Now, I don't want to sound too much like a conservative. But ---
I do believe in saving money. I do believe in fiscal responsibility. And I do believe in cutting government programs that don't work.
So let's start with cutting President Bush's pet project: Abstinence-only education. On which we are now spending $800 million a year. What a colossal waste of taxpayer dollars.
We all know George Bush wants to suck up to the religious right. But this is crazy -- and expensive!
Look, we all agree that abstinence is, in theory, the best solution. If teenagers don't have sex, they're not going to get pregnant and they're not going to catch a sexually-transmitted disease.
But, it's like my freshman college biology professor once said: 95 percent of men masturbate. The other 5 percent are liars.
Same with abstinence. Despite their best intentions, 95 percent of teenagers will end up having sex. The other 5 percent will lie and say they didn't.
Worse yet, every study of abstinence-only program shows that not only will most of those teens who pledge to save it until they're married break the pledge -- once they do have sex, because they've never been taught anything but abstinence, they're less likely to use protection. So they're the ones who end up pregnant or infected with some God-awful disease.
Abstinence alone just doesn't work. The only real world solution is to combine abstinence as the first approach -- with comprehensive sex education -- including condoms and contraception -- as the back-up.
Unfortunately, George Bush just doesn't understand that. Maybe he should have a good, long talk -- with his daughters.