I’ve just heard the latest on Kerry Robertson and the thought of social services virtually wrenching her baby from it’s mothers breast leads me feeling numb. I’m not one for trial by newspaper, especially where the Daily Mail is concerned, but Fife council’s behaviour has all the hallmarks of our current statistic approach to child protection. Compassion is gone, trust in parents is gone, the state knows what is best for us all. We have been fed a lie through politicians and bureaucrats whispering in our ears, demonising those that oppose then and grabbing ever more power for the state by instilling a sense of fear into the population. Through fear they can control, as they tell us how they will keep us safe.
I’m not saying there isn’t an argument for the state taking a role in child protection. I simply think it has reached a stage where they are doing more harm than good. The approach is typified by Graham Badman’s recent comment made to the house of commons committee debating plans to force me to register my children as I can’t be trusted to raise them:
“You ask me why the urgency. My urgency would be very simple: if, by going forward with a registration scheme, we safeguard the life of just one child, it is worth it.”
What a load of tosh. If your cognitive abilities are so poor that you can’t understand that government should never make policy on that basis then you shouldn’t be within 100 yearsd of parliament. The fact they let him in the door is evidence of the insanity of the system. Your urgency isn’t simple, your argument is simplistic.
And yet, this phrase has been trotted out time after time, and many people simply nod, hypnotized. Think it through people. You have to think beyond the emotive issue of the life you “safeguard” and look at the bigger picture. Does the action put a life somewhere else at risk? What impact does it have on people’s freedom to participate fully in society, to express themselves, to hold differing views? What impact will it have on the quality of life other children can expect?
Trying to distil a highly complex issue down to a crappy little soundbite which tugs at people’s heart strings is little short of evil.
Our system must stop trying to convince us there is greater danger than there really is, it must stop trying to eradicate any line of thinking which does not accord with the PTB’s ideology, must start trusting, and must be prepared to take some risks. Risk that things will go wrong. Risks that people will get hurt, physically or emotionally. Risks that people will die. We don’t live in a perfect world, bad things will happen. Government cannot protect us. Time to give back more trust, more faith in individuals, in parents, in families, in society, let’s take the risk.
Image courtesy of the Department for Children, Schools and Families and used under the terms of a creative commons license