Should spanking be banned?

It’s a common debate between parents. Now the right to spank children is being debated by politicians in Massachusetts. Yes, lawmakers will look into banning parents from spanking their children.

How did this come about? A mother, who is also a nurse, created the the bill. Kathleen Wolf says her daughter told her that some of her friends were regularly spanked by their parents. Wolf wants to educate those parents and raise awareness about child abuse. Recalling her younger days when teachers disciplined students by striking them with switches, Wolf seems to be trying to define the line between good acceptable discipline and abuse. She was quoted as saying, “[The bill] would make it so that corporal punishment is not an acceptable form of punishment in Massachusetts, and hopefully from this would come education, communication and support.”

In 1999 The Massachusetts Supreme Court ruled parents can spank their children, but can’t threaten bodily harm. Wolf’s bill doesn’t broadly criminalize all aggressive physical contact. There are exceptions, according to an op-ed piece in the Boston Herald, for “minor physical contact” and parents defending themselves. C’mon, kids are big these days! You can read the entire bill here.

We knew this story would get folks here in Texas talking, so we asked you to email your thoughts…

Here are the first few responses:

Deborah: “Dr. Spock came along when I was very little. My parents spanked me when I did something I wasn’t supposed to do, and it didn’t make me psycho. Back then, it was called discipline, which is something that has nearly disappeared today. I still think Dr. Spock is responsible for the trouble we have with kids today. And I think, too, that the increase in “bullies” has a simple cause and cure. It’s instigated by today’s “love” for COMPETITION. Not all human beings are cut-out for competing – I never was. And today, parents push their kids to compete and I don’t think it’s for the kids’ sake. These parents are too vain for their own good.

Phil:Spanking SHOULD be allowed. I got my butt spanked many times, at home and at school and it did not hurt me. I never got into any bad trouble growing up and I raised my children the same way. My children are grown and have never been in trouble and are leading very productive lives. The problem with kids now is a lack of discipline at home and at schools. SPANKING SHOULD NEVER BE BANNED!!!! Beatings are a different story….

Holly: “That woman must live in Mayberry. Let the parents decide what is appropriate for their children. I had spankings (quite frequently) growing up and I turned out fine. Do I think there are better ways to discipline children? Yes. However, it is certainly not my place to impose my thoughts on anyone else.Actually, I change my mind. I’m a high school teacher and I wish more parents would have spanked their children… Maybe even beaten the–“We get the point, Holly.

Judy:“Another stupid idea by a stupid person. Massachusetts…. Vaccinations for children forced by the State backed by armed police with dogs Massachusetts Nov 2007) another stupid idea. It is NOT the governments job to raise our children.”

Doug:“…As parents, we must provide stability and an example of good, honorable living. And part of honorable living is obeying the Laws of God, the Laws of Nature and the Laws of Man. Understanding, obeying and respecting the law begins in the home at a very young age. In the beginning, Mom and Dad are the law. Children must learn that if a law is broken, there are consequences to be paid! Respect the law and fear the consequences of breaking it!!! Young children cannot comprehend reasoning, bargaining or pleading. But, they do very much understand a SOAR REAR END!!In a short time, a child will be able to put together in their mind – “Hey, if I do this, then my rear end is going to be very soar and I don’t want that…”

Shani: “So, the woman wants to ban spankings? That is absurd. I am 25 and I was spanked ALL the time, and I turned out fine. I sometimes think I turned out better because of the spankings. To this day, I still don’t go into my mothers purse, LOL. I have a 2 year old son, who (if need be) will receive a spanking. The punishment must fit the crime. So if my child hits another child, it doesn’t make sense for me to hit him in punishment, but if my child steals, lies, getting into trouble,and all of the other 50 million reasons there are for a spanking, he will get one…”

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6 Responses

  1. I DO NOT AGREE WITH CHILD ABUSE,I THINKS TERRIBLE THAT SOME PEOPLE TAKE THEIR AGREESIONS OUT ON SMALL CHILDREN….BUT I DO NOT THINK ANY GOVERNMENT ENTITY SHOULD HAVE RIGHT TO BAN THE DICIPLINARY SPANKING OF A CHILD EITHER.I WAS SPANKED AT SCHOOL WHEN I DID THINGS I KNEW I WAS NOT SUPPOSED TO.BY MOM AND DAD,AND EVEN GRANDPA ,AND GUESS WHAT,I GREW UP GIVING PEOPLE THE RESPECT THEY DESERVED ,RESPECTING OTHER PEOPLES PROPERTY,IVE NEVER STOLEN FROM ANYONE
    ,AND NEVER BEEN IN PRISON,,,HMMMMMMM IMAGINE THAT…. MY SISTERS KIDS ARE NEARLY UNMANAGABLE BECAUSE THEY RARELY GET SPANKED WHEN THEY REALY NEED IT ,ON THE OTHER HAND MY OTHER SISTERS CHILDREN(OF WHICH THERE ARE SIX OF THEM)HAD SPANKINGS WHEN THEY NEEDED IT,THEY ALL ARE POLITE,RESPECTFUL,WELL ADJUSTED MEMBERS OF THEIR COMUNITY,WITH STABLE JOBS ALL IN ALL GREAT KIDS THE OLDEST OF WHICH IS NOW 23 YEARS OLD.AND STILL HAS NEVER SEEN A JAIL CELL,,MAYBE THERE IS SOMETHING TO THIS SPANKING THING ,I KNOW I STAYED OUT OF A LOT OF TROUBLE WHEN I WAS A KID JUST BECAUSE I KNEW I WOULD END UP WITH A RED REAR END.

  2. I grew up getting spankings, and I turned out just fine, as did many of my friends and family. This is a terrible idea, for there isn’t any discipline with the children of today as it is. Children (not all, but most) have no manners, are rude and crude, and are very disrespectful. Spank their butts and make them mind!

  3. Last time I checked, we live in a free country. It’s not the government’s responsibility to raise our children, nor is it their right to dictate how we choose to discipline our children. My brother and I were both spanked with the belt and we turned out fine. No issues from it and we both deserved it.

    She picked quite a battle to fight and unfortunately will be reaping the repercussions for some time.

  4. I was spanked when I was young and proud of it. I am talking a spanking, not being beaten or berated. To be honest every spanking I got, I deserved and probably needed some I didn’t get.

    You go anywhere now and see the way kids behave and you know there is a disipline problem at home.

    They ought to make it manditory that kids get spanked if you misbehave instead of banning it. I bet the woman who proposed the bill is a royal (expletive) and you would probably want to slap her if you saw her.

    Maybe I have gotten old and crotchety, but I say spank away.

  5. i do believe if the government wants to band spanking then they should raise our kids. i am a mother of two toddlers, and i do not believe in child abuse and do believe in patience and the time-out chair, i do think that sometimes there are instances that spanking is appropriate. if there was going to be a law in texas like this, my kids and i would form a picket line and i’m sure thousands will follow. i don’t need the government telling mr hoe to raise my kids. soon they’ll be telling us when they have to be potty trained!

  6. I do not believe spanking should be banned. It is a form of discipline and I do NOT want the government telling me how I should raise my children (unless they want to start footing the bills) and what I can and cannot do in my own home. I was spanked as a child on certain occasions and looking back, I DID deserve it. It has not affected my life. Thanks to my parents, I am a well-rounded, law-abiding, responsible adult. Kids need discipline more than ever these days.

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