Federally funded sex ed program teaches Hawaii middle schoolers that butts are genitals

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A member of Hawaii’s House of Representatives is criticizing an ambitious, federally funded sex education program currently in use in 12 of the state’s public schools.

The pilot curriculum, called “Pono Choices,” targets 11- to 13-year-old students. (“Pono” is a Hawaiian word that basically means “good” or “moral.”) Its creators include the University of Hawaii and, of course, Planned Parenthood.

Rep. Bob McDermott, a Hawaii Republican, claims that the curriculum is “not age appropriate and not consistent with state policy” for a slew of reasons, reports

McDermott’s biggest complaint is that the curriculum is wrong on a pretty major point: It defines the anus a “genital.”

“Genitals are sexual reproductive organs,” McDermott told EAGnews, “and the ass isn’t that.”

Beyond the sad and hilarious inaccuracy involved in calling any anus a genital, the state representative notes that any discussion of oral sex — defined as “mouth on genitalia” — becomes pretty troublesome for inquisitive middle schoolers who reflect on the concept.

Mouth-on-anus sex acts can lead to all manner of infections and parasite digestion that no 11-year-old wants.

McDermott asserts, the 60-hour “Pono Choices” curriculum fails to mention any dangers related to analingus.

“It’s either gross negligence or a purposeful omission,” he told EAGnews.

In his report entitled “The Pono Choices Curriculum: Sexualizing the Innocent,” the congressman alleges that the curriculum presents male-on-male anal sex as just conventionally good, clean living—to 11-year-olds.

The report says:

“In the module on ‘Preventing Sexually Transmitted Infections,’ students are instructed to estimate the relative risk of HIV transmission for numerous varied activities, from hugging to anal sex. Both vaginal sex with a condom and anal sex with a condom are rated as low risk activities. Unprotected vaginal sex is rated as high risk activity. The risk level of anal sex without a condom, however, is not addressed.”

He notes that the Federal Drug Administration warns Americans, on its website, that anal sex is “simply too dangerous to practice.” He also observes that virtually no 11-year-olds are engaging in or thinking about having anal sex. Thus, it’s a bit odd to focus so much of this age group’s academic energy on anal sex.

Pono Choices has received nearly $1 million in federal funding from the Department of Health and Human Services.

McDermott’s report offers a multitude of additional criticisms as well.

For example, he notes that in Hawaii the sexual penetration of a minor under the age of 14 — anal or otherwise — is a a class A felony. So, if, for example, a 13-year-old boy decides to try out what he learns in school with an 11-year-old girl in the afternoon, he would be committing a crime.

The curriculum also never makes a single mention of the benefits of monogamous relationships.

In addition, as the Honolulu Civil Beat reports, McDermott and state Sen. Sam Slom say the Hawaii Department of Education and University of Hawaii intentionally stonewalled attempts by the two elected representatives to access the materials related to the comprehensive pilot sex education program.

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