Wednesday, September 24, 2014 it really ok to hit your kid..even if it's with a switch?

A "paddle"?  A hair brush?  A coat hanger?  A hand?  A belt?  Flyswatter?  Broom?  When was that ever ok?  How do folks rationalize it...EVER???  "Well, my pappy beat the shit out of me, so if it was good enough for is good enough for my kids!"  That's called a cycle of abuse, people.  Does it really take a little four year old kid, with linear cuts and bruises to his legs, buttocks and scrotum to garner national attention to basic child abuse?  And that horrible, unwarranted, disgusting, atrocious "punishment" meted out by an incredibly powerful, adult, male, athlete to a pre-schooler...provided appropriate punishment for what?  What could a four year old, 6 year old, 8, 10, 12 year old possibly do to deserve such treatment?  AND....not at the hands of a "child abusing "STRANGER!!!  NO!!!  By his own father!!!  Worse yet, is it because of the unacceptable horror of this act, that this story has made headlines in every grocery store tabloid, cable and network news, reputable magazines and NPR????

Sadly, no.

It is because his father can run really fast, catch a ball, and make more money in one year than hundreds of folks will see in their cumulative lifetimes.  Wow.  What excuses adult abusers will give themselves.  Picture these children in your mind.  Not just this one.  Their sweet dimpled elbows.  Their extreme desire to please.  Their gooey little hands.  Their sweet breath and soft arms akimbo as they sleep.  What would we, as a nation, be saying if this child had been abducted by a poorly shaved, unkempt fellow...who fed the kid a good meal, did nothing pervy with "private" body parts...just simply, beat the crap out of him with a switch, leaving stripes of bloody, bruised flesh on the parts already noted, and returned him, "safe and sound" - though now duly punished for his horrid 4 year old crimes - to his loving father?   I don't think we would say that was ok.  No, not at all.  There would be a huge manhunt - for the guy who "disciplined" the fast running man's kid!

Just a few facts:  Spanking children with an open hand, paddle or switch is NOT illegal in the United States.  It IS illegal in more than 30 other countries including Sweden, Bulgaria, and Kenya.  More than 100 nations have banned corporal punishment in schools, yet 19 U.S. states allow teachers to paddle a child.  We in the U.S. remain self righteous in our bad parental behaviors even though years of psychological data prove that hitting children as punishment is ineffective and dangerous.  Corporal punishment has been proven to lower I.Q. while increasing the incidence of depression, low self esteem, aggression, spousal and child abuse (down the line) as well as crime.  So...good times!  Way to teach that kid a lesson!

At least at this point, Adrian Peterson has been indicted by a grand jury and stands accused of reckless/negligent injury to a child and public outcry has been enough to make his team at least ponder what the viewing public will think if they continue to pay a child abuser a zillion dollars per game.  It's time to break the cycle of abuse.  Time to stop condoning and excusing, irresponsible, heinous, adult behavior. Time to think about the kids.  And...if you did this shit?  You should at least tell your kid you're sorry.  And mean it. No excuses.

Think about it.  Cause if there is a God.  He ain't smilin no rainbows at you. - c


  1. Well said! I had very similar thoughts when I saw those headlines!

  2. This is a good article by a psych that I like tremendously. Good info on evidence against corporal punishment and very good alternatives.

  3. Thanks for sharing that! It noted a lot of the data I've kept up with while taking care of children all these years. It IS especially difficult to manage children with psychological and emotional problems. In fact, I often tell the parents of ALL the children I take care of...."I've had a lot of jobs that I thought were really hard. But, being a parent is the hardest (though most beautiful) thing I've ever done."
    I particularly appreciated his approach. It is not about the author. It is just about the facts. I found this segment particularly compelling and...sad....

    "It is not so much where I stand or it’s not even my opinion, which I would not regard as very important. Our science has amazing evidence and the evidence is not confused at all in a few places related to spanking and it goes like this: Moderate to heavy spanking in a child has the child at great risk for academic dysfunction, physical health and mental health problems. How serious is this? If it’s enduring and there’s stress on the child, we know now that violence in the home, including excessive punishment, can change the child’s immune system in a permanent way. And when the child grows up, he or she is more likely to die of cancer, heart disease and chronic respiratory disease as a result of early stress in the home."