Sexting, it is a term most everyone has heard of in the world today; but what can be defined as sexting? According to Merriam Webster, it is the sending of sexually explicit messages or images by cell phone. However, what can be truly defined as an explicit message or image? The reality is that there is not a clear definition so it is left to be subjective, and because it cannot be answered in just one way, it is difficult to punish the acts of sexting.

When you google the word “sexting” an abundance on news stories pop up. If you take a moment to read about the different cases of sexting you find that no one case is exactly alike. However, you do find that they all have the same general happenings and outcomes. These include that a girl sent a picture to a guy and he shared it with someone else, who shared it with his friend, and now everyone has seen it; but the girl did not mean for that to happen. However, not all circumstances are the above case, but most often that is how it goes. You continue to read finding out that no one truly got punished. In most cases, there are no laws about sexting, therefore it is hard to actually prosecute, leading the sender and distributors to no punishment at all. So if no one is actually getting in trouble, does this make it right to indulge in the act of sexting?

The answer is a simple no. Sexting is by far not okay, but it is somehow becoming more and more socially acceptable. You may ask, “If it is not okay, then why are people participating in it?” This answer is unclear, but can be linked to the fact that teens today believe, “It is my body, and I will do what I want.” Teens especially participate in the act of sexting to feel more connected to a boyfriend/girlfriend, or even a friend that are just talking to. They want to feel a sense of trust with this person, so they take part in sexting. But why? In almost all cases teens are hurt through the process, and individuals that were not supposed to see the picture do. Also, if this keeps happening, why do people still think it is okay to sext? The only explanation is due to the fact that when cases, or huge sexting scandals, are taken to the police, nothing truly happens. Teens are then lead to believe that if they are not going to get in trouble, then it is not a bad thing to do.

The only way individuals are going to stop sexting, or at minimum modify it is if there are strict laws made against it. Until the authorities follow through with such laws, and implicating everyone involved, will teens truly understand the consequences of participating in the act of sexting.

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