Saturday, December 13, 2008

Rant of the day- sex and technology

The Day of New London ran this editorial on Friday which just about sent me over the edge.

The concept of sexting is not new, it's just a new delivery method, and if you didn't see this coming, you must have your eyes closed.

What burns me up is when the editor says, "Though it may not be practical or even ethical to check your teenagers' cell phone text messages and photos, don't ignore the issue." or even ethical? in this context are you kidding me?

This highlights for me not only a subversion of logic and morals, but the pervasive mentality that it is the responsibility of the parent to be their kids' friend, not their parent. I'm sorry, but if you're a parent and you provide your kids' home, food, clothing, education, transportation, entertainment, and the cell phone in question, you have every right to check the contents of your child's cell phone. Their privacy is a theory; your responsibility as a parent is a reality. Obviously, you ought to tread with sensitivity on sensitive matters, but you have to guide your children, not let them fend for themselves in adult matters when they are not yet adults!

Here are a few tips: Don't let your children have a computer or phone in their room. Computer use should be in a shared area in which anyone can see what is going on on-screen. Demand that you have 24-hour access to your kids' MySpace account, Facebook account, email and instant message accounts. Cell phones should be prepaid phones for emergencies only with no text or photo capabilities, if you even give them one.

And lastly, but MOST importantly, teach your kids to recognize that they are of infinite worth and deserve to be treated with dignity and respect by themselves and others. Teach them to be modest in their actions, words, and in their dress. They are children of God, not sexual objects to be displayed for others in order to gain acceptance.


Clairvaux said...

Amen! There is also a problem if parents wait until the child is approaching pre-teen/teens to start to try to teach them about this. Oh, I taught my daughter to always be honest with me because she would get in trouble but in WAY more trouble if she lied and I found out. So, then there came times when I thought, "I wish she would have lied to me!" because I had to put all life on hold to work with her on what was at hand. A few deep breaths, collecting oneself, realizing nothing is more important, and sit down to talk. Consistency! Absolutely the key. Great rant, by the way! lol

Mike in CT said...

Yeah, I'm trying to figure that out now. My kids are still young, so I want to perfect my "script" now, if I can.