Friday, December 16, 2005

Expanding the power of government (Verse 33)

Comes a report in the Washington Times today about anti-smoking zealots who are now pushing for government regulation of tobacco use IN PRIVATE HOMES. (You're damn right we are shouting!)

Satan masquerades as an angel of light and of course the new campaign is directed at protecting "the children."

Their efforts so far have contributed to regulations in three states -- Maine, Oklahoma and Vermont -- forbidding foster parents from smoking around children. Parental smoking also has become a critical point in some child-custody cases, including ones in Virginia and Maryland.

In a highly publicized Virginia case, a judge barred Caroline County resident Tamara Silvius from smoking around her children as a condition for child visitation.
No, sirree, we wouldn't want her children to stay in touch with the real mom, would we?
An appeals court upheld the ruling, but not before one judge raised questions about the extent to which a court should become involved in parental rights and whether certain behavior is harmful or simply not in a child's best interest.

Mrs. Silvius says she complied with the decision by altering her smoking habits. "My children know not to come around when I'm on the front porch with my morning coffee, tending to my cows or out in my garden, because I'm having a cigarette," she said.

Still, she thinks this was not a matter for the courts because it was not proven that she posed a risk to her children's health.
The issue is not health. It's not about smoking. It's about how far the "protective" reach of the law will eventually extend into our private lives.
The smoking-at-home issue also sparked debate about whether such rulings will lead courts to become involved in such matters as parents' making poor TV programming choices for their children.
The point exactly. Why should the government become the super-parent of every family, able to rescind privileges, monitor behavior patterns and exact punishments for non-compliance?
The nonprofit group Action on Smoking and Health is among the most outspoken on stopping parents from smoking around children.

"Children are the most vulnerable and the most defenseless victims of tobacco smoke,"Executive Director John F. Banzhaf III said. "They should be entitled to the same protection as adults."
Shouldn't that protection also include the right as free individuals to have a home independent of governmental intrusion at every level?

Ah, America! We hardly knew ye.


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