Health Department Shuts Down 11-Year-Old Entrepreneur

It’s very important for young people to learn about real life as soon as possible. Back in the day, that meant learning how to work hard, how to succeed, how to manage finances… you know—how to become an entrepreneur, a business owner, an inventor, or the like.

These days, teaching children about the real world has more to do with explaining how all their efforts will be for naught when the civil government swoops in and either eats up all their profits or forces them to stop making any.

Just the other day, eleven-year-old Chloe Stirling got an early education in government bureaucracy. She had started a very small homegrown cupcake business from her parents’ kitchen in Illinois. Her largest total order was 220 cupcakes (for a fundraiser to fight cancer, by the way). She was saving up money to buy a car in a few years. Modest goals and modest methods, but very good ones I think we can all agree.

Well, not all of us apparently. A few days after a local newspaper wrote a story about the young entrepreneur, the local health department came knocking. They said that Chloe Stirling had to shut down her business because her kitchen did not meet health code specifications. They told Chloe’s parents that they could add on an additional kitchen in their house if they wanted to continue supporting Chloe’s business.

They had gotten Chloe a separate fridge for her ingredients and a grandmother had chipped in on a stand mixer, but an additional kitchen was not in the budget. So, until further notice, this young entrepreneur has had her business drive and community spirit extinguished in the name of safety and “the rules.”

Just whom these rules are meant to protect, I don’t know. Anyone eating Chloe’s cupcakes would obviously be eating “at their own risk.” And no one had complained. No one probably would. Does the health department honestly believe that a home kitchen is less wholesome or sanitary than the industrial blood parasite factories that make most of the food we eat?

I want my children to show initiative and drive, but socialism and bureaucracy just saps the spirit of an entrepreneur. These are not the lessons I want to teach my children.