Fuck you. No it doesn’t.
Nothing says the South more than saying the words “ass whooping”.
The thing is, spanking doesn’t make your kids assholes. Just as much as not spanking your kids will turn them into slothy, disrespectful dicks. I am so fucking tired of hearing it from both sides.
There was a school stabbing in Houston today at Spring High School. And one commenter on my friend’s status about it said “Ugh, some kids just need their ass whooped growing up….period.” Then I said “That’s probably why this happened to begin with….they learned violence at home.” I am from the North. Ass-whooping here means fighting someone, punching them in the face and whatnot. I took it to mean “abuse”, but then this guy took his Southern term (which sounds horribly violent to me) as say to open the “spanking” debate.
So spankers think that non-spankers kids make violent. And the non-spankers think the same thing.
Soooooooooo….who are the violent ones, again?
I will just come out and say it: humanity is violent. Some more than others, but it has nothing to do with if were spanked or not.
Although, logically, you would think that NOT hitting your kids would incite less violence. Because beating the violence out of your kids? Yeah, not sure how that logic even make sense for a nanosecond 😕
Let’s talk about what we consider violence is for a moment (humor me for a second):
Violence is identified as a “rough or injurious physical force, action, or treatment”. So, by definition, spanking is a violent act. But, the REAL question is: do these types of violent acts cause issues later in life?
We do know, for one, that if we are spanked, we are more likely to grow up to spank our own children. But if we had lived in a time when spanking was not okay, then would we even resort to spanking in our weakest moments? Or is it just something built into us?
We have proven that we can stop spanking, as many of us do not spank, even if we did before. We can make a conscious choice to not do it by every time we’re in a situation we’d normally spank, we actively choose something else.
So, does that make this punishment a subconscious act? Something that’s normal to want to do because its ingrained in all of humanity?
Kids, by nature, are violent creatures. They hit when they are mad, they bit, kick, and throw things. We all know that kids are also reactive creatures (that’s your vocab word, write it down). They do not “think first, then react”. They “react first”, always. That’s subconscious talking.
Are kids not conscious creatures? If they only react, that would suggest so. The dictionary says the subconscious is “the totality of mental processes ofwhich the individual is not aware”. So our children are not aware of what they do, as their brains are not developed yet. So, its safe to say that hitting is the product of an underdeveloped mind. Its reactive behavior.
So, what does that say about us? Are we proactive or reactive? Proactive means “tending to initiate change rather than reacting to events”. So those of us who do spank, have we developed that part of our brains that lets us initiate change rather than react to it?
Why do we spank?
Parents spank as a way to:
1) react to a negative incident that our children have created;
2) to punish children for creating such an incident; and
3) hopefully prevent said incident from happening again.
But where did they get this idea? And why is it seen as okay?
As seeing that spanking is a form of corporal punishment, we have to look it as a whole. Corporal punishment is described as a form of “physical punishment that involves the deliberate infliction of pain as retribution for an offense, or for the purpose of disciplining or reforming a wrongdoer, or to deter attitudes or behavior deemed unacceptable” (Wikipedia). Other forms of corporal punishment include: switching, paddling, belting, caning, whipping, and birching (using a birch rod to hit someone’s bare buttocks, back or shoulders). Sounds pretty violent, doesn’t it? Although the state where I live you are only allowed to hit your kids with your open hand on the butt, anything else is deemed abuse.
Corporal punishment has been around as long as humanity has. Why? Because our ancestors had less developed brains than we did, so therefore they lived in fight or flight mode on a second to second basis. This was needed for survival. So when these parents (and husbands) thought their children (or wife) was doing something that wasn’t right? Hitting them was just instinct.
So this “instinct”, as with all instincts, its a “knee-jerk” reaction (do I hear the word “reactive” in there again?) to an a circumstance or incident. Having our ancestors smack each other was a way to say “Hey, I might hit you now, but if that sabertooth tiger gets you cause you’re not listening to me, then that will be WAY worse!” They could not convey this with words, so they had to use their hands.
Here is a bit of history from http://www.religioustolerance.org for corporal punishement:
- Slave-owners could whip slaves. This was theoretically abolished in the U.S. at the end of the Civil War.
- Masters could whip indentured servants.
- Husbands could beat wives with little chance of being arrested; this immunity has been greatly reduced in recent years throughout North America.
- The public could commit violence against people found guilty and held captive in a pillory. This was abolished in most US states by 1839. In 1905. Delaware was the last state to eliminate stocks.
- Jail guards could cane or whip prisoners. The last flogging in Britain was in 1967; in the U.S. it ended in 1952, again in Delaware.
- Ship officers could flog sailors until the practice was abolished by the U.S. Senate in 1850; and in Britain in 1957.
- Boxers were and are expected to beat each other senseless to the point that they can no longer function. Over time, this still often causes brain damage.
- School teachers could use corporal punishment on their students. Laws were passed to abolished spanking in British state-run schools in 1986, and in privately funded schools in 1998. The Supreme Court of Canada prohibited corporal punishment by Canadian schools in 2004. Punishment in schools is still permitted in about 60% of the states.
- Parents and guardians could — and continue to — use corporal punishment on their children in the U.S. and Canada, subject to some restrictions.
To this day, hitting your wife is an acceptable form of punishment in some countries and you won’t get arrested for it. But WE Americans know this not to be true…that hitting your wife, even “spanking” her (not the sexy kind of spanking) is abuse, correct? “We are more civilized than that!” we cry out. We know better! YET it was commonly done (and still is illegally) up until our parents’ or grandparents’ generations (and depending on where you live, it might still be ignored). YET…..we do not feel the same about our children.
More Questions to Ask
So when we live in a society where slapping a child on the ass is seen as okay, and not abuse, where does that leave the child’s psyche? Will the child feel abused? Will they remember? Will they become deviants or act out because of it as they would as if there were clear lines drawn as abuse?
If there were clear lines drawn for abuse for spanking, would it feel the same as other types of abuse? And if not, would do even feel abused because the society in which we live says its okay to do? Does that have anything to do with it? Possibly. But I bet the wives that were hit legally for “punishment” felt abused. But if they had only been spanked? I dunno. Is there even a line between an open hand on the butt than a smack on the face? I know I don’t remember my spankings as much as I do when I got slapped….BUT I was younger when it happened, too.
The problem is, most parents don’t use their hands. They use belts.
And here is a video of what that looks like, in case you think its appropriate to hit your kid with a belt:
Hitting your kids with belts are the same as whipping them with a slave whip. Now, granted, the whip makes bloody marks and scars and was arguably more violent, but its “today’s version” of slave whippings. Cause why are you whipping them? Cause they don’t listen. Just like your slave.
The issue here is, when does dicipline become abuse? Where is that line? And if you beat your kid with a belt or your hand, will they be a better child who doesn’t experience violence as a form of discipline? We’ve already discussed how it is violence, so there is no argument there, but when does it become abuse? Look at the comments on that video…look at how many parents or people see that as a viable form of discipline?
Anyone reading this have nightmares of getting spanked or beaten with a belt? I guarantee you if you were hit as a teen you do, or at least you remember the humiliation and pain.
And just because you might not remember it, does it mean it didn’t affect you? Do you spank your own children?
There has been a study done that shows that children who are spanked are more aggressive and more depressed, and I assume, causes behavior that deems more spankings. A vicious cycle……
“I spank you, which causes you to act bad, so I spank you more, which causes you to act worse, etc.”
Here is the link: http://shine.yahoo.com/parenting/spanking-leads-aggressive-depressed-kids-191000663.html#!icHQu
Think about it….why has this form of discipline lasted throughout the ages? Spare the rod, spoil that child, that is. Which isn’t technically in the bible, its an axiom based upon biblical teachings.
So yes, we are back to the Christians again! Yay!
Christianity has persevered throughout the years, and is a HUGE advocate of beating children. Okay, not really, but it used to be:
Proverbs 22:15 – Foolishness is bound up in the heart of a child; The rod of correction will drive it far from him.
Proverbs 23:13, 14 – Do not withhold correction from a child, For if you beat him with a rod, he will not die. You shall beat him with a rod, And deliver his soul from hell.
Proverbs 29:15 – The rod and rebuke give wisdom, But a child left to himself brings shame to his mother.
Technically it says we should beat our children with rods to keep them in line, so they don’t go to hell. So THAT’S where this notion of “Giving my kids an ass whooping makes them better kids than your kids!!” comes in. Now I get it!! :::lightbulbmoment::: And my kids are going to hell!! Whoo hoo!!
So, go back to our ancestors for a moment, they could not convey with words what they had to convey with their hands. But today, not only do we have higher cognitive functions, but we have words. We can use them. We constantly tell kids instead of hitting each other “Use your words”. But yet we can’t do that ourselves? Hmmmmm…….double standard, maybe? And kids can see thru a double standard faster than they can hear the ice cream truck coming down the street. And that’s fast!
Kids aren’t stupid. “Do as I say, not as I do” has never worked.
So where does that leave us? Well, if you want to spank your kids, take a look…are your children more aggressive? Are they depressed? Could you use other forms of discipline other than spanking to see if there’s a difference? And also remember what spanking is and what is isn’t: its open-handed slap on the butt. Not on the leg. Not on the face. Not on the arm. Not with a flyswatter, a belt, a broom, a switch, a wooden spoon, a shoe, or anything. Those are child abuse by law. Know the difference.
Most parents spank out of anger…..which makes the whole act violent (and we did clarify that spanking is a form of violence….its just the question of how much mental damage, if any, does it inflict on your child). Spanking not out of anger does not make sense to a child…..to hit someone when you’re not angry? I can’t even think about what that teaches a kid. I have never met a parent that doesn’t spank out of anger.
Kids hit each other when they are at their wit’s end, when they have run out of options. So let’s give you all some options, so that way you’ll have ALL these tricks and ideas on hand so you won’t ever be at your wit’s end and be reactive (acting before thinking) rather than proactive (consciously thinking before acting):
Those are just a few, just google it and you’ll come up with loads more.
So back to the title of this blog….those who choose to spank their children, they like to try to constantly make the rest of us who choose not to, feel bad about our parent choices. They tell use our kids will “get into trouble” or in the fact of the man who posted that meme “they grow up and stab people”.
I really REALLY hold myself back in these cases to call those people “lunatics” and “utter morons”, as common sense will tell you that showing your kids any type of violence will make them more violent and not showing them violence will in NO WAY cultivate violence. But I digress….
I can’t take it personally, as 1) I have common sense and 2) the entire reason they say this to me is not because of me or my children. Its because they have been made to feel bad by non-spanking parents so they feel that they retaliate against all non-spankers. As if we all are the reason they feel bad. I don’t even have to say anything, I just have to choose the act of not spanking and its offensive to them.
Its like when I used to tell people I was vegetarian, they would get all stupid and say “I’m sorry” and then go on about how great meat is. As if the act of me choosing (proactively) to not eat meat was in itself making a mockery of those that do, as if its offensive or that my choice was saying something about them.
What???? Okay. My choices ARE NEVER a statement to be made about those who choose differently than me. But ask yourself, are you actively choosing your diet? Your form of education? Your parental discipline? Or are you acting out of habit or because “that’s the way its always been done?”
Anyone who actively (proactively even) chooses a way of life, will never be offended by someone else choosing differently. Yes, it makes me sad when people spank their kids. It hurts my stomach to watch…..but that doesn’t say anything about me. I know why people do it, I get it, its been ingrained in their psyches for so long (for all of us as a human race) that its okay, that its hard to change (or some don’t want to at all, and that’s okay), and its not for me to judge. But that’s not about me in the least. Your choice to spank your kid does not affect my choice to not spank.
So if you feel bad because of my choices? Or get offended because I disagree with you? I think deep down you either want to change….or you might be letting others make you feel bad for your choices and taking it out on me. But since its not really about me, I need to just walk away and not worry about it.
Be proactive in your life. Choose your actions, your words, your way of life, rather than letting your reactive subconscious mind choose for you.
Its easy to to let your mind control you. But now its time for you to be in control of your mind.
Till next time….