Question: The Rising Number of STDs
Michael Perleman: Well, I think there’s a greater freedom amongst young people, and, again, technology has a lot of young people to find time to be together that a generational ago was inconceivable. You know, even on a very sort of positive and benign note, you know, you finish work early, you throw up on your Facebook wall, hey, you know, like I’m around, anybody want to grab a drink and have a bite to eat, and, you know, six of your friends hit you back and say hey, let’s meet over at Joe’s. Reciprocally, people are advertising they are available sexually, people are connecting in ways that are more facile, we have a casual culture, and we have really a serious high frequency communication of sexually transmitted diseases as younger people are experimenting with sex. Part of the problem, of course, is we keep telling them that they shouldn’t be doing this, so frequently they do not prepare for it adequately because someone or both of them want to sort of pretend oh, this is not going to happen anyway, I am not that kind of person. So when they find themselves in the middle of this happening, in part, I think, because of the significant amount of underage drinking going on, that also has an adverse effect on people’s judgment, they will choose to engage in sexually activity that is just not safe and we see an increase in disease. So people have more partners; they have more premarital partners, younger people, and they’re having more premarital sex than their parents and certainly their grandparents did. And I believe that is primarily what accounts for it.