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Do children deserve equal rights?


Duelix
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Why is it that children don't have the right to drive, the right to free speech, the right to work, the right to watch pornography (Essentially suppressing free speech), and anything else. Isn't this a violation of equal protection. If black people generally have a lower IQ, could we restrict them from driving cars? If a kid manages by some miracle to pass a driving test, shouldn't that child be able to drive? There are many stupid adults out there. Isn't it discrimination that a person is judged on an ASSUMPTION that they aren't as or more intelligent?

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The 14th Amendment protection against discrimination allows a wide range of differential treatments for different groups. The only limit is that these differences in treatment are subjected to varying levels of scrutiny to assess whether they are rationally justified or not. Discriminatory regulations against children normally pass this test quite easily.

 

While it is certainly true that children vary greatly in their abilities and maturity, the state, for its administrative efficiency, is entitled to impose certain simplifying categories on people to manage the society without too much cost.

 

But while those are the general principles governing the way children are treated, I would generally prefer that children be granted greater personal autonomy, especially when it comes to state restrictions which are imposed on children 'for their own moral good' rather than for their objectively measured health and safety interests.

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  • 4 months later...

We need to turn to science for the answer of this question. The human brain develops slowly and does not reach its full growth until around age 25. For this reason, the status of adulthood should not apply to anyone under 25. Also for this reason, age restrictions were put on running for congress (25) and the president has to be at least age 35.

 

When it comes to equality, you would not want a 15 year old with no medical education performing an operation on you, would you? We have many restrictions on what a person can do, depending the person's proven ability. The reason for increasing the age of getting driver's license, is the high number of young drivers who drink and have accidents. Car insurance rates decrease when a person gets older, because to statistics showing our driving improves as we age, up to a point. After age 80, we are more prone to get in accidents and should consider alternative transportation.

 

It seems almost impossible to get a teenager to understand the rules are for his/her own protection, not because someone likes the power of making and enforcing rules. The unfortunate result is they break they rules and get hurt or hurt others. This is one of the favorite themes of Greek mythology and I wish such were still apart of public education. Young people are prone to bad judgement, and should not be treated as adults. This includes, regardless of the crime a young person commits, the law should respect the fact that the thinking of those under 25 is not equal to the thinking of those over 25.

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Not surprisingly, children in their formative years are not mature enough to make proper decisions -- they are not adults. For example, the "pursuit of happiness" obviously does not include running away from home. However, courts generally recognize 12 years old as the age of majority, where children can begin to show maturity and wisdom in some of their own important decisions (such as which divorced parent to live with).

 

Many people are unaware that, parents and guardians can legally defame other people in the name of raising their children. The law against defamation has no power within the parent-minor child relationship. Mom or Dad can tell little Joey not to play with the kid next door because the kid is ________ or his parents are ________ (fill in the blanks), and the kid and his parents cannot sue for defamation. The parent-child relationship is considered inviolate in that respect.

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We need to turn to science for the answer of this question. The human brain develops slowly and does not reach its full growth until around age 25. For this reason, the status of adulthood should not apply to anyone under 25.

 

I don't think it is correct. IIRC 25 is the age when you have top abilities and when you have the most neurons. But the brain has reached a full development at the age of 18. Even sooner . See diagrams of brain wheight at http://faculty.washington.edu/chudler/dev.html

Edited by michel123456
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I'm not quite sure what the relation is but I always feel that children have fewer rights because they have fewer responsibilities.

You can't hold a 10 year old driver responsible in law if he kills someone- so you don't give him the chance.

 

Incidentally, for most countries the age of majority is 18; it's not the age at which you can make some decisions, it's that age at which you can make any/ all decisions. Most people would be unhappy seeing 12 year olds deciding to get married.

 

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Age_of_majority

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Do we have a right to drive - I would have phrased it that we are licensed by the law of the land to drive under certain circumstances. Some rights can be seen as absolute (life, not to be tortured etc), others are contingent (freedom of speech, association) - yet other notions are thought of as rights, but in fact are just generally applicable and accepted practices. There is a convention of the rights of the child - UNCRC - I haven't checked but I don't think driving is one of them.

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Because most children are still developing, they are not mentaly or physicaly prepared to take on responsibility's of an adult. They need adult supervision so they dont hurt themselves or others and learn from the parents's to be a productive citizen. That requires time just like school does K-12 + college to be fully prepared for the work force. Same goes for children they need that time to grow develop and mature.

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I don't think it is correct. IIRC 25 is the age when you have top abilities and when you have the most neurons. But the brain has reached a full development at the age of 18. Even sooner . See diagrams of brain wheight at http://faculty.washi...hudler/dev.html

 

Perhaps nothing is more important to the judgement of this question than science. Here is a google sample of that science. Since ancient Greeks the teen years were known as high risk years and a period of poor judgement. Now we have the science to understand this.

 


  1. BRAIN NOT FULLY DEVELOPED UNTIL AGE 25 - Marist Country
    BRAIN NOT FULLY DEVELOPED UNTIL AGE 25. By Kristen Rollins. Teenagers are four times as likely to be involved in a car crash and three times more likely to ...
    www.academic.marist.edu/mwwatch/fall05/science1.htm - Cached - Similar

  2. At What Age Is the Human Brain Fully Developed? | eHow.com
    Apr 22, 2010 ... At What Age Is the Human Brain Fully Developed?. As with nearly every other body part and system, the brain continues to grow for several ...
    www.ehow.com › HealthFamily HealthGeneral Family Health - Cached

  3. A child's brain fully develops by age 25 - Newark Parenting ...
    Sep 21, 2009 ... The human brain reportedly becomes fully developed at age 25. Prior to full brain development children exhibit the following behaviors more ...
    www.examiner.com/...in.../a-child-s-brain-fully-develops-by-age-25 - Cached

  4. Brain Immaturity Could Explain Teen Crash Rate (washingtonpost.com)
    Feb 1, 2005 ... A National Institutes of Health study suggests that the region of the brain that inhibits risky behavior is not fully formed until age 25, ...
    www.washingtonpost.com › MetroMarylandGovernment - Similar

  5. NIMH · Teenage Brain: A work in progress (Fact Sheet)
    This growth drops off sharply after age 12, coinciding with the end of a critical period for learning languages. While this work suggests a wave of brain ...
    www.nimh.nih.gov › Health TopicsPublications - Cached - Similar

  6. Expert: Risky teen behavior is all in the brain - USATODAY.com
    Apr 4, 2007 ... "Adolescents are at an age where they do not have full capacity to ... have in recent years found that the brain is not fully developed ...
    www.usatoday.com/news/.../2007-04-04-teen-brain_N.htm - Cached - Similar

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Incidentally, for most countries the age of majority is 18; it's not the age at which you can make some decisions, it's that age at which you can make any/ all decisions. Most people would be unhappy seeing 12 year olds deciding to get married.

 

 

It's important to remember that laws and rights of children have changed drastically over the years, a couple hundred years ago 12 years old was a good age to marry, for a girl anyway, of course women as children and as adults have always enjoyed fewer rights and privileges than us wise manly men... Of course we have to offer them our wisdom and maturity as we guide them in the right direction, between football games and pickled egg farts. :P

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