A generation ago, third base meant some below-the-belt touching. These days, reports Newsweek, third base is (or can be) oral sex. That's according to sex educator Logan Levkoff (left), whose new book, Third Base Ain't What It Used to Be, urges moms and dads to discuss sexuality with their children. In addition, a study from the Kaiser Family Foundation found that 70% of all network and cable TV included sexual content, averaging five sex scenes per hour. Though teen pregnancy rates are down slightly, more than 6% of high school students say they had sex before they turned 13. Levkoff insists that it's important for parents to talk to kids about sex. "I think we empower our teens by sharing some of those things with them. It means you care enough about them to show you trust them. "
While we applaud Levkoff's initiative, we can't help but wonder if she's fighting an uphill battle because things have gone so far off the rails. When we were young and Madonna writhed on MTV singing about being "like a virgin," it was pretty scandalous. But we never actually saw the lips of her vagina like we have in pictures of Britney Spears. (It's true that we saw more of Madonna later, in her Sex book.) Levkoff says a 6th grade girl asked her what a dildo was. "I think she heard it on Sex And The City, Levkoff says. "Networks will air ads during prime time for Viagra and birth-control pills and herpes medications, but the majority of them will not air condom ads [then], even if there's no mention of the word sex." Here's a question: it's easy to joke about, but are things getting worse and worse? Are the younger generations doomed? Because we really can't see the positive spin on this.
Not Your Parents' Third Base [MSNBC]