Teens Take It to Court: Young People Who Challenged the Law—and Changed Your Life
By: Tom Jacobs
Reviewed By: Jon Henshaw, M.A.
Young people don't have the same rights as adults do. For example, they can't vote, and they aren't afforded the same liberties as adults. But as Judge Tom Jacobs discovered, that doesn't mean they can't influence the laws that affect them.
Jacobs, who served as Arizona Assistant Attorney General, a Superior Court Juvenile Division judge, and a Family Court judge, became fascinated with teenagers who challenged established laws, and brought many of their cases all the way to the Supreme Court. Many of the decisions that were made from those challenges changed the way the law views teens and their rights. And many of those cases addressed hot-button issues that continue to be controversial:
- Do parents have the right to control their teen's education?
- What can teens do if they are sexually harassed at school or work?
- Do teens have to submit to drug testing to play on the school team?
- Can parents search their teenager's room?
- Can a teen be kicked out of school for having green hair?
- Can teens be required to pray?
Teenagers and children will find each case very interesting. Jacobs introduces each situation with a issue statement, followed by the facts of the case and important questions that should be asked, and then provides the final ruling. Teens can dig even deeper into the issues, because he provides related cases for each ruling.
Teens Take It to Court is designed for both personal use and for the classroom. I could easily see any Civics teacher using this book as a catalyst to discuss teen rights, and how our judiciary system works. As with most books published by Free Spirit Publishing, Teens Take It to Court is very well formatted for its core audience. It's an interesting read for teenagers who are interested in understanding how and why certain laws exist, and what they can do about it.