Kids are pets ("A pet is a household animal kept for companionship and a person's enjoyment", kids fit that description). That doesn't mean you shouldn't treat them with respect, you should and you should do that to your pets as well. They're possibly worse then pets because pets can sometimes survive without you whereas kids can't and need you. As long as it's safe, I don't see the problem with it. Some kids are little terror and run around shops throwing **** on the floor. I would never do it, I'd rather give them a smack if they act up but different strokes for different folks.
I personally, would never use one on any child I had, but I understand why people do it, as long as people are actually trying to teach their kid why running off is dangerous, and that they should stay close to their parents, I don't mind people using it as a short term solution.
I really don't think parents are intending to treat their children like pets. Perhaps they have a child who likes to run all over the place and they don't want them running into the road and getting hurt? I see nothing wrong in a parent being cautious when out with their child, if anything its commendable.
To be honest I'd much rather have my child in baby reins than running into the road or getting lost in a crowd. I agree that it's really important to teach them how to behave and not to run off in public, but the fact is that they won't listen all of the time, and until you can trust them, then why not use something like that to ensure that they're attached to you in some way all of the time?
Also, there are times where it's not really suitable to have them in a pushchair, or carry them for long, and holding hands with a little tot can be annoying and cause serious arm ache after a while. It's easy to say ''oh, don't take them with you then'' but most of the time that's probably not an option either.
In short, I don't have a problem with them. In fact, I think they're a great idea.
My mum used to make me hold her hand when near busy roads or if my sister was in the pushchair make me hold onto the side of that, its just the same. The fact leashes are used for dogs makes no difference at all. If its practical then its a good idea and it is because you don't want your little kid running into a road.
I take the same view as pets on leashes as I do children on leashes.
If you can't control them then why do you have them?
now unfortunately it's the law that I have my dogs on a leash while out by roads and the like but I assure you I'm always in control. I mean don't get me wrong they misbehave sometimes (as a child is also wanton to do) but that where a bit of firm, fair and most importantly non-violent discipline comes in.
Now a separate arguement could be mad regarding particularly unruly children or pets but I've had over 12 dogs now and I can get the most unruly under control. I also think most folk here can remember back to school and those certain teachers who could control even the most unruly of children.
But this is just one man's view.