Nation Briefs

Abstinence study finds pledges at greater risk for STDs

(U-WIRE) NEW YORK – Teens who pledged to remain abstinent until marriage are more likely to engage in other types of sexual activity that increase their risk of acquiring sexually transmitted diseases, according to a new study.

The study found that young adults who took virginity pledges were six times more likely to have had oral sex than non-pledging teens, and that male pledgers were four times more likely to have engaged in anal sex than male nonpledgers who had not had vaginal sex.

The study was co-authored by researchers from Columbia University and Yale University. They found that abstinence pledgers were significantly less likely to use contraception when they did engage in sexual activity, compared to their nonpledging peers.

The findings seem to provide striking evidence against the effectiveness of abstinence-only sexual health education programs.

Abstinence-only education programs receive approximately $170 million dollars in government funding, according to the American Civil Liberties Union.

The current study has drawn fire from members of the political right and those who endorse total abstinence as the only way to prevent pregnancy and sexually transmitted diseases.

U. Illinois Pillowfighting Club to attempt world record

(U-WIRE) CHAMPAIGN, Ill. – The University of Illinois Pillowfighting Club wants to take the slumber party out of pillow fights and bring them outdoors to attempt to break a world record.

The soccer field on the corner of Florida and Lincoln avenues in Urbana, Ill., will play host to the Pillowfighting Club’s attempt to be listed in the Guinness Book of World Records for the world’s largest pillow fight.

“In an ideal situation, we would want over 3,000 people to show up,” Emma O’Brien, junior in communications, said. “There are other colleges that are competing, like the University of Albany. Ideally we would want as many people to show up as possible.”

According to the Guinness Web site, the current world record for the largest pillow fight is 2,773 people. It was set on Sept. 8, 2004, by the employees of a Land’s End factory in Dodgeville, Wis.

Whether the club breaks the record or not, the members of the Pillowfighting Club will collect donations during the fight in order to raise money for St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital.

-compiled by Katie Rooney

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