Advertise Here

A Matter Of Opinion

Our kids, our business — my question

How willing is our culture to take steps necessary to prevent child abuse? Sterilization?
I have to confess that the daily stories we’re seeing about the vulnerability of kids are largely familiar. We’ve heard most of them before — a number of times.
We also know that numerous government and non-profit agencies are working earnestly on prevention and intervention. Yet they can do only so much.
People who work with small children from dysfunctional homes — teachers, counselors, social workers, law enforcement officers — can point to families where child abuse and neglect are a pattern, where nothing has been shown to work and where the pregnancies keep coming.
If we balance the right of a child to be raised in a healthy environment against the right of a parent to pursue happiness between the sheets, why are we so reluctant to promote sterilization of demonstrably unfit parents?
I’m talking about extreme cases here, but I expect there will be those who are gasping, even now. One of the first words they are likely to utter once they regain the ability to speak will be “fascist.”
But consider: We sentence child molesters to prison, then, when the sentence has been served, we require them to register the rest of their lives. We do that, even though they have paid the prescribed penalty, because of what we know they are likely to do in the future. A serial rapist like Kevin Coe (who ultimately was convicted of only one rape) can even be returned to prison after serving his full term.
In extreme cases where parents have made it clear that future children will be subject to abuse or neglect, why shouldn’t the law require sterilization — fathers as well as mothers?

Please keep it civil. Don't post comments that are obscene, defamatory, threatening, off-topic, an infringement of copyright or an invasion of privacy. Read our forum standards and community guidelines.

You must be logged in to post comments. Please log in here or click the comment box below for options.

comments powered by Disqus
« Back to A Matter Of Opinion

Get blog updates by email

About this blog

A Matter of Opinion is really a matter of many opinions — those held by the people responsible for the opinion pages of The Spokesman-Review ... and yours. Check in regularly to follow the discussion and help keep it lively.

Joust offline!

We welcome letters to the editor (all are subject to editing). Letters can be sent to:

Search this blog
Subscribe to this blog
Advertise Here