When I tell people why I fight for Comprehensive Sex Education they sometimes cut me off too soon. They say they agree that young people should learn how to protect themselves from teen pregnancies, STD’s, non consensual sex and some even see the importance of being provided with more knowledge about Gay rights. What I don’t hear is the desire for a space where people can get a better sense of who they are.
Black women are the most heavily effected by most of these issues, but knowing about protection and contraception is not enough. When we go talk to our peers we have to remember that the problems that effect them go deeper than we may expect. Comprehensive Sex education embodies all the ways we explore who we are, and as a black woman who has never been given a space where i can discuss my struggles health and otherwise I hope that Comprehensive Sex education can some day bring that space.
A friend showed me this poem by Philly(!) poet Joshua Bennett, and I thought it did a great job of going beyond the shallow struggles of black women. And more important still it is empowering to those who may be overwhelmed by all the things holding them back.