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Friday, 14 August 2009

The Law Killeth--and killeth--and killeth again.

The White Man has not been in any mood lately to blog about political matters. Nearly every day another e-mail arrives, duly certified as being from an unmonitored e-mail account at The White House. The thief sending the emails tries very hard to convince me that his plans to steal from me are all in my own best interests, but I remain unconvinced. As does he; soon it will be a crime not to gamble over my health. Sigh.

But at any rate, my keyboard has not yet been muzzled, and I take to cyberspace today to comment on yet another dead child, found strapped in a car on a hot day. Hardly a week goes by in the hot summer months without another such report, despite the fact that in some states it is now a crime to leave an infant strapped in an unmoving car. Of course it was already a crime to leave an infant unstrapped in a moving car, and that is the point of this blog.

All laws have consequences, and the consequences of a law are never fully foreseen at the time it is implemented. No one suspected that children would die in unmoving cars as a result of it being a crime to allow them to get hurt in a moving car, but that is what it appears has happened.

It is not easy to strap a child into an approved car seat; it's much easier to hold him on your lap. But the fact is, it's just plain safer for a child to be strapped in a car seat while the car is moving at a high rate of speed down the road. Just for safety's sake, most parents would want their infant securely buckled in while out on the open road.

But ah, the law doesn't allow parents to use their own judgment in such matters. A 5-minute stop-and-go drive to the grocery store 10 blocks away may necessitate spending another 5 minutes just buckling all the children in. And in many families' case, the laws now stipulate that every one of their children needs his own car seat--thus requiring a van for what in most countries of the world a compact car would more than suffice. Stopping at the store adds another 2-3 minutes unbuckling them all, then another 5 minutes getting them back in to go home.

Is it any wonder, then, that many parents prefer to leave their sleeping children strapped in the car while they run into the store quickly to buy something? I certainly do. And thus as an inevitable result of more and more draconian car seat laws (especially the one making it a crime to put an infant in the front seat where he could be killed by the mandatory air bag)--coupled with the wide availability of vehicular air conditioning and a paranoia over car theft--duly imprisoned infants continue to roast to death in their parents' cars.

Yet another unintended consequence from yet another series of laws "in our best interests." Sigh.


    Car seats cause lead poisoning in children

  2. Hey--those White House emails have stopped coming! Interesting.


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