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May 16, 1981

Do Children Have Rights?

George H. Smith was formerly Senior Research Fellow for the Institute for Humane Studies, a lecturer on American History for Cato Summer Seminars, and Executive Editor of Knowledge Products. Smith’s fourth book, The System of Liberty, was recently published by Cambridge University Press.

In this lecture from a Texas Libertarian Party conference in 1981, Smith speaks about the rights of children, specifically very young children who have not yet reached the “age of reason” and cannot legally consent to contracts. Smith looks at several different methods of dealing with the idea of children’s rights, including the theories of Murray Rothbard and Samuel Pufendorf. He also takes a few questions from the audience.