The premise of his article is that the legitimacy of professional licensing is well-established and the practice should be expanded to parents.
While one could argue that it doesn’t follow from professional licensing being applied to various professions that it should be expanded to parents, this article is really illustrative of why libertarians should oppose professional licensure outright.
It’s a slippery slope from licensing florists to licensing parents, be it for procreation or raising children after the fact.2 Once you concede the legitimacy of some licensing, then more outrageous nonsense inevitably follows.
- Anytime you see the words “applied philosophy” or “applied ethics” together and the article isn’t written by a libertarian, it is safe to assume it contains some nonsense like environmental socialism, Big Brother or nanny statist stuff like this or national health care or other social-welfare programs, calls for government to make businesses more socially responsible, and so on. [↩]
- No offense, my home state of Louisiana. Why we need to be protected from bad floral arrangements is beyond me. What professional licensing is really about is restricting competition in order to protect existing players in the market; which, not incidentally, is what the state-granted monopoly privilege called intellectual property is about too. Licensing procreation will effectively be a eugenics program. And requiring a license to parent will amount to a massive social engineering project controlled by the politically-connected few. [↩]