Should parents be allowed to monitor their kids cell phones?
Debate Rounds (3)
From a legal objective standpoint, parents monitoring their kids' cell phones are legal and within their means of being a parent. Nothing out of line. I understand we were all teenagers thinking parents have no place in our business; however, according to the law, under the age of 18, you are a juvenile and are under the custody of your parents. So regardless, they have legal authority over their children until they are 18 obviously.
From a moral standpoint, which is more subjective, parents also are likely to be the ones paying for the cell phone bill. So I do think they have some say as to what a child can or cannot do on their cellphone as long as they are providing a "privilege" to their kids and not an entitled necessity like food. More so, if they suspect their kids are maybe in danger or doing something illegal they have the right to intervene or monitor their activities. Of course, any good parent would inform their kids that they will be monitoring their usage rather than just outright snooping, maybe not to the rallying support of the teen. But I do believe kids have a right to be secure and not feel molested with rules, but regulating or monitoring a kids phones is at the discretion of the parent, and if the kid feels as though it isn't necessary or is violating his/her privacy, he/she should speak up, which may relieve the parent any worries and monitoring the phone anyways. This is families we are talking about, they can communicate with each other directly, this isn't indirect as the government and the people.
However, I don't really agree with a parent looking through a child's conversations with their friends, or other relatives. In many points a teen will vent to their friends through their texts or emails, and say things they don't really mean. In which case of a parent disapproving of said messages, but a parent does not need consent true enough. On some occasions someone who has no right to look through the phone at all, such as a friends parent or an administrator, then telling a parent of anything said person disapproves of. If the teen is caught in class with a phone then the teacher has the right to take and search it, but if the phone was found on grounds, as in falling out of a students pocket, then person has no right to look through the phone, or contact the parents of any findings that are within legal activity on the phone.
I guess saying that a kid will vent frustration to friends over the phone that the parents may not approve of isn't much of a monitoring issue, but obviously some dysfunctional aspects in the family. In that case, there are way too much personal and intricate details that an example just can't relate to. It is important for teens/kids and their parents to just speak their mind. I know my family did, we were loudmouths.
I also disagree, from a legal standpoint again, teachers do not have the authority to search a student's phone even in a classroom environment. Do they have the right to confiscate? Absolutely. Especially if it is a distraction in class. But to search one's phone, there has to be probable cause for the search that a student is committing a crime, from a constitutional point of view. And obviously, to search a person of anything pertaining to a crime, one has to be a cop or other federal agent. I know in some states and school districts that rule is probably manipulated so teachers can if they so desire... but what sane teacher would have the audacity to do such an embarrassing thing to a student that is technically, a stranger in their personal life? To me they probably shouldn't be a teacher if that is what they want to do. And if a person finds a phone on the ground, I do not think they should snoop around, but unlocking or using the phone to call a contact in the phone to inform them of the found phone is just in my eyes. But yes, they can't report illegal activities to a parent of anything found on the phone because that qualifies as an illegal search with no consent of the owner nor probable cause for the search in the first place.
dylan160w forfeited this round.
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