No-strings sex takes toll in UK
Researchers say Britain's ranking is empowering for women because it means they now are as able as men to engage in no-strings sex. "Historically we have repressed women's short-term mating and there are all sorts of double standards out there where men's short-term mating was sort of acceptable but women's wasn't," said lead researcher David Schmitt, a psychology professor at Bradley University in Illinois. They attributed Britain's ranking to the decline of religious scruples, the highly sexualized culture and other factors. All good things, apparently.
Missing from the study and the fawning news coverage were the collateral-damage data:
The Health Protection Agency says sexually transmitted diseases in Britain have never been higher. STDs in 2006, the last year full data were available, were up 6 percent over 2005; of the 380,000 new cases, 200,000 occurred among 16- to 24-year-olds.
Britain is fast becoming the abortion capital of the world. Government statistics show abortions in 2007 increased by 2.5 percent; the number performed on girls under 16 jumped 10 percent. Its abortion rate is No. 1 in Europe and No. 3 in the world, behind only the United States and Australia, where rates have been falling steadily for years.
The teen-pregnancy rate is soaring and is the second highest in the world behind the United States, a UNICEF study found. The spike is occurring even though the government has spent more than $100 million in the last three years to cut the rate in half by 2010.
The most recent report on social trends by the Office for National Statistics found a record 1 in 4 children in Britain live in households headed by a single parents — overwhelmingly single mothers. That's three times the proportion of 1972, while the rate of two-parent families has fallen from 52 percent to 37 percent, a new low. The Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development says Britain's welfare system is second only to Ireland's in making it more lucrative for single mothers to stay on the government dole. And predictably, single mothers and their children continue to suffer from some of the worst social and cultural pathologies.
How exactly is any of this empowering for women?'
It makes on ashamed to be English.