The Washington Post

After hand-holding, other banned Tennessee behaviors

Tennessee has come under fire, of late, for a new, vague, abstinence-focused bill. The bill bans sex-ed teachers from talking about what its advocates called “gateway sexual activity,” prompting opponents to nickname it the “no-hand-holding bill.”

Gateway sexual activity? I have no idea what this means.

Here are some other behaviors I assume fell under that heading.

● Waving.

● Winking.

● Blinking with an eyepatch.

● Hitting on gates.

- Saying, “Hey, girl, are you from Tennessee? Because you’re the only 10 I see!”

This is encouraged.

● Drinking.

● Being Ryan Gosling.

● Texting after midnight.

● Sitting on the roof after a party and talking and talking about the stars and dreams and, you know, stuff.

● Watching “Game of Thrones.”

● Doing any dance but the polka, with a special exception carved out for slow, sensual polkas that made lawmakers uncomfortable.

● Touching the braid of a Naavi.

● Making whoopee.

● Asking people up to see your etchings.

● Reading “50 Shades of Grey” over a stranger’s shoulder on the subway.

● Making eye contact.

● Ankle-ogling.

● “Hooking up,” in any sense of “hooking up” that doesn’t mean “actually having sex” because obviously that part is covered by the law.

● The bases.

● Whatever that thing was that Bill Clinton did.

● Boombox-holding outside windows.

● Sheep-herding together for that one summer on Brokeback.

● Poetry.

● Not being a prokaryote.

● Teaching sex education.

Alexandra Petri writes the ComPost blog, offering a lighter take on the news and opinions of the day. She is the author of "A Field Guide to Awkward Silences".


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