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Missouri Family E-News February 8, 2010
 
 
 
Senate Gives Initial OK to Sex Shop Regulation Proposal
 
The Missouri Senate has given initial approval to a bill which would establish stringent regulations on sexually oriented businesses.  The bill, sponsored by Senator Matt Bartle of Lee's Summit and Senator Jack Goodman of Mt. Vernon, was granted preliminary approval on a voice vote.
 
We have previously reported that the measure regulating sex shops has been given expedited attention during this year's legislative session.  What is surprising is that the bill did not encounter an anticipated filibuster from defenders of the "adult entertainment" industry during the perfection process.
 
A major feature of the bill imposes a distance requirement of 1000 feet between any sexually oriented business and schools, churches, libraries, parks, day care facilities or any private residence.  The bill seeks to discourge the concentration of such businesses in any geographic area by requiring that they be located 1000 feet from each other.
 
"Adult" video stores and strip clubs (advertised today as "gentlemen's clubs") have increasingly become a haven for sexual encounters.  The proposed law would discourage such activity in video arcades and theatres.
The bill would shut down sexually oriented businesses from midnight to 6AM, prohibit the sale of alcohol on the premises, ban the entry of persons under 18, and limit the distance between dancers and patrons.  
 
The Bartle-Goodman bill now awaits a final vote in the Senate.  It would then move to the Missouri House, where a similar measure has been introduced by Representative Ed Emery of Lamar.
Attempts to crack down on the sex industry in Missouri have repeatedly run aground in the Missouri General Assembly.  It appear the issue has taken on impetus this year in the wake of an ethics cloud hanging over the Missouri Legislature.
 
A federal grand jury in Kansas City is examining the failure of another bill dealing with "adult" businesses sponsored by Senator Bartle in 2005.  The Kansas City Star has reported that major political contributions were made to campaign committees at the time by operators of sexually oriented businesses.  Senator Bartle was recently called to testify before the federal grand jury.
 
 
 
 
New Research Shows Abstinence Programs Work
 
A new research study suggests that abstinence-only sexual education programs can be successful in discouraging premature sexual activity.
 
The research was published in the journal Archives of Pediatric and Adolescent Medicine.  The federally funded study was conducted by professors at the University of Pennsylvania.
 
The study focused on the sexual conduct of a group of sixth and seventh graders.  Only a third of the students who participated in abstinence-only sex education engaged in sex within the next two years, while over half of those who participated in so-called "safe sex" programs started having sex.
 
"This new study is game-changing," says Sarah Brown of the National Campaign to Prevent Teen and Unplanned Pregnancy.  "For the first time, there is strong evidence that an abstinence-only intervention can help very young teens delay sex."
 
The U.S. Congress, at the urging of the Obama administration, has eliminated $170 in funding targeted for abstinence sex education initiatives.  Instead, the administration is pushing a pregnancy prevention campaign composed of the usual "safe sex" elements.
 
John Jemmott III, one of the study professors, suggests that may be a mistake.  "I think we've written off abstinence-only education without looking closely at the nature of the evidence.  Our study shows that this is one approach that can be used."
 
"The take-home message is that we need a variety of interventions to address an epidemic like HIV, sexually transmitted diseases, and pregnancy."
 
Missouri state law requires that sex education programs "present abstinence as the preferred choice of behavior...because it is the only method that is one hundred percent effective in preventing pregnancy."
 
The law requires that students be informed about "all forms of contraception," including the "side effects and health benefits" of contraceptive choices.
 
This Week is National Marriage Week
 
 
Advocates of the traditional family are observing this week as National Marriage Week USA with the theme "Let's Strengthen Marriage."  They say their goal is to reduce the divorce rate and build a stronger marriage culture, which reduces poverty and benefits children.
 
Promoters point to the ailing condition of marriage in our country.  The percentage of married adults has dropped from 78 percent in 1970 to 57 percent in 2008.  Forty percent of all children born in America today are born out-of-wedlock, and 71 percent of African-American children are born without married parents.
 
Marriage Week sponsors cite numerous studies that show that marriage leads to better health, greater happiness and mental well-being, greater financial stability, and fewer troubled kids.  Children who are not raised by a mother and father have lower graduation rates, lower performance in school, and higher incidence of incarceration.
 
The National Marriage Week organizers are challenging churches to make a serious commitment to strengthen, enrich, and repair marriage.  They are challenging pastors to establish marriage preparation classes, marriage enrichment courses and small groups, courtship and dating seminars, and parenting instruction.
 
For more information on National Marriage Week and the marriage resources being offered, you can visit their website at this link:
 
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Missouri Lawmakers Join Debate Over "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" Policy
 
State and federal officials in Missouri have joined the debate over the future of the U.S. Armed Services' "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" policy.  President Obama announced in his recent State of the Union address that he is determined to repeal the policy, which was implemented by President Clinton in 1993. 
 
Under "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" homosexuals are able to serve in the military provided they don't announce their sexual preference for homosexuality on their military eligibility forms.  The policy precludes military personnel from inquiring about the homosexual conduct of enlistees. 
 
Under existing military regulations, anyone who "demonstrates a propensity or intent to engage in homosexual acts" is prohibited from military service.  President Obama wants to revise existing policy so that openly homosexual individuals can serve in the armed forces. 
 
State Senator Bill Stouffer of Napton has filed a resolution in the Missouri Senate calling on Congress to support continuation of the "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" policy.  The resolution states that the policy "helps ensure unit cohesion that is essential to our military's fighting capability," and that ending the policy "would be disruptive to the military and their mission."
 
"We are in the middle of two wars and we don't need the interruption of a culture war,"  Stouffer says.  "We need our men and women to have their focus on their safety and ours--not a progressive agenda."
 
State Senator Jolie Justus of Kansas City has filed a resolution endorsing the rescission of the "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" policy.  Justus, an outspoken "gay rights" advocate, says her female "partner" is a veteran of the Persian Gulf War.  "If my partner were in the military today, I could not go visit her because of the fact that it would come out then that she is gay," Justus said.
 
A key figure in the debate will be Missouri Congressman Ike Skelton, due to his chairmanship of the U.S. House Armed Services Committee.  Skelton had a major hand in shaping the "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" policy.  Skelton opposed President Clinton's push to allow homosexuals to serve in the military, but agreed to the compromise in which homosexuals could conceal their sexual preference.
 
Skelton now says that he is against "anything that is disturbing or upsetting to the troops."  He believes that changing the law would create "disruption" and "serious problems."  Skelton's position stands in sharp contrast to his actions last year, when he supported the attachment of a bill establishing special legal rights for homosexuals to the Defense Department budget authorization bill.
 
Legislation is currently being circulated in the U.S. House of Representatives repealing the ban on homosexuals serving in the armed forces.  The bill already has 187 co-sponsors, just 31 votes short of the 218 votes needed to pass a bill.  The fate of such legislation rests largely in Skelton's hands, since such a bill would typically have to be approved by the committee he chairs.  Skelton's 4th Congressional District has a major stake in the debate, since both Ft. Leonard Wood and Whiteman Air Force Base are in his district.
 
Richard Black, who served as chief of the U.S. Army's criminal law division, says that discipline will suffer if homosexuals are permitted to serve in the military.  He cites a homosexual scandal that occurred at Fort Hood, Texas, where a restroom on base was advertised as a gathering place for homosexual activity.  Over a period of one week, more than 60 men, including officers, were observed engaged in homosexual conduct, many of them in uniform.
 
Black also cites an incident at Fort Sill, Oklahoma, where two homosexual recruits found a lone soldier showering at night.  They violently sodomized the solider, forcing him to submit by strangling him with a bath towel.  The victim ended up hospitalized under psychiatric care.
 
Elaine Donnelly, president of the Center for Military Readiness, says that the enlistment of openly homosexual service members will reduce the number of people willing to serve in the Armed Forces. 

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

"The Military Times poll that was done in 2008 said 10 percent would end their careers,"  Donnelly reports.  "They would not re-enlist.  Another 14 percent said they would consider leaving."
 
Retired Army Lt. Colonel Robert Maginnis says the repeal of the ban on homosexuals in the military would result in all sorts of social upheaval in the military.  "We'd have to open up the floodgates to homosexual marriage in the military and the use of family quarters."
 
We urge you to contact your U.S. Congressmen and Senators on this vital issue.  Tell them it is critical that they oppose efforts to endorse perversion in the U.S. Armed Forces.  Encourage them to uphold the high moral standards of military service, and retain the morale that is essential to the solidarity and effectiveness of America's fighting forces.  Tell them you are praying that they will honor those who have sacrificed their lives for our country by preserving the integrity of the military branches they served and loved.
 
You can contact your Congressman by going to this link:
You can contact Senator Kit Bond by visiting this link:
You can contact Senator McCaskill by clicking this link:
 
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