When Mexican seventh-graders crack open their new biology books this week, they're in for a titillating surprise: Chapter four is all about sex.
And it's not the sterilized sex education of the past. For the first time, the federally mandated textbooks broach the once-taboo topics of masturbation and homosexuality while instructing students that there is nothing wrong with either.
Church officials and conservative groups are outraged. They charge that the texts — which are required teaching — encourage promiscuity and "abnormal" sexual practices. They are pressuring the federal government to remove passages they consider offensive.
"These days," one edition of the biology text states, "masturbation is considered a common and inoffensive sexual practice." The book, which includes images of famous works of erotic art, goes on to debunk "common myths" that masturbation causes people to go blind or grow hair on their palms.
The new texts are part of a federal crusade to reduce teenage pregnancies, which account for one in five births in Mexico, and prevent sexually transmitted diseases by introducing comprehensive sex education at an early age.
The campaign also seeks to fight widespread discrimination against gays in Mexico's predominantly Roman Catholic culture.
The complete story may be found here: