COMPILED BY ASHLEY D. THOMAS
Corporal punishment – Yes or no?
In the wake of child abuse allegations brought against NFL star running back Adrian Peterson, the question of how to discipline children again has taken the national spotlight.
Laws vary from state to state but at home, corporal punishment is technically legal in all 50 states. Florida Statute Section 39.01 states, “Corporal discipline of a child by a parent or legal custodian for disciplinary purposes does not in itself constitute abuse when it does not result in harm to the child.”
“Whipping, we do that all the time,” Charles Barkley said while addressing the controversy on CBS Sports’ The NFL Today. “Every Black parent in the South is going to be in jail under those circumstances.”
Peterson’s actions have sparked a nationwide debate over physical discipline after he admitted to police that he used corporal punishment on his 4-year-old son by ‘whipping’ him with a ‘switch’ (a thin branch from a shrub or tree, typically with leaves removed). The switch left bruises to the child’s back, buttocks, ankles, legs and scrotum, along with defensive wounds to the child’s hands.
The Daytona Times took to the streets to find out what Daytona Beach residents had to say about corporal punishment, its effectiveness and whether or not they agree with the punishment.
It should be illegal. Some people, now days, don’t know how to spank a kid. When I was growing up as a child we got spankings with extension cords, belts and everything else. But now people just beat the **** out of their kids and nothing is usually being said. The neighbors and everybody else is afraid of saying anything so yes I do think it should be illegal.
I think if you bring up your kids right you don’t need to give spankings. I have two kids and I haven’t touched them at all, a ten-year-old and a sixteen year old. If you just bring them up the right way, you won’t have the need for the spankings.
I think beating with any kind of stick or limb is not morally right at all. I got spankings when I was a child, but never with a stick. I think it should be other forms of discipline parents used. I didn’t get many spankings growing up and that was because my mother talked to us (self and siblings). It is not the ‘in’ thing now to beat your child like when I was coming up.
You got to spank them or they will spank you sooner or later. Just like if a child takes something in the store, you take them back in the store and you spank them. I don’t give a damn about what people say.
Don’t abuse them, but sometimes you have to chastise them. Something else – in the school nowadays, a child does wrong at school and you suspend him for four days to sit at home and watch TV. That’s not discipline. Next week he is going to do the same thing again.
Spanking should not be illegal. I think it shouldn’t go to the extreme with bruises, cuts, all that. As long as you don’t bruise them, I think it will be alright.
You’re asking me? I think if a child needs it then spank. My kids were bad. I spanked.
I believe in spanking. I don’t believe in brutalizing and torturing them. The switch is too much. I had a switch when I was a kid, had to go out and pick it. But a spank? That’s fine and there is a difference. I have three grandkids and I can tell you “time-out” does nothing. But they remember when you smack them on the hand. At four years old, a switch is way too much. If you have a tendency to have a temper, let the mother discipline them. That shouldn’t be your job. You probably have other things that you are good at that you can take control of.