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Contraception (Lat. against conception) generally refers to devices or substances that prevent pregnancy (birth control). There are many different methods, each having its own level of effectiveness and safety. Abstinence, of course, obviates the need for any form of birth control.

The controversy over this in the United States mainly involves two alternative approaches:

  1. "Abstinence-until-marriage" education programs, advocated by many self-identified conservatives and supported by President Bush.[Citation Needed]
  2. "Comprehensive sex education", advocated by most self-identified liberals, and many others.Template:Fact-political

Conservatives maintain that abstinence-only education is the only completely effective means of education.Template:Fact-politicalTemplate:Fact-scientific Some studies have shown that abstinence-only education is not as effective as believed.[1] [2] In 1997, the Republican controlled Congress authorized a ten year study of the effectiveness of abstinence-only sex education. This study concluded that abstinence-only sex education did not have an impact on sexual behavior; those receiving abstinence-only education were as likely as a control group to engage in pre-marital sex; had as many sexual partners; first engaged in sex at the same mean age; and were as likely to use birth control, contrary to the findings of some previous studies. [3].


  3. HHS 100-98-0010 “Impacts of Four Title V, Section 510 Abstinence Education Programs” Final Report April 2007 [1]