It's always something. If you can't blame video games for bad behavior, how about websites? There's a fear mongering story in the Detroit Free Press talking about how kids these days are are getting hooked on drugs after looking at drug websites. There's all sorts of scary quotes suggesting that it just takes looking over these websites to turn kids into full-blown addicts (the anecdote at the beginning suggests exactly that). Then, there are all drug counselor-type folks quoted in the article who seem to say that the real problem is that kids can be sneaky online. To them, the only solution is to better spy on your kids -- because nothing makes a kid less likely to do something rebellious than thinking his or her parents don't trust him or her. The "experts" keep saying the problem is "unfettered and unmonitored" access to the internet. However, as has been pointed out over and over again, parenting isn't about watching what your kid does all the time, but teaching them right from wrong, so that they can make those decisions even if you're not around. Nowhere does the article or any of the experts suggest that, rather than spying on your kids surfing habit, you might be better off teaching them why drugs are dangerous and to be skeptical of some of the content they find online. Instead, they point to recommendations from the Office of National Drug Control Policy, telling parents to check their kids cell phone records, IM archives and web histories. Apparently, the folks who wrote that report learned their parenting skills from HP's board.
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