Smacking Children

Discussion in 'Soap Box' started by ~Nobody~, Jun 15, 2007.

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  1. ~Nobody~

    ~Nobody~ Well-Known Member

    Laws under which parents in England and Wales face jail for smacking children so hard they leave a mark are to be reviewed, the government has said.

    Children's Minister Beverley Hughes said parents would be asked whether smacking should be banned outright.

    Restrictions were toughened in 2004 to stop parents and carers who assaulted children from using "reasonable punishment" as a defence, but moves to ban any hitting of youngsters outright were rejected.

    Public debate

    Under the law, which came into force in January 2005, mild smacking is allowed but any punishment which causes visible bruising, grazes, scratches, minor swellings or cuts can face action.

    The then children's minister Margaret Hodge promised MPs that the law, which sparked considerable public debate, would be reviewed to see how it was working.

    The current minister Ms Hughes said it was clear that violence against a child was illegal.

    "Parliament did not go as far as to ban all smacking because it didn't want to see decent parents criminalised.

    "We have no reason to believe that the current law needs to be changed. However, in 2004 we made a proper commitment to examine the practical consequences of the changes to the legislation and this consultation is fulfilling that commitment.

    "We also said we would be separately seeking parents' views on physical punishment and this will done through a parental survey."


    Children's charity the NSPCC says the law is flawed and has called for a total ban on smacking.

    Last month Britain's four child commissioners called for a total ban, insisting there was "no room for compromise" on the issue.

    Campaign group 11 Million, headed by England's Children's Commissioner, Al Aynsley-Green, said it recognised that parenting was sometimes a difficult job and there was a need for help in finding positive and effective forms of discipline.

    But chief executive Rob Williams said: "Fear and intimidation can never be a positive part of childhood.

    "Children are rightly protected from assault in school and other settings.

    "It is time for the law to protect them from violence at home where, of all places, they should expect to feel safe and secure."

    But shadow children's minister, Tim Loughton, said: "Even though this issue was debated barely three ago, Labour ministers cannot resist meddling in how parents look after their children.

    "Bringing up children is a big enough challenge already without opening up this can of worms, which is all about nanny state rather than trusting parents to bring up their children as they see fit."

    Thoughts, anyone?
    Last edited by a moderator: Jun 15, 2007
  2. Terry

    Terry Antiquities Friend Staff Alumni

    I have hit my son 3 times in his entire life

    1. When he ran infront of a car(a fear smack)

    2. When he went missing for 3 hours (another fear smack)

    3. And once when he was a teenager(and boy it was a clout:eek:hmy:)when he
    refused to go to school, swore at me and called me a bitch:eek:hmy:(the grovelling apology that followed this moment of madness was something to behold..he even made me tea:laugh:)

    So I asked him once what it meant to him when it had come to a smack, his answer was, I knew then I had really gone to far.

    I guess everything in moderation and don't use it as a punishment, it was never a punishment with me, just me reaching break point.
  3. anonymous51

    anonymous51 Staff Alumni

    i dont see whats wrong with smacking your children personally. We have been doing it for generations and has helped children to grow up with a sense of respect and responsibility in society. kids dont have proper reasoning skills when theyre young so the only way they think is do bad stuff = bad stuff happens do good stuff = good stuff happens and it helps them to respond to more serious events better when theyre older. It makes me feel bad for the child when i see some stupid middle class parents ignoring their child because they watched supernanny and she said its good for them. I have seen the effects of some of the first generation of this new method of parenting and i am scared at what they are going to be like as adults
  4. hammockmonkey

    hammockmonkey Well-Known Member

    I just know that the 12 Tribes (a cult) uses the stick because they don't want their children afraid of hands.

    One shouldn't abuse their children, but sometimes a smack is necessary. I know its frowned upon in Western culture, and for some good reasons. But seriously, once and a long while that's what it takes.
  5. muslim

    muslim Well-Known Member

    I thinck that smacking children is useful in some sitiuations and
    not useful in others
    that depends on parents and the child itself.
    but we cant prevent smacking totally.

    it will affect the relation of parenys and children

    in some cases if you didnt punish your child by smacking he will not respect you any more.\
  6. ybt

    ybt Guest

    i am completely against the smacking of children. if "violence is not the answer" for adults, why should it be any different for children?

    additionally, children haven't dealt with as many experiences, so it can be emotionally damaging. i think getting hit can be emotionally damaging for an adult as well.
  7. I had a few courses about children and each spoke about how unhelpful hitting/smacking/spanking a child was.
    It's much more useful to reward the child when he does right and give him something to strive for. Instead of hitting, one could speak the child and say, "I am very unhappy you earned a lower grade in this class since I know you can do much better. I am taking away your video gaming privileges for two weeks--if you show me that you are improving then I will allow you to play your video games once again." You can also completely reward a child, "Oh, I see you have made straight A's this grading term. For that, I will allow you an extra hour of television time for a week."
    The courses pretty much stated that the child doesn't really learn anything from the smacking except to hide their actions at certain moments. Instead of cursing in front of mother, they wait until she walks away. Instead of giving their grade card right away, they hide it for awhile until the parent confronts them about it.
    Rewarding a child gives him/her something to strive for and look forward to. They want to show their grades and their improvement. They feel better about themselves and they feel proud that they have earned something more than just a piece of paper with a number on it. They tend to work harder at achieving and are more open to recieving assistance in subjects they struggle with.
    I feel this makes a lot of sense and I feel it's helpful not to spank a child after many years of being pro-spanking. I would not speak poorly about parents who do spank though so please do not get me wrong. I just figured I'd share what I had learned in my courses.

  8. Hmm. I agree that rewarding a child is very helpful in giving the child a reason to strive to try better. However, I disagree with you about parents taking away a child's privilages because the child received a poor grade. Often, teachers will unfairly grade a child due to various reasons. Also, some children do make an effort to get good grades, but sometimes they don't do as well. Taking away anything from them because of it, is wrong in my opinion. Rather, the parents ought to sit down and discuss it with the child.
    I think if the parents respond to their children with love, rather than any sort of emotional/physical violence, kids would be much healthier and happier, as they would do better educationally too.
  9. sarahg

    sarahg Well-Known Member

    i work with behavioural kids
    i cant snmack them to get tasks done
    smacking never an option
    i also have a son which i have never hit and which i have told that he ever hits me he better make sure i never get up
    love and understanding
  10. ~CazzaAngel~

    ~CazzaAngel~ Staff Alumni

    I agree with Sarah on this one.
  11. ybt

    ybt Guest

    actually, even "taking away privileges" is usually wrong. it's best to just talk. again, you wouldn't take away an adult's car, would you? why should children be any different? and ESPECIALLY for school. compulsory education is so completely wrong.

    but positive reinforcement doesn't help either. it's still a form of brainwashing into the beliefs YOU think are right. and so, either way, what you need to do is to just talk and ask for opinions, don't pressure, unbiased, no sneaky tricks. basically what you expect for someone to do to you. you wouldn't want to be misled, why should they?
  12. Wonderstuff

    Wonderstuff Staff Alumni

    I think it's outrageous that the Government are even talking about banning smacking. I was smacked - never overly much or overly hard, only when I refused to stop doing something after being told a few times not to - and it didn't harm me. It simply reinforced the message that what I was doing was wrong.

    Children who are particularly young don't always understand reasoning. Therefore when people say you just TELL children what they're doing is wrong, and explain it, how do you know they understand?

    In the past decade - maybe two - there has been a surge in the number of parents saying "No, we don't believe in smacking". There has also been a dramatic rise in the number of children whose lack of discipline in the home means they cause a lot of trouble at school, have no respect for teachers or adults in general, and who are increasingly difficult for parents to control.

    Do you seriously think there is no correlation between the two?
  13. rd9671

    rd9671 Guest

    I think that it is sometimes necessary to swat a child on the rear or a quick "cuff" behind the head, but if it leaves any lasting marks i think it may be too much. Some of it depends on the age of said child as well as other circumstances. If the child is young --- alot of force is not necessary, sometimes it just means that you need to get their attention and they can focus on what you are saying to them.
  14. ~Nobody~

    ~Nobody~ Well-Known Member

    It's interesting reading your replies, I'm glad you all want to voice your opinions on this :yes:.

    Personally I believe it should be illegal.

    This post might be a long one...

    I understand what you're saying in terms of "do something bad = get something bad", but why do you believe the something bad has to be physical violence?

    As for the ignoring your child thing... that's absolutely the way to deal with a child having a strop. Children who were fussed over whenever they threw a tanturm when they were younger will continue exactly the same behaviour into later life. And think about it, if you knew someone your age who was very into hystrionics, a total drama queen, you would deal with it by pretty much ignoring what they said. Not by smacking them.

    When, though? This brings me on to the main reason why I think it should be illegal - even if a smack is 'necessary' sometimes, every parent will have differing opinions on when that sometimes is. If children do not have proper protection from assault then wicked/stupid people will always use that to their advantage.

    But is that respect or fear? Think about the people you know, do you respect those who talk to you and reason with you when they disagree with something you've done, or those who threaten you with physical violence every time? There is a world of difference between respect and fear, but many parents seem to view it as a very thin line.

    Well said.

    This is the kind of alternative apprach that works. It shows that violence towards a child just isn't necessary or productive.

    Actually, I disagree with you here. We do take away the privileges of adults who break the rules. If they were driving dangerously then we would take away their car, as well as their right to drive a different one. We take away free time by sentencing them to community service. How is this any different from taking away a toy when the child doesn't treat it with respect, or telling them they have to clean their room instead of going out with their friends?

    Unless you disagree with punishing adults too, of course.

    I'm sorry, this is getting a little daft. How would society ever work if there weren't some rules about what behaviour is acceptable and what behaviour is unacceptable?

    Consider yourself lucky that you were someone whose parents didn't overdo it. The problem is, that as long as it is legal to hit your children then vast numbers of people will get away with taking it much too far.

    Because children are more aware and intelligent than most people give them credit for. I can guarantee you that.

    Surely it's better to base a reward/punishment system on reason and discussion than violence and shouting?

    There is a HUGE difference between correlation and cause. Also, it's been discussed for a lot longer than twenty years.


    I hope I haven't offended anyone with any of this. I just want a discussion :smile:.

    Just to reiterate my point, I believe that children should have the same protection from physical assault that adults do. I think it's disgusting that we live in a society where is is fine to hit those who are smaller than us and "belong" to us.

    Peace. ~Nobody~ x
  15. ybt

    ybt Guest

    fair enough, i was wrong about the positive reinforcement/punishment things. all the same, the major argument i have against it is that respect is done out of fear, which is absolutely not how it should be done.
  16. muslim

    muslim Well-Known Member

    i thinck that there isnt any problem to make the relation between you and your child a mix of respect and fear.
    fear is not that when he saw you he ran away
    that not what i mean
    but fear means to be afraid of making big mistakes.
    if you said to him dont smoke when he is 10
    if he didnt fear from your punishment he will do what he want
    i thinck that is very natural thing to be afraid of our parents punishment.
  17. ybt

    ybt Guest

    human relations should be about trust and logic, not about being scared into doing things.
  18. mp

    mp Well-Known Member

    I think smacking should be banned, its violence.

    Why should children be exposed to violence, no matter how small it is. Children cant express themselves well(most of them), parents would never know how their behaviour affects their children. Smacking is "easy method" you use violence to suppress a child, he is scared of it so he listens to you, but whats the point? wouldn't patiently talking with the child and making him realize that what he is doing is wrong is much better? at least he himself decides not to do it. When those children grow up, they are going to treat their children the same way.

    This ban would at least prevent parents from using violence even if its for fear getting prosecuted, maybe next generation would be more peaceful.

    But yes it doesn't affect everyone badly, like laur for example. she learnt from it....but as i said earlier there are other non violent ways you could achieve the same thing if you have patience.

    Last edited by a moderator: Jun 19, 2007
  19. Bostonensis

    Bostonensis Guest

    I disagree in absolute certainty. Smacking or anything in a form of punishment doesn't teach us knowledge.And same is true with children. When the child is deprived of privileges when they do wrong ,they feel humiliated.Who said we cannot do no wrong? Adults are entitled to make mistakes. That is how most of us learn. When you smack the child becoz he run in front of a car ,the failure is on the adult mind. Do you want to stick in the memory of a child that in order to cross the road safely is when you are there so she/he will be assured to depend on you? At 3-4 yrs. old I teach my son to look both ways twice before crossing the parking lot, I also practice him the danger of some sharp objects like scissors ,knives & sticks ,the stove the iron,that looks like them & I put him on the test. I never had a worry about them around more so when my memory fails me,they can be on the floor but he never touch them. Children are innately full of wisdom not by using their mind but their feelings. They cannot comprehend logical things becoz their brain is still developing so they need guidance from us. Teaching them with discipline in a form of pain or humiliation will only register both ,not the lesson that effect that are trying to achieve. Remember the brain of a child is underdevelop , three or four stimulus the brain has to process all at the same time will braek the child's intuition,or focus ( spatial,visual, audio, smell , fear, add two more, pain & humiliation. Where is the mind of the child will go? He is forced sunconsciously to submerged all her/his intuitive feeling & will pick up the most traumatizing stimuli. But that does mean the child learn the true meaning of the danger? You guess.......I can only guess that all of you who thought otherwise was taught this way by your parents?

    My half a cent,
    Last edited: Jun 18, 2007
  20. Bostonensis

    Bostonensis Guest

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