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El Chanclaso

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Bad News for Voters in Iowa and Teenagers in Tennessee

Posted: 06/29/2012 4:30 pm

It must be election season again since thousands of voters are being removed from the voter rolls. Previously, I gave a chanclaso to Governor Rick Scott of Florida for purging thousands of Latino voters suspected of being non-US citizens from the voters rolls. Well, Iowa Governor Terry Branstad was ahead of the anti-voter curve. As one of his first acts as governor, Branstad signed an executive order ending a policy that automatically gave ex-felons the right to vote after they were released from prison. Governor Branstad made it even more difficult ex-felons to register to vote by requiring ex-felons to submit a credit report and apply to the governor in order to get their voting rights restored. Iowa joins Kentucky, Florida, and Virginia as the only states that require ex-felons to apply to the governor. Unless it's the Final Four, this group of states is the bracket you usually never want to join. Governor Branstad, you get a chanclaso.

When will states with the highest teenage pregnancy rates in the country learn that an abstinence-only curriculum is not the solution to reducing the teenage pregnancy rate? For the love of education and knowledge, please let students make the most informed decisions about their own sexual health. In an ideal world, yes, it would be great if teenagers were waiting until adulthood to engage in sexual activities, but they're not, hence, the high teenage pregnancy rates. So let's deal with situation with facts and a strong sex education curriculum. Governor Bill Haslam of Tennessee signed an abstinence-only bill that bans teachers from teaching students about "any gateway sexual activity." The legislature was too squeamish to define "gateway sexual activity" so it could potentially mean kissing and holding hands. Violators could be fined $500. It's shocking that the measure easily passed both the House and Senate and onto the Governor. This is NOT good legislation. I'm giving a chanclaso to Governor Haslam cause he should know better. Kids are engaging in sexual activities but at the very least we can ensure they know how to put condoms on.

 

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