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the issue of infant carseats in our country - Page 4

post #61 of 188
Thread Starter 
I totally agree with all of you that carseats are important. And what I meant by my post was a different thing. I wasn't looking for opinions on not using carseats or explanations on why it's so important. I know that. I was looking at why as a country, not using a carseat is looked at as a crime, and yet other forms of "child abuse" such as circumcision, or something as not breastfeeding, is a choice parents have to make. I think as a society we are being hipocritical!!

Ofcourse I think carseats are life-savers now, but I still don't feel as strongly as you do about them because I truly believe it is a cultural thing. I wanted to see why 'some' kinds of judgement are allowed in a society, and some are not. If my child had an accident (God forbid) and he was unbuckled, like someone else said, the nurse in the ER would look at me like a child abuser. And yet that same nurse will, 24 hours later, go up to the nursery and strap a perfect baby down and cut part of his penis off. see where I'm going?? It just doesn't make sense to me. As a society we set standards for what is acceptable and what is not based on what the mainstream think.
post #62 of 188
There has been a campaign to educate and promote the use of car seats here in the United States.
In the 1970s, faced with a working safety device for children but not being able to convince the general populace that they were a needed accessory for child care, there was a massive push to educate the public on safety seats and the dangers posed to children from conventional lap belts.

Members of the medical community, consumer groups, safety seat manufacturers, and insurance companies among others got together and showed the general public that safety seats for children were a necessary device for keeping their children alive in the case of a collision.

They also managed to convince various levels of governments, and some states started passing laws requiring the use of safety seats for young children. Tennessee was the first state to do so, and between 1978 and 1985 every single state was to follow suit. There has been little backlash toward these laws, as the general populace sees safety seats as a necessary precaution.

By 1984, nearly half of the population aged 0-4 was riding in some form of child safety car seat. Those numbers continue to grow to this day, where nearly all of the children requiring a safety seat are in one when they go anywhere in a vehicle.
from http://www.pregnancy-place.com/The_H...ves_Lives.html

When my siblings and I were babies they just didn't have car seats in wide use. Despite never using one for their own children, my parents would not go anywhere with their grandkids without them buckled in a seat though today. They are happy to have car seats. Maybe it is like people say "when you know better, you do better".
In our car we do not move without everyone wearing a seat belt- even adults. My dh has had friends and family killed in car accidents because they weren't wearing a seat belt. A couple of years ago we went to the funeral of one of his teenage cousins who died because she wasn't wearing a seat belt. I'd never want to go to a baby's funeral because they weren't fastened in their car seat.
If I were breastfeeding I'd plan to take a bottle (you can bottle breast milk too you know) or be prepared to stop as soon as I could (as hard as it is emotionally, crying isn't going to actually kill my baby- being flung about a car probably would) or do some acrobatic manuevers with everyone strapped in. Or not get in the car with my child.

I don't think it is hippocritical.
post #63 of 188
Thread Starter 
Originally Posted by Kleine Hexe
My reason is this. If there was an accident and my child was seriously injured, maimed, or killed I could never *ever* forgive myself. I know I could not live with the guilt I would have. Maybe others could forgive themselves but I know I could not. Ever. The guilt would consume me.
ok, this really hit on what my point is. You say guilt would consume you. Is that because society hasmade you feel that way? Because they have insisted on the carseat issue so many times, that you're terrified of feeling the guilt they have created?

The reason for this question is because parents that vaccinate (myself included) whose children are damaged by the vaccine forever, for example, would feel that yes, they ARE responsible for the injury but they were truly doing what they FELT was right. Same as circ'ing moms. Ofcourse they are injuring a body part and yet, it is so socially acceptable that there is no guilt (in the event that the circumcision went wrong they would not feel THAT guilty because they would have the support of circ'ing peers, although in my eyes it always does because there is no such thing as a good circumcision, it's like saying, a good finger amputation, kwim?)

This is my whole point. It's like our society reigns and decided what they want us to feel guilty about. Smoking, not using carseats. I hope you all get my point
post #64 of 188
No I don't get your point. I feel like you are comparing apples to oranges.
post #65 of 188
I think you are just way off base here and as pp said comparing apples to oranges.

I don't want to get into a debate about cir'ing but look in newspapers across the county in any given week and I bet you will find several cases of babies dying because they were not strapped in a car seat. This is simply not the case with circin'g.

And not bf'ing and vaxing. The strict correlation (some would say any correlation) between these and death are very hard to find.
post #66 of 188
Originally Posted by loving-my-babies
This is my whole point. It's like our society reigns and decided what they want us to feel guilty about. Smoking, not using carseats. I hope you all get my point
Yes, I see your point ~ to some extent. Private autos are very dangerous for kids. One on the contradictions I’ve noticed is that we talk A LOT about car seat safety (and merchandise…money!) and relatively little about reducing the amount of time kids spend in cars in the first place.

But, I think this kind of thing exists for many things in our culture. The stranger abduction focus on child abuse is a perfect example. There seems to definitely be a heightened awareness, fear and even marketing of products for stranger abduction yet that is extremely rare among child abuse cases.

Yes, and smoking vs. other unhealthy habits, prescription drugs vs. “recreational” drugs…

I doesn’t really surprise me though. Growing up in the US, this kind of thing starts to seem normal, unfortunately, and there are a lot of defenses built into the methodology.
post #67 of 188
I totally see your point.

Some mom can take her formula-fed, CIO'd, spanked, circumsized child out in her gas-guzzling SUV, and the only thing she's being judged for is whether or not the baby is in a car-seat.

I lived in Southeast Asia and India and my first child was NEVER in a car seat. Not once.

My second child has NEVER been left to cry in a car. Period. I take her out until we can safely pull over.

I am one of those people who think leaving a baby, especially a really small one, to cry in a car seat is cruel. My solution has, and continues to be, to choose a life that doesn't rely on a car. We live in a walking community and use our wagon much more than our car.
post #68 of 188
I understand the cultural thing with carseats. Like some others have mentioned you will find that people from the southern states and maybe some more rural areas of the country use them less. I live in an area of the country where a huge chunk of the population has strong ties to Mexico and I see lots of unrestrained children. I do not think they are necessarily bad parents but I do they they are uninformed and taking HUGE risks

Unintentional injury is the #1 cause of death in children. Not ff, not circing, not vaxing.....unintentional injury. That said, I did not circ and I breastfed. I did not take my children out of carseats to breastfeed and I did not unbuckle myself. I did buckle into the seat next to the carseat and do the breastfeeding lean. I was not aware that that was dangerous and if anyone would like to tell me more....

I pulled over sometimes and did the "lean" at others. If my child had to cry for a few minutes I would comfort them and let them know I was there but I did not take them out. I do not think that would be worth the danger. Drunk, psycho, sleepy drivers are everywhere and the car is a dangerous place to be as it is.

For the OP- I understand your point, I just disagree.

*Accidents occur most frequently close to home, at moderate speeds, in rural areas, and the accidents in rural areas tend to be more serious. The car is an unsafe place to be- especially for children. Anything I can do to better the odds that they will not be injured or killed I will do.
post #69 of 188
I'm sorry, I just don't see ANY corelation between what you are comparing. I mean, by my understanding of what you've written, the fact that I formula feed my daughter (yes, by necessity) makes me a child abuser and taking horrible risks, but not so of the person who thinks it's just hunky dorey to have a 30lb projectile loose in the back seat??????
If you want to compare these things, what I would want and ask to see is just how many children/year die in North America from being FF or circed, then compare that to the number of children who die in automobile accidents when they are not properly restrained.
Why are people "brainwashed" to believe it's dangerous to travel with an unrestrained infant---it's really, really simple---because it is. How many babies need to die for that to become fact for you?? I just don't get it, so no, I totally don't get your point at all. The chance of an unrestrained infant dying in a very minor car accident is huge

All I can say is one thing. I hope like hell you never have to go looking around in a ditch for dead baby who flew through the windshield of his car in a minor accident. I'm guessing if you did, you'd suddenly think proper car safety is at least as important as breast feeding.
post #70 of 188
Originally Posted by loving-my-babies
(without it getting heated, please, I really have questions and I'd like to talk about them)
SOOOO.. I don't know how she started talking about carseats and how she doesn't ler her baby cry in the carseat while she is in the car but she also doesn't stop the car when baby is hungry. She will sit in the back of her SUV and nurse her baby, while her dh drives. I said...

"ME TOO". (yes, this is the part where your blood pressure will rise, right?)
well, I don't do this now, because my son no longer needs to nurse every hour. But dh and I did this many, many times when ds was under a year. countless times.
Here's why it's not such a good idea:


http://www.safeprogram.com/video10.htm Here is what an unseatbelted body does when it's flying around in the cab of a car. This isn't a baby, it's an adult, but you get the point.

Here's some easy math. An object's force is weight times speed. A ten-pound baby in a car crash where the car is going 45 miles an hour now weighs and has the force of an object 450 pounds. Imagine...

That 450-pound object smacking you in the skull. Like this:
That 450-pound object flying toward the windshield.

Long story short, that's why.
post #71 of 188
Adding- My grandmother (remember that southern culture isn't insistent on childseats) was driving with my cousin in his booster seat (he was two) and was in an EXTREMELY minor fender bender. Nobody was hurt but the force of the (comparatively) tiny collision dislodged the booster seat. She hadn't strapped it in correctly and the whole thing slid forward almost off the seat. Think what would have happened if he hadn't been in one at all. Tiny accidents can have huge consequences.
post #72 of 188
Originally Posted by cortsmommy
Well babies don't sit in car seats in limos or in taxis or on buses either. I think the carseat thing is yes a safety precaution and yes it does save lives but we don't all wreck everyday.
I'm sorry, but this is such an astoundingly ignorant statement I can't even believe it. In the faint, faint hopes of curing or amending the many logical fallacies this statement presents, I'm refuting these contentions below:

1. The fact that babies don't sit in car seats in limos or in taxis or buses does not mean that it's safe for them to go seatless in ANY of those conditions.

2. WE DO "all wreck everyday"[sic]. I could quote you statistics -- that your chance of getting injured or killed in a car accident is very, very good, that you probably know at least one or two people who've died in cars and know many more who've gotten injured in them, but LOOK AROUND when you commute to work, for God's sake. If you don't believe me, believe the evidence of your senses.
post #73 of 188
Wow. Thank you, Shannon. That's a heck of a story. I honestly think that these people who don't use car seats and think it's perfectly OK are just ignorant of basic physics. This makes the lesson clear as day. I hope you saved someone's life with this story.

Originally Posted by shannon0218
I'll just tell one story. When I was a volunteer fire fighter I attended an accident where a baby and his father were both killed. The damage to the car amounted to a grand total of $300.00, the accident was to say the least, incredibly minor. When I pulled up on it I couldn't figure out why on earth we'd even been called, then I saw the the front seat. Mom was nursing baby in the back seat out of his carseat. Dad breaked hard as traffic in front of him slowed down because of a stray dog in the road. He barely hit the vehicle in front of him. Baby went flying out of mom's arms, into the back of daddy's head, breaking dad's neck and killing him instantly, baby then continued to travel to the dashboard where he sustained lethal head injury.
That mother was left without her husband and her child....all so the baby wouldn't be hungry until it was safe to pull off the road.
I may be willing to leave my babe in the carseat while I walk 8' to the ATM, but I'll never have her unrestrained in a moving vehicle.
post #74 of 188
The scary thing is that accidents just like that happen every day. Unfortunately the reason they often are not publicized is because too many people think "it's cruel" to the parents who have already lost so much. This may be only my opinion on this, but it's coming from a spot of having to see to many dead children..if you have your child out of his carseat and you are in a crash that kills him, you should be charged with first degree murder. You thought about it and then decided to do it anyway, even though the risks are clearly presented and it's the law.
post #75 of 188
Oh, and after reading about the cab company who carried car seats with them, I did some checking and both our local cab companies refuse to carry a child without a car seat or booster. They have with them (apparently 60% of their fleet) a convertable seat that goes from 5 lbs right up to a booster that covers up to 80 lbs and all their drivers are trained by the police on properly installing them.
If you call for a pick up and fail to tell them you have a child you don't have a seat for, and that cab doesn't have one, they will tell you to wait for a cab with a seat. In Ontario at least, that driver can be charged with a very heavy fine if he OK's transporting a child with no seat.
post #76 of 188
I have nursed my babies in the car, but only with them in the carseat. I did once travel in the car with Rosie out of her carseat, because she had thrown up all over her seat and I foolishly had nothing at all to put under her or to clean it with. Fortunately, she threw up less than three blocks from the house and my dh was in the car (this was when she threw up a lot due to her intestinal problems). We thought about walking home, but she was covered with vomit and crying and we just wanted to get her home as soon as possible.

But it was a hard decision at the time, even then. Shannon, what a horrific story.
post #77 of 188
post #78 of 188
I don't really get what having only one child has to do with any of it. So what, if you have 2 it's ok to pull 2 out and have multiple projectiles unrestrained?? Sorry, maybe I'll "get it" when I have more than one, but I fail to see how the number of children plays a roll in risking your childs life.
post #79 of 188
lol, that post was only there for a second before I erased it. you caught it, shannon!

ok, in my deleted post, I said it's a lot easier to pull over when you only have one kid.

I did not say I take my kids out of their seats instead.

yes, I think you will get what I mean when you have more than one.

eesh, what I want to know is, why are people so self-righteous about their own perfect carseat use? why not just express concern for others instead of this arrogant disdain?

post #80 of 188
Originally Posted by loving-my-babies
ok, this really hit on what my point is. You say guilt would consume you. Is that because society hasmade you feel that way? Because they have insisted on the carseat issue so many times, that you're terrified of feeling the guilt they have created?
The only way I could see this as a cultural issue is that in North American culture, we are highly educated about traffic safety and car seats (plus they're mandatory by law, at least in my state).

This is where I think the guilt may come in - we are aware of the risks. If I know that a crash with an unrestrained baby can be lethal at worst and dangerous at best, and I decide - oh, just this one time will be OK - and then BAM, just that one time I get into a wreck? I would always wonder "what could I have done differently?" Obviously, I could've pulled over to nurse rather than unbuckling the baby.

It seems to me to be comparable to not baby-proofing my home or not supervising my toddler in a friend's unbaby-proofed home. I want her to be as safe as possible so I use the knowledge I have to help manage her safety.
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