Condom Week: The KuKluxKlan, meth labs, and AK-47s

karens_condoms2While we’re on the topic of condoms, I want to take a moment to address the issue of public perception. Sexuality education and sexual health are both often relegated to the back room of a red light district sex worker studio. Not that there’s anything wrong with the back room of a red light district sex worker studio, but it’s clearly not a place for children and not something you’re going to chat about in most company. Sexuality education and sexual health, however are absolutely topics that children need to be exposed to and should be discussed in most company.

When I first started in sex ed, my grandmother was pretty embarrassed about it. She would tell people that I was a psychology professor, which, while true, neglected some key details. She asked me why I had to focus “on THAT” when I could do so many good things with my life. In the subsequent years, after learning from me how many college students have zero knowledge about the basics of reproduction, for example, she has become a stalwart supporter. We now talk openly about sexuality education and sexual health, and it’s a beautiful thing.

So what, you may ask, does all of this have to do with the KuKluxKlan, meth labs, and AK-47s? Twitter considers condoms (a key component of both sexuality education and sexual health) to be part of the same category as:

  • Hate content and violence.
  • Drugs and drug paraphernalia.
  • Weapons and weapon accessories.

I could go on and on about the bizarre propensity in our society to conflate sexuality and violence, particularly in movies. How is it possible that the kind of violence that exists in movies is considered appropriate for children? The new X-men movie for example? Not appropriate for children. It’s gore-filled, fast paced, all sorts of things that elevate the audience’s anxiety levels. When children grow up with constantly heightened anxiety levels, they become accustomed to that and they can’t ever really, fully relax. You know what doesn’t raise the audience’s anxiety level? Nipples. It might arouse the audience, depending on a number of variables, but arousal levels go up and down naturally, they don’t get caught in the same hardcore, over-stimulated cycle as anxiety.

And do you know what does good for people? Saves lives rather than ends them? Condoms.

So what’s the deal, Twitter? You should stop perpetuating this particularly craziness.

Want to tell Twitter? Sign this petition:
and then tell all your friends to sign too!

And then dress up like a giant condom and hangout on the street! Because condoms need to be part of our public discourse. End of story.


I’ve decided that it’s Condom Week around here at Unhushed. Melissa White over at Lucky Bloke recently asked if I wanted to provide content for her new safer sex education website, and of course I was delighted! But when I went back to look through my blogging archives (both here and at, I found that I had written terrifyingly little about condoms. So here I am, rectifying that problem with Condom Week, on both sites. Here at I’ll be writing about teachers and other educators’ issues about condoms in the classroom. At I’ll be writing about parental concerns about condoms. Interested in receiving KarenRayne blog posts as they happen? Sign up here. You can sign up to receive Unhushed blog posts here.

About Karen Rayne

Dr. Karen Rayne has been supporting parents and families since 2007 when she received her PhD in Educational Psychology. A specialist in child wellbeing, Dr. Rayne has spent much of her career supporting parents, teachers, and other adults who care for children and teenagers.