Friday, December 29, 2006

Two Things of Concern

I have been threatening to make an entry for quite some time now, and it is about time I made good on that. Here, in no particular order, are two things that made me say "WHAT?" in the last several weeks.

(1) In my home state of Pennsylvania, the minimum wage will be increasing from $5.25/hr to $7.25/hr in only 6 months. Now I know most readers of page 132 are supporters are supporters of this, and I can at least be sympathetic to the intent, if not the logic. But, this is an economy and employment killer, at least in PA. We are not a high cost of living state - YET. I looked up state minimum wage rates. There are only 5 states that have a higher minimum wage: Connecticut, Oregon, Washington, Hawaii, and Massachusetts. All 5 have considerably higher costs of living than PA. $7.25/hr is a ridiculous amount of money for the teens in my youth group who fry stuff at Chick-Fil-A. If they want to pay that, fine. But to be mandated to pay that, the cost of services well beyond Chick-Fil-A are going to increase. So I will end up paying for them to get a new Playstation 3 and Grand Theft Auto.

(2) A few weeks ago, I saw a commercial on TV that infuriated me. It was for a new drug. The commercial started out with a bunch of young women - teens or college age saying, "I didn't know" to the camera with a surprised or sullen look. I wondered what it was they didn't know. It turns out that, despite their government subsidized sex education, not a single one of them knew that HPV, the #1 sexually transmitted disease, causes cervical cancer in women (which in turn leads to infertility, which in turn was left out of the commercial). Now I don't know why these women don't know this. I guess their sex-ed teachers forgot that part while they were passing out condoms. I never had a sex-ed class, and I know this. I guarantee that every single student in my youth group knows this. I guess I am a real sex-ed teacher. But apparently, a majority of young women were never taught actual facts about STD's in school, jus how to be "safe"- whatever that means. But that was not the zinger. Here is the drug company to save the day! Here is a chance to get proper information into the hands of these young women. So a women in a white lab coat comes on and says, "For most women, HPV clears up on its own. But if it doesn't, talk to your doctor about....." BuZZZZZZ. I'm sorry, that answer is incorrect, but thanks for playing - your consolation prize is a lifetime of carrying HPV which NEVER clears up own it's own, is the #1 cause of cervical cancer in women, killing more women than HIV in the US every year, and also a 20% chance of vaginal and uterine scarring (one of the leading causes of infertility in women) that doubles in likelihood each time you contract the disease. In other words, sleep with two people who have it, you get a 40% chance of never having kids. Go for three and it's 80% likely that you will never have children. Well also send you away with the knowledge that you will give this to anyone you sleep with for the rest of your life, including your future husband who will get to suffer some fun consequences as well.

If THIS is representative of what "sex-education" has given us - an entire generation of young women who have NO CLUE about simple facts, but enjoy their free condoms - Count me out.