South Jersey, NJ Parents MUST Be Notified If Their Child Is Caught Drinking Or Smoking Underage [OPINION]
It has finally happened: marijuana has been legalized and decriminalized in the Garden State.
But of course, this legalization comes with a whole new slew of decisions that need to be made.
Where are people are allowed to smoke? What should the legal age for marijuana be?
And the most recent that is yet to be resolved in New Jersey: Should parents be notified if their underaged child is caught smoking marijuana or drinking alcohol?
Originally, Governor Phil Murphy seemed on board to pass a new law that would not allow police to contact underage juveniles' parents when caught drinking alcohol or smoking marijuana.
Well now, it seems that a "compromise" has been made: parents wouldn't be notified for the first violation only.
I am going to have to go against all of what is listed above and here is why:
Kids are young and are going to want to have fun. I get it.
But if parents are only notified the second, third or fourth time a problem arises....by that time it may be too late.
The first time a teenager is caught drinking and or smoking underage, it needs to be addressed because there is a lot of responsibility that comes with it.
It sounds like a "mom" point of view but to be honest, I am grateful that my parents were as on top of me during my teenage years as they were. (Don't ever tell them I said that)
When you are a teenager, you think you know everything. You think you know how the world works, that you are going to grow up, snag that dream job in the blink of an eye, live in that gorgeous mansion and the rules don't apply to you.
Learning that lesson the hard way without guidance from a teenager's guardians can be catastrophic....and I've seen it happen with friends of mine whose parents were basically nonexistent in their day to day lives.
I am going to have to 100% agree with Sen. Dawn Addiego on this one:
“The importance of parental involvement in every aspect of a child’s development has been well documented,” said Sen. Dawn Addiego, D-Burlington in a statement. “Removing parents from a moment as pivotal as being caught breaking the law runs contrary to common recommended practice and quite honestly common sense.”
Parents need to be notified the second any underage consumption is caught in the act.
And now I realize as I finish writing this article how freaking old I am to even have this point of view. Ew.
Stay safe everyone.
To learn more about this proposed law for New Jersey, visit NJ.com.