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Adults prove to kids the dangers of social media

Teens and even tweens are constantly asking their parents — or not asking — to use various and sundry social media applications on their phones.

Parents try hard to persuade the youngsters of the risk involved, but who wants to listen to stodgy old mom and dad?

Police agencies recommend against a number of these apps. Although relatively benign Facebook and Instagram do not make the list, popular apps that parents should have heard about should not be on their son or daughter’s phone. These include TikTok (videos), Snapchat (images) and What’sApp (messaging).

Regardless of their original intent, all of these can be used as means of communication between individuals — and that’s where they can be dangerous.

If the kids want to see first-hand how social media can destroy lives, send them to school — specifically, to the school district at the eastern end of Route 522.

Social media has become a serious problem in Selinsgrove of late — and not for the students.

Several weeks ago, it was revealed that an administrator — the assistant principal of the middle school — was under investigation for making overtures toward the girls in his school using Snapchat.

Thankfully, no one was fooled. He has since resigned.

Within the past few days, the district lost a school director who essentially threatened to shoot people on Facebook. Dr. Jennifer Rager-Kay — yes, a medical doctor, and a prior candidate for the state legislature — stated on a post about shutdown protesters that “if you refuse to wear a mask and try to come within six feet of me or my family, I will exercise the same constitutional rights to shoot you.”

She resigned her board post two days later; her husband at the same time stepped down as the county’s chief public defender (he presumably had no role in her Facebook post).

She claims hers was a private post. Snapchat claims your messages disappear after a few seconds. In both cases, someone proved those theories wrong.

There are lessons to be learned from this, kids: If intelligent, responsible and respectable adults can ruin their lives this quickly on the internet, just imagine how easy it would be for you.

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