Friday, December 21, 2012


We have academically agreed that both state and family have roles and bear responsibility. What is the appropriate role of family within a free and democratic society? What is the appropriate role of the government with respect to families? The questions are multi-faceted because of our numerous divisions of governance, local, federal and provincial, and our legal systems and law enforcement.

Tensions subsist within our government and the sectors that comprise it when it comes to converting theory into practice. The discussions surrounding these questions has become increasingly louder with each questionable and contested administration of government intervention into family affairs.

In most cases, families function effectively and never require any outside attention. In a minority of families, children become vulnerable, are disadvantaged, neglected, even abused by custodial caregivers. These innocent lives need to be protected by our government agencies mandated with this responsibility. However, and please catch the specific verbs that I use next, our governments and their administrative organizations should never ‘usurp’ the family’s natural, inherent and appropriate role. Instead the state should ‘facilitate’ the operation of the family.

This protection of the innocents is so important that it has become the internationally celebrated cause leading to the fruition of a child-centred legal system. Parental liberties have been put into jeopardy in numerous jurisdictions. At times agencies charged with child protection find it easier to expedite removals of children than to facilitate, enable, educate and empower parents to more effectively care for their own children. A praiseworthy focus on the rights of the child has become so prevailing that it actually thieves the rights of some children to their biological families. Bureaucratic and judicial wheels turn so slowly that human compassion and understanding and civil liberties are squeezed out of a judicious solution. 

Our government must be alerted to the endangerment of family independence. Citizens must not surrender the family’s proper role without a conscientious defense. Protect parental liberty.

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