Teen Sex vs. Divine Light

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Teen Sex vs. Divine Light

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In analyzing these questions, Time magazine writer Belinda Luscombe cites a litany of imprudent behavior by famous young ladies.

Girls behaving badly

Examples include recently published photos of a semi-clothed Miley Cyrus and the unwed pregnancies of Jamie Lynn Spears and Bristol Palin. Plus there are the "Gloucester Seventeen," a group of high school girls in Massachusetts who agreed among themselves to get pregnant together.

Adding to real-life cases, the author cites fictitious young female personalities who behave just as badly—and often more explicitly. Characters from the television shows 90210, Gossip Girl and The O.C. top the list, plus MTV hits like My Super Sweet 16 and Spring Break. Juno may be the most visible in a list of films that negatively influence teen girls.

There's not enough room in this commentary to fully address the ways in which this particular Time magazine article fails to properly handle the subject—but there is room to make two very important points.

Boy accountability

First, remember that Jamie Lynn Spears and Bristol Palin did not get pregnant by themselves, nor did the Gloucester Seventeen. Boys must be held accountable for immoral behavior just the same as girls.

Young men need to understand their proper role with young women—to respect their character and protect their purity. If a teenage guy wants to become a real man, he would never make sexual advances toward a girl or accept any advances that she might make toward him. Real men understand the value of saving themselves and their girlfriends for the incredible blessings of marriage.

Underestimating the media

Second, the Time writer fails to grasp the true danger of sexual content in modern media. She states that the link between how teen sexuality is portrayed in the media and the behavior of teen girls is "more complicated than Tracey see, Tracy do" ("The Truth About Teen Girls," Sept. 22, 2008). That's a word play on "monkey see, monkey do" to describe how some imitate the actions of others without thinking.

While not every teen exposed to sexual content in news or entertainment apes the behavior he or she sees, that's no cause for the cold comfort implied by Ms. Luscombe. The problem with sexually suggestive or explicit material is that it fills the mind with images and sound bites that are incredibly difficult to un-see and un-hear.

Bright thinking vs. wrong sex

Jesus Christ said, "The lamp of the body is the eye. Therefore, when your eye is good, your whole body also is full of light. But when your eye is bad, your body also is full of darkness. Therefore take heed that the light which is in you is not darkness" (Luke 11:34-35).

Of greater concern than "Tracey see, Tracey do" is the certainty that when Tracey sees, Tracey thinks. When you think about wrong behavior, you suffer a portion of the damaging consequences even if your thoughts never lead to actions. If wrong thoughts do lead to wrong actions, the damage suffered greatly increases.

Asking whether teen girls are becoming sexually active too early in life is the wrong question. Any young person, male or female, who engages in sexual activity before marriage is doing so too early!

The real question for a vertically thinking young person is, "What should I be thinking and how should I be acting so that I can save sex for my marriage?" Successfully answer this question and you'll never regret it! VT

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