While no one is advocating children be left alone in a motor vehicle, these decisions should be left to the parent, not the state. Parents are already charged by law with the safe rearing of their children. If something were to happen to an unattended child, the parent could under existing state law be held accountable. Why do we need more than this?
In the article "More Nanny State" Paul Mero of Utah's Sutherland Institute responds to the proposed McAdams bill by pointing out that leaving a child unattended doesn't necessarily harm the child, or cause a crime:
In his blog today "Legislating Away Your Liberties", Connor Boyack would have us take a serious look at the incessant cry for expanding legislation:
And then there’s this sentence from the [SL Tribune] article: “McAdams said the problem with using existing child-abuse laws in Utah to prosecute people is a requirement in the law to prove that the child was harmed.” Imagine that – someone has to prove that a crime has been committed to be able to prosecute the crime! (Mero Moment, Jan 4 2011)
Connor continues that the solution is to simplify law and thus liberate the citizenry:
The constant wave of new laws does not reflect a productive legislature which takes seriously the powers entrusted to it by the people. Rather, it reflects a messy patchwork of legislative “fixes” for a wide variety of ever-present problems that distract and emotionally captivate those who cry out “there ought to be a law!” (Connor's Conundrums, Jan 24, 2011)
Rather than legislating, start repealing. Instead of focusing inordinate amount of time on generally unimportant statutory tweaks, look for ways to restore lost liberty by removing entire chunks of the Utah Code. In short, we need less laws, not more. (Ibid.)I couldn't have put it any better than Connor. Perhaps we need a 45-day de-legislation process following our current session to get rid of all the micromanaging laws we have encumbered ourselves with. We certainly don't need a micromanaging Mom bill such as McAdams plans to unleash this session.
++++ Update 1/27: McAdams' bill now has life as S.B. 124