Remember little Anthony Bars, the 4 year old starved and beaten to death in foster care? Wendy McElroy raises important questions about the growing power of child welfare agencies.  Her superb column comes from

Due to media and public outrage, the caseworker who recommended removing Anthony from an earlier, loving foster parent is facing charges. Denise Moore is accused of official misconduct and of falsifying reports in an adoption proceeding: misdemeanor offenses.

Sadly, Anthony is just one in a long list of children neglected or abused by Child Protective Services in state after state. In his case, the press is still pounding on why child welfare officials never disciplined Moore for her actions and cited state confidentiality laws at almost every question asked.

Emerging scandals and conflicts in Indiana and elsewhere should not be allowed to distract from more fundamental questions: When should a third party have the terrible right to separate a child from its parents? By what right do civil servants enter your home and threaten to remove your children if you do not answer accusations of abuse — often accusations made anonymously — to their satisfaction?

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