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A Solution to the Sexting Crisis ™

March 26, 2010

I’ve had family visiting and have been a bit out of the loop. They left this morning, so I finally settled into the divot on the couch formed by my unhealthy, red meat-eating arse to catch up on the news this morning. Instead, I was subjected to what seemed like 3 hours worth of hand wringing over the most pressing issue of our time, apparently:

Kids and Sexting.

It was the topic du jour (that’s fancy foreign talk. Pretty good for a cracker, yes?) on Fox news even.  Oh, the children! Sexting their little fingers off! What are we going to do? Woe is us! Then there was some back and forth about the laws being too harsh; some kids are labeled sex offenders for life, yada yada (my mind wandered off at this point, as I started imagining Chris Hanson, from Dateline’s To Catch A Predator, creepily reading from a kid’s cell phone).

I would have blown it off completely, but, if the constant news is any indication, I’m pretty sure that it’s on its way to becoming a full-blown Crisis ™. Which means that Michelle Obama will get involved somehow and I really don’t have the stomach for seeing her boob belt traipsing around all over. I also soon discovered that some states are contemplating legislation to address the crux of this most earth-shattering issue. No, really. I wish I was kidding. Others are rambling on about counseling and education (mandatory, natch) being the proper fix:

Connecticut is one of at least fifteen states considering legislation to address teen sexting. State Representative Rosa Rebimbas introduced a bill that would create a lesser category of punishment for minors who transmit child pornography electronically. ..

Make no mistake though, she doesn’t plan on letting kids off with a slap on the wrist if punishment is warranted. “The misdemeanor would be something that would stay on their record, absolutely and I think the important point in that is to hold minor children accountable for their actions because there are true victims as a result of these acts,” Rebimbas explained….

Not everyone thinks more laws are the right solution to the problem though. Connecticut Victim Advocate Michelle Cruz says education is key. “I think we’re in a society where a lot of times what we try to do is we see an issue, we want to resolve it so we think legislation. Sometimes the best answer is education, not codifying certain behaviors,” says Cruz. Cruz believes creating a law that defines teen sexting as a crime and is targeted to put them in the criminal justice system is not the way to go. “I feel that carving a specific section for an age specific group of individuals for pornography is dangerous. Now we’re codifying sexting and we’re saying to kids, this is pornography and we’re identifying it by creating a law to penalize them,” she said. Cruz advocates mandatory education to teach teens about the potential ramifications of sexting.

Enough. Even though I’m not some expert legal mind, nor a policy wonk, I do have a handle on that whole For The Children ™ thing, being a Mom and all. It does not require sweeping legislation, for goodness sake. Nor mandatory “education” at the indoctrination facilities known as public schools. Since I’m kind and thoughtful, I’ll offer my solution, free of charge (let’s see the government do that!):

Dear Hand Wringers, there is an easy way to stop teen “sexting”.  Stop buying cell phones for children.

If you, for whatever reason, feel the need to indulge your child and you end up buying them a cell phone, then, you know, be a parent. Monitor their phone. Do not choose a texting plan. If you are all hippie-like and thinking “oh, that’s spying! It’s an invasion of their privacy” try to realize that you are the parent. And you are paying the bill. It’s your phone, not theirs. In fact, you own them. They can have privacy when they have their own home.

While you are at it, get off my lawn.  There. Mommy made it all better, once again.

You’re welcome.

(cross-posted at iowntheworld , RedState and Right Wing News)

18 Comments leave one →
  1. Jonahex permalink
    March 26, 2010 5:06 pm

    So once again they don’t suggest that parents be oh I don’t know PARENTS!?! I am betting watch and monitor the kids, be active in their lives and most likely they will not have this issue with their kids.

    • Lori Ziganto permalink*
      March 26, 2010 6:15 pm

      Bingo. Instead of wasting OUR money and time on thinking up asinine legislation and crap, try being parents to your own kids!

  2. March 26, 2010 5:53 pm

    Way to go “mommy”. You should be advising the B.O. administration. You have more common sense in one “pinky” than any of them have in their whole body. johnnywood Austin TX. P.S. I think I love you. Keep up the good work.

    • Lori Ziganto permalink*
      March 26, 2010 6:16 pm

      Aww, thankies 🙂 Much appreciated, really.

  3. Joe Mercer permalink
    March 26, 2010 8:34 pm

    How did you get so smart?

  4. Wing Zero permalink
    March 27, 2010 8:02 am

    I came to the same conclusion you did. My daughter is 3 1/2. She won’t get a cell phone until she gets a car… or goes to High school. And even then… I’m checking that phone when she’s not looking.

  5. March 27, 2010 1:39 pm


    Let me guess. You also have those mommy eyes on the back of your head too. The bane of every young child ever born. But, it is so fun to see used with the skill of a professional.

    By the way, I would hate to be a party-pooper, but you since you spend so much time sitting in your divot, you obviously have not heard the latest news. Cell Phones are a right. You just can’t take away a kid’s right. It is just another in the long line of “rights” granted to kids by our all-knowing government and education system.

    So, you see, your answer, while seemingly logical, would never work in the real world. You could be arrested for child abuse for even suggesting such a thing. And, I would hate to envision you in prison.

    (…. well…..uhmmm) (ahem)

  6. Ben permalink
    March 27, 2010 2:33 pm

    It won’t work. Parents don’t want to be parents, they want to be friends. Parenting is hard and might take some time and effort, being a friend is much easier. So instead of raising their kids, parents nowadays would much rather have their children’s lives regulated and dictated by a bunch of out of touch, greedy, spineless idiots who lead such ‘clean and perfect’ lives. If it becomes a problem, just label it a Crisis and then the almighty government will take care of it for you.
    Your child is sending naked pictures of him/her self on their cell phone… take the cell phone away and punish the kid or let the government arrest them and charge them as a sex offender.
    A video game has bad stuff in it… don’t buy it for them or let the government outlaw it?
    A song has bad words in it… don’t let them listen to it or let the government regulate it?
    A book has some thoughts or ideas that you don’t want your child to know about… discuss it with your child or have a good old fashioned book burning?
    Don’t want to deal with your child feeling bad for losing his ballgame… teach your child to try because things aren’t handed to you in life or just don’t keep score anymore?
    Kids these days are fucked. (Sorry for sounding so vice presidential there)

  7. Hairy Buddah permalink
    March 28, 2010 12:47 am

    If your kids are going to be involved in sexting, then it is already too late for you. It doesn’t matter if you get them a cell phone or not, they will find some other way to get into trouble. Our kids are polite, well behaved, obedient, and have cell phones. One of The Boy’s teachers recently commented that “trouble avoids him”.

    That’s because we raised them with lots of freedom, but with very clearly defined and rigorously enforced limits.

    Their cell phones are a great convenience for us. They got them in late middle school. We can always get them. They can always get us. If they are out with friends and the group wants to move, they always call us and ask us if it is OK to go to the new location, then call us again to tell us when they get there.

    They send and receive texts, and we regularly check their messages. We know how many should be on the phone because that is on the bill. Trust but verify.

    The problem isn’t the cell phones. If you can’t trust your kids with a phone, then you have bigger problems.


    • Lori Ziganto permalink*
      March 28, 2010 12:50 am

      They send and receive texts, and we regularly check their messages. We know how many should be on the phone because that is on the bill. Trust but verify.

      Exactly. That is what bothers me. There is no need for legislation and counseling and “education” … What is needed is for people to parent their own darn kids. It’s really that simple.

  8. February 9, 2012 12:55 am

    Fantastic web site. A lot of useful information here. I’m sending it to some friends ans also sharing in delicious. And obviously, thanks for your sweat!


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