A Shocking New Attempt To Undermine Parents – Could It Happen To You?

We have seen more intrusive government in recent decades, with the left pushing to infringe on our constitutional and God-given human rights.

The breakdown of our system of government — at all levels — is of utmost concern to parents who work hard every day to preserve our system of values and traditions for our children’s future.

We may like to think that our authority as parents will not be infringed upon, that we may be left alone to raise them as we see fit – but one shocking story recently came to light that should frighten every American parent.

Imagine receiving a visit from your local Child Protective Services agent, demanding to enter your home and investigate an accusation of neglect involving your child.

The complaint? You missed your child’s six-month cleaning at your local dentist’s office.

Sound absurd? One Pennsylvania dental office is threatening just that, sending letters to patients to let them know they can be reported to the state for neglect if their child misses an appointment.

Activist Mommy reported:

A letter sent by a pediatric dental clinic in Pennsylvania recently underscored just how much faith people put in the government and how little faith they put in parents to make sound choices for their children. To make matters worse, this clinic seemed to be using a sickening fear tactic to get more business: threatening reports of neglect if patients were not kept up to date on their checkups.

The letter, sent by Smiles 4 Keeps in Scranton, PA, states: “Failure to bring your child for dental care is considered neglect. Smiles 4 Keeps has not reported your child’s outstanding dental treatment as of yet,” but concludes with the warning “To keep your child as healthy as possible and avoid a report to state authorities, please call Smiles 4 Keeps immediately to schedule an appointment.”

Parents were dumbfounded when they received these letters recently from their child’s dentist.  Simply for missing a dental cleaning – recommended twice a year for dental health – parents are being threatened with a report to their local Social Services office for neglect.

Medical and dental professionals, as well as teachers and anyone who regularly works with children, are “mandatory reporters.”  If they suspect neglect or child abuse, they must report it to the authorities.

This is the law in every state in the union, as well as in several U.S. territories. But these laws were put in place to protect children who are being severely abused or neglected – not for private businesses to use as a scare tactic to force us to do business with them.

Many, if not most, parents nowadays are juggling a million responsibilities. Both parents frequently work, help with homework, shuttle kids to a variety of activities, and pay the bills – all while trying to have a little quality family time.

And despite our best efforts as parents, there are always things that slip through the cracks. But being accused of neglect if our child is late with a dental checkup – or, heaven forbid, has a cavity — is outrageous.

This offensive invasion of our parental rights could be the first step down a very slippery slope.  What if our child goes to daycare in a dirty t-shirt, or we get busy and forget that we scheduled a well-care visit with our pediatrician (an appointment we probably had to schedule months ahead of time)?

Will parents be reported for incredibly minor “infractions” that are determined to be neglect by people who barely know us or our children? Is this what our country is coming to?

Following receipt of the letter, one mom posted on Facebook that she had stopped going to the practice because the staff would not allow her to accompany her child into the appointment, recommended multiple follow-up appointments they would not explain, and would not even allow her to meet with the dentist!

She was within every right to find another dental office, but when she did not return to the practice with her child, she received the letter threatening to report her.

The clinic has understandably received tremendous backlash for their shocking threats. Many parents have decided not to take their children back to Smiles 4 Keeps. The office’s response?  The dental clinic told [reporters] that letters

“aren’t sent until multiple attempts have been made to communicate with the family, and that if parents seek business with a different dentist they should let them know,”

according to Reason.com.

Dental clinics and medical offices are, first and foremost, private businesses – not government agencies. It is absurd that Smiles 4 Keeps thinks they have the right to demand that parents notify them if they decide to go elsewhere.

While staff members at the clinic declined to comment to local news outlets about the complaints, the dentist himself, Ross Wezmar, defended sending the offensive letters, stating that he sees many health problems in his patients that could have been prevented by regular dental care.

Reason.com continued:

Color me suspicious, but that’s not the point. Smiles 4 Keeps is a private business providing a service, not a government agency. [No] consumer has any obligation to communicate with Smiles 4 Keeps or to set foot in its offices if [they don’t] want to, and [are] not required to tell them why or where they’ve gone instead. Yet Wezmar and his offices are threatening families with government investigations for declining to do business with him.

I doubt lawmakers intended the reporting requirements to be used this way, but it’s one of the side effects of mandating that private actors play tattletale to the government. Does he even care that he could upend families’ lives by reporting them to the state?

It is a dangerous game being played by this local business, and one that should frighten all parents.  As government at all levels continues to encroach on our rights, this will likely not be the last such case of using our children as pawns to get us to “cooperate.”

Hopefully, any parent who has taken their child to Smiles 4 Keeps will immediately cut ties, putting this preposterous dentist and his staff out of work.

What do you think of this shocking story?  How would you react if you received such a threatening letter about your child?  Leave us your thoughts in the comments.

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