After intense protests in the central Spanish region of Castilla-La Mancha, government officials decided to “provisionally suspend” four controversial guides for 11-18 year-old girls because of their content promoting lesbianism, abortion and masturbation.
The COPE radio network—which is owned by the Bishops’ Conference of Spain—denounced the Women’s Institute of Castilla-La Mancha for distributing the “guides for girls” in the region’s schools. The Institute had said the purpose of the guides was to “change thinking and discriminatory behavior in order to achieve a new model of a woman.”
The guides counsel girls to masturbate “certain concrete parts” of the body and promote “self-eroticism,” even to the point of suggesting—with explicit illustrations—that “if you have the chance to find someone you trust to give you massages, relax and let go…it will surely make you feel out of this world.”
In addition to promoting abortion as a solution to unwanted pregnancies, the guides also promote homosexual relations. “And what if you ‘especially’ like girls?: You have surely heard that the normal thing is to like boys, but if you educate yourself well and you think a little bit on your own, you will discover that what is natural is that people show love and express themselves sexually, whether with someone of the opposite or of the same,” the guides indicate.
The civil rights watchdog website HazteOir.org denounced the effort to “usurp from parents the right to educate their children, ignoring the obligation to respect the beliefs and values that parents wish to pass on to their children.”
A statement by the regional government said it would stop distributing the guide to schools in the region "on a provisional basis ... to ensure the adaptation of the text to the pedagogical requirements of the school community of Castilla La Mancha."
HazteOir.org called the temporary suspension insufficient and demanded the resignation of the authors of the guides. The website’s spokesman, Alejandro Campoy, said it would keep up the pressure on school officials to definitively suspend the distribution of the guides, which he called “family-phobic.”
“This is not about revising or changing the content,” Campoy said. “What is at risk here is something much more serious: the invasion by a public authority of an area reserved exclusively to parents, according to article 27 of the Constitution. State-sponsored sex-ed in the schools should be limited to healthy and scientific formation regarding all aspects involved in such an important matter.”
He said to introduce ideologies or morals into the schools without the consent of parents is to impose a sectarian and state-sponsored morality on young people, “in pure Soviet style.”