Rand Paul’s claim that vaccinations shouldn’t be mandatory was disturbing enough, when you also consider he claims to have played a doctor in real life. While claiming there is a nexus between vaccinations and developmental illnesses, Rand Paul said something else that flew under the media’s radar. He said that children are their parents’ property, during an interview with CNBC’s “Closing Bell”. His exact words were: “The state doesn’t own your children, parents own the children.”
See it for yourself here.
Certainly, the focus was on Paul’s position on vaccinations, yet the fact that he said that parents “own” their children has haunted my mind since I first heard the quote.
How do these crackpots reconcile their belief system with the notion that one human being owns another? After all, what could be more repulsive to people who purport to love freedom than stripping a human being of their humanity and the freedom that entails?
Nothing about it makes sense, but Rand Paul’s assertion that children are property provides yet another confirmation of the sociopathic nature of the far right’s ideology. When Murray Rothbird wrote about rights and freedom in The Ethics of Liberty, he asserted that “no man can have a ‘right’ to compel someone to do a positive act.” He goes on to apply this to parents and children.
Applying our theory to parents and children, this means that a parent does not have the right to aggress against his children, but also that the parent should not have a legal obligation to feed, clothe, or educate his children, since such obligations would entail positive acts coerced upon the parent and depriving the parent of his rights.
As a matter of law, the U.S. rejected the claim that children are property back in 1874, when, according to the legal dictionary, a badly beaten girl, Mary Ellen, was recognized as a victim of child abuse.
When it comes down to it, this ties in with the heart of the Republican Party’s “pro-life” until birth way of thinking. Big government must mandate woman to complete a pregnancy even if the pregnancy is the result of rape or incest and even if it could mean death for the woman because the unborn fetus is a person. However, once that person is born, they become property and as such, parents should not have a legal obligation to feed, clothe, educate or vaccinate them. The good news is the property child regains their human status should they survive to adulthood.
Rand Paul asserts that vaccinations should be voluntary because it’s about the parents freedom to do what they want with their property. Except, even by the twisted logic of Murray Rothbird, Rand Paul and the anti-vaccination crowd is wrong because Rothbird also said. “Thus, we may say that a man has a right to his property (i.e., a right not to have his property invaded).“
In other words, once a parent “freely chooses” against vaccination and should their child become a carrier of a highly contagious disease like the measles, they are in fact infringing on the rights of others, be they parents who also view their children as property, or parents who recognize that children are also human beings. Even under “libertarian” thinking where rights are a bad thing and compelling an individual to perform a positive act is tyranny, the freedom of one individual ceases the moment it steps on the freedom of another.
Of course, the far right has a tendency to cherry pick be it data, facts or quotes by people who don’t share their views. In this case, they are cherry picking their own ideology in the name of advancing the “freedom” of one person to put other people’s lives at risk.
In reality, this isn’t about freedom and it never was. The anti-vaccination crowd is playing the freedom card because of fears they have based on a debunked and fraudulent “study” by a now former doctor. The reality is there is nothing more repugnant than someone who claims their “freedom” to neglect their child’s health, takes precedence over the health and, in some cases, lives of other children and adults.