Saturday, June 7, 2008

Spanking should always be between consensual adults...

Completely unrelated to atheism, but certainly connected to rationality... this just popped up over on the Fayetteville Free Thinkers forum.

A judge in Texas... isn't it always in Texas?... has ordered at least one parent in his family courtroom to spank their child.

In the case in question, a man was told to spank his step-daughter with a paddle he described as "large and heavy and fashioned from a thick piece of lumber", or else he would be forced to pay a 500.00 fine.

"When he was through, the judge told him he had not struck the girl hard enough."

Don't we have dozens of studies that show that corporal punishment, at best, has no effect on shaping long-term behavior?

At the worst, it can have horrific long term consequences. It increases antisocial behavior, serves as a model for dealing with conflict, erodes trust between the parent and child, and may lead to depression.

Most worrisome, physical punishment may adversely effect cognitive development.

We have a JUDGE ordering this practice?? I am speechless.


Leah said...

The judge ordered a man to spank a 14-year-old girl in the courtroom with a big paddle... besides the whole state-sponsored corporal punishment thing and the obvious problems with that, that is creepy as hell

nisemono3.14 said...


As a thirteen year old girl, you think it would be creepy to have an adult male order someone to spank you?

What a perceptive young whippersnapper you are...

Robert Madewell said...

Corporal punishment in my family was a brutal practice. My father was usually angry when he would administer punishment, so usually he was way too rough, hit us too hard, and too many times.

By the time I was a teen, I had no trust for father at all. Not only that, I was scared to death of him. I was also afraid anytime he would raise his voice. Even if he just raised it a little bit and was not really angry.

When I was a young man in my 20's I went through terrible depression. I had no self-esteem and couldn't talk to anyone or look anyone in the eyes.

Today, I only have a long distance and strained relationship with my parents. I visit them only if I have to.

I blame the extreme desciplining for most of that. Of course I probably had it worse than most folks, but there are families that were/are much worse than mine was.

nisemono3.14 said...


Thank you for taking the time to comment. I truly appreciate your candid response.

While there are many parents who are turning to corporal punishment as a way to direct frustration and anger, there are others who still believe that corporal punishment is truly the best way to raise a child.

We have shown over and over that this just isn't true. We have shown that corporal punishment has the possibility of doing long term damage to a child.

Sadly, the culture at large just hasn't got the memo yet. This judge is just another example of lawmakers who a way behind the curve when it comes to the social science research on a practice.

Thank you again for taking the time to comment.