- The Washington Times - Wednesday, January 10, 2007

The Montgomery County school board has dropped the X-rated cucumber from its revised sex-education curriculum but still has not received a thumbs-up from the two lawsuit-minded groups that objected the loudest two years ago.

The groups contend that the new curriculum takes a neutral position on sexuality, just as the old one did, whether the sexual activity involves two members of the opposite sex or same sex.

In seeking to promote tolerance among teens, the school board takes a myopic approach. If the aim is to truly educate teens on the sexual creativity of humans, it would be helpful to point out that heterosexuality and homosexuality represent only a fraction of it.

There is group sex, too. There is spouse-swapping. There is polygamy, which no longer is accepted in America but is still practiced in certain parts of the world.

The school board felt compelled to go beyond the basics with its curriculum, beyond the mere biology of sex to include another condom show and a foray into the same-sex lifestyle.

By this logic, the school board ought to be prepared to teach a smorgasbord of sexual lifestyles in order to help teens understand and respect all kinds of interests. A teen should not have to feel marginalized or different because of an obsessive interest in toes.

A boy who steals his sister’s lingerie should not feel ashamed. He should know that there are others just like him. Worse, if he does not come to terms with his fascination with inanimate objects, then he could grow up to be Sung Koo Kim, the Oregon man who was found to have stolen more than 3,400 panties and bras at Laundromats.

The groups that finds fault with the school board’s curriculum are making a nebulous point on some level, for they know parents in Montgomery County hold the ultimate power. If the parents dislike the curriculum, then they do not have to provide the written consent that would allow their children to attend the classes. That seems fair enough.

The fight all started over a woman toting a cucumber representing a state of arousal. Guffaws soon were heard across the nation, as syndicated columnists mined all the humor they could from the previously undistinguished vegetable.

One cucumber later, educators and the groups are fighting anew. Educators can cite teen sex studies to empower their cause. But parents being parents can claim to know what is best for their teens, even if parents sometimes are the last to know the less savory aspects of their darlings.

We have not heard the last of this, of condoms and the studied neutrality of an institution at odds with two protest groups who champion Mommy and Daddy.

If they are up to it, Mommy and Daddy can hold the sex-ed classes themselves, possibly with a lot of clearing of the throat, and instruct Montgomery County’s educators not to bother.

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