Another professional athlete, a man who should be aware that with his job comes the responsibility of being a role model to our youth, does something stupid and irresponsible. Like it or not, kids who watch sports, place these players on pedestals and look to them as examples. The NFL says it is reviewing allegations involving Minnesota Vikings quarterback Brett Favre, who the website Deadspin says sent racy messages and photos to a woman who worked for the team while he played for the Jets.
Aren’t we as parents concerned about the use of cell phones and kids sending inappropriate images and/or messages? Sexting… did he think no one would uncover his texts? Is he that cocky and egotistical to assume they would go unnoticed? Apparently, yes.
Like our little friend, Tiger Woods who thought nobody (including his wife) would notice his string of affairs. When you’re so self-centered and perhaps narcissistic as these men appear to be, they think they’re untouchable.
Unfortunately, the ones who get hurt by their example, are their family and our kids who think they’re awesome.
So the next time a young girl gets a sext from a young guy, he can say, “well, Brett Favre did it!”
This problem is real and clowns like Favre are not helping parents prevent problem with their sons. In an article on ABCNews by Gigi Stone that appeared on March 13, 2009, illustrated the consequences for kids who sexted among one another with underage girls.
“News reports are increasingly documenting legal repercussions after indecent photo appear online. And attorneys say there are many unanswered questions about whether young people who send their own photos could face prosecution for obscenity or child pornography. This year in Wisconsin, a 17-year-old was charged with possessing child pornography after he posted naked pictures of his 16-year-old ex-girlfriend online. In Alabama, authorities arrested four middle-school students for exchanging nude photos of themselves. In Rochester, N.Y., a 16-year-old boy is now facing up to seven years in prison for forwarding a nude photo of a 15-year-old girlfriend to his friends.”
Sponsors seem not to concern themselves much over this tainted image either. I guess the increased exposure benefits their sales. How pathetic!
What can you do? Be open with your son and talk to him – starting at a young age – about respecting his body and others. Remind him that things he posts can come back to haunt him. The rule should be that he doesn’t text (or post online) anything that he wouldn’t want his parents or grandparents to see (if they were sitting next to him). Be open, honest and upfront. Explain your expectations and seek feedback from him to help gauge and drive further conversation. Don’t preach to him 0r he’ll ignore you.
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