Monday, December 14, 2009

The "right" to carry a cell phone.

Albuquerque Journal editors recently argued in their support of APS' cell phone ban, link;

"Having a cell phone isn't a right, ..."
Well of course it is.

Just because it is not written, "citizens have a right to carry cell phones", does not mean that the right does not exist.

Rights are not created by being recognized by, and written in,
the Bill of Rights.

All rights exist independently. The right to exercise them is
sometimes limited in the community's best interests.

Students' right to carry cell phones is real.

The opportunity to exercise that right may be limited, rightly
or wrongly, but to argue that it does not exist is nonsensical.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I usually agree with you, but on this one, I think you overlook a few "traditions" in regards to legal exceptions and the school.
Students exist in a "grey" area in the law. They can be searched and seizured, even their cars, when they enter school grounds, without a warrant or even just cause.
IT could be argued that any citizen that wants to carry a butternife in his/her pocket is a "right", but on school gorunds, that becmes a "weapon" and the student can be suspended, even if no one was threatened with the butterknife, and even if it remained in the pocket, backpack or student vehicle.
Cell phones cannot be considered a "right" in schools because they can be used as an organizing instrument for on campus gang activity, cheating, and drug dealing.
Our legal system is behind on identifying what applies to students and what doesn't. They should not be in a "grey" legal area, ever.