I must credit some of this to my co-worker Mike. He and I discussed this “solution”. We had some laughs discussing a gun-control like approach to solving abuse of technology to pick up on young people.
I’ve seen articles about Brooke Lajiness and her predilections for young males pop up in my news feed recently. It got me thinking, society cannot let this happen! We must take action to stop future cougars from using these tools to prey on the young and vulnerable. It’s time for common sense reform, and I have some ideas of how!
Step 1 – Government Licensing of Smart Phone dealers
First thing we need is the Federal Government to step in and start licensing business that sell smart phones on a retail level. Additionally, the Federal Government should license manufacturers and importers of smart phones. Manufacturers, importers, and retailers should be required to keep a registry of all smart phones they manufacture, import, or sell and keep serialized records for 20 years. Federally licensed retailers should be required to run background checks of potential smart phone buyers. This will keep smart phones out of the hands of known predators — people that have a past of: child pornography, furnishing pornography to minors, sexual conduct with a child, and other such sex offenses.
Step 2 – Universal Background Checks for Phone Purchases
I think we can all agree ensuring there is a background check every time ownership of a smart phone changes hands is the next most common sense step we as a society can take to protect our children! This will make sure people reselling their smart phones to others will have to first make sure the person passes the same federal background check we require retailers to run. It’ll close the street sale loophole left by the previous proposal. If we only implement Step 1, the criminals will be able to procure smart phones by going on to Craigslist.
Step 3 – Age Restrictions on Smart Phone ownership
People under the age of 18 should not be able to buy (or perhaps even possess) smart phones! If we keep these devices out of the hands of the young and vulnerable then we will be making steps towards a society that is safer for our children.
Step 4 – Limit availability of certain dangerous features
Certain things are just plain dangerous to have in proximity of cell phones, I’ve included a few examples below.
4.1 Selfie Sticks
Selfie sticks are a common tool of those who provide indecent material to minors and solicit them for sex! By making sure these devices are not available, we limit the ability of these predators to operate. It should be a federal felony for anyone to possess (without a license) a selfie stick while also possessing a smart phone that fits on said stick. The licensing process to possess these sticks needs to be very thorough, including fingerprinting, submissions of photos of yourself, and getting sign-off from local law-enforcement.
4.2 Phones that shoot pictures in rapid succession or record videos
This technology is simply dangerous! It can be used to lure young people into horrific activities such as described in the new story cited in the top of the article. Similar steps in 4.1 should be followed for controlling this technology.
4.3 Military Style Smart Phone features
These are features dangerous when combined with other features. Phones with 2 or more of these features make them especially useful for abuse.
- Otter Boxes and other military-style similar phone cases
- Phones that are Black in color
- Storage Capacity in Excess of 4 GB
- The ability to install third party apps
- Phones smaller than 8″ in diagonal measurement
- Phones that can install applications that haven’t been approved by the phone manufacturer
I hope we can all agree to these common sense reform measures. We must preserve the innocence of our children!