Unpopular Opinion, The Kids Online Safety Act is Going to Harm More Kids than it Protects
|

Unpopular Opinion, The Kids Online Safety Act is Going to Harm More Kids than it Protects

I get it. The people who write these laws live in a world where kids all have a loving family who cares about them and want only to protect them from the evil that exists “out there.” They will provide whatever help and information their kids need, and there’s no need for them to navigate the wildness of the internet.  But we make information available to kids online because that’s not their reality. They don’t have supportive parents, they get kicked out for being gay, they are being abused at home, they are dealing with mental health issues their parents refuse to acknowledge, and they are often alone in trying to get help.

Those kids need an open internet.

You’ve Already Done Hard Things

You’ve Already Done Hard Things

We’ve already done hard things, but we don’t give ourselves credit for it. Typically, we do the opposite, blaming ourselves for the trauma or our mental health struggles, thus seeing ourselves as weak, the kind of people who can’t do hard things. That carries over into all aspects of our lives. We don’t take risks in jobs, relationships, etc. because we don’t think we’re capable and we don’t think we could survive failure.

Which is weird, given how much we have survived.

We Still Have to Talk about Why Sexual Assault Victims, Including Kids, Don’t Come Forward

We Still Have to Talk about Why Sexual Assault Victims, Including Kids, Don’t Come Forward

Never mind the fact that they might have tried to tell someone and got shut down.

Never mind the fact that they might have told someone who didn’t believe them

Never mind the fact that telling someone is going to create a massive conflict within their own family.

Never mind the fact that it’s extremely unlikely that any sort of conviction will occur if they tell the police.

Never mind the fact that they will now, and maybe forever, be seen as damaged goods by a large segment of society.

Never mind that no matter how heinous the crime, they’ll have to answer question after question about what they did to provoke it.

There’s a New Form of Stigma Around Mental Health and It’s Extremely Dangerous

There’s a New Form of Stigma Around Mental Health and It’s Extremely Dangerous

If you can’t read that, or Twitter starts blocking embeds again – at the mention of a pediatric psychiatric hospital Rep. Cox said “You might want to check that place for grooming”.

Yes, the very mention of providing mental health care for children is met with a suggestion that it is a place for grooming. Because, of course, anyone who encourages kids to talk about their mental health is out to groom them for sexual abuse.

This is a dangerous path that we are on.

Florida Sends the Wrong Message when Allowing for the Death Penalty in Child Abuse Cases

Florida Sends the Wrong Message when Allowing for the Death Penalty in Child Abuse Cases

I get it. Punishing child abusers is an easy public opinion win. No one wants to punish abusers less. As survivors, though, we must balance that with what is best for the child. Testifying in a child abuse trial is a traumatic experience as it is. We shouldn’t be asking kids to take responsibility for taking the life of their abuser on top of that or spend the rest of their lives knowing that someone died because they spoke up. Nor should we be arming abusers with another way to manipulate kids into staying silent.

We should focus on what is best for a survivor’s healing so they can have a life after abuse because that is possible.