How should we recycle?Editor's note: The county...

Readers write

July 19, 1992

How should we recycle?

Editor's note: The county commissioners have ordered private trash haulers to pick up recyclable material from residential customers starting July 1. Apart from some towns, residents are encouraged but not required to sort out recyclables. The immediate aim is to begin complying with state law, which requires counties to recycle a percentage of their solid waste. The commissioners also want to reduce the amount of trash going to county landfills. We have asked our readers if they think recycling is a good idea, if they recycle, if recycling should be mandatory and if the commissioners should contract for countywide trash pickup. Here are some of their reponses:

From: Lynn M. Thorne

Sykesville

Should recycling be mandatory?

Absolutely not. Again, people are jumping on the bandwagon before knowing all the facts.

*

From: Carole Fortney

Westminster

Yes, I do recycle. It is the only way to preserve our environment.

G; I believe it should be mandatory. It is our civic duty.

Get facts on teen sex

From: Hampton "Skip" Auld

Westminster

I came across some interesting information which I believe sheds light on the debate over including the video "Teen AIDS in Focus" in the ninth-grade curriculum.

This information is from the just published "Where We Stand," "the official sourcebook for the PBS-TV series 'Made in America.' "

In the United States:

* 80 percent of men and 42 percent of women have premarital sex.

* 75 percent of Americans approve of premarital sex (but not necessarily for teen-agers).

* 17.4 percent of men and 9.2 percent of women say they have had a homosexual experience.

* 73 percent say AIDS is a concern.

* 65 percent of teens are sexually active.

* The average age of first intercourse is 15.8 for boys and 15.4 for girls.

* Only 12 percent of boys and 16 percent of girls have not experienced intercourse by age 20.

* Only 55 percent of sexually active, single 15- to 19-year-olds use birth control.

* There are 98 teen pregnancies per 1,000 teen-agers, 54 teen-age mothers per 1,000 teen-agers, and 44.4 teen abortions per 1,000 teen-agers.

I did not get to see "Teen AIDS in Focus" and I neither support nor oppose its inclusion in the curriculum.

I believe fully the maxim that the only safe sex is no sex. I appreciate the comments of people like Mel Arbaugh and Chris Brammer that promoting "safe sex" can be "dangerous, insensitive and uncaring."

It seems to me that the crux of this problem is the need to send different, conflicting messages to those who choose abstinence in their teens and those who choose to have sex.

I certainly will preach abstinence to my own children. But, as Christ said to Peter in Gethsemane, sometimes the spirit is willing, but the flesh is weak.

For those kids experiencing weakness of the flesh, I hope they are given accurate information about the consequences of sexual behavior. If the national statistics quoted above apply at all in Carroll County, the abstinence message is going to fall on a lot of deaf ears.

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