Rights of Teenagers

The United States was founded on right. The main reason that America became America is that English subjects didn’t want to be ruled by a king that didn’t respect their rights. If you are a teenager being stopped by the police it is scary most of the time especially if it is at night. If a police officer stop you and ask you for your driver’s license and your registration, you should give it to them and then ask if you did something wrong and wait for an answer. If the officer ask you to get out of the car, you get out and you close the car behind you. In my opinion if you are a teenager and a police officer pull you over and ask if they can search your car you said no and ask if they have a warrant. Teenager rights can be interrupted in different ways.

Your rights are limited in schools for example your rights to privacy is limited because you are on school property and your locker is the property of the school so the school can search it without your permission because it belongs to the school. The next thing you have to think about is what you say to the police because it is important. The police can use what you say to arrest you especially if you badmouth an officer they can search your car on the evidences that from your speech it sounds like you have been using illegal substances or that you are intoxicated. If it is so you just gave the police the right to arrest you because you were unage drinking or using illegal substances. If a police officer is following you  with their siren on and  you happen to be a  teenager you need to listen to me to know exactly what to do .

Given that I am a teenager and I  have done extensive research on the topic. So if you see hear  a police car behind or in your rearview mirror. I would strongly recommend that you pull over to your right. Also use your signal indicator to sign that you are pulling over. Pulling over as soon as possible also so gives you a better chance of remembering if you did anything wrong and it will not angry the police officer. All of that is great advice but there are more important advices for instance if the police officer comes to your window you only have it open just a crack so you can be able to give him/ her you licence and registration . At one point should you insult the officer. Another important thing is that you keep silence unless the officer ask you were name, or your place of residence . If you get ask do you know why you were pulled over you can said “No sir” but it is better if you just not say anything and no where in your traffic stop do you make the office angry. If you are ask to step out of the car you step out but make sure that all your windows are up and that the doors are closed. If the police officer then ask if  he/she can search you car you reply by say “no”and you ask if they have a search warrant  because sometimes if you don’t answer they can take that as a sign of yes.The officer will have to give you your ticket and let you go they can’t search your car or detain you.

I was told that they are only a few cases that teenagers have actually won. Tinker v. Des Moines Independent School District (1969). The case was basically the rights you have in school. The students wore armbands to class and they were suspended. Their parents saw that as a violate their children’s first amendment and took the case to the supreme court. The supreme court ruled in favor of the students because it was a violate of the students right. The Tinker’s won the case but that doesn’t mean that you can do anything in school because you are on school property which essentially means that the school can still limit your freedom of speech and any other freedom for the good of others. New Jersey v. T.L.O. (1985). This is a case that the teenager did not win. It was a case on privacy issues in school. Your belonging can be searched on school property because it is not considered to be an unlawful search and seizure. A teacher caught her in the bathroom smoking and she was sent to the principal’s office. Where the principal asked to search her purse and found that she had inside was a pack of cigarettes, rolling papers, and a small amount of marijuana. She was also selling marijuana on school property. The supreme court ruled in favor of the school because it is illegal to sell drugs. The last supreme court case that I will include in this essay is one that speaks to me because I am on my school’s newspaper and I try not to write things that I know may silence others rights on a topic. The court case was Hazelwood School District v. Kuhlmeier (1988). The case was about student journalism and the first amendment. Schools can censor a school newspaper and an example of this was an episode in Malcolm in the middle where the school censored the newspaper because the essay was explicit . Malcolm thought that his freedom of speech was being violated be in what the school’s right to censor the newspaper. Students at the school wrote and edit the school’s newspaper for journalism class and the dealt with the pregnancy of teenagers and divorce on students. The student’s newspaper were censored. It was taking to the supreme court and the court ruled in favor of the school.If people ever say that teenagers don’t have right they are wrong and teenagers have rights in school as well but remember it can be limited .

So inclusion if you are pulled over by a police officer and they ask you do you know why you were pulled over you say no officer or you don’t answer and plead the fifth. You then give them your license and registration and if they ask you to step out of the car you make sure that all your windows are up and your doors are closed. If an officer ask you to search you car you can say no if you don’t say no they can take that as a silent yes. So teenagers should remember that you are a teenager and you probably shouldn’t be doing something that may get you in trouble because after all teenagers can be tried as adults.

Ronchelle Marshall

I love to read.

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Volume 6, Issue 10, Posted 5:32 PM, 10.12.2015