Obama’s ‘Animal Farm’

There is a current proposal from the Obama administration that would prevent children from being able to do farm chores. It is an application of child-labor laws that prohibits children under 18 from typical farm work “in the storing, marketing and transporting of farm product raw materials” and makes places like “country grain elevators, grain bins, silos, feed lots, stockyards, livestock exchanges and livestock auctions” off limits for children.

There certainly is a backlash against this proposal, even from the children currently doing chores on farms. The repercussions to 4-H and FFA programs would be considerable and family farms would suffer. However, the most damaging aspect could end up being the loss of work ethic that many children learn from doing farm chores.

It is not surprising that Obama may not appreciate the importance of that work ethic. Government employment does not require it and does not cultivate it. It is an enemy of socialism and government dependence. It is toxic to a union-dictated environment. It breeds independence and self-respect. It is not a requirement for a community organizing position.

This farm proposal coincides with Obama’s current campaign focus on relieving the burden of college students’ loans, dovetailing well with his overall attempt to win the youth vote. That may seem cynical, but everything is political for Obama. After all, he’s never held what many would consider a real job, and farm work is certainly real work. Politics is all he really knows and the satisfaction that a hard day of physical labor can bring may be an entirely alien concept to him.

David J. Hentosh

UPDATE: Obama takes back proposal after complaints.

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