Thursday, July 28, 2005

Postcard from 12005'

My kids (7 and 10) on the top of the world

This week we took a little overnight trip to the other side of the mountains. Our path took us through the Rocky Mountain National Park - along Trail Ridge Road, the highest continuously paved road in the US. Along the way we stopped and hiked up the 200' from the Alpine Visitor's Center to this marker.

I took almost 100 frames and I'll be loading more of them to my flickr account over the next 24 hours or so. I need to get them loaded before I forget what they are.

Tuesday, July 26, 2005

Postcard from Florida

Last weekend I was in Florida at a conference. We stayed at Disney's Coronado Springs Resort. It's quite a place. Late July, however, is a darn poor time to be in Central Florida.

Friday, July 01, 2005

Call me naive ...

... but when did it become alright for teachers to lie to kids?

When politics and education intersect, we have some interesting issues arise.

I'm reading this (PDF, sorry) report on the abstinence-is-the-one-true-path sex education curricula. Now I appreciate we often gloss over details - we simplify for clarity. We have Santa Claus, the Tooth Fairy, and the Easter Bunny. But are these the same as deliberately promoting false/dangerous information in order to put forward a religious agenda? And why are MY tax dollars supporting this crap?

Yes, I'm overstating the case a bit. All these programs promote abstinence and if the students follow the advice, they'll be safe. But if they stray, they could die from a lack of knowledge and an abundance of mis-information.

These programs downplay the importance and effectiveness of safe-sex. "It's not all that safe" leads, inevitably, to "why bother if it's not going to work anyway." I saw a clip from 60 Minutes wherein the medical expert pointed out that all benefit from the abstinence programs evaporates on the first exposure to reality, since the students who've been fed this cark have no basis upon which to make any kind of reasonable decisions.

The logical line here seems to be "If we keep them stupid, we can keep them scared. If we can keep them scared, we can convince them that only marriage can keep them safe. And of course, once they're married, they'll breed like rabbits ..."

It's ok to kill them for not believing? When did *that* become a "Family Value"...?

Ok. So .. It's all a numbers game, right? ONLY about 1/3 of 1% of the people in the US carry HIV. That's only slightly more than people who are blind. What're the chances that you'd pick one of them? And as far as pregnancy goes, well, that's only gonna mess up the girls ... So, the Holy Fathers here seem to think that's ok. Everything else we can cure with a pill, or a shot, right?

Does this seem troubling to anybody else? As a father of two rather high-spirited pre-teens, I gotta say, this has me seeing red.