Keep our Children Safe by Medhnaa Saran

Imagine you are a middle school girl who just created her social media account. After an hour, you start to get DMs from older men asking to be your friends. Of course, you say yes because you want more followers and why wouldn’t you want to make a new friend? As time goes on, you start to chat with these men constantly and they start asking you personal questions about you, your age, and what you like to do. Once again, you’ll answer them because after all, they are your friends. About a month later, they start asking for your pictures and compliment how beautiful you are. You start to get attached and send more pictures and chat even more. Before you know it, one man is asking you to meet him in a nearby motel. Without your parent’s permission, you take a taxi and go. It seems a little bit suspicious, but what harm could he do, after all, you are a minor. You meet him and he seems very nice and convincingly asks if you want to go into a room. You say yes…
This situation is every parent’s nightmare and with the increased usage of social media and social networking platforms, the cases of online sexual abuse and predators have increased substantially. During the COVID crisis, the majority of society has been forced to isolate themselves and have had a difficult time coping with this unfamiliar situation. With cleared up schedules, there is no doubt that many of us are increasing our electronic usage, especially children.
Children have more time to roam the internet and therefore, have a higher chance of finding themselves in inappropriate situations. However, parents can avoid these grim situations by taking standard precautions. Starting in elementary school, parents and teachers should teach their children about internet safety and what to do if they feel endangered or uncomfortable. Additionally, parents should put restrictions on their child’s electronic devices to avoid online chatting with strangers and to avoid going on indecorous websites. This will limit the exposure of these sites and most importantly, keep the child safe.
As students get older, teachers and parents should talk about pornography and what to do if the child feels sexually violated. Additionally, students should not communicate with strangers online, give any personal information, or send pictures of themselves.
This is only some advice to avoid child predators and to maintain internet safety. It is our duty to make sure our children and peers feel safe and inform people about the dangers of online predators and staying off of malicious websites.

2 Replies to “Keep our Children Safe by Medhnaa Saran”

  • Really I liked how you talked about by assuming to be a girl who wants more friends and started conversation with the stranger. You had well explained after that about standard precautions too.

  • This is very informative article, loved how you connected to the readers by using anecdotes!

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