Libertarianism, children and the disabled

7. Libertarianism, children and the disabled

Some libertarians hold that parents own their children10 because they have made them out of material they own, but that at some point in development children become self-owners – perhaps when they are mature enough to make their own decisions. Others believe that children are self-owners from the start – perhaps in the womb even. But libertarians don’t believe that parents have a coercible duty to take care of their children. Parents are free to do what they like so long as they don’t violate the rights of their children11 – and children don’t have a right to be taken care of.