Charles Taylor The Morality Police Analysis

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In the 1891 play (turned musical in 2005) Spring Awakening, a teenaged girl named Wendla falls in love with the suavely anti-establishment, self-proclaimed intellectual Melchior. Armed with nothing but their hormones and a mother's' tale that babies only come to married couples to guide them, the inevitable happens. Through Wendla's botched abortion leading to her death, the suicide of a close friend, and being institutionalized at a reformatory, the reader follows Melchior as his parents' lie comes to its disastrous conclusion. One hundred ten years later, Charles Taylor's essay, The Morality Police, complains of similar stories occurring in the modern day, reaching from movie theatres to sex ed classes. I have to agree with Taylor's thesis:…show more content…
In society at large, like the play, hiding sexual information from students leads to devastating health crises. The attitudes that contribute to pro-censorship culture have their roots in the media. Whether maliciously or otherwise, misinformation about violent video games and movies spread like wildfire into the minds of parents and lawmakers alike. In paragraph 13, Taylor recounts the story of a young girl who watched "The Faculty", a film centred around youth-on-adult violence, repeatedly. To an outside observer like a journalist or legislator, why the girl enjoyed the film so much is obvious: the girl is a budding sociopath as a result of watching the scarring film, and will soon go on a murderous rampage of her own at school. However, the author then specifies the girl's real intention: an adolescent crush on one of the actors. With very rare exception - and such exceptions are in need of mental health counselling - children are curious and seek information and media innocently. Nonetheless, institutions like the movie rating system are still in place, and are often a parent's first resource when…show more content…
Although teaching children that babies come from 'the stork', or even that kissing boys under the bleachers can cause fatal diseases, may be easier for parents and teachers to manage in the short term, they end up raising a generation of sexually clueless adults. Marjorie Heins, author of "Not in Front of the Children: 'Indecency', Censorship, and the Innocence of Youth", cites a study which found that in 1998, the United States had a higher rate of teenage pregnancy than any country in Europe. Yet, a popular sex-ed program titled "Sex Respect" preaches that teenage pregnancy is a form of natural "judgment", along with similar efforts to scare teenagers away from sexual activity for fear of shotgun weddings and death. Unfortunately, it is a universal truth that teenagers will have sex. Rather than plugging their ears or trying to redirect a river with a detour sign, sex educators should address these issues head-on so that students are better equipped to handle them in adult life. Otherwise, we will continue to see epidemics similar to those we see today: HIV and other sexually-transmitted diseases decimating at-risk populations; teenage pregnancy in areas where abortion is frowned upon or illegal; and crises of sexual orientation. As Taylor put it in paragraph 32, "the people who want to deny teenagers access to sexual information... are implicitly saying that
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