Bill: ‘Sexts’ Not Always Sex Crimes

It’s not every day that we see legislation that embraces common sense, but this one does: a new law under consideration at the State House recognizes that there is an obvious difference between mischievous, horny teenagers texting lewd photos of each other and a pedophile. The proposed bill would shield minors from being prosecuted under the state child pornography law for sending ‘sexts.’ Instead of being a crime, sexting would be treated as a ‘status offense’ and referred to family court, with possible ramifications ranging from service to treatment programs. This is a good step, but we wonder why schools couldn’t handle this in the first place. If Johnny snaps some naughty photos of Sally, what’s the matter with detention, suspension, or some other in-school punishment? Of course, given the way schools are run today, perhaps a sexting incident could become an excuse for more sex education, and we certainly don’t mean to endorse that. So here’s a radical idea: why not send Johnny home from school to face Mom and Dad? We have a feeling they won’t be too happy with how Johnny is using his new cell phone. For more on this, read The Providence Journal report.


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