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A Teenager’s Thoughts On The Dad That Shot His Daughter’s Laptop [EDITORIAL]

 

As many of you may know, while I am an editor here at TheDroidGuy, I am also a 17 year old who is currently finishing his junior year of high school. This makes one of the big pieces of news as of late, the story behind a man who shot his daughter’s laptop over a venomous Facebook post directed at her parents, a little more personal to me. If you haven’t heard about this story yet, you must be living under a rock, because in just 5 days, the YouTube video alone has generated over 22 million views. That is definitely something we can call viral. And as I’m obviously not the first person to ever be a teenager, I have grown up in a slightly different era of technology than many of the viewers and readers that have commented, or just read about this story.

With MySpace, Facebook, Twitter, Foursquare, Gowalla, Formspring, Tumblr, and other social medias on the rise throughout my childhood, I really didn’t know what it was like to not be able to blab about my problems through various song lyrics and cleverly worded posts all over social networks for the whole world to see. I’m in high school. My friends are in high school. Most of my personal relationships are people who have access, and have had access to social networks most of their adolescent life. While this is great for us, this story shows the brand new door it opens for trouble, because as we all know, once you put it on the internet it stays there. Forever. This can be a serious issue with loose-cannon teenagers who take shots at their parents, friends, and other figures of authority on Facebook. I’m no better, as I’ve had many regrettable posts in my day–things that once shared are taken in every horrible way possible and spread to just about everyone I may have possibly glanced at once or twice. While this is just everyday life for us, parents are faced with problems and issues that they couldn’t learn from their parents on, and are now blazing a new trail through the parental wilderness of “monitoring your child’s social media”.

More after the break

So here lies the conflict: how do you deal with a teen who has slandered the name of her parents all over Facebook. This dad has chosen to be as blunt as possible with punishment by thoroughly destroying the tool used to spread such hatred, but has also caused a rise from every corner of the internet. Some people think this was way too harsh, and he is only breeding further rebellion in his child, and possibly causing deeper, more permanent damage that could affect their relationship forever. Some people think he was right on, and more parents should take this route to stop their unruly kids from cluttering everyone’s news feeds with disrespectful ramblings. I am in no position of authority myself, and am definitely not even a slightly skilled parent, but I can look at it from  a more personal perspective of a fellow adolescent.

If I were in this girl’s position, and had done something similar to my parents, I’m sure my father would have been very upset, and while maybe not shoot my laptop, would have punished me, and made sure he got the job done. But then again, I’m the kind of kid who wouldn’t run away from my parent if he did such a thing. We have no idea who this girl is, and what her record of reactions to punishment have been, so to be honest, only a follow-up story could really tell us how productive her form of punishment was. I think the real thing that a lot of the arguments come down to, is the difference in people. My generation was raised with all of the technology and communication we need right at our fingertips, and therefore, we have grown up in an age where we share everything on the internet. From pictures to song lyrics, we publish our lives for all to see. This is how I think it is a little different for this girl to publish a disrespectful post on Facebook, than it would be if she stood in front of a group of people, tearing down her parents in a whirlwind of anger and cursing. It does not, however, give her any right to post something so terrible about her parents, especially to the hundreds of people who have seen and read her post.

Herein lies my opinion on how it should be dealt with. Every child is different. Some kids would despise their parents forever for such an act, only furthering the problems, and some would take it as a signing to quit screwing around with Dad when he says quit posting bad things on Facebook. The point is, there is no “one way” a parent should handle this situation. Every parent is going to have to deal with their child in a way that will be productive, and not damaging. Not every dad wears a cowboy hat and has a concealed carry, and if this was done in a big city he would probably have been arrested. Whether or not this was the right thing to do can’t really be determined until we know how it affected the daughter. I, for one, don’t think destruction of property is in any way an appropriate measure of punishment, but I’m not that daughter’s parent, and I don’t know how to parent her, but if my dad shot my laptop, I would understand I crossed the line and stopped what I was doing in fear of more punishment. Either way, the conflict of whether this was right or wrong will continue, and everyone is going to have their own opinion. There’s many ways a problem can be solved, and you can’t tell which way was best until you get the results.

11 Comments

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  1. Thinking back on the incident being a parent I would have endorsed destroying the computer by shooting it. There is no other nice way to get the point across. Teenagers today have a great deal of freedom accentuated by technology. Opinions travel hard and fast to encourage teenagers to indentify with each other in vast numbers. Parents supply their kids with this high technology and it should be respected and not misused to the enragement of their parents. They should not bite the hand that feeds them in other words. Appreciate what you have and parents to run to when things get tough.

  2. If the daughter had been a grown man he would have clocked him and told him to have a nice day. You can’t do that to your teenage daughter and counseling can take months to get. There are not enough counselors available to service all of the disfunctional and opportunistic teenagers. Taking out his frustration and betrayal on the computer and grounding is a life’s lesson in cause and effect. If she tried this with a really sick stalky kind of boy it could be her life. If she slanders someone she could go to jail if the slander was hurtful enough to cause someone to get hurt. With social media out there and today’s movies there is no respect. And you as a parent can’t stop your child from looking at either.

  3. As a parent of a 16 year old daughter I can speak from experience that it is hard to raise a teenager in this day and age. Before you could punish a child with corporal punishment and grounding and that might have been enough. Today we have schools and their counselors watching us and we have the teens friends watching us ready to make headline news over not washing dishes or breaking curfew. But totally disrespecting the very people who take care of you in such a public way is slanderous. A crime. But she is your child. Because of our devotion to our children we work more hours and have less parenting time. We bust our buts trying to please our children and yet when they are refused to do something or go somewhere or stay out late should they allowed to abuse us? They don’t have the life’s experience to appreciate just how easy they have it today. Their spoiled inability to wait until we can afford it (living within our means) skews their sensibility to believe they should get it now or shop lift or ask a boyfriend with benefits to get it for them. I can’t really wait for them to appreciate adult/parents good judgement when they are 25 years old. Children should just work with their parents or at least Eddie Haskell them. The Dad in video got fed up. If she were a grown man he would have clocked him and said have a nice day. You can’t do that to a teenage daughter.

  4. The daughter could have gone overboard but by shooting her computer isn’t a way to teach teens respect. The father reacted violently and I know many parents out there doesn’t approve to this kind of action. Some may think that it was cool but it simply is pure violence and there is nothing cool with violence.

  5. As usual you 12-18-21 year old ass wipes think you know everything. Instead of doing chores that would take a few minutes of your precious agnst filled lives so you can do something as meaningless as trashing friends and family. The parent was right on point because anything posted on the internet is a permanent monument that could possibly be there forever if configured properly. Some one could download (and put on disk or thumb drive) that message that you may someday be regretful about when you have your own kids. You may reap what you sow. She did have it easy because all she had to be was a decent, respectful, appreciative daughter. That was her only job (other than getting good grades and going to college)

  6. As the father said, she had just been grounded for doing something similar. Decided to take harsher action.

  7. I’m not sure how to take it – I’m a part of the generation when computers were first introduced, however social media and stuff didn’t come out until I was in college.

    While I agree that this generation has grown up with computers and technology, that still isn’t a reason to do what the girl did. The Dad was right (if not a little bit extreme) and parents should do what Geekout mentioned – when I was a kid, if I did something wrong, I was punished. I got things taken away if I did or didn’t do something (such as failing grades).

    The problem I see with kids today is that parents just give them what they want, regardless of consequences. Parents don’t parent and then when they need to actually parent, they find that they’ve spent too many years giving in that their kid is now a spoiled brat. Personally, every child should know what it’s like to NOT have something (like a computer) until they are older and when they misbehave, it gets taken away. A true responsible teen isn’t going to act like a three year old when it does.

    Yes, there is technology, however there is also this thing called outdoors and this thing called a library that holds these small things called books.

    Geez, this makes me sound old. You kids get off my lawn!

  8. “Not every dad wears a cowboy hat and has a concealed carry” … that’s not concealed, you can see it in the entire video, but he he was a bit harsh.

  9. I believe that having a computer is a privilege, the parent’s responsibility is to provide food, shelter, clothing, and education.. not a computer. and when a daughter abuses a privilege, the parent can take it away (or destroy it with a gun in this case, but I would have sold it off) 

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