“Lets talk about sex baby”

Posted: June 9, 2013 in Latest post
Tags: , , ,

After countless hours of contemplating how to approach this topic -which was pretty tough for a girl who can’t even say “sex” without laughing- I decided to just be blunt about it. Teenagers are having sex.
that awkward moment...The physical activities of teenagers in South Africa has recently been put in the limelight due to the recent debate over some sections of the Sexual Offenses Act. One of the first acts to reach our bedrooms; which criminalises consensual sex amongst children between the ages of 12 to 16.

Quite frankly I find this to be utterly stupid. Two contrasting ideas where on the one hand sex between teenagers is illegal, while children over the age of 12 can be provided with condoms. Make up your mind, government!

Not only are they contradicting themselves, but also causing an already controversial topic to become legally taboo. Criminalising something, especially something which could be considered a rite of passage to some, is not going to make anybody stop doing it- it will just make us a little bit sneakier.

Teenagers are vulnerable, naïve and hormonal creatures. This irrational law is causing teenagers to become even more vulnerable. How can we learn responsibility about sex when just talking about it is so off-limits? If we are already afraid to ask questions, we become more ignorant about sex and the health implications- and become much more susceptible to making the wrong decisions concerning sex.

Many people are justifying this Act as being an answer to the ongoing issue of teen pregnancy and HIV-positive rates amongst children, but that is definitely not the case. By approving this law, there will not be any change in teen pregnancy or HIV rates, there will just be an increase in teenagers with criminal offenses to their name.
The solution to the issue of sexually related problems is not making teenage sex illegal, but by improving and increasing the sexual education of children. Sex should not be a topic that teachers and parents are too uncomfortable to address, and children are too afraid to ask about. It should be a topic that we can openly discuss without feeling guilty. Once this happens, children will have more knowledge on how to be responsible.
Whether I, or any one of my peers, decide to have sex now, when we’re twenty or when we’re married- is none of any body’s business(especially not the government’s)- because that’s exactly what it is, my choice.

I’m taking liberty with Spiderman’s words, “With[ teenage sex], comes great responsibility.” Teenagers have to remember though; if you choose to have sex, then choose to be responsible.

Written Imrah Kamedien, Grade 10

be responsible

  1. Sioux says:

    Interesting article – I agree that overturning this outdated law was in the best interests of our youth. There are so many examples of how a law can criminalise a behaviour and thereby exacerbate it (I’m thinking of the prohibition in the 1920’s in the USA and the so-called ‘war on drugs’ which has simply led to more deaths and a curtailing of the system’s ability to help addicts). But I wonder – how do we make teenagers understand the responsibilities that come with sex- from contraception to protection from HIV to an understanding that this wonderful intimate act can be the cause of all sorts of confusions and sadness too? Thanks for sharing your writing – keep at it!

  2. mienaaz says:

    teenagers do understand the responsibilities and consequences that come with having sex but they try not to think about that and tend to live in the moment.

  3. This is a excellent writing piece.Keep it up!

  4. thembi nayo says:

    i totally agree with this article, the government cant make up his mind about these kinda issues. instead of criminalizing this issue he should come up with more teenage targeted awareness programmes. i feel like the way they are warning the teens about these factors is not enough its too targetde to a borad target market and aimed more to teens.

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