Controversy Surrounds New Sex-Ed Website MariaTalks.com
A new sexual education website is drawing significant attention in Massachusetts. While not part of any public school curriculum, lawmakers are urging state funding to be pulled from the project. The site, MariaTalks.com, was created by the AIDS Action Committee of Massachusetts and is geared towards giving teens the lowdown on all subjects related to sex. Funding from the Massachusetts Department of Public Health was used to create the site but controversial literature is creating a heated debate about the use of public money.
The site was created to be a resource for teenagers with questions about sex; in words they understand. The information is organized by teenaged characters that have concerns, questions or curiosities about sexual topics. “Maria” is the narrator of the site and is portrayed as an 18-year old female who shares answers to questions she has asked her aunt “Lucia” who is a medical doctor. Maria is joined by several of her friends portraying various characters with sexual concerns including fear of STDS, fear of pregnancy, questions about birth control, same sex relationships, etc.
Colloquial language is used to describe sexual terms, acts and topics. Different types of sexual acts are detailed with definitions and a focus on sex being healthy and natural is forefront. Safe sex topics are discussed with options for birth control, emergency contraception and information about the process of abortion. Information for teens to practice safe sex is easy to find on the site, but facts about abstinence are also available.
Lawmakers in Massachusetts have openly expressed their distaste for the site. The slang terms used on the site are intended to make teens feel comfortable about a theme that is usually accompanied by controversy but political players are seeing it as inappropriate. Massachusetts Governor Deval Patrick is being urged to cut state funding.
Supporters of the site attest that teens are more likely to use a sexual education resource that speaks their language. As the debate continues it is unclear whether MariaTalks.com will continue to be financially supported by the state of Massachusetts.
Check it out at Mariatalks.com and let us know what you think!
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