There is an article today in the media about a mother who left her 2 year old child sleeping while she walked with another child and young friend to place coins in a charity bucket. It was sleeting and the child was sleeping. She did not want to disturb her and take her out into the inclement weather. She set the flashers on in her car, locked the doors and set the alarm. She then walked the 10 yards to the bucket, took a few pictures of the kids and returned to her car. There is more to the story but the bottom line is that she is now awaiting trial. She could receive up to a year in jail and a $2500 fine. How much is too much? At what point does the government trying to prevent potential dangers or accidents infringe upon parental rights? How much control is too much control? Accidents happen everyday. On the roads, in homes, at work. One argument used in this case is that kids can choke in cars when the parents aren't there. No argument there. They are right, they can. However, horrible accidents can happen right in front of us when we are watching. Would I have chosen differently from this mother I don't know. I wasn't there. What I do know is that there seems to be a horrible injustice occuring with this situation.
I face this all the time with my own children. I want to control their environment so that nothing bad happens. Every event and happening. The reality is that I can never be completely in control. At some point I have to let go and trust God with them. Does that mean bad things will never happen? Of course not. Bad things do. Does is mean that I stop protecting them? Nope. Somewhere I need to find a balance between letting what will be will be and smothering every breath they take. I think there is a middle ground of healthy protection and calculated risk. This world get scarier all the time and we need to change the way we do things constantly. At the same time we need to not live in fear.
If the details that I have read in the case are true, I hope the case is dismissed. It is an abuse of power and is unacceptable.
Now if you'll excuse me I need to climb down from my soap box and start some laundry.