Wednesday, 18 April 2012

It begs the question...

So, lately I have found myself having this conversation with a number of people, and hearing different opinions on the topic. The topic is street beggars.

When I visited some family friends in Vancouver a few years back, the woman told me “never give money to beggars here, half of them aren’t even homeless. Some of them even own shoes but take them off and hide them while they’re begging to get more sympathy…” Bleeding Heart Social Worker Miss had to bite her tongue very hard to not come back with some hilarious quip such as “Now, is that manipulative, or good business sense? Wait there’s no difference between the two in the Business World, why should there be here?”

And that is basically the crux of my argument. If people choose to have it their job to sit out on the street and beg, then that’s their job, just like you go to work everyday, they go to their street corner with their mangled “Going through court, need money for legal costs” or “need place to sleep, not drugs” signage that sits behind their squashed hat to catch 5c pieces. Why should we judge this? An answer to this Q that deserves some consideration is “because they are duping/defrauding people to feel sympathy for them”. But I’ve thought this over, and I still believe that this is ok. Whether or not it’s an act/performance, people choose to freely give them money. And the givers feel a sense of righteousness because they have spared money on a poor person. So if you think about it like that, people who beg on the street are doing society a favour, they are providing the public a service by which they can feel smug at their deed of altruism.

What do you guys think?

Monday, 9 April 2012

Just another fist shake at abstinence, really

YES! Just the engaging topic for a Monday morning… What was that, it’s Tuesday? Oh, well, can I still write about it? I’m at work? and should be doing the job I’m paid to do? Oh fine, I’ll be quick…

To summarise, Tennessee in the US has an “abstinence only” law for it’s sex education curriculum. In itself this is nothing but shameful. Sex is a primal urge and teaching kids to say “no” to it isn’t going to take that urge away!!! But, what’s even madder is that they’ve amended the law to state that schools should also teach kids to say no to “gateway sexual activity”. Now the article points out that no one has been specific as to what constitutes “gateway” sexual activity, but could be interpreted by individual schools to mean kissing, hugging, even just holding hands, which if you can recall your early teens, was the most innocent but most thrilling sensation ever!

These poor gateways. Pot is a gateway drug, toy guns are gateway weapons, holding hands is gateway sex… next cheese will be gateway fast food, and be banned.

The sex education in Australia is poor enough, but the sex education in the US sounds insanely pathetic! Haven’t these conservative parents/schools/law makers heard that ignorance is NOT bliss? Education, in all facets of life, is so important, don’t they want their children to make informed choices, rather than struggle against perfectly natural hormones, fail, and end up putting their health at risk? GRRRRR I wish I had the answers; I wish I could make people see abstinence is not the answer! The end of the article states “a 2010 study published in the journal Archives of Pediatrics & Adolescent Medicine found that abstinence education can delay sex among teens”, but what it doesn’t state is that, once these teens do start having sex, even if it’s “delayed”, they may not be having safe sex; fully understand how to negotiate consent around different sexual acts, or be too afraid to speak to people if they are having issues related to sexual activity.

You’ve reached the end of another pointless rumination. Leave a comment to show that you care!