CITY HALL – Parents, do you find raising a child to be a little testy? Local government feels your job ought to be and will soon assess your skills before you are allowed to join the ranks of the world’s mothers and fathers.
In a landmark decision on Tuesday (10-5), the Los Angeles City Council voted in favor of requiring that expecting legal guardians pass a test and obtain a license that proves they are worthy of breeding and rearing a human being from infancy to adulthood.
According to the first-of-its-kind law, prospective mothers and fathers in Los Angeles must pass the so-called ‘paternity test’ that certifies their ability to raise offspring based on the confines of the new city code, which has been developed in conjunction with a recent policy report issued by the WOW Corporation, a think tank, as well as community input.
The law is intended to be a first step in a comprehensive policy to address increasing tax burdens placed in recent years on public schools, hospitals and social service centers to support under-educated, under-insured and/or impoverished children throughout the Southland, whose parents are often unable to provide ‘fairly and reasonably’ for their progeny, according to the WOW report.
The cost for the parent license itself, not including fees and services associated with obtaining it, will be $500, according to city representatives. Refusal to obtain a license would result in scaled fines for would-be parents that range from $1,000 to $15,000, depending on the number and severity of offenses.
The law will become effective Dec. 1, 2018 after months of wrangling at City Hall. Approval of the law was met with cheers by supporters, who believe that parenting ought to require qualifications to ensure parents are well-suited for the job.
“This is awesome news for L.A.,” said Bob Rosemesh, a councilman who represents the Westside and helped spearhead the legislation. “We insist people have a license in order to drive a car, own a business or get married, but when it comes to something as sacred and important as parenting, anyone can do so as long as they have functioning genitalia and a willing sexual partner. No longer will parents proceed with impunity for any long-term negative consequences their decisions to procreate cause themselves, their loved ones and society at large.”
Criteria to be approved for the new parent license include:
– Prospective parents cannot have been convicted of a felony five years prior to the child’s expected due date.
– Prospective parents must obtain a license for their first expected child and every child expected to be brought into their family thereafter.
– Prospective parents must allow the expected child to be screened for 500 genetic pre-dispositions, which if confirmed positive could result in disabilities, disorders and/or diseases following birth that range from alcoholism, cancer, diabetes, even halitosis. If any serious conditions develop, prospective parents might be required to pay higher taxes to help support the child.
– Prospective parents must demonstrate financial security that includes a $10,000 deposit to be matched by local government, all of which is to be invested into a fund that will be used to support the expected child’s education and preparation for an occupation once the child becomes an adult.
– Prospective parents must agree to vaccinate the expected child of all diseases currently required by law by the time the child is of school age.
– Prospective parents must complete thirty hours of a course that will test their competency in important parental matters such as changing a diaper, calming a hysterical child, guiding an adolescent through puberty, even managing teenage angst, swearing to instill in their future young adult the civic values of pride and excellence in regards to their participation within a democratic capitalistic society.
Many of those who oppose the law say they do so on the basis of its discriminatory nature.
“This is a terrible day for L.A.,” said Olivia Estaban, a councilwoman who represents the Eastside and voted against the parent license. “Even in this age, we continue to demonize those poor and disenfranchised who often have come to this country in search of a better life. Why are adults who have made mistakes in the past barred from becoming parents in the present? Why are babies needing to demonstrate they are mentally and physically fit to live in this world before they are welcomed to breathe in it? Why is money something this law insists parents have, but qualities such as love and respect for each other, or even the stability of marriage, not required when bringing life into this world? As it stands with the new parent license, the government is taking the biggest job a human being can have and turning it into a platform for an elitist and racist policy masked by pseudo-science. I have no doubt this law will be challenged and overturned in the courts for failing to uphold the civil rights of parents.”
Kaelin Case, Sept. 11, 2018
Categories: Environment & Health