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December 12, 1980

Whatever Happened to Chastity?-Reply

Author Affiliations

Bureau of Venereal Disease Control New York

JAMA. 1980;244(23):2607. doi:10.1001/jama.1980.03310230013008

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In Reply.—  I, too, as a parent and a physician feel very strongly about the need to educate our teenagers on the importance of "responsible and healthy sexual practices, including abstinence and fidelity." While I may even agree with Dr Snell that our society is too casual when it comes to sex, we must remember, however, that we arrived at the state we are now in long before we ever thought of promoting and providing sex education, ie, the use of condoms. There is no scientific evidence to suggest that in providing education about contraception or disease prevention, we would be making the problem worse.As medical professionals, we, more than anyone else, should be fully aware of the consequences of untreated venereal disease and unwanted pregnancies. We, therefore, have an obligation to see that our children do not become victimized by our own self-righteousness. For lacking anything better to