Journal of Applied Philosophy 27 (4):327-343 (2010)

Authors
Hugh LaFollette
University of South Florida St. Petersburg
Abstract
Although systems for licensing professionals are far from perfect, and their problems and costs should not be ignored, they are justified as a necessary means of protecting innocent people's vital interests. Licensing defends patients from inept doctors, pharmacists, and physical therapists; it protects clients from unqualified lawyers. We should protect people who are highly vulnerable to those who are supposed to serve them, those with whom they have a special relationship. Requiring professionals to be licensed is the most plausible way of doing that. Given the overwhelming support for the licensing of these professionals, I find it odd that so many people categorically reject proposals to license parents. Although the relationship between a parent and her children is different in some respects, it is also relevantly similar to that between a professional and those she serves. To defend these claims, I show how and why the rationale for licensing parents parallels the rational for licensing professionals. I then ask whether such a program could be justifiably implemented. Finally, I describe and reject what I see as the flawed view of the relationship between parents and their children
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DOI 10.1111/j.1468-5930.2010.00497.x
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Licensing Parents to Protect Our Children?Jurgen De Wispelaere & Daniel Weinstock - 2012 - Ethics and Social Welfare 6 (2):195-205.

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