Vaccinations: Parents Matter

by Kerry Dougherty

Does the left want to replace parents with the state?

Increasingly, the answer seems to be a hard YES.

Here’s one example of government officials actively driving a wedge between parents and children:

Last November, the far-left District of Columbia City Council passed the “Minor Consent For Vaccinations Amendment Act of 2020. “ This parent-shunning measure took effect on March 19, 2021.

In essence, this law allows a child 11 or older to be vaccinated against any disease without the consent — or knowledge, apparently — of their parents.


Yes, I know. Many of you think it’s imperative that young people become vaccinated quickly against COVID-19. But what sort of bizarre collectivist mentality would suggest that parents not be involved in the decision to inject their children with a drug being distributed on an emergency basis and without full FDA approval?

Current federal law requires that parents be given information about all vaccines before they are administered to minors.

That is no longer the case in D.C. so it’s not a surprise that lawsuits are flying. At least one suit doesn’t even involve the COVID vaccine. If the plaintiffs in these cases lose, look for similar disturbing laws in blue states where parents are regarded as pesky meddlers in their children’s lives.

According to Bloomberg news Josh Mazer sued the D.C. Department of Health on July 2 after his 16-year-old daughter, J.D., a resident of another state, traveled to D.C. and requested that she get a vaccine for summer camp without her parents’ knowledge or consent. Mazer said he was opposed to J.D. getting vaccinations because of religious beliefs as well as a severe reaction she had when she was 5 years old to a tetanus, diphtheria, and pertussis-containing shot.

J.D. went to MedStar Georgetown Pediatrics to get a Tdap vaccine and was told she also would need to get two additional vaccines, Gardasil and MenACWY, according to the complaint. J.D. decided to leave without getting the shots, but the doctor gave her instructions on how to receive a vaccine if she was still interested without the risk of her parents finding out, Mazer alleged.

The Daily Caller has additional details about the case: The father alleged that when his daughter “became nervous upon seeing the shots and voiced that she wanted to leave without getting the shots,” one doctor and nurse “positioned themselves in the room such that she felt trapped.”

Two conservative groups are also suing the District of Columbia over the law and filed court papers on Monday.

In a lawsuit by the Children’s Health Defense (CHD) and Parental Rights Foundation against D.C. Mayor Muriel Bowser, four parents call for a preliminary injunction prohibiting D.C. from enforcing the D.C. Minor Consent For Vaccinations Amendment Act of 2020, which allows children who are eleven-years-old or older deemed “capable of meeting the informed consent standard” to consent to vaccines without their parents’ knowledge or consent.

“The Minor Consent Act subverts the right and duty of parents to make informed decisions about whether their children should receive vaccinations, by both depriving them of the opportunity to make those decisions and by concealing from parents that their children have been asked to consent to vaccinations or may have indeed been vaccinated,” the lawsuit said. “In fact, the Minor Consent Act states that medical providers who administer vaccines under the Minor Consent Act shall seek reimbursement directly from the insurer without parental knowledge or consent.”


Consider this: Vaccines might be contraindicated in an 11-year-old who had a violent reaction to a particular vaccine when she or he was a toddler. While the parents would know the details of such an event, the child may not. Administering a vaccine to that kid without the parents knowing about it could be deadly.

Like it or not, parents should be involved in medical decisions of their minor children. That includes abortions as well as vaccinations.

Yes, sometimes parents get in the way of what the left believes serves the common good.


This column has been republished with permission from Kerry: Unemployed & Unedited.