The English Mosquito

Last modified on September 28th, 2013

There is a relatively new device called “The English Mosquito” which is being used in England to control where young people typically gather.

The device works by emitting high-frequency sounds that only young people (typically younger than 20 years of age) have the ability to hear. Because it’s fairly annoying, it causes young people to eventually leave a particular area. Human right’s groups are obviously unimpressed with the blanket use of the devices:

Aynsley-Green said about 3,500 of the devices are in use across England to split up gatherings of youth in areas such as parks and shops.

“These devices are indiscriminate and target all children and young people, including babies, regardless of whether they are behaving or misbehaving,” he added.

Apparently some people feel that having young people gather in a place like a park is a huge problem. I mean, it’s quite possible they might pull out a soccer ball or a frisbee and start playing, and who knows what else.

[..] Shami Chakrabarti, director of the human rights group Liberty, said: “What type of society uses a low-level sonic weapon on its children? Imagine the outcry if a device was introduced that caused blanket discomfort to people of one race or gender, rather than to our kids.

“The Mosquito has no place in a country that values its children and seeks to instill them with dignity and respect.”

And while most of the groups that are resisting these devices are in the UK, the availability of these items for sale on the Internet is already worrying individuals in other neighbouring countries:

John Loughton, from Pilton, chair of the Scottish Youth Parliament and recent Big Brother winner, said: “If ever there was a device which highlighted the terrible way in which young people are treated in society then this is it. Since when did standing in an area become a crime?”

I obviously think that the use of a device like this is complete lunacy, but what I’m fairly surprised with is how every article I’ve read justifies the device by saying it helps eliminate “anti-social behaviour” by driving kids away. Wouldn’t kids striving to hang out together in groups constitute social behaviour? I mean, when I was a kid it was cool to get together with our friends in parks, parking lots and even in front of the local 7-11. We weren’t looking to create trouble, we were just looking for something to do.

If kids really are causing problems then pick up the phone and call the police — don’t discriminate against all kids with a device like this simply because you’re afraid of a few bad apples.