New Jersey child protection officials removed 3-year-old Adolf Hitler Campbell and his two baby sisters from their home. The children and their parents made news last month when employees at a supermarket refused to put the boy’s name on a cake for his third birthday. A spokeswoman for the state's child welfare office said the agency gets involved only in cases of alleged abuse or neglect. “We would never remove a child simply based on their name,” she said. (ABC News)
What the commentators said
The state says it didn’t remove young Hitler because of his name, said Allahpundit in Hot Air, but there’s reason to be skeptical. Child welfare workers had already warned the children’s dad, Heath Campbell, to remove swastika’s from the family car to avoid endangering the kids. “If the fear is that the Campbells' politics had made them so unpopular" it put the children's lives at risk, then the state can "swoop in and 'rescue' any child" whose parents have controversial beliefs.
As a rule, it's wrong to remove children from a home over the parents' political beliefs, said Michael Tomasky in Britain's The Guardian. And it's true that surrounding your babies with Nazi symbols is different from denying them food, "but I think in this particular case most of us can agree that removing children from an atmosphere of obvious poison is probably a good thing."
That's an understatement, said Don Surber in West Virginia's Daily Mail. The social workers who stepped in to protect these kids are "real heroes." Nazism is a sickness, not a political belief. "Calling kids such terrible names" is abuse, and it's "enough for me to denounce this couple as unfit parents."
THE WEEK'S AUDIOPHILE PODCASTS: LISTEN SMARTER
- The mystery behind China's aggressive push into space
- Here's the schedule very successful people follow every day
- How the battle for religious freedom became a nonsensical free-for-all
- The best places to find love — and lust — according to science
- What would a U.S.-Russia war look like?
- 10 things you need to know today: July 30, 2014
- What religious traditionalists can teach us about sex
- Pay yourself first: The habit that can help you build wealth
- 7 grammar rules you really should pay attention to
- The 5 best and worst states for a well-lived life
Subscribe to the Week