top of page

Education restrictions not the answer

Letter to the Editor, The Florida Times-Union

June 9, 2024

By Steven Slavkin

Children and teens face an unprecedented mental health crisis that calls for serious solutions. The pandemic hit this generation hard. Between lockdown, social media and living in a polarized society, they are especially vulnerable.

We know that social media often harms kids’ mental and physical health. Apps are designed to boost profits through addictive features targeting kids and teens. The U.S. Surgeon General has also warned about the negative effects of social media on kids’ mental health.

Rather than addressing such well-established causes, certain politicians and pundits exploit worries by misrepresenting the factors behind this tragedy. They fuel anger by wrongly blaming inclusive education and comprehensive libraries. These divisive tactics aim to recruit people into political movements, ultimately deflecting attention from well-researched causes. This can increase anxiety.

To protect future generations, we must bring attention to realities and not let outrage purveyors shape the narrative. Book bans and restricting freedom to learn doesn’t help.

Caring for kids means caring about research, regulations and funding for proven solutions. We must focus on helping kids — not fueling culture wars.

Steven Slavkin, Jacksonville


bottom of page