27 February 2011
The Answer to Teenage Sex: More Mosques...
Sexually active young people is hardly a new phenomenon. Maybe the 'scope' of what we read about in the news now is that teenagers themselves are more open about talking about their experiences than they have ever been in the past. So, this might be a case of teenagers being more truthful about their extra-curricular activities for statistical purposes.
Nevertheless, the moral and religious crusaders go to great lengths to tell us that this is indicative of a failing society and that the beginning of the 'end of days'. This leads to obvious "answers" to be put forward by these individuals. The answers always involve religious and moral instruction in places of worship.
So, there is no surprise when the Mayor of West Jakarta, Burhanuddin, reckons that the best way to combat casual sex amongst teenagers is to build more mosques and indoctrinate them on all things religious and moral. To each their own. In my mind, the best way to address this issue is to ensure that our teenagers are indeed educated. However, that education is not one of religion or morality. The education, or lesson, is one of responsibility. If you are a teenager and you are dead keen to have sex then it will be almost impossible for adults to prevent it from happening.
Assuming that others are of a similar view, then the issue is one of ensuring that teenagers know the risks and consequences of engaging in pre-marital sexual activity. If the Indonesian Commission for Child Protection (KPAI) are to be believed, then there are some 32% of Indonesian youths in the 14-18 years of age in Indonesia's larger urban centres of Jakarta, Bandung, Surabaya, Medan and Yogyakarta are engaging in sexual activity. Once again, the most critical component of any response to this is to ensure that youngsters understand the risks and consequences, and then act responsibly and from a position of being forewarned and forearmed.
It seems a little naive to think that the solution to this "issue" is one of building new mosques and mandating that youths attend special sessions on pre-marital sex. I wonder whether these are non-denominational sessions or Burhanuddin is only concerned about young Muslims and their sexual appetites? One would have imagined that pre-marital sex is a community issue and not one that is exclusive to Islam, Christianity, Buddhism or Hinduism.
I guess to be fair, one must give Burhanuddin a chance to show that his plan is capable of teaching these youths about safe sex, sexually transmitted diseases and infections, and responsibility amongst the expected God prohibits unmarried teenagers from having sex (and if you do so then you are going straight to hell!)
There goes another RAB Experience rant and rail.