April 27 2012
Big Brother Blinks: Now Legal For Farm Kids To Do Chores
You can do your chores, kids.
After the Obama Department of Labor’s proposed rules to regulate chores of kids on family farms became an internet sensation, the DOL has decided it doesn’t have the flexibility just now to impose the draconian new regs.
The Daily Caller, which broke the original story, reports:
Under pressure from farming advocates in rural communities, and following a report by The Daily Caller, the Obama administration withdrew a proposed rule Thursday that would have applied child labor laws to family farms.
Critics complained that the regulation would have drastically changed the extent to which children could work on farms owned by family members. The U.S. Department of Labor cited public outcry as the reason for withdrawing the rule.
“The decision to withdraw this rule — including provisions to define the ‘parental exemption’ — was made in response to thousands of comments expressing concerns about the effect of the proposed rules on small family-owned farms,” the Department said in a press release Thursday evening. “To be clear, this regulation will not be pursued for the duration of the Obama administration.”
The rule would have dramatically changed what types of chores children under the age of 16 could perform on and around American farms. It would have prohibited them from working with tobacco, operating almost all types of power-driven equipment and being employed to work with raw farm materials.
Said Senator John Thune, Republican from South Dakota:
“The Obama DOL’s youth farm labor rule is a perfect example of what happens when government gets too big.”
But you’ve got to love the DOL’s rule that kids can’t work with tobacco products—I think they are allowed to do anything on wind farms, though. Indeed, the regs reek with condescension. An editorial from a rural news service, written before the regs were withdrawn, pretty much says it all:
This new Department of Labor regulation gives us a clear sense of how Obama and his team see us in rural areas of the country. They think we abuse our children by making them do farm chores, for one thing. This is micromanaging of a culture's traditions, folks. Clearly, Obama and friends believe they have to save our children from farm families.
And here we thought that we were instilling a little discipline, work ethic, and responsibility for one's family through these chores.
Here's what we want to know about these eggheads in the Obama Administration's Department of Labor: was there some kind of child abuse epidemic going on across the country that the rest of us missed? Were increasing numbers of farm kids coming to school exhausted or otherwise sick from excessive work on the family farm?
If not, then the Labor Department is far out of line in suggesting that a few farm chores equals child abuse. Our Congressional representatives should jointly call for the Labor Secretary's ouster if this regulation is released.
We are tired of the constant insults from our own federal government, and we're going to manifest our sentiments at the ballot box this November.
Does the Obama administration really think rural parents are too stupid to be aware of basic safety for their offspring? I’m afraid the answer is…yes.