Discovering a phony “trend”, making a case for it, and then shooting down your own premise…
Taking a cue from Time magazine, Newsweek tries one of those shallow “youthful trend” cover stories…and fails as miserably as Time.
This time its Choosing Virginity
REJECTING THE GET-DOWN-make-love ethos of their parentsâ€™ generation, this wave of young adults represents a new counterculture, one clearly at odds with the mainstream media and their routine use of sex to boost ratings and peddle product.
According to a recent study from the Centers for Disease Control, the number of high-school students who say theyâ€™ve never had sexual intercourse rose by almost 10 percent between 1991 and 2001.
Yeah. I’m an American teenager and I love to answer government questions about my sexual habits honestly. Jeesh. Article authors Lorraine Ali and Julie Scelfo go to great lengths to find assorted teens to back up their thesis, which is just the kind of article that Newsweek wants to feature to make America feel all warm and snuggly again (but without the tingly feelings “down there”) in these times of goverment inflicted anxiety. But then they keep finding kids who make comments like this:
Lucian, now an engineering major at the University of Alberta in Canada, is a â€œrenewed virgin.â€ His parents are strong proponents of chastity, and he attended school-sponsored abstinence classes. But the messages didnâ€™t hit home until heâ€™d actually had sex. â€œItâ€™s a pretty special thing, and itâ€™s also pretty serious,â€ he says. â€œAbstinence has to do with â€˜Hey, are you going to respect this person?â€™ â€ He has dated since his high-school affair, and is now hoping a particular cute coed from Edmonton will go out with him. â€œBut Iâ€™ll try to restrict myself to kissing,â€ he says. â€œNot because I think everything else is bad. But the more you participate with someone, the harder itâ€™s going to be to stop.â€
Itâ€™s not easy to practice such restraint, especially when those around him do not. Lucian lives in a single room, decorated with ski-lift tickets and a â€œScooby-Dooâ€ poster, in an all-male dorm, but he says most students â€œget hitched up, sleep around and never see each other again.â€Meanwhile he does his best to push his own sexual urges from his mind. â€œI try to forget about it, but I have to say it sucks. Homework is a good thing to do, and going out for a run usually works.â€ He also goes to Sunday mass. Lucian figures he can hold out until heâ€™s married, which he hopes will be by the time heâ€™s 30.
Guilt, repression, self-deception…Yup. Sounds like this new abstinence trend is really going to take off.