By Jonathon Van Maren
It’s not a popular view to hold, but I believe that one of the most dangerous things you can give your teenager is a smartphone. As I noted several years ago, there are many reasons not to give your child one of these dangerous devices (Tim Challies put in bluntly in a December article titled “Please Don’t Give Them Porn for Christmas”), and the news seems to produce corroborating evidence for this position by the day.
Late last year, a police officer from Prince Edward Island warned that nude selfies were now so ubiquitous among schoolchildren that “it’s become part of the courtship process for kids as young as junior high,” according to Canada’s state broadcaster. In some cases, pictures are being sent by children as young as sixth grade. These photos—generally of the sender’s genitals, or topless photos—have a “110% chance” of being shown to others. Despite this fact, most teenagers simply do not seem to think through or understand the consequences of this behavior.