A bill being considered by Vermont lawmakers seeks to make it illegal for anyone under the age of 21 to use a cell phone.
Introduced by Senator John Rodgers, the bill would even make it a crime for people under 21 to possess a cell phone; being caught with one could net an offender up to a year in jail and a $1,000 fine, according to the proposal. Rodgers says he authored the proposed legislation in hopes of preventing bullying and reducing traffic accidents caused by teens distracted by their phones. “The use of cell phones while driving is one of the leading killers of 15 teenagers in the United States,” the bill reads. “In light of the dangerous and life-threatening consequences of cell phone use by young people, it is clear that persons under 21 years of age are not developmentally mature enough to safely possess them.” While news of Rodgers’ bill has ruffled a lot of feathers in Vermont, it should be noted that even Rodgers doesn’t expect it to be approved; he says he wrote it up “to make a point.” He adds, “I have no delusions that it’s going to pass. I wouldn’t probably vote for it myself.”