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  1. Andrae Smith
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    Andrae Smith Gone exploring... in the inner realm... Contributor

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    To Spank or not to Spank???

    Discussion in 'Debate Room' started by Andrae Smith, Mar 16, 2014.

    I recently came across this video on my friend's wall, and it sparked an interesting bit of conversation, which I shall elaborate on in a moment.



    In this video, a father (or uncle) whips his 13-year-old daughter (or neice) after she goes missing for 3 days and is found dressed like a grown woman... That is, according to the description.

    On one hand, it's supposed to be funny because for people who've had a "whoopin'" like this, in one sense we can relate. We can laugh it off a bit like, "Wooh, that man to' her @$$ up. Bet she'll think twice before trying something like that again... and she shoulda kept her mouth shut and got in the car." I've never gotten it this badly, but it does bring back memories

    On the other hand, it's going a too far. No grown man should be beating a 13-year-old girl like that. Where is the love? Where i the compassion? That's more of an expression of anger than corrective or instructive punishment. Pulling hair, name calling, so much intentional violence... what does that teach but fear and subjugation.

    Based on comments, I can see it's embedded within our culture. My mom whipped me, her parents whipped her generation, and their parents whipped their generation. The idea, now, is that because it's traditional it was better. However, every generation thinks it is cooler/smarter/better than the one before it, but they also think they are smarter/wiser/more respectable or upright than the generations to follow. This seems especially true in African American households, where "a good old fashioned ass whoopin'" is what a child needs every now and again to keep them in line and let them know who's the boss.

    Look at some comments, shall we:
    On the other side, you have comments like these:
    Of course there are many more comments, but I'm sure by now you get the idea. My question is, what are your thoughts on this kind of extreme parenting? What do you think about spanking in general? Is it good or bad for children? Does it work? Is it the only way to raise well-behaved, respectful children? What kind of effects does it have on kids while their young and as they grow up? What kind of society does it stem from or produce? Do you agree with spanking?
     
  2. Dagolas
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    Dagolas Banned

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    I think he just got carried away. He could just have given her a stern bollocking.
     
  3. Andrae Smith
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    Andrae Smith Gone exploring... in the inner realm... Contributor

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    But do you think it would have worked? What if it was your daughter? How would you react? Is he justified?
     
  4. 123456789
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    123456789 Contributing Member Contributor

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    Are you upset about the violence or his anger? It's kind of two different things.
     
  5. Dagolas
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    Dagolas Banned

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    He has every right to be angry, but should not resort to violence. A stern telling off would probably close the matter just as well as whipping her with his belt.
     
  6. Andrae Smith
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    Andrae Smith Gone exploring... in the inner realm... Contributor

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    I'm not talking about his anger. I'd be totally p/oed (albeit a bt relieved as well, but piiiisssed beyond belief), but I don't think resorting to violence was the right answer here.
     
  7. Duchess-Yukine-Suoh
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    Duchess-Yukine-Suoh Girl #21 Contributor

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    I'm an anti-violence person, but I also know that
    A) this problem should have been solved before it started
    B) violence doesn't teach children anything
     
  8. Wreybies
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    Wreybies The Ops Pops Operations Manager Staff Contest Administrator Supporter Contributor

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    I too was raised old-school, like you @Andrae Smith. My parents are Puerto Rican. In this, your culture and mine are very similar. But my parents were consistent to a fault. I only ever got the whack maybe twice. I joke that the first time was to show it was there, the second time was to prove it was still there. After that, what else is there to know? I knew my place was at my mother's right leg, quiet, hands to myself, don't ask for anything. Other people's kids sometimes scared me for their lack of discipline. My parents had friends when we were young - we lived in Nebraska at the time - and when they would come over, I really would not play with their kids and I am sure they thought I was a snob or a weirdo or whatever, but there was no way I was going to get sucked into their screamingly loud inanities. They seemed like animals to me. That's an ugly thing to say, but that's how it was. I loathed when they came over.
     
  9. Michael Collins
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    Michael Collins Contributing Member

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    It's hard to judge from a single video, maybe he is the most patient and caring father you'll ever see, but she does stuff like that every single day, and he just snapped.

    I received a slap or two as a kid, but a thirteen year old?
    I doubt hitting a teenager can do any good, probably it will only make her behave worse.

    Edit: This video could also be fake.
     
  10. vera2014
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    vera2014 Contributing Member

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    I would have tried family counseling (or this is what I'd like to think I would do). Teens and parents can both get out of control and it can be hard for either side to admit they're partly responsible. Talking things out might help.
     
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  11. thirdwind
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    thirdwind Contributing Member Contest Administrator Reviewer Contributor

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    I don't think beating your kids is the right thing to do, but neither is the stuff we white folks do. Speaking from experience, telling a kid to "go to your room and think about what you've done" isn't effective. I'm sure there's something in between these two extremes. Maybe deny the kid water for a few hours. :p
     
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  12. GingerCoffee
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    GingerCoffee Web Surfer Girl Contributor

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    As to the thread question, the answer is NOT. There is a lot of research backing that up, the country of Sweden outlawed spanking, even by parents and their society did not fall apart.

    As for the video, any parent who reacts to disobedience in a child with anger needs help and some serious anger management help. Even parents who ignore the research and choose to spank should calm down before carrying it out.

    Child abuse is not dependent upon the reason the parent had for losing control and inflicting violence on their child.
     
  13. jazzabel
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    jazzabel Contributing Member Contributor

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    It is NEVER ok to beat your children, or your animals. Just because they don't understand something we want them to, and just because it's so easy for adults to beat them up, doesn't mean it's ok. It's bullying, lazy parenting, and it only teaches kids not to get caught. I say this after a lot of thought, and from personal experience, knowing for certain there's always a way to get through to a child without showing them they are defenceless in your presence. It is much easier to smack them into submission, though. In my opinion, if an adult loses it and hits a child, they should profusely apologise and use that to make sure it never happens again. Unfortunately, most just escalate the violence, and give a clear message to their children that it's ok to be violent to the weak. It's why our society is so aggressive and full of victim blaming, so many people grew up believing that violence is a right of the strong and a default way to solve problems. It isn't, it just creates passive-aggressive resistance in the victim, and prolongs conflict.

    ps. I speak knowing dozens of kids whose parents never beat or humiliated them. They taught them to play music, spent a lot of time with them, took them to swimming and museums and allow them to express themselves. All their kids are really good and grounded, some are teenagers, other younger, primary school age. But parents all work part time, some have grandparent support on daily basis, and children aren't left to fend for themselves.

    pps. I was surprised that some of you think beating the kids is something only/mostly black people do. Where I grew up, most kids were beaten, it was the accepted way to discipline children, as was almost everywhere else thirty years ago. Less so now, thankfully.
     
    Last edited: Mar 16, 2014
  14. shadowwalker
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    shadowwalker Contributing Member Contributor

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    I got spanked a lot as a kid, and my mom liked a yardstick. I spanked my son probably five times during his entire childhood, and it was one smack on the butt with my hand. Sometimes with kids, you really do have to get their attention and words just don't cut it. I don't think either of us suffered any ill effects from corporal punishment, but I really don't think there's any reason for more than one smack. In this particular case, there were obviously major problems before this; commenting on this episode alone and out of context is meaningless.

    (And btw, I was neither a lazy nor bullying parent - my son turned out just fine, is not a violent person, and we have a great relationship - just as we did when he was growing up. I think we could stay away from making gross [mis]judgements of others when stating our opinions of such things.)
     
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  15. GingerCoffee
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    GingerCoffee Web Surfer Girl Contributor

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    I know a lot of people believe this, but the evidence just doesn't support it being true. With a very young child you may need to physically remove them or restrain them, but you do not need to spank.

    I think the worst time I ever got physical was when my son was three and he had a temper tantrum because he didn't want to walk. I took his hand and he walked, temper tantrum and all. It's one of the few tantrums he ever had. As long as you determine the tantrum is not for a good reason the best thing to do is not react to it. When the behavior is unsuccessful, it stops. You do need to be consistent.

    Parents need better tools and unfortunately we don't include such important skills as effective parenting in most high school education curriculums. But once you have the skills/tools you find spanking is the least effective. For example, give kids choices instead of commands, 'if then when then' is another way to give kids control, you don't let arguments and the 'but whys' to go beyond one round, punishments should make sense like a time out for behavior that is disruptive to others. Another rule I had raising my son was, pick your battles. If the issue is not really that important, don't make some need to control or be behaved the reason for your action.

    I should add that the studies are mixed on whether spanking is harmful. It has little negative effect when it is rarely used. But get beyond rare and you start to see the negative effects.
     
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  16. Lewdog
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    Lewdog Come ova here and give me kisses! Supporter Contributor

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    He might as well have broken out a piece of sugar cane and beat her while she was chained up. To say that was a bit much would be under-exaggerating things.
     
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  17. minstrel
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    My sister and I were spanked as children, but only rarely (we had to get really out of line for it to happen), and I don't think I was ever spanked after the age of about six. The advantage of spanking is that it happens immediately, and maybe (I don't really know) young kids need that because they don't have long attention spans. I know that when I was very young, if Mom tried the old "Wait til your father gets home!" routine, it wouldn't have worked.

    I don't think it affected me adversely. I'm the most peaceful guy you could ever meet - I loathe violence. The idea that spanking teaches kids that violence is okay doesn't fly for me.

    But, as I said, for me it stopped when I was young. Spanking a thirteen-year-old? I think that's kind of weird, and I'd never do that if I had kids.
     
  18. GingerCoffee
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    I'm not saying spanking hurt you in the circumstances you describe, but again I must object to the claim it is necessary or somehow better. You might argue it's easy, but even that I would personally argue with.

    Spanking does not teach all kids violence, but it does teach some. It doesn't harm some kids, but it does harm many.

    Corporal punishment policies around the world
    I'm surprised @Andrae Smith didn't realize this subject would spark a debate. It's as controversial as guns and politics. People react to change, some adopting along with the research findings and new ways of viewing the world, while others dig their heels in, affronted by the suggestion what they or their parents or their grandparents did raising their children was/is wrong in any way shape or form.

    So naturally there is an army of pro-spankers out there equipped with their doubt-the-science research. Some of it does deserve consideration, but some of the claims are outright false.

    For example, claiming child abuse went up in Sweden after the law was passed when in reality the same behavior that previously occurred was now illegal. People take time to change.

    There are also claims Swedish parents still spank, they just keep quiet about it. I'm sure that's true, but over the 4 decades since the law was passed, anti-spanking has become the norm.

    People are affronted with the idea someone should tell them how to raise their kids. That's one of those hot buttons of the government overreaching. If you use the word 'hit' instead of spank, pro-spankers complain that hitting and spanking are two different things. Heaven forbid we call it what it is, hitting your kid. Whoops, there it is, I said the trigger word.
     
  19. jazzabel
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    @minstrel : Even though all the studies I'm aware of showed that physical punishment doesn't come close to non-violent discipline methods in terms of teaching the child and achieving reliable good discipline, arguably children who were smacked very infrequently and only if they really messed up, don't necessarily grow up psychologically scarred.

    Still, on a deeper level, it is connected to the likelihood of minimising the effect violence has on others because the child learns that there are situations in which violence is the only way (or the best way) to solve a problem. They grow up believing those couple of smacks 'did them good' so it makes them more likely to rationalise not raising an alarm about genuinely abused children in the future. Because so often people refuse to believe just how much some kids are being 'disciplined' on daily basis.

    In my country the classic defence of smacking claimed that if a toddler keeps putting his fingers into the power socket, and you can't explain to them to stop, smacking is the only way to save their life. When I repeated this argument to my professor during one of the child psychiatry lectures, he looked at me blankly and said 'This is what child-proof sockets are for.'

    There are always better alternatives than violence. If there weren't, then we would encourage teachers, nursery assistants, babysitters and others to beat our children in order to 'keep them safe' as well, and as far as I know, most parents, including those who practice physical punishment, would raise hell if anyone else raised their hand to their child.
     
    Last edited: Mar 16, 2014
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  20. Duchess-Yukine-Suoh
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    For those of you who think it's OK because it was OK in your grandparents time remember that back then:
    Race riots were common.
    Poverty was rampant.
    Gay marriage was unheard of.
    People died from easily preventable diseases.
    The glass ceiling was unbreakable.

    Times are changing.
     
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  21. shadowwalker
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    shadowwalker Contributing Member Contributor

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    I just love how people who think spanking is okay are "digging their heels in" while those who don't are "adopting to research". I could easily point out how many kids who have never been spanked act in public - like animals. Yeah, talking really worked for those parents.

    As to "denying the research" - research is all about generalities. Instead of making blanket judgements, people might consider the fact that different kids react to different methods, and that parents typically know their kids better than some stranger. I also wonder how these strangers can confidently state that there's damage done even if it isn't apparent. To me, that's like saying "If it walks like a duck and quacks like a duck, it's a goose - you just can't see it.".
     
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  22. Duchess-Yukine-Suoh
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    How do you know if they've been spanked or not? :confused:
     
  23. jazzabel
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    jazzabel Contributing Member Contributor

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    Actually, this isn't true. Studies that look at effects of spanking on children's behaviour, on their future self esteem and achievement or studies that attempt to assess effectiveness of a parenting style, are all qualitative in nature. Qualitative research is all about individual interviews and questionnaires, examining various biases including researcher's own, and in fact are not 'generalities' but a collection of individual findings. When conducted over a long period, and on many thousands of subjects, and then analysed and meta analysed, if patterns emerge, for example that physical punishment in childhood has detrimental effect on many individuals later on, it's not just some statistical average that doesn't apply to anyone in reality.
     
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  24. ChickenFreak
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    Exactly. There seems to be a line of illogical logic:

    - It's dangerous if he doesn't learn X.
    - Therefore, we will teach X through spanking.
    - This will work because...um...um... IT JUST WILL, DAMMIT!

    The fact that the kid needs to learn something doesn't mean that the world has arranged itsself so that they can learn that thing through violence.

    We don't beat kids for failing to learn how to swim, right? "I looked away for just a second and he was going under! I smacked him good; next time he'll know that he'd better float!" We understand that "don't sink in the water" is a very important safety skill that nevertheless can't be taught with spanking.

    Kids don't stare at the street and think, "Hmm. It will really annoy Mom if I run out there and get killed. And it's not as if there's any consequence, like spanking. Here I go!" Kids are more likely to think, "SQUIRREL!" or "PRETTY LEAF!" or "OH, NO, MY BALL!" and dash out because they have no impulse control. There's no particular reason to believe that spanking will teach impulse control.

    Yes, sometimes kids deliberately misbehave because it drives Mom or Dad insane. We need to teach those kids proper human interaction, and dealing with their boredom or frustration or energy in a way that is respectful to other people. So we take out our frustration...yeah, there's a logical problem there.
     
  25. thirdwind
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    thirdwind Contributing Member Contest Administrator Reviewer Contributor

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    Spanking is just a form of conditioning. Kids start associating breaking certain rules with physical pain. So I do see the logic behind it to a certain extent.
     
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