Don’t Tell Me What To Do!

What is government’s role in dictating to parents how to parent?

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Comments (7)

(5) Anonymous, September 4, 2015 7:42 PM

I'm not so sure

You failed to mention whether the (11 year old) child was left in a LOCKED car, if the windows were opened or not, or, even if the mother left the motor running so the air conditioning would keep the child cool.
It is unfortunate, that in this TERRIBLE world we live in we have to worry and worry, a crazy kidnapper/rapist/ serial killer could take our children.. You can't trust anyone anymore. There are very few places where children can be left outside to play by themselves. However, calling the police and having the mother arrested is unacceptable. This is the mother's problem and no one elses. If something happens to the child it is the MOTHER who has to deal with it. People do make mistakes and we can't have strangers getting us into trouble.

(4) SusanE, August 24, 2014 3:51 AM

In My World

There are times when government should interfere every time. That is when parents drink or use drugs. No one can parent if he is under the influence. The child is in danger. ~~~~ A 9 or 11 year old alone in a car in a parking lot is as safe as a 9 or 11 year old alone in a mall or in a movie or alone in a parking lot. I think the parent lacked common sense.

(3) Vlad Seder, August 20, 2014 1:59 PM

Minor issue

Government abuse of power manifested in its intrusion in parent/child relationships is really a "minor issue" in comparison with the whole comprehensive government micromanagement of our personal lives. This country was based on the concept opposing to the European model of all-powerful, all-knowing, every-present government. The Founders believed that the "all-powerful, all-knowing, every-present" idea is applicable only to G-d, that individual people are fully competent to govern their personal lives, able to do it most effectively and should have freedom to do it. Sadly, it took less than 240 years to to destroy this country's belief in these founding principles and to turn the prevalent public opinion to favor the European model and accept the belief in "all-powerful, all-knowing, every-present" government as its new religion.

(2) Dr Eliana Freydel Miller (BDS Syd), August 20, 2014 11:22 AM

Dear Rabbi, I love all your videos, BUT...


Dear Rabbi, I love all your videos, BUT...I don't think kids of the age you mentioned e.g. 9 yrs or similar should be out of SIGHT of the parent or other responsible adult.
This would have avoided all the sexual interference with children, and kidnapping and other missing persons reports.
Of course the parents must be educated, and in emergency situations or ones with a valid reason, like going to work and allowing children of intelligence to look after themselves in a locked, secure house with instructions in case of emergency, and how to handle visitors or phone calls, then the parent should be allowed to leave a child unsupervised, but overall I do not think a law that does not allow a parent to leave children in potentially dangerous situations in any way infringes any "right". But I still love all your videos.

(1) Anonymous, August 17, 2014 12:46 PM

Rabbi--I know that you are also a social worker and I am surprised that you left one sentence out of your otherwise thoughtful blog. We always need to ask ourselves about minimum degree of care. Is the child well fed? Is he/she adequately clothed according to the weather? Is that child getting proper medical care? Is the child being educated? If one or more of these questions cannot be answered in the affirmative, then there is definitely a problem which needs to be addressed. However, if these questions CAN be answered in the affirmative then I would agree with what you have said. Sadly, there is a lot of genuine child abuse and neglect in our society. Let's not get caught up in minor disagreements which most likely will NOT hurt our children.

Anonymous, August 19, 2014 10:43 PM

Intrusive Government Isn't a Minor Disagreement!!

Yashir Koach, Rabbi! Thank you for standing up for individual freedom and responsibility. The comment above which, if I understand correctly, suggests that this sort of government intrusiveness is a minor disagreement and won't hurt "our children." THE DESTRUCTION OF OUR FREEDOM, OUR RIGHTS AS CITIZENS RATHER THAN SUBJECTS, AND OUR VERY REPUBLIC IS AT STAKE WHEN ARROGANT BUREAUCRATS THINK THEY KNOW BETTER THAN WE DO AND CAN PROSECUTE US IF WE DISAGREE.

WE ARE LIVING IN TERRIFYING TIMES FOR LIBERTY. THE JEWISH PEOPLE HAVE FLOURISHED IN A SYSTEM OF RELIGIOUS PLURALISM, AND THE RULE OF LAW. JEWS, CHRISTIANS AND ALL GOOD PEOPLE ARE AT GREAT RISK WHEN TYRANNY GOES UNCHECKED.

AND THAT, MY DEAR ANONYMOUS, STANDS TO HURT OUR CHILDREN MOST.

Anonymous, August 20, 2014 11:02 AM

Making myself more clear

To the commenter just below me--I see I was not very clear. If the minimum degree of care HAS been met, then I do not believe we need to call the authorities simply because we disagree with what a parent chooses to do. If a parent uses a pediatrician that I think is incompetent, should I call the authorities? Of course not!! However, if a child has not been getting ANY proper medical care then I certainly WOULD want to report this to the child welfare authorities. I hope this example clarifies what I meant to say.

 

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