‘Why are girls who lose their virginity allowed to go to public school?’

Yup, that’s a direct quote. Bambang Bayu Suseno, a legislator in Jambi, a province of Indonesia, is floating an idea among his colleagues and constituents that all girls would have to pass a virginity test in order to attend state-funded schools.

Bambang told the Jakarta Post that he “deemed that parental and school supervision on youth interaction was weak, so there was no other choice but to hand over supervision completely to the child. Hence, the idea of drafting the virginity test draft bylaw.” So let me get this straight–because parents and schools aren’t adequately policing young people’s interactions with one another, young women have to suffer the human rights violation of being forcibly tested for a socially-constructed, non-medical “stauts” in order to get fundamental access to an education?

This is one more heinous example of education access being linked to outdated and inhumane notions of acceptable femininity, especially as it relates to sex and our bodies. This kind of shaming, of course, goes on all over the world, and in more subtle but still damaging ways, in the U.S., where pregnant teens or those labeled as sluts are often compelled to leave school.

Hopefully Sec. Clinton, who took a trip over to Indonesia last year to encourage stronger relations with the government there, can let her new friends know that this kind of sexist legislation is just plain wrong and that their boy Bambang needs to be checked.

Thanks to Tommy for the heads up.

Join the Conversation

  • http://feministing.com/members/toongrrl/ Jessica “Jess” Victoria Carillo

    Hey! If that kind of test ever goes through in the States, 98% of girls won’t even be educated at public schools! Bambang, you loser! Are you crazy?!

  • http://feministing.com/members/ligeia/ hannah

    wtf?! That is insanely horribly inhumane and biased. Poor girls…

  • http://feministing.com/members/esmeralda/ Esmeralda

    OMG seriously, these people need their heads checked!! How can you even test for “virginity”? If they’re checking to see whether or not a girl’s hymen has been broken, then that’s not even a reliable “method of testing” because many things can cause a hymen to tear or break. I’m sure I tore mine when I used tampons for the first time a age 14 and when I had my first pelvid exam at age 18, and I was a virgin in BOTH instances!! Funny how they aren’t trying to think up a way to test the BOYS for virginity. Oh wait, I forgot, that’s because it’s perfectly OK for boys to have sex at any age. It’s only wrong and sinful if girls and women have sex….no matter if we’re 16 or 40. Someone needs to tell this asshole that EVERYONE is entitled to the human right of a basic education….virgin or not. I posted a link to this story on my Facebook profile for everyone to read.

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  • http://feministing.com/members/artofme/ artofme

    What the hell? There are so many things wrong with this that I don’t even know where to start.

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  • http://feministing.com/members/mooshrimp/ Emily

    I guess all girls who rode horses, did gymnastics or ballet, rode a bike too much, and let’s not forget girls who have been through sexual traumas, or any of the other things that can tear your hymen don’t deserve education. Why should only girls have to take this virginity test? Furthermore who gets to say which way of expressing her sexuality is one that deems her worthy of an education? It makes me seethe with anger that women lose value if they have sex, while it has no impact on men. Even men who rape don’t lose as much value as the woman who has been raped. There just aren’t words for how unfair that is. It’s ridiculous that in this day and age men still own women’s sexuality.

    • http://feministing.com/members/brightvase01/ Ashley

      So sorry Emily, I accidently reported you comment, which by the way I totally agree with your comment.

      Not to mention, what about girls who are simply not born with hymens or partial hymen! This is absolutely a sick example of how sexism is working to degrade a women or girl’s self esteem and how they are.

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