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Welcome. The aim of this site is simple - to rail against the slow, but steady chipping away of traditonal American values by a host of groups & individuals bent on destroying them.

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Thursday, December 16, 2004

Court Says Parents Can't Listen to Kids Calls

There's an old saying, "Children should be seen & not heard". Well the Washington State Supreme Court has affirmed that saying in a way that is not sitting well with parents.

At issue was a mother using a speakerphone to listen in to her 14 year old daughter talking to her 18 year old boyfriend on the phone. The boyfriend implicated himself in a robbery during the call. The mother took notes, went to the police & the boyfriend was charged. The Supreme Court dismissed the charges, saying it is against the law to intercept or snoop on anybody's private conversation & that even a child has privacy rights & that it is a crime for someone to do that, & that whatever is heard cannot be mentioned in court. Don't blame the court this time. They followed Washington state law, which states that all parties on a call must know & agree to being monitored.

The Washington legislature needs to amend this law pronto. Parents are already denied the right to know if their child had an abortion or was treated for drug use or was in mental health counseling. If a parent needs to monitor a child's phone calls for illegal activity or improper activity or for whatever reason, it should be their right. Does not a parent have a right to monitor a call if the child is suspected of communicating with a pedophile? As it stands now in Washington, if a parent hears a murder confession while monitoring the child or hears a terrorist plot, the evidence will be thrown out of court because the child has a "reasonable expectation of privacy". The parent is also breaking the law & can be charged.

It should be a simple thing to change the law to read that all minors & those who communicate with minors have no expectation of privacy. It's really amazing how many jackasses are running around disguised as lawyers & legislators.

6 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

I never liked these privacy of speech laws. For adults as well as for minors. It prevents people from protecting themselves when threatened. But then again, think what would happen to policemen and other government officials if what they said was recorded. There would be many of them that were not being sued or going to prison. These laws are really there to keep the powerful, powerful and the disadvantaged, disadvantaged. If these laws protect a few drug dealers or child rapists, then so be it. At least the politicians and their cronies are safe.

12:50 PM  
Blogger Toadlicker said...

Why shouldn't minors have an expectation to privacy? Are you saying that you have every right to read your child's journal? I think that is insane really.

I was raised with my privacy respected. My parents never read my journal. In my son's room he has a wooden box and we have agreed that is his private space - something I will never open. With regards to the telephone - I have no need to listen to my child's phone calls. The better solution if you're having a problem is not to allow your child to answer the phone and screen their calls rather then violating their privacy.

An example that is quite effective:

In bootcamp they are cannot legally keep your mail from you. Federal law prohibits this action. BUT when they issue your mail they can order you to stowe it in your A&B locker and not allow you to open it until another time.

One can respect a child's privacy while maintaining parental control over the situation. And in the example you used I mean really this woman's 14 year old was dating an 18 year old criminal - odds are she was not the most brilliant mother to start.

6:01 PM  
Blogger Francis Lynn said...

Mary - thanks for stopping by. Boot camp is a poor analogy in that those soldiers are adults. Children are not emancipated, legally. Until then, they are under the control of parents & children should have no expectations of privacy. Parents have the right to decide what controls to put on children. What worked for you may not work for another parent. But that does not mean they are wrong. For whatever reason, they prefer a more controlled environment for their children.

Should children have the expectation to eat what they want, even though (in the parents eye) it is harmful to their health? Parents make decisions for minors everyday & put restrictions on them everyday - that's why we call them parents. The only expectation a child should have is love from his or her parents.

But, hey, since children can get an abortion or treated for drug use or pysho-therapy without the parents' consent or knowledge, why not drop all parental controls. I guess you would have no problem about being taken out of the loop as a parent if your child had an abortion or was treated for drug use. After all, they have an expectation of privacy & you do respect their privacy, don't you?

11:17 PM  
Anonymous alyssa said...

Those privacy laws are in act for a reason. and no not just to protect politicians. i promise its not just a big conspiracy! They are there because some terrifiedd knocked up 15 year old with mr. happy fists daddy would rather go have some back-ally abortion hat could leave her maimed or worse than have her parents know what kind of trouble she was in. The same goes for the drug help. If a child is getting help for a drug problem why do the parents need to be informed? obviously that person is responsible enough to TRY to get better. As for the phone call thing, this is not some big brother society. Its not OKAY to listen to peoples phone calls. privacy is important, not just for getting away with crimes or abortions, but sometimes people need to keep things for themselves. A parent can pretty much take anything away from a child as long as they aren't beating or raping them. Control is not that difficult and if after doing all they can, their child still misbehaves they can have them deemed incorrigable and sent to juvie or boot camp. I mean seriously, if you are that worried about what your kid is talking about on the phone, then dont let them talk on the phone. Alowing them to talk while listening to catch them in something is the same as sending an incognito cop out offering drugs and then incarcerating anyone who accepts. DONT GIVE THEM OPPORTUNITY. a parents job is to protect their child until they are mature and responsible enough to make good decisions. If yoy can't do that without breaking the law then you shouldnt have kids

2:23 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

If everyones phone calls can be listened in on then whats next? communist dicators telling eactly what can or cannot be done? what about censorship? farenheit 451? wht about harry potter? i mean seriously we have a right to privacy to limit the authority. its called free will people!!!! If i want to rob a bank I can do that. It is my RIGHT to make that choice because i am a think moving breathing locomitive human being. Yes there are consequences for all decisions but the choice is still ours to make and if we want to talk about it on the phone fine! its worth protecting a bank robbers phone conversation if that mean putting a limit on how much we can be controlled. Just because I'm not a criminal doesnt mean i want anybody who can to listen to me talk on the phone. Privacy is important. How would you feel if every detail of your life was easily available to whoever looked for it? uncle sam can find another way to catch the bad guys

2:35 PM  
Anonymous Big Daddy said...

Hey kids…plain and simple... No matter what age you are, when using a communication device in your parents home (computer, phone, cell phone, ect...) that is not paid for with your own money including the monthly charges/fees, than you have NO EXPECTATION OF PRIVACY. PERIOD. NONE AT ALL. Parents are way too lenient with there children these days, and the heck with what the government says… it’s your home, your children your life. NOT THE GOVERNMENT’S.

10:20 AM  

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