So often we here statements along the lines of “but if one less child dies…” or “if we can stop one child being abused…”. Indeed the government cliche of the moment is “Every Child Matters”. The trouble is, in a simplistic way I guess most of tend to agree with these sorts of statements. There is a problem in that statement though – the word “simplistic”. These are not simple matters, they are complex, and cannot be boiled down to “Every Child Matters – how could you possibly disagree?” The dangers of children being abused or endangered in some form of another need to be weighed against the risk of a meddling nanny state really screwing our kids up, or risk aversion that leaves our children soulless and with no sense of adventure or enquiry.
And please dear reader, do not forget, the state has a history of acting in loco parentis. It is utterly useless at it. So I’ll keep looking after my kids, and ask the government to stick to what it’s good at. As soon as I find out what that is.