Thursday, January 7, 2010

Is Spanking Harmful?

More and more modern parents are abandoning physical punishment of their children, and embracing the more politically-correct timeout, along with other non-physical methods of discipline.

A corporal punishment study was done by Marjorie Gunnoe, professor of psychology at Calvin College in Grand Rapids, Michigan. Her findings, announced early in 2010, stated that claims for not spanking children simply fail to hold up.

She found that children who were physically disciplined actually performed better than those who weren’t disciplined. This included school grades, optimism, outlook on life, willingness to perform volunteer work, and the ambition to attend college. In addition to that, they weren’t any more likely to get involved in fights or become depressed. She also found that children who were never spanked tended to have behavioral problems.

A study done by the University of Akron found that children raised where there is a legal ban on parental corporal punishment more likely to be involved in crime. This study focused on Sweden which implemented a complete ban on physical discipline about 30 years ago. The study found that teen violence tended to increase among children who grew up under the spanking ban.

Other countries, such as Germany, Italy and New Zealand have also adopted bans on spanking. In New Zealand, the use of force to correct children actually entails criminal penalties. In that country, a parent isn’t even permitted to take a child’s hand and force him to go where the child refuses to go.

There are plenty of feel-good organizations that are promoting anti-spanking policies. In the United States, the National Association of Social Workers states that all physical punishment has harmful effects and should be stopped. The American Academy of Pediatrics states that spanking is less effective than the timeout. In 2007, the California government actually attempted to pass legislation to impose a ban on spanking children. Thankfully, that legislation did not become law.

To learn more about non-physical child discipline and other politically-correct tendencies of our modern society, read Shadow Truth: The Ultimate Deception by Larry J. Tate. Go to or

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