Re: When I were a lad ...
I'm not agreeing that the devices should be used, just that I can understand why they would be desirable.,
Yes, I can see that myself - where little thought is put into it. Sadly, too few today spend any real time thinking about purchases (well, waay back when no one really thought much, but back then the frivolous spending was more likely to be a set of gaudy curtains than a tracking device for your kids)
In reality unless they get prevalent, a ne-er-do-well will not realise they have a tracker on them and would probably not be able to send fake GPS locations unless the target was a high value.
That's the sort of thinking I'm sure they want you to have. You don't think the paedo chat rooms (if there's any still around?) aren't already all over this? There may be a bit of a gulf between their dreams and their abilities, but some will have the resources to abuse this. Many people will think there isn't any near them, but why take the risk?
However the bit about no-confidence to do xyz I just don't see and would need some reliable evidence for that. I'm pretty sure 18yo are far more likely to holiday or go travelling by themselves much more than I was or my parents generation were. There seems to be no obvious decrease in appetite for risk amongst teenagers from what I can see, so would like to know the evidence. The food related illnesses is far more likely to do with the availability of fast food, processed food and sugar rich foods than people putting trackers on their kids.
Look around. Kids are less likely to be sent outside or even allowed outside to play. They're more likely to be inside on their playstation. I wasn't allowed inside during the day unless I was playing in the yard and needed the toilet or it was a weekend and I was coming in for lunch. Otherwise I could be anywhere (once any chores were done - that's how we got spending money, did work at home or work for someone else like a paper run) and sometimes was 3 towns over, perhaps an hour's ride away.
My parents trusted me and taught me to be trustworthy. Taught me to go out by myself and look after myself.
We had sugar-rich drinks and fast food and the like, but they were a rare treat - even amongst the richer kids - not an every day item. We'd share a half-pint bottle of coke between 2 or 3 of us once a week, not expect to go through 3 or 4 litres of the stuff each every day.
Want to put it to the test? Walk outside on the next fine weekday and see how many kids walk or ride past your house, how many play in the street (if your street is quiet enough). Go to the local playground. Is it filled with playing kids? Or is the only sound the chirping of crickets? When I was young the playgrounds were full, the streets were playgrounds for those who could, and kids walked or cycled alone or in groups - always without parents. Can you spot that in your community today? Do they still walk/bike to school? Do they still go to the playgrounds on their own or in groups of friends?
It may not have changed where you live. It has where I live, and it has where I grew up. The thought of getting their arses off the couch has the fat little buggers panting and wheezing. The concept of being away from their devices causes them to have massive panic attacks. And social interaction? Forget it.
(At least more and more schools are getting over the "ban anything that might get them hurt" stage and getting back into the "get off your fat arse, get outside and play" stage)