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  #1    
Old September 24th, 2012, 01:38 PM
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Is spanking/paddling a suitable punishment for kids? Up to what age? Should parents be the only ones to dish it out, or it is okay for other authority figures to do it? Should the punisher have to be the same sex as the punishee?

These are some questions that I've seen brought up lately after a news article about a sophomore girl at a high school in Texas was spanked so hard by her male vice-principle that it apparently left her "bruised and blistered." Here's one article about the incident if you want to read it. Here is another one. Naturally, questions about what is suitable and what isn't have been raised. What is your take on this case and the issue of corporal punishment in general?
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  #2    
Old September 24th, 2012, 03:10 PM
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I think it is wrong. You simply do not physically harm those who can not defend themselves
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  #3    
Old September 24th, 2012, 05:43 PM
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I don't believe in using physical punishment for children. I believe spanking is no different from any other type of hitting.
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Old September 24th, 2012, 06:17 PM
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If my vice principal tried to hit me I'd break his arm (or stab him with whatever is in my pocket or on his desk at the time). If physical punishment is the only way to deal with me then you are doing something wrong. The reason I can't actually hurt him back is because I'd be killed by my dad, and maybe arrested for assault.
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Old September 25th, 2012, 01:17 PM
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There's a fine line between corporal punishment and abuse. Who is to say when it is justified to use violence as a punishment?

Beyond that ruling through fear by inflicting pain on those who aren't yet able to defend themselves is morally wrong on several levels. The first part using fear as a control method is wrong because it doesn't help create a healthy minded individual and because it goes against human rights. The second part is just bullying, it doesn't matter what "cause" it is for it is picking on those weaker than yourself to impose your will. This applies to both parents and authority figures.

IF it were acceptable I see little reason for gender to play a part, man or woman it doesn't matter to a child getting beaten, pain is pain.

When would it stop being acceptable or effective? That is the simplest for me to answer really. A method is no longer acceptable when it doesn't get results. So when the child is old enough to stand up for themselves and fight back it is no longer effective and, if you ask me, no longer appropriate. This is assuming you could even consider it as appropriate to harm a child anyway.
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Old September 25th, 2012, 07:43 PM
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Only in Texas could crap like this be acceptable. Violence isn't the answer when disciplining children.
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Old September 25th, 2012, 07:57 PM
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For parents it's okay to spank your children (not teens) to discipline them, spanking lightly on the butt to teach a lesson is not the same as hitting them full force to even argue that is kidding yourself.

However hitting them is wrong and abuse, by hitting I mean punching and slapping in the face or really trying to hurt them.

For schools no it shouldn't be up to them for that, parents should discipline their own children.
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Old September 26th, 2012, 11:21 AM
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Originally Posted by gimmepie View Post
IF it were acceptable I see little reason for gender to play a part, man or woman it doesn't matter to a child getting beaten, pain is pain.
What about the fact that some people have kinks for certain things? (I think you know what I mean.) Wouldn't gender discrimination reduce the possibility of something bad happening with, say, a male authority figure and a female student, and would that not also reduce the chances of said authority figure of getting too overzealous with their disciplinary action if they weren't getting something extra out of it that they probably shouldn't?

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For schools no it shouldn't be up to them for that, parents should discipline their own children.
What if a parent gave permission to a school? (Assuming the school is a place that practices corporal punishment.)
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Old September 26th, 2012, 02:11 PM
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I won't get into which one I believe is "wrong" per se, but I want to go into why corporal punishment can be less effective than strict non-corporal punishment.

Here is an example to help guide the distinction between the two:

Corporal Punishment

Spoiler:
Billy is supposed to wash dishes on Fridays. Billy refuses to wash them. He is smacked on the butt. Billy cries, and then does the dishes.

Next Friday, Billy does the dishes out of apprehension of being smacked. He learns not to do certain things through corporal punishment effectively, as long as their is a consequence of physical punishment whether it is mild to severe.

Billy is now 20. He works in a paper mill. His employer tells him that he needs to do task A, B, and C every night before he leaves the mill. Billy knows that his employer will not smack him as a punishment, therefore, he does A and B, but not C.

Corporal punishment only works when their is apprehension of physical punishment. Period.

A counter claim to this would be, " well, my parents only spanked me as a punishment, and I adhere to rules in college and work, therefore corporal punishment does teach a child to be adherent to authority figures. "

I'd like to note that most parents that use corporal punishment do also utilize other forms of punishment.

Well, even parents who only use corporal punishment do send kids to school, extracurricular activities, other family members who don't use corporal punishment, along with many other institutions and situations that call for other forms of discipline. So, although your parents did use corporal punishment, you most likely have learned other forms of discipline that readied you for adherence of authority figures without the use of apprehension of physical harm.


Now, let me give an explanation of strict non-corporal discipline:


Spoiler:
Billy is supposed to wash dishes on Fridays. Billy refuses to wash them. He is told that he will not be able to watch Television for one month or have friends over after school.

Next Friday, Billy does the dishes out of apprehension that his rewards and possessions will be detracted from. As long as their is apprehension of losing rewards or possessions, he will adhere to authority figures.

Billy is now 20. He works in a paper mill. His employer tells him that he needs to do task A, B, and C every night before he leaves the mill. Billy knows that his employer will not smack him as a punishment, but will in fact take cut his hours, take legal action, and/or take away his job. Since Billy has been equipped and conditioned with the idea this type of punishment, he is more likely to adhere to the authority figure.

Let me also remind you of the various studies done by the American Psychological Association among other nationally/internationally recognized groups, there findings, to be summed up in a sentence would be, corporal punishment causes a child be more likely to have violent tendencies, abuse their own children, not adhere to authority figures, among other negative effects; these effect are more prevalent or severe in depending on the amount of force used by the parent.
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Old September 26th, 2012, 11:09 PM
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What about the fact that some people have kinks for certain things? (I think you know what I mean.) Wouldn't gender discrimination reduce the possibility of something bad happening with, say, a male authority figure and a female student, and would that not also reduce the chances of said authority figure of getting too overzealous with their disciplinary action if they weren't getting something extra out of it that they probably shouldn't?
That statement would make sense if homosexuality wasn't a possibility and whilst I admit that that kind of behaviour is more common in straight men than any other group EVERYONE is capable of committing such acts.


I've also thought of some more reasons non-corporal punishment is more effective.

1. If I was hit, even as a young child, my logic would then be "well what else can they do? I've experienced this once and survived another time won't matter".
2. As bad/stupid as this probably sounds the child would eventually get used to the pain and just not care after the punishment had occurred enough times.
3. Simply put which punishment seems worse and more likely work over a long period of time? If you smack your child they'll be in pain and they won't do the wrong thing for a while sure. But pain like that is temporary, it doesn't last long. Whilst the removal of privileges can be extended as long as is necessary. How do you make corporal punishment that affective? Beat the kid every 20 minutes until they do the right thing? That's not punishment it's child abuse.

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Simply put that would be because it would be useless. Once your old enough if your parent tries to hit you it's probably going to be an instinctual reaction to defend yourself and that would jsut spiral out of control into a domestic dispute.
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Old September 29th, 2012, 05:23 PM
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I've said this before on another forum, and I'll repeat it here. If it is illegal to hit another adult for doing something wrong, why then should it be legal to hit a child?
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Old September 29th, 2012, 07:52 PM
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I've said this before on another forum, and I'll repeat it here. If it is illegal to hit another adult for doing something wrong, why then should it be legal to hit a child?
After everything we have all said, after all the complicated arguments people have come up with, that simple statement is the single most intelligent and compelling argument any of us have come up with. So very true, in regards to violence children and adults should be treated no differently.
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Old September 30th, 2012, 01:44 PM
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I don't think that making your child fear you, which is more or less what you do when you hit them, is a very good way of making them listen to you. If you have to resort to violence to control your own child you need some serious help with your parenting skills. And as mentioned in this thread, there's always the chance that the child will simply become desensitised to it or learn that hitting is the way to get what you want; neither of which will have positive outcomes.

Regarding the whole 'authority figures' thing, the parent should be the greatest authority figure that the child has and if the parent wouldn't do it, the authority figure shouldn't do it. It is the parent's place, and only the parent's place, to use non-verbal methods of discipline should they choose to.

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I've said this before on another forum, and I'll repeat it here. If it is illegal to hit another adult for doing something wrong, why then should it be legal to hit a child?
I agree with this tbh - especially since children aren't as able to defend themselves as adults are. Doesn't really make very much sense to me at all that the law basically states that it's alright to hit someone as long as they're young and defenceless.

...although, in fairness, with an adult 'hitting' would be more likely something like punching in the face rather than spanking, which is still illegal with children. I don't really think it should be illegal to spank, even though I don't think it's a good idea, since the degree of violence is far less than would be experienced in the adult world.

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Should the punisher have to be the same sex as the punishee?
I don't really see why it would matter.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Scarf
What if a parent gave permission to a school? (Assuming the school is a place that practices corporal punishment.)
Do such schools still actually exist? If so then... I guess that'd be alright. If both the parent and the school are ok with it and it's legal then there's nothing stopping it, I suppose.
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Old October 1st, 2012, 10:32 AM
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I've said this before on another forum, and I'll repeat it here. If it is illegal to hit another adult for doing something wrong, why then should it be legal to hit a child?
I agree, but for the sake of argument, how about this counter argument:

When adults don't follow the rules we don't hit them because we remind them of the rules, or fine them, or arrest them and put them in jail since we assume they're responsible enough to accept the consequences of their actions. Aren't children supposedly not always able to accept the consequences of their actions because of their maturity/developmental level? If reminding kids of the rules doesn't keep them from breaking them what can we do? It wouldn't be fair to punish them like adults because in some ways they aren't as responsible for themselves as adults, but we can't just let them do whatever they want.
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Old October 1st, 2012, 03:49 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Scarf View Post
I agree, but for the sake of argument, how about this counter argument:

When adults don't follow the rules we don't hit them because we remind them of the rules, or fine them, or arrest them and put them in jail since we assume they're responsible enough to accept the consequences of their actions. Aren't children supposedly not always able to accept the consequences of their actions because of their maturity/developmental level? If reminding kids of the rules doesn't keep them from breaking them what can we do? It wouldn't be fair to punish them like adults because in some ways they aren't as responsible for themselves as adults, but we can't just let them do whatever they want.
When a parent punishes a child for doing something wrong, that punishment generally includes a restriction on their freedoms. This alone for a child is a pretty good reason not to do whatever it is they did again. In the case of stealing, for example, a parent could take away a child's favourite toy for a time and then sit down with the child to drive home the message. Only after the parent is satisfied that the child has learned the lesson is the toy returned.

There are many ways to properly discipline a child and instill in them a sense of what is right and wrong without having to resort to violence. And yes, spanking is a form of violence. In my view, it is only the lazy parent who has to resort to hitting their child's behind to drive home a lesson.
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Old October 1st, 2012, 06:11 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jay_37040 View Post
When a parent punishes a child for doing something wrong, that punishment generally includes a restriction on their freedoms. This alone for a child is a pretty good reason not to do whatever it is they did again. In the case of stealing, for example, a parent could take away a child's favourite toy for a time and then sit down with the child to drive home the message. Only after the parent is satisfied that the child has learned the lesson is the toy returned.

There are many ways to properly discipline a child and instill in them a sense of what is right and wrong without having to resort to violence. And yes, spanking is a form of violence. In my view, it is only the lazy parent who has to resort to hitting their child's behind to drive home a lesson.
Well, I agree, for the most part, but that punishment doesn't give a clear enough message to the child that will deter him or her from repeating the activity.

The discipline must be more stringent. If a parent takes a single toy away for a very brief time as a punishment for theft, the magnitude of the action is not completely realized. I would treat the child more adult like, yes it will make them feel bad for a short while, but it is necessary in order to raise children with work-ethic, respect, and and appreciation for the many things that they have. I think a more appropriate form of discipline would be to take the toy away for a set time, like two week or a month in addition to extra chores. If you do something that you know is wrong, then you will face harsh consequences, rather than allowing the child to state their error, since the lesson is not completely learned. Therefore, it helps to solidify and follow-through with a punishment to convey the message that we cannot simply talk or apologize our ways out of facing a consequence in the life. Many parents will resort to physical punishment rather than following through with this type of discipline that requires consistent and firm parental oversight, since many parent try to use a non-physical method and fall short because they are erratic and lax with the rules that they have put in place.
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Old October 1st, 2012, 07:49 PM
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Well, I agree, for the most part, but that punishment doesn't give a clear enough message to the child that will deter him or her from repeating the activity.
How do you know? It would depend on how the parents implement the punishment, wouldn't it?
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Old October 1st, 2012, 08:35 PM
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How do you know? It would depend on how the parents implement the punishment, wouldn't it?
As I explained later on in my post, there needs to be clear preemptive time tables. If there is not, then the child may not apprehend the short-term absence of a toy or learn to obtain the toy back from the parent without facing consequence for bad behavior. I have worked with many children before. Once the toy or privilege is taken away, they will fuss, then eventually admit wrongdoing to get the object back, but that doesn't really teach the child that there are consequences for actions, and once those actions are taken, you must pay the penalty which is non-negotiable.

Not to sound like a drill-sergeant, but it is necessary to show children that pleading, after the fact, is not acceptable; when we do things that are "wrong" then we must assume responsibility and accept the punishment that we are liable for.

However, that is just one important side to discipline. The other is reward. When we fulfill the responsibilities of which are required and then some, the child should be given additional freedoms and/or objects. This is a necessary counterpoint to show children. We are not always given extra privileges, they are, for the most part, earned. This also helps to deter bad behavior and invoke enthusiasm in the type of discipline.

The kids that I have worked with had issues with this type of discipline, at first. Once they learned that they were able to receive additional privileges, they became productive, competitive, and well-behaved. But, you cannot begin/continue to grant privileges without consistent and clear-cut boundaries that define disciplinary penalties.
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Last edited by -ty-; October 1st, 2012 at 08:56 PM.
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Old October 2nd, 2012, 03:46 PM
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Wait, they still use physical punishment in schools in America?
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Old October 4th, 2012, 10:01 PM
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I don't think a light slap on the wrist or the butt or the mouth is bad. Anything more is something I don't approve of.

I also think that it should be something reserved strictly to the parents. If I was a parent and discovered my child's teacher did that to him/her, I would be FURIOUS that they laid a hand on him/her in such a manner.
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Old October 5th, 2012, 02:04 PM
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I don't think a light slap on the wrist or the butt or the mouth is bad. Anything more is something I don't approve of.

I also think that it should be something reserved strictly to the parents. If I was a parent and discovered my child's teacher did that to him/her, I would be FURIOUS that they laid a hand on him/her in such a manner.
Pretty much this. A teacher has no right to even try to hurt a child.
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Old October 6th, 2012, 12:59 PM
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Only in Texas could crap like this be acceptable. Violence isn't the answer when disciplining children.
I was at school yesterday listening to my civics teacher talk with her aide about this topic. Both of them were apalled that one of her 2nd period students (from the class before me) actually asked if they did paddles in school.

As I recall, the girl was from Missisippi, but I could easily see it happening in any of those deep-south states like Texas or Alabama.
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Old October 22nd, 2012, 07:51 PM
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Corporal punishment like this only works if they fear you. So for those not easily frightened, they'll keep on getting physically harmed to the point where they begin to have prejudices and resentment towards the punisher. Yay! Breaking down family bonds one spanking at a time!
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Old October 22nd, 2012, 08:50 PM
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Yes.

You shouldn't be allowed to beat the crap out of a child, but pain is as much a motivator as pleasure. Carrot and stick is a tried and true practice; punish a child when they do something bad, reward them when they do something right. It's really quite simple.
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