Why you should care

Sometimes nothing says love like a passionate argument. 

It’s not that we want to make trouble or anything. But we at OZY are big fans of the heated debate; and sometimes, nothing says love like a reasoned, passionate argument. Some of our favorite recent provocations:

Should Parents Go to Jail for Their Kids’ Crimes?

Last year, a 12-year-old in Florida, tormented by bullying, killed herself. In the wake of the suicide, lawyer Mark O’Mara — known for representing George Zimmerman in his trial for killing Trayvon Martin — drafted legislation to hold parents criminally liable for their kids’ cyberbullying. Parents who let their children “use social media as a weapon need to wake the hell up,” the criminal defense lawyer at O’Mara Law Group told OZY. Should it pass, O’Mara’s law wouldn’t be the first of its kind. Most states will hold parents liable for their kids’ behavior in civil court and criminalize the act of “contributing to the delinquency of a minor,” with which parents can be charged, but criminal charges for bad parenting are less common. Read more here.

Sue the Ivy League!

“Legacy” admissions, in which universities give preference to applicants whose parents are alums, are a widespread practice at the world’s most elite universities — and that’s the case even as federal lawsuits against race-based affirmative action pile up. The universities claim that legacy admissions help them to maintain tradition, and they’ve rarely been contested. Shouldn’t they be? We argue that legacy preferences violate not just the principles underlying the Revolutionary War and the Civil War but also the Constitution and the laws that grew from those struggles. Read more here.

We’ve Taken ‘Bullying’ Too Far

America: It might be time to admit that we’ve taken bullying too far. We’re not talking about the acts of aggression, some of which are truly awful and some of which are completely normal. Our beef is with the term “bullying,” which litigious parents and the school officials frightened by them sling around way too easily these days. Here’s a list of things that can qualify as bullying these days: eye rolling, excluding someone from the lunch table and giving the “evil eye.” It’s especially troublesome as more schools and states legislate heavily against so-called bullies — currently 14 states include a criminal sanction against bullying. Doesn’t shoehorning all kid conflict under the term “bullying” minimize actual cruelty? Read more here.

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OZYPOV

Interviews, op-eds, and analysis to help you make sense of the news of the day and the news of the future.