Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Children's Rights

Why it is said that circumcision violates a child's rights?
Circumcision on a healthy child is amputation of a healthy body part. You have to put it in perspective of equality, not normality. That means you ask: could you amputate any other healthy part? (no, they have the right to keep their healthy parts) Could you amputate that same part from a man or a woman without asking [yes women have foreskin]? (no, they have the right to their autonomy) In order to treat the child like an equal, you have to imagine that he is the grown man he will become.

Why is it said that formula feeding violates a child's rights?
The question is what a parent is obligated to provide. When you choose to have a child, you are willingly obligating yourself to protecting all of the child's rights, and providing for all of its needs. If you have a sweater and it's cold out, you are obligated to give the sweater to your child. If you choose to give them a thin t-shirt, you have taken care of a need, but only halfway. This is sort of a murky issue, because people choose to believe that the t-shirt (formula) is just as good as the sweater (breast milk). Will your child die?  Probably not, but the measure of harm isn't the deciding factor. He does have the RIGHT to the best and most appropriate thing you have available.

Why is it said that spanking violates a child's rights?
Any kind of hitting is violence, and violence violates the human right of autonomy. The motive of the hitter cannot change that. This is another issue of equality vs familiarity, so we have to ask: is it appropriate to hit your spouse when they don't do what you say? (no, violence violates their human right) Would you allow your teacher or parent to hit you? (You too, appreciate nonviolence) If I, we or they have a right, I, we and they have it when I, we and they are children.

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