At first glance, classical liberal thought and contemporary libertarian politics might appear guilty of neglecting the issue of children. In discussions of freedom, rights, responsibility, and the formation of civil society, questions about children have not been at the forefront. Instead, political debates about issues that affect children, such as education and health care, and discussions regarding the nature of rights and the good life have focused on adult decision makers, the rights of parents, and the freedom of families to raise children without state interference. A more careful look at the broader classical liberal tradition, however, might well provide a foundation for a more developed libertarian position on the moral and political status of children. In what follows, I highlight the issues involving children ...

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