Squirming at common sense

Posted: Wednesday, July 11, 2001

The following editorial appeared in the July 5 issue of The Sacramento (Calif.) Bee:

It's remarkable how a little frank talk about sex can make a lot of people squirm.

Surgeon General David Satcher released his long-awaited "Call to Action to Promote Sexual Health and Responsible Sexual Behavior" last week, and its mildly worded, well-reasoned plea for a mature and realistic national dialogue about matters sexual was welcomed by the many doctors, researchers, youth advocates and clergy who contributed to its making and once worried it would never see the light of day. Yet within the Bush administration, where Satcher's days are surely numbered, the report was received with the kind of warmth reserved for truth-telling uncles who insist on dragging out the family secrets at dinner. ...

Satcher's call to action is hardly radical. It's rational. It takes sober account of how much work remains to be done if young people are to learn how to protect themselves and act responsibly.

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