Parental responsibilities. When you have a baby you are met with a whole list of them. Traditionally, parents have had the right to choose how to meet these responsibilities. Here are a few examples.
Responsibility: Feed your kids.
Right: I choose what my kids eat. At first, it’s either formula or breast milk. Later, no one is monitoring if I’m feeding them candy bars and potato chips for dinner or if my choice is all raw, organic fruits and veggies. It’s my parental right to choose what they are eating.
Right: Apartment, house, trailer or camper is your choice. From Washington to Florida, you choose where you want to raise your family. That’s another parental right.
Right: Expensive brand name or Walmart brand, buying the kids clothes new or from the Goodwill, as long as they have clothes, your good. No one cares what little Johnny is wearing.
Right: Public school, charter school, shit, you can even home school. That’s both your right and responsibility to determine what you feel is best for your child.
Responsibility: Protect your child.
Right: Well, if you live in some eastern states, parts of this are vanishing.
I know vaccinations are a hot button for many people. If kids should get them, how kids should get them, if they’re even safe. I usually ignore articles on vaccinations all together. When my kids were younger, I was ignorant of the controversy. I did no research. Now I’m more aware, but it doesn’t affect my family since they are pretty much vaccinated for everything under the sun.
This isn’t a vaccination issue though. It’s a parental rights issue. At a time when more and more parents are bucking the trend of immunizing kids, New York is the latest state forcing even more immunizations into children, following in the steps of New Jersey and Connecticut. In most states, doctors suggest kids get a flu shot, the parents decide if they want that immunization. New York just stepped up and said no more. They’ve taken that right away from parents. The new law that says all kids under 5 must get a flu vaccine to attend preschool or daycare.
Now, many states have that same law for most major vaccines (measles, mumps, rubella, the list goes on). The difference is, in many states parents are allowed to opt out of vaccinations based on philosophical or religious beliefs.
New York is saying that a parents philosophical beliefs don’t matter. I can’t just say it’s against my religion either. I have to have to provide documentation from a religious leader. If I’m not religious, but still don’t believe my kids should be injected with the vaccine every year, my beliefs simply don’t matter.
As a parent, I’m outraged. I don’t live in these eastern states, and my kids are over 5, so you may wonder why I’m concerned. I’m not anti flu shot or pro flu shot, but I believe parental rights should be protected. I’m pro parent research to make an informed decision. I’m pro parents being able to at least consider the link in Europe a few years ago between Narcolepsy and the flu shot they were using, or that flu shots are revamped every year. Parents should have the right to take all available information into consideration, and should be allowed to make an informed decision on if they want that “protection” injected into their kids.
If they are already doing it in 3 states, where will they do it next? If they are taking away parental rights with the flu shot, what will they do it with next? Why aren’t my philosophical beliefs and parental rights “freedoms” that are protected as fiercely as my freedom of religion? I take my responsibility as a parent seriously, but I expect to have all the rights that go along with those responsibilities. I don’t expect to slowly have those rights stripped away by lawmakers who think they know best.