Make me your Homepage
left corner left corner
China Daily Website

Sex education vital for kids

Updated: 2013-09-24 07:15
( China Daily)

A cartoon film produced a few years ago by Shanghai Animation Film Studio, which has several scenes of animals' breasts, was recently labeled as the most provocative animation ever by netizens. As a result, Internet users are worried that it would have a harmful effect on children. The debate over the animation film has become a hot issue on TV programs, and has been grabbing headlines on Web portals and newspapers alike, says an article in Qianjiang Evening News. Excerpts:

Chinese people have always had a prudent attitude toward sex and sex education. They have been oversensitive to anything even remotely related to sex. Their reservation toward sex even forced broadcasters to blur the genitals of David, the masterpiece created by the great Renaissance artist Michelangelo Buonarroti, when they showed it on TV programs.

Sex education vital for kids

Gao Weiwei (right), a lecturer, talks to students about the human body at a summer camp focusing on sex education. The camp, believed to be the first of its kind in Shanghai, was established in 2009. [Zhang Dong / for China Daily]

Whether or not such prudish behavior protected children from being exposed to unnecessary profanity is not known. But the incident certainly became the butt of jokes across China. Nobody knows what was achieved by blurring a part of a famous Renaissance creation which the entire world has been privy to for more than 500 years. But one thing is for sure that they did not achieve anything by trying to hide something that is obvious.

Were the broadcasters and authorities trying to cover up something only to make it even more mysterious and leave people wondering what the unnecessary fuss was all about? What sort of effect will such efforts have on teenagers, who by nature are curious, and contrary to prudish belief, know a lot about human body and sex?

When it comes to sex and sex-related subjects, Chinese people have a great responsibility to fulfill. On the one hand, Chinese people can no longer shy away from talking about sex. On the other, teachers and parents have to take the responsibility of imparting sex education to children.

Inadequate sex education in schools and parents' reluctance to educate their children about sex are partly to blame for the prevalence of underground sex culture in China, which in more ways than one is harmful to children.

Netizens' overreaction to the possible release of the animation film reflects their immature and insecure mentality. We cannot pretend to be doing a good job of imparting proper sex education to our children and hiding behind a fig leaf. What sort of lesson will our children learn seeing us shy away from the realities of life?

(China Daily 09/24/2013 page9)