Thursday, September 10, 2009

Car Seat Debate

Car booster seats. I am a law abiding citizen and when the law in Indiana passed a few years ago I went and bought my son a car seat, even though he had been out of one for over a year. It was my choice to take him out because I thought he was big enough and I always made sure he was buckled in properly.

My car is small. I can't fit 3 car seats in my car, even though my car is designed to fit 3 people in the back. A cousin had the same problem with her 3 small children. She ended up getting a van. If that is just my family that was forced to get 3 car seats and 1 mini van, how many other families in Indiana had to get multiple car seats and a mini van? Probably a lot. I remember the local Wal-Mart couldn't stock the car seats fast enough. I didn't have a choice when I got Gavin's seat, he's lucky he didn't end up with a pink one! So I don't want anyone to tell me my opinion (yes I know it's just an opinion, but it's a very strong one) that the law wasn't passed to give our state a little boost.

Sure the safety of the children may be one factor, but I saw the billboard's and the commercials promoting children beyond age 8 to stay in boosters. They were really hitting the parents hard, guilting us into getting boosters for everyone- even beyond the age of 8. I have adult friends that are very small- should they still be in a booster seat? Seriously.

I did a paper in college on the safety and the necessity of the booster seat safety. You know most sites that I was ever able to find on the booster seat safety that promote it are made by the car seat manufacturers?

There have been research done on car seats and booster seats. Yes, I agree, they are a good thing, but I also think it should be a CHOICE when I'm ready to take them out. Parents continue to get their choices taken away from them. We may as well get bar codes stamped into them when they're born and let the government just do the rest. Okay, okay that is a little extreme.

It's just if booster seats are the answer- how did we ever survive before they came along? With the stats I read millions over the years should be dead from vehicle accidents. (Kinda like with my insurance pitch everyone should have cancer, burned houses, or some other horrible thing -a lot of people do, but it's not devastating, there are millions and millions of people and we keep reproducing, so we must be somewhat ok).

Got a little off subject there, sorry. Don't even get me started on the school buses. Why hammer on normal vehicles that have safety devices when there are NONE on school buses? My children ride those scary things EVERY day!!

I realize I'm not right, but anyone else with a strong mind about it isn't right either. I don't think there is exactly a perfect answer. When dealing with probabilities and statistics there never is. so please don't shoot me down because of my opinion.

In my opinion, I hate to see my 7 year old in a car seat when I know that she is perfectly safe and fine in a regular seat belt. What it boils down to is HOW your child is buckled in and seated in the vehicle. Regardless if they are in a booster seat or not if they are not buckled in properly and wearing the seat belt properly- it doesn't matter. Now if a booster helps the belt fit "snugger" that is each individuals matter of opinion. I have seen kids with very loose seat belts in a booster, and with the shoulder strap behind them. Like I said- it's HOW your seated and buckled. Seat belts work the way the person buckling them in works. Not how the seat is designed. Otherwise bucket seats in cars would be safer, etc.

Of course my college paper was oober pages long. I had both arguments, why experts think they are safe (with the research backing that up), and why I think it is jack (and my research backing that up)- but I'm obviously not going to bore you with my college paper.

It isn't really the fact that that there are booster seats that tick me off, it is the fact that our government tells me how to parent.

As always I'm open for debate on this topic and welcome opinions. I'm sure most people will disagree with me, but that is fine. I'm stubborn- a law abiding stubborn citizen.

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