Tuesday, May 24, 2005


By now you should be able to tell that I totally suck at having good titles on my blog posts. I come up with crap that is ... well... crap.

Okay so here's the question for Americans ... why is it illegal(is it?) for parents or teachers to smack their children to discipline them? Did some parents set a bad example by going out of their way to hire the mafia to discipline their child? Maybe that might be it. But I don't get it. You can't hit your OWN children to discipline them.

In India, disciplining children by hitting them was the norm. And look at us ... we haven't turned out any worse than American kids. We probably have the same ratio of good, bad and ugly as Americans do. So why the laws protecting a child against getting disciplined by parents. I'm not saying that I'm all for it - I'd probably have a very hard time getting myself to discipline my child that way. But all I'm asking is, why is there legal protection against that? My mom hit me occasionally when I was a kid and I definitely deserved it for being such a pain in the behind. Of course she didn't hit me whenever she felt like it....she hit me whenever I needed to be hit and I'm fully convinced that it was for the right things.

I am not against laws preventing physical abuse of children. For example, I'd hate to see a father hanging his son upside down from a tree branch to make sure he understands not to talk at the dinner table. Overkill (no pun intended!) like that should be punishable. But if a mom smacks a child across his face because he's spitting at some other kid or just being an antisocial rodent, well he deserved what he got. Nice kids don't get smacking. Little girls don't get smacking...period! They're too cute. Little boys ...that's a different story.

In conclusion...I think children need disciplined with the occasional smack and there should be laws preventing over-smacking where the child looks like he was in a 12 round boxing bout the other night. But most parents don't go to that extent. Most parents and teachers try to smack kids to get something right in that pea brain that kids own. I've been there ... I've been a pea brain ... I know!!


Blogger Archana said...

I am totally against smacking. Let's see if I can get the fact across to you...
Children DONOT need smacking to be disciplined. They learn things eventually....in their own time, in their own way. Smacking does not make it any better for the kid to learn. Its either just the belief of the parent that the child will learn something [this happens only in 20% of the cases] or it is just a way for the parent to vent out their anger on the child [this one sounds unreal..no parent wants to hit their own children. But, trust me, its real for the other 80%] Most parents or teachers hit their child only because they are mad....human anger can do anything...Haven't you read the news where children are admitted to a hospital because they were hit by their parents/teachers? Last year 4 students even died because their teachers tried to discipline them. I think this is the reason why its a law.
I've seen my brother and sister brought up, with whom I have an age gap of 5 and 10 years respectively. When they are smacked, they tend to be aggressive against the parents. If you sit them down and talk to them, they understand better.
If you hit children, they dont exactly learn from their mistakes. The next time before they commit those mistakes they think "Oh, my mom's gonna hit me....so I'm not going to do it!" instead of thinking "Its not right! I'm not doing it because its wrong!" You've got to develop the right kind of thinking in a child.
Personally, years ago, there are instances where my Dad hit me...too bad...most of the times because he had a bad business day..and I dont see any reason to be hit. Infact, I dont think that what I did was wrong either.

Gosh Sheeshers, I just hope that you knew how bad some parents [specially fathers when they are drunk] hit their children, until their ribs are broken and skin is torn...we should have such laws in India.I support them....Children are the gifts given by God himself.

Tooo big....hope you got what I tried to say :)

1:17 PM  
Blogger Denise said...

I agree with both forms of thinking. I believe that it's alright to punish a child with a smart little paddle on his devilish little bottom if he needs it...(BOTTOM, I say)...but not before he has had "the discussion" and understands exactly WHY he needs a smack. To just smack a child randomly, letting your hand fall where it may on that little being, is going a little too far. Heads are definitely off limits!

There are just times when children need their little hineys spanked, and believe me, there are some parents that need it, too. (The ones that have NO discipline skills whatsoever).

In Egypt, it's the same as India. Kids usually know what they are getting a smack for, and they are not worse for it. They expect it. In America, this anti-discipline campaign started with laws to protect children against physical abuse, but people have taken the law a little too far. They get into the loopholes to fit whatever "divorce" scenario they can, and it has escalated to a point here where if you look at your child sideways CPS will come and take them away from you, to the extent that you will not only have to prove you are a fit parent, but that you are a sane and normal human being. The whole CPS "policing" thing in itself is often more humiliating for both the parent and the child than the spanking.

4:14 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

See, I personally do not support ANY kind of physical punishment with kids, and I have strong views about this too. I love kids and I work with them daily. I see kids as young as 3-4 coming in for immense anger problems and a lot has to do with any kind of physical aggression shown in the home between parents or even with physical discipline. I feel logic gets a little twisted when your kid hits you or someone else, or does something wrong and you smack him as a punishment. So violence begets violence? and what does the kid learn in the process.

Granted, most of the families I meet with are towards the more severe end of the spectrum and they have been in families which involves alot of abuse, so it just carries on because that's all they know. I dont think any kid grows up with fond memories of being spanked and what a wonderful citizen they are today, because of it.
I know it can be frustrating and challenging bringing up kids (I dont have my own, and even when I see then for an hour, sometimes I am ready to pull out their hair or mine!), but I believe there are always alternatives to smacking or spanking. I think sometimes we get caught up in the drive-through and instant gratification culture that we are not willing to provide proper consequences and end up giving a whack instead, to end the bad behavior.

Alot of inappropriate discipline does go on in alot of families and CPS doesnt just take kids away if you spank them once. But since I am a child advocate, I believe it better to err on side of protection and overpolicing sometimes, if it even helps 1 child.
Ok, I'll get off my soap-box now and back to checkers...

Anyway, I wasn’t smacked and look how great I turned out! ;-D
~ Synapse

5:43 PM  
Blogger Sheeshers said...

I still think that the law of reasoning cannot be applied universally to all kids and that they're not all born equal. In that situation, if a child keeps getting out of hand despite parental reasoning and it gets to the point where he's a teenager that is a menace to society.....what do you do next? Oh I know .. we should send him to Synapse since she's a pyschologist.

So basically, if things went well beyond the reasoning stage...and had you smacked sense into his head (not literally of course..) do you think the child might have turned out different?

I don't know why but Archie and Synapse are seeing this as too black-and-white...like too sides of a coin. Either you get good kids or you get troubled kids. Well...um...I'd say you can pull away SOME troubled kids from that boundary and make them good kids by knocking sense into their behind if needed.

10:32 PM  
Blogger Archana said...

You donot get kids good or bad..kids are just kids. If they are becoming a menace, then sit them down and talk to them. Kids turn out to be aggressive and intolerant if you smack them and thus you'd be increasing the menace they do. Its not necessary at all for parents to smack kids.
Anyways, I'm a kid myself....so I'll just leave it at that.

3:39 PM  
Blogger gAMe said...

Archana is a real disciple of Gandhi....well I wonder if u saw the comedy show by Russel Peters (he is an Indian)....watch it I havent watched a better show than that...oops if u dont get it BUZZ me at http://students.iiit.net/~suryakant/cgi-bin

I will get u that ... by the way a part of it has this smacking thing....thinking of that maked me laugh

3:39 AM  

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