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Teen Brain Research

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You guys are making me think too hard! Ok, here goes.


Packsaddle, Dr. Giedd's research was news to me when NPR covered it earlier this month, so I assumed (uh oh!) that it would be news to other members of this forum. I still think it's newsworthy.


Prairie Scouter, we'll have to agree to disagree. I strongly believe it is the parents' right and responsibility to constantly be telling their adolescent children what to think/do, especially about profound issues. The "Parents, the anti-drug" PSA campaign on television is an example of my belief being implemented by society as a whole. Well, I hold that beliefs about God and sexuality are just as important as those about illegal drug use.


NJ, you responded: So then I assume in the situation of the atheist parents and the atheist Scout, you disagree with the BSA policy of removing the Scout. How could it be fair to do so when his opinion is "merely a reflection of his parents' position" and he had no role whatsoever in forming that opinion.


I never said he had no role in forming his opinion, just that a 14YOB is not fully developed physically, at least if I'm reading this research correctly. So I conclude that a 14YOB is not competent to make such profound life decisions. After all, we're not talking about choosing Doritos over Fritos. That said, I would not support his removal from Scouting UNLESS he began to proclaim his opinion from the mountaintops.


Mindless robots? When did you meet my 14YOB?!?! I think acco40 was 110% right on with his comments! LOL!


Seriously, NJ, you're missing my point, and that must be because I didn't do a very good job of laying it out. I do not draw the conclusion that the young person who is "caught" early enough by their parents has no role in what they themselves believe. Rather, the conclusion I draw is that it is imperative for parents to do their utmost to influence their children's beliefs, starting as infants and continuing through their entire stint as adolescents because research shows their brains are still developing and are not yet hard-wired. Too many parents seem willing to stop trying when their kids turn into adolescents, yet this research says they still can have a huge influence on how their kids turn out.


(This message has been edited by CubsRgr8)

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CubsRgr8, I understand. I believe the parent has a right (responsibility) to insert their views at any age for their children. But the children should pay greater attention prior to becoming adults. At that time they can choose to ignore it.


Anyway the thoughts I have had since I first heard about this research were:

1) Why is the age of legal adulthood 18 years? 21 years would be a lot closer to correct and that's what it was when I was that age.

2) Better yet, children also should not be eligible for the armed forces at age 18.

3) In SC a child can 'emancipate' themselves from their parents at 17 - absolute lunacy - the child is off on their own and the parents are still legally responsible.

4) The alcohol age limit is close to correct but what about tobacco?

These are some of the issues in the public domain that might be good ones to reassess in light of this research.

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Your points sound pretty good to me. Society has to balance the individual's rights against its need for the greatest general good. But how many parents do you know who want to retain responsibility for their children through age 21? Not too many, I'll bet. Maybe what we need to look at is a graduated legal age, similar to the graduated driver's liscence we now have here in Wisconsin. Statistics seem to be proving out that this is a good thing (fewer accidents and fewer injuries & deaths amoung teenage drivers). And this "emancipation" thing in SC - you've got to be kidding!

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Few 18yr olds are qualified to be adults/parents nor should be given those responsibilities, I certainly wasn't.


But they make pretty good soldiers. Don't think I would have done well in the military had I joined up at 21 or later. I was too set in my ways by 21, questioning everything, especially authority. But at 18, I could have been molded into a fine soldier.


So there's the rub. We need them to protect our nation and put their lives on the line, but deny them a beer or cigarette or the freedom of a drivers license for our own domestic safety.

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GernBlansten, I don't think I've read you around these parts before. Welcome.

I've often heard suggestions that young people are better soldiers because they accept authority more readily. It is a persuasive idea but I sure wish their acceptance would make itself present in other venues as well.;) Such as the classroom. :)


Anyway, I need to correct what I said regarding emancipation, I am getting conflicting views from attorneys. Some say there is no such statute in SC and others are saying it can occur at age 17, but only through a legal proceeding. I did a little looking and it seems in Colorado, for example, a young person can be emancipated at 15. Not sure about parental responsibility, though.


In a related matter, the age of consent is quite variable among states and is as young as 14 in SC - with parental consent (I hope that sends everyone's minds reeling). I guess ol' Strom had a local influence as well.;)

But I see your point regarding the inconsistencies. This research just gives those inconsistencies greater importance.

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