Vermont bill would ban cellphones for anyone under 21

A state senator in Vermont introduced legislation this week that would make it illegal for anyone under the age of 21 to use or possess a cellphone.

The bill, sponsored by state Sen. John Rodgers (D), says cellphones have been linked to loss of life among teenagers, from distracted driving to cyber bullying that results in suicides, the Barre Montpelier Times Argus reported Wednesday.

The bill text says: “The Internet and social media, accessed primarily through cell phones, are used to radicalize and recruit terrorists, fascists, and other extremists. Cell phones have often been used by mass shooters of younger ages for research on previous shootings.”

ADVERTISEMENT

Violation would result in a misdemeanor that is punishable by a maximum of a year behind bars and a $1,000 fine.

Rodgers, however, said he doesn't expect the measure to become law, adding that he introduced the bill to make a point.

Rodgers argued that the state legislature “seems bent on taking away our Second Amendment rights” and that based on the information in the bill, a cellphone is more dangerous than a gun.

The legislation reportedly says suicide and suicide prevention were discussed repeatedly when the state legislature passed a bill requiring a 24-hour waiting period before purchasing a firearm. Gov. Phil Scott (R) later vetoed the measure.

"I have no delusions that it’s going to pass," Rodgers said of his bill. "I wouldn’t probably vote for it myself."