Three major sexually-transmitted diseases (STD) reached a historic high in infection cases in 2018, according to a new report by the Centres for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). The combined number of chlamydia, gonorrhea, and syphilis cases have continued to increase, reaching what the CDC described as “an all-time high in the United States.” According to a report the CDC found that from 2017 to 2018, chlamydia cases increased 3% to more than 1.7 million, the highest number of such cases ever reported to the CDC. Gonorrhea cases increased 5% to more than 580,000, and there were also 115,000 syphilis cases, both the highest number since 1991.
CDC attributed the rise in the three STDs to drug use and poverty, decreased condom usage among young people and gay men, and government cuts to STD programs. Jonathan Mermin, director of CDC’s National Centre for HIV/AIDS, Viral Hepatitis, STD, and TB Prevention said in a statement. “Curbing STDs will improve the overall health of the nation and prevent infertility, HIV, and infant deaths.” The CDC report also found an increase in congenital syphilis, which occurs when a baby is exposed to syphilis through its mother, with newborn deaths tied to congenital syphilis increasing 22 percent from 2017 to 2018 from 77 to 94 deaths.
Franklin Graham, head of the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association, blamed social acceptance of extramarital sex for the statistics. “Hollywood is busy promoting promiscuity to the world through movies and television” stated Graham in a Facebook post. “God made us male and female and gave us sex to enjoy inside a marriage relationship between a man and a woman, not two men, not two women.” Graham then addressed those who might be reading his post that have a sexually transmitted disease, imploring them to confess their sins. “You can be forgiven! He can cleanse your heart, and in His eyes, it will be as though you’ve never sinned,” he concluded.
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