Child porn laws being turn on their heads – by the kids themselves

Many of the laws that are in place to protect our children from abuse and as objects of child pornography are a good thing. Unfortunately though those same laws are being called into question because some of those people creating this type of photographs are the kids themselves. In fact there seems to be a rising number of charges being brought against children of both sexes because of them taking and sharing pictures of themselves in the nude.

This week, prosecutors in Greensburg, Pennsylvania charged six teens ranging in age from 14 to 17with creating, distributing and possessing child pornography, after three girls were found to have taken photos of themselves in the nude or partially nude and e-mailed them to friends, including three boys who are among the defendants.

The case is only one of the latest in a spate of similar prosecutions and investigations. In Florida, officials similarly charged a 16-year-old girl and her 17-year-old boyfriend with producing, directing or promoting child pornafter they photographed themselves having sex. Neither of the teens shared the images with anyone else.

Source: Threat Level

As Mark Rasch a former federal cybercrimes prosecutor said recently – “the problem is that that the child porn laws were really designed for a situation where an adult abuses a minor by forcing the minor – psychologically as well as physically – into taking these pictures. But here when the person takes the pictures herself or consents to the picture being taken it turns the whole statute on its head.”

some authorities argue that bringing child porn charges against these kids should be looked at as a education against the dangers of taking these types of pictures others argue that charges like these won’t achieve the desired effect. Which makes sense considering that just about every kid around considers themselves invincible and above the law in every regard. I have never understood why children who can’t even afford to pay for things like cell phones on their own are being given the tools to spread themselves around the Internet before they can even understand; or care, about the implications.

As Kim Zetter wrote in the post on Threat Level

In the case of teens charged with child pornography, they simply don’t see a difference between posting provocative pictures on MySpace and sending nude photos to friends.

“These kids are now seeing stuff on MySpace and other places online where other kids are posing in sexual poses in the nude performing real or mock sex, and to them it’s just their 15 megabytes of fame. They think it’s the norm,” she said.

So what do we do when the laws that have been created to protect our children are the same laws being used to prosecute our children for exploring their personalities and lives with the tools that we the adults hand over to them.