Show Summary Details

Page of

PRINTED FROM OXFORD HANDBOOKS ONLINE (www.oxfordhandbooks.com). © Oxford University Press, 2018. All Rights Reserved. Under the terms of the licence agreement, an individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a title in Oxford Handbooks Online for personal use (for details see Privacy Policy and Legal Notice).

date: 23 October 2019

Abstract and Keywords

The laws that protect children apply to everyone, religious and nonreligious. Too often, however, parents claim exemptions from child-protecting laws in the name of religious freedom beyond that which is required by the First Amendment. They refuse to vaccinate or to secure medical care for injury or illness, or they harm, abuse, or even kill their children, claiming they are doing so for protected religious reasons. This chapter argues that all children need full protection of the laws prohibiting abuse and neglect, and all parents must obey them. Children are no longer property; they are persons, and the laws that affect them should prevent harm, not cause it. Children’s health, safety, and well-being are rights that should be protected even against parents who harm them.

Keywords: children, First Amendment, religious freedom, exemptions, vaccinations, children’s health, free exercise of religion, medical neglect, child abuse, parents’ rights

Access to the complete content on Oxford Handbooks Online requires a subscription or purchase. Public users are able to search the site and view the abstracts and keywords for each book and chapter without a subscription.

Please subscribe or login to access full text content.

If you have purchased a print title that contains an access token, please see the token for information about how to register your code.

For questions on access or troubleshooting, please check our FAQs, and if you can''t find the answer there, please contact us.