Challenge Match: Benarius vs skeptic1: "If You Do That Again, You Will Get Such A Smack!!!"

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posted on Feb, 5 2009 @ 08:37 PM
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The topic for this debate is: "Smacking a Child is Abuse and Should Be Outlawed"

Benarius will be arguing the pro position and will open the debate.
skeptic1 will argue the con position.

Each debater will have one opening statement each. This will be followed by 3 alternating replies each. There will then be one closing statement each and no rebuttal.

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Any character count in excess of 10,000 will be deleted prior to the judging process.

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When asked a question, a debater must give a straight forward answer in his next post. Explanations and qualifications to an answer are acceptable, but must be preceded by a direct answer.

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[edit on 2/5/2009 by semperfortis]




posted on Feb, 5 2009 @ 10:35 PM
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Dear fellow ATSers, friends of debating, ranters (such as me, sometimes), trolls and anonymous lurkers and especially semperfortis and skeptic1 who make this debate possible, I invite you to a journey of exploring the faults of human behaviour that have still to this day been adapted and widely accepted by what I beleive is the result of uneducated parents (not uneducated in generell, but unadecuated in parenting) and the misshaps „slight of hand”.

Smacking a child is abuse which I will demonstrate (verbally) in this debate. First of all lets look at this two words first as defined by one of many online-thesauruses.

- smacking:

Reference 1: thesaurus.reference.com...

- abuse:

Reference 2: thesaurus.reference.com...

lets add a third one (limit of references in opeing statement reached)

- child:

Reference 3: thesaurus.reference.com...

So we have now, hitting, wrong use and a very young person. I am sure you can argue to use another thesaurus, but it will still boil down to the same perception and definition.

In my oppinion, the word smacking is just a play with words. A downplaying of a word. Belittleing of the word hitting. Therefore let me point out, smacking is hitting.

I like the definition of abuse in this thesaurus. Wrong use. As the definition states clearly. Wrong, wrong and wrong again!!!

And most importantly, the victim in this debated scenario. A young person. Maybe somebody that hasn't learned everything in life yet. Maybe somebody that needs a leading not a hitting hand. Maybe somebody in need of a teacher not a tyrrant. But definately a person much younger than yourself.

Now to the final part of my opening statement.

I stand firm on my beleive that smacking a child is still a bad form of expressing frustration and desperation by parents that are not capable of communicating verbally with their children. This is not the childs fault. It is clearly a badly inherited form of social conditioning that will go on and on forever if not stopped now. I also beleive that many of the worlds problems today would be handled differently by a generation that never experienced this ill behaviour of social injustice upon children.
As to what degree this abuse should be outlawed is probably worth of another debate, but I beleive that an educational process of the abusing parent should be imminent.

I hereby close my rather short opening statement as I like to keep some aces up my sleeve for my three replies. Especially the 5 or even more questions I have are something to look forward to be answered and hopefully can be answered with a clear concious not to lose any nights sleep over it.

Thank you all for listening (reading).

Regards

Benarius

P.S.: Please forgive my spelling and grammar. Both makes, me and my PC are of non-english background and my spellchecker in OpenOffice isn't installed. Btw. This is my first debate ever. U2U's are welcomed to help me improve. Thank you.



posted on Feb, 6 2009 @ 07:20 AM
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First off, I'd like to thank Semporfortis for setting up this debate. Second, thank you, Benarius, for suggesting such an interesting topic.

To the readers and judges, I hope you find this intriguing and intelligent.

Like my opponent, let's start off with three definitions:

1. Smack: to strike sharply, esp. with the open hand or a flat object.
2. Spank: to strike (a person, usually a child) with the open hand, a slipper, etc., esp. on the buttocks, as in punishment.
3. Abuse: (verb) to treat in a harmful, injurious, or offensive way; (noun) bad or improper treatment; maltreatment

Source

And, everyone has a pretty good idea what a child is.

I included spanking in my definition list due to the fact that, in other countries, “smacking” seems to have the same meaning that “spanking” does in the US. Here in the States, spanking is a controversial topic, with some insisting it is abuse and others insisting that it is a parent’s prerogative as long as the “abuse” line is not crossed.

In my mind, there is a huge chasm between smacking or spanking a child and actual physical abuse.

When I was a child, I would get a smack or a swat on the bottom to get my attention in a physical manner. A swat or a smack, in my life, was never meant to hurt me, but to physically get my attention to point out that I had done something improper or wrong. It wasn't administered to inflict physical harm; it wasn't abuse. It was a quick and effective way to get my attention and stop me from what I was doing.

Is smacking or spanking abuse? Some countries have rallied against it, spending millions on anti-smacking (anti-spanking) campaigns and some countries have banned smacking (spanking) altogether. What has that led to?

In Australia, an advocacy group spent $2.5 million in taxpayer dollars on an anti-smacking (anti-spanking) campaign:

Source


While such campaigns are meant to lessen child abuse - a legitimate concern - they end up working against parental authority: the ability of parents to control and discipline their own children. This is because these campaigns effectively equate corporal punishment with abuse, or at least imply that smacking is counterproductive and leads to child abuse. While we should all be concerned about child abuse, we should also be concerned about those who are unable, or unwilling, to distinguish between child abuse and physical discipline. We already have laws on the books against assault, abuse, and so on. But smacking is not abuse.


Sweden even tried to ban smacking (spanking) in 1979. What did that lead to?

Source


Part of the reason for the ban was that it was hoped that it would reduce child abuse. OK, so what does the evidence tell us? What can we learn from the Swedish experiment? In 1996 an important study into child abuse in Sweden was published. It found, among other things, that Swedish data indicated a 489% increase in child abuse statistics from 1981 through 1994, as well as a 672% increase in assaults by minors against minors.


I won’t argue semantics with my opponent. Smacking (spanking) is hitting. I will argue, however, the actual meaning of the word and how it is perceived. Smacking (spanking) is not abuse for most parents and for most children. Smacking (spanking) is a form of physical discipline, not an outlet of frustration or a form of desperation. Smacking (spanking) is a form of parental authority. Smacking (spanking) is a parent’s choice.

Smacking (spanking) is not physical abuse. There is a definite gap between smacking (spanking) a child and physically abusing them.

In closing, smacking (spanking) was never the sensation it is today until the era of political correctness. My grandparents were smacked (spanked) by their parents. My grandparents smacked (spanked) my parents. On occasion, my parents smacked (spanked) me. It got my attention, made me a bit uncomfortable for a few hours, but did not scar me for life, did not damage me for life, and did not strike me (pardon the pun) as abuse later in life. But, today, in the light of media sensationalism and political correctness, a parent’s choice to use physical discipline on their child is frowned upon….no matter what form of discipline is used. In some places, a slap on the wrist is viewed with the same disgust as beating a child with a belt.

It isn’t the same thing; it doesn’t even come close.

Socratic Question #1

Why is smacking (spanking) so demonized today, when in the past, in our parent's generation, it was standard operating procedure; why is something that was acceptable for them (and, society approved) suddenly taboo now?

Socratic Question #2

Who is society or any government, for that matter, to tell parents how they can physically discipline their child(ren) as long as the punishment is not meant to physically damage, hurt, or harm the child; who are they to tell a parent that they cannot smack (spank)?



posted on Feb, 6 2009 @ 10:49 AM
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Ladies and gentlemen,

my first reply to my opponents opening statement will start by answering or at least trying to answer her two socratic questions. Actually, let me split the first (nicely camouflaged as one question) into two.

Socratic Question #1.1

Why is smacking (spanking) so demonized today, when in the past, in our parent's generation, it was standard operating procedure?

Answer: Because we see the ill effects in society even more than before. The „victims” have learned to talk about it and not be ashamed anymore. None of the children actually ever liked it.

Socratic Question #1.2

Why is something that was acceptable for them (and, society approved) suddenly taboo now?

Answer: The children never aproved of it. And the children that grew into an adults are ready to use a different approach on their own children.

Socratic Question #2

Who is society or any government, for that matter, to tell parents how they can physically discipline their child(ren) as long as the punishment is not meant to physically damage, hurt, or harm the child; who are they to tell a parent that they cannot smack (spank)?

Answer: I don't know who they are, but hope some of them do their jobs right and act as defenders of the weak. I wish it didn't have to be that way. But it's up to the parents. Don't let it get this far.

Explanation to my answers: To give a straight forward answer as defined in the rules is an almost impossible task here. But let me use these questions to emphasize with what we are dealing here. The opposition uses expressions such as demonized spanking, where it is simple and clear that it's not the action that's demonized but the executor of the action. Let me call it „temporary loss of self-discipline” for the time being. More to that later in this post.
I also really got stuck by the opponents expression of „standard operating procedure”. Let me point out that we are talking about a human being here. And that is what many parents seem to forget. They are dealing with an individual human being. Not a car or a PC. Fill 'er up or just re-boot. „SMACK” (sorry, I”ll stay focused).

Now to the next part. How my opponent sees how parents actually perceive what spanking means. But first a quick word about semantics. If we payed more attention to it, spanking would become obsolete. Wouldn't it? (just had to get it somewhere in between here).
She states „smacking is not physical abuse” or „a definite gap between smacking and physical abuse”. This is where I disagree strongly and explain what I meant before by „temporary loss of self-discipline”. I will use an example to demonstrate how quickly a harmless spanking can turn into physical abuse. Most spankings do happen out of frustration and desperation. Because if that wasn't the case, we would take the time and TALK to the child. Now, because I just don't have the time to TALK, I LOSE it....... SMACK.
Most of the time you're just lucky. You didn't hurt the child seriously. But sometimes you're maybe not so lucky. That flick on the ear actually missed and turned into a serious loss of hearing for the rest of your childs life.
I think I don't need to give another example. All I am trying to say is, of course we didn't mean to physically harm the child. But it is so easy to hurt such a fragile human being. Not to mention the psychological effect of such measures. And this is what I mean by „temporary loss of self-discipline”. Most parents after an accidental smack will say that they can't beleive they did that. They didn't mean for it to happen. And for most, after feeling such pain will never ever lay hands on their children again.
But what if we find a way to stop this behaviour and teach parents to talk instead of hitting. It happens also because we pre-meditate it ourselfs. If we took just a little more time to find out how to talk to children instead of repeating constantly in our heads „one more time, you get such a smack” over and over again.
I think I showed enough of how a harmless smacking turns into abuse because you cannot control the use of force at all times. And if you'd have time to find out how to spank controlled without abuse, you'd might just as well take the time and find out how your child ticks.

Almost done for today. It is a very hard subject as during this debate the child pictured in my head is sometimes a pre-school child and sometimes almost a teenager, and sometimes something in between. I do sometimes call them little monsters, too. Therefore I will state my socratic questions to shine more light on the different stages of a childs life.

Socratic Question #1

From what age till what age do you consider spanking as appropriate? Only as young as long they don't spank you back? (can be split into two questions)

Socratic Question #2

Even though, you and me were lucky and got away without scars for the rest of our lifes, would you have wished your parents would have used a different approach, so we'd actually wouldn't have to remember that part.

Socratic Question #3

If there was a course „Learn how to never ever needing to smack your child”, would you do the course? And if this turns out to be successfull, wouldn't it make sense to make it compulsory for parents to be? Need to mention, the course would be free!!!

Socratic Question #4

If smacking is accepted at home, shouldn't it be accepted in day care centers, schools, etc. or even be used by ones babysitter. After all we don't want to confuse the child and send him double messages. How confusing.

Just to finish up the post (character count) I need to mention that I did read the two sources (articles) supplied by you and simply dismiss them for the fact that tax dollars are always somehow allocated to be spent and used because they need to be used. I don't beleive in statistics or the numerization of human experimentation as they only reflect a small amount of the whole and give you a falsified picture. Thanks for supplying them. No disrespect intended.

Thank you all for your time.

Regards
Benarius



posted on Feb, 6 2009 @ 12:40 PM
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In response to the answers to my first set of Socratic Questions, my opponent cites the fact that children don't like to get spanked and never approved of getting spanked.

My response: Well, duh. No child likes to be punished for something they did wrong. They don't like to get caught doing something they shouldn't, and they don't like the consequences....no matter what they are. Parents are concerned with teaching their children right from wrong and punishing the child(ren) if and when they do something wrong. Parents shouldn't be concerned with whether the child approves of or like the punishment. It is no deterrent if the child enjoys the punishment.

Punishment is meant to keep the child from repeating the erroneous behavior. Punishment is meant to keep the child from making mistakes and doing bad things. Punishment is not meant to be enjoyed or approved of by the child(ren).

My opponent also states that the government and/or society should be defenders of the weak. On this we agree. We also agree that it is up to the parents not to abuse their children. Like I stated in my opening, there is a world of difference between spanking a child and physically abusing a child.

On to my opponent’s main points in their first response....



The opposition uses expressions such as demonized spanking, where it is simple and clear that it's not the action that's demonized but the executor of the action.


No, this is about the action. The action itself, spanking, has become extremely demonized in this day and age. Parents should have the freedom to punish their child physically as long as that punishment does not cross the line into abuse. Spanking is not abuse. It does not equal "beating a child".

Source


An open-handed single "swat" to a child's clothed bottom is not the same thing as a closed fist to the face, a humiliating experience of repeated "swats" to a child's bare-bottom in public, or any other kind of "discipline" that leaves a bruise.




I also really got stuck by the opponents expression of „standard operating procedure”. Let me point out that we are talking about a human being here. And that is what many parents seem to forget.


You misunderstood my use of "standard operating procedure". When our parents were growing up and their parents were growing up, spanking was standard operating procedure when it came to punishment. There weren't such politically correct things as "time outs" and "taking away your cell phone, internet, and TV". They were spanked.



Most spankings do happen out of frustration and desperation.


Source? Proof? Or, is that just your general opinion?



I need to mention that I did read the two sources (articles) supplied by you and simply dismiss them for the fact that tax dollars are always somehow allocated to be spent and used because they need to be used. I don't beleive in statistics or the numerization of human experimentation as they only reflect a small amount of the whole and give you a falsified picture.


Dismiss them? Dismiss the fact that the government is telling parents how to properly raise their children? Dismiss the fact that actual child abuse (physical) increased almost 500% after a country outlawed spanking?

Spanking works. Physical abuse doesn't. Studies have found that spanking is necessary in some situations for some children (source).

A controlled parent who uses spanking to help "train" their child(ren) is not likely to have a spanking turn into an out of control beating. You were correct when you said it was up to the parents.

Socratic Question Answers

1. In my mind, spanking is appropriate from around the age of 2 up until the child is 9 to 10. And, some experts agree.

Source


Rosemond does not advocate spanking children after age 9 or 10, as it is not effective. Further, parents who spank their teenagers likely have not established clear discipline prior to that point, and their teens are likely engaging in significant antisocial behavior. Spanking has no effect, and likely does cause significant resentment. It is not the spanking that has caused the problems; however, it is the history of inadequate or ineffective parenting.


2. No. I have no ill-will towards my parents for how they chose to punish me. I was the one that screwed up, and I deserved to be punished. And, since I view spanking as punishment, not abuse, I don't look back and wish for something different.

3. I think every parent needs to take parenting classes (some more than others). Parents should learn effective ways to discipline their child(ren), but nothing should take away the parent's option to use physical discipline as long as the child is not physically hurt/bruised.

4. And, no. No one should be allowed to spank your child except for you. Parental discipline and physical discipline is the parent's territory...no one else’s. That's why I feel like outside entities should stay out of the spanking debate.

Socratic Question #1

1. Since you made the point of pointing out that children "never actually liked" getting spanked, how will a child learn from punishment that they enjoy?

Socratic Question #2

2. If a swat on the bottom isn't appropriate and is abuse in your eyes, then how do you reason with a 2 or 3 year old who continually breaks the rules? Their language skills and decision-making skills aren't that of an older child.

Socratic Question #3

3. Is there ever an offense that a child makes (or multiple offenses of the same thing, like running into the street to play in traffic after you've told them umpteen times not to do that) that would warrant a smack in your mind?



posted on Feb, 6 2009 @ 10:58 PM
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I will again come straight to the answers.

Answer #1: Exactly my point. They don't. Learning through punishement? I know of children (own experience and observed) that smile and giggle even after smacking the back of their hands several times. What then? So smacking didn't help in the first place. Raise your voice, make the child become afraid of you. And if that doesn't help, increase the force of your smack?

Answer #2: Ask yourself, why the child is constantly breaking the rules. Have these rules been actually extablished and been understood by the child? Most times children find themselfs in situations that could have been prevented by the neglecting supervising parent. Praise children often for their good behaviour and you will find breaking rules will fade.

Answer #3: No offence warrants a smack. Your example only shows neglect of the parents again. Teach them where and provide them space to play. And supervise them so they don't end up getting hit by a car.

Again, very difficult to answer these questions as each question deals with children at a different ages.

So lets look at what punishement according to my opponent should prevent. She states: „Punishment is meant to keep the child from making mistakes and doing bad things”
Keep children from making mistakes? Isn't it the essence of life to learn from your mistakes?
Bad things? What is bad things?
I know what my opponent is trying to say here, but let me again explain that smacking in none of the above would have any positive impact teaching a child to understand. The smacking itself does not prevent a repetition of a mistake or doing a bad thing. Only through verbal communication and the teaching of right behaviour and proper supervision can you prevent bad things from happening and mistakes being made over and over again.

What also disturbes me is often the wrong reaction of parents that actually punish a child after they have been in what I like to call „close call accidents” where it was in no way the fault of the child. Let's asume a 3 year old is about to run into the streets. Or the child is about to put his hands in to the open fire place.
First the parent realizes in awe and is in shock what's about to happen. A quick reaction prevents the worst from happening. At this point you'd do anyhthing without much thinking. A quick yank or a slap, that looks bad but was the right thing to do. At this point this is not even punishement. This is just a natural reaction to save the day. But what happens next is what is very disturbing. The child at first doesn't even know what's going on, because it didn't see the danger. But most parents are in such a shock that a spanking or smacking follows with concerned or raised voice using words such as „what are you doing?”, „you could have...”, „don't, don't, don't”...followed by a smack or spank, mostly uncontrolled. The child starts crying and still has no idea what's going on. Now this automated smacking is what concerns me. Right after the parent prevents the worst from happening, he/she should simply take a moment to think, breathe, and realize that all this was caused by a short moment of not paying attention to the dangers out there. You are the the eyes and ears, the extended arm, almost like to call it the antena or radar of the child you need to constantly protect from dangers.
Anyway, this example just shows that in this case a smacking was inapropriate and actually happened because it's just a typical reaction. The one who needed to be punished here is simply the parents because he/she is responsible to prevent the child from getting into dangerous situations. Well, I talked to my friend to whom this (street) happened as I stood right next to her. She did realize she was at fault and apologized and explained to her 4 year old. Of course I felt responsible too as I didn't pay attention and maybe even contributed to this almost accident. The yanking of the child was right but there was just no place for punishing the child for this.

So this leads me to my socratic question #1: What precise actions of a child warrants a smacking/spanking?

Socratic question #2: If a light smack or spank doesn't help, what do you recommend?

Socratic question #3: If you'd recommend anything other than repeated or harder smacking/spanking in question #2, why not use that method in the first place?

I will think of two more in a minute after I get this absurdity of source out of the way. Dear ATSers and judges and intrested followers of this debate. I am almost ashamed to mention with what sources we are presented here. My opponent seems to forget that this is a conspiracy site and most people here do read news articles in another way and read between the lines.
An increase in abuse of 500%? Please? A law get's past and suddenly a whole nation turns into abusers? I can only suspect what has caused this number to pop up. I might be wrong I might be right. You decide. Maybe the abuse was there all the time? But since it was now law to report it, more light was shining onto that issue. So let's sweep this law under the carpet and all is fine again. This has room for another debate of what statistics say and what not. The only good out of this report is that people maybe thought about the issue and maybe learned somryhing about themselfs and how to treat and teach children.

Socratic question #4: If not the law, but who should and who would you let telling you, that your smacking/spanking isn't actually working?

Socratic question #5: I am not here to win for myself, but to win for all the children. If after this debate it has been established and we'd found good enough reasons or better ways not to smack/spank, would you then adapt to the newly gained or better ways of punishemet and teaching?

Just before I close for today I'd like to mention again that smacking is wrong as it only shows a child from a very early age on that smacking/spanking/hitting is accepted in society. And unless we stop teaching young children violence, violence will always be accepted as a last resort and might just explain why adults fight wars.

Thank you all.

Regards
Benarius



posted on Feb, 7 2009 @ 11:09 AM
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In opening my second response, I want to clarify a few points first. I am simply stating that spanking or swatting a child on the bottom or on the hand is not abuse. After re-reading my opponents replies in this debate, their talk about "smacks" on the head, around the ear, that we may not be talking about the same specific issue. I am focusing my remarks around open handed spanking on a child's bottom or a swat on the hand. I am in no way promoting or defending slapping or smacking a child in the face or head; in my mind, that does fall into the category of abuse.

As to my opponent's answers to my Socratic Questions....



Exactly my point. They don't. Learning through punishement? I know of children (own experience and observed) that smile and giggle even after smacking the back of their hands several times.tWhat then? So smacking didn't help in the first place. Raise your voice, make the child become afraid of you. And if that doesn't help, increase the force of your smack?


Children do, though, learn through punishment. Not all children will respond to "time outs", not all children will respond to "groundings", not all children will respond to "a swat on the wrist", and not all children will respond to "spankings". Personally, I toned out lectures and didn't pay attention.....it was so boring that I didn't hear half of what my parents said. But, when I was a little kid, a quick swat on the hand or a spanking on the bottom got my attention real quick. And, I learned that if I didn't want to go through that, then I better not perform the action that got me the swat in the first place. And, for the record, I do not approve of shouting or screaming at a child. It does induce a type of fear that is difficult to understand in a small child.



Answer #2: Ask yourself, why the child is constantly breaking the rules. Have these rules been actually extablished and been understood by the child? Most times children find themselfs in situations that could have been prevented by the neglecting supervising parent. Praise children often for their good behaviour and you will find breaking rules will fade.


Ask why a 2 year old is constantly taking her 3 year old sister's favorite toy. Ok. Then, try to reason with both children, using adult ideas and language. How's that working for you? They don't understand. At that age, they are testing boundries and very little gets their attention long enough to make them see that they have done somethig wrong. Parent's can't keep their full attention on these little critters 24/7 to make sure that no one does anything out of line. It just isn't realistic.

Praising good behavior works; some of us call it bribery, which works as well. But, on the flip side, punishment has to be dealt out for bad behavior. Punishment that gets their attention to the point where they figure out pretty quickly that they (child) don't want to do it and suffer uncomfortable consequences.



Answer #3: No offence warrants a smack. Your example only shows neglect of the parents again. Teach them where and provide them space to play. And supervise them so they don't end up getting hit by a car.


Yes, there are offenses that warrant spankings. In my house, those offenses included lying, stealing, back-talk, harassing my step-siblings, and being disrespectful to the extreme. Those spankings stopped at around 10. After that, then I had my stuff taken away....my phone, my television, going out and playing. At that age, I was a prisoner in my own home and wished for the few hours of being unable to sit down comfortably and then having it all over....lesson learned.

Onto my opponene't main points....



Keep children from making mistakes? Isn't it the essence of life to learn from your mistakes?


Of course it is. But, we don't want the mistakes we make when we are toddlers to plague us throughout life. Toddlers see something they want and take it. Withought proper punishment and parental intervention early on, those traits could follow that child into adulthood. What has more effect 1)a spanking on the bottom to show that you can't take other people's things....automatic attention getter that will probably make the child think twice befofe committing the punishible action again or 2)Talking, ad nauseum to a 3 year old about the rules and responsibilities of the world at large....a conversation/lecture that will more than likely put the child to sleep.



The smacking itself does not prevent a repetition of a mistake or doing a bad thing. Only through verbal communication and the teaching of right behaviour and proper supervision can you prevent bad things from happening and mistakes being made over and over again.


Once again, I ask for proof or sources, Or, once again, is this just your personal opinion?

Socratic Question Anwers

1. Disrespect towards parents, siblings, and other extended family; disrespedt towards family frieds as well as the child's friends. Lying, stealing, back-talk, extreme sibling rivalry, any action which can put a child into a dangerous situation which can cause lasting/physical harm (playing in traffic, putting a child's hand on a burner)

2. Depends on the child and the situation. One spank on the bottom may work perfectly for one child, while another may need multiple spanks on the bottom just to get the point across

3. Because we are talking about spanking and there is a line where physical discipline does cross into abuse; no one doubts that. But, I can't talk to a 2 or 3 year old like I can to a 10 year old. It doesn't work that way. I have previously stated that at the age of 10, spanking stops. But, before the age of 9 or 10 is reached, then spanking is a sure-fire way to get the child's attention and point out to them in simple terms what they did wrong and how not to do it again.

4. I don't want any outside govrnmental agency telling me how to raise my kids. Physical discipline is a parent's perogative. If the parents cross the line, then someone needs to get involved. But, a child who gets a spanking and automatically screams abuse just muddies the waters for the rest of society

5. If you can convience me that society and government can raise my children better than I can, their father can, their grandparents can, and out extended family and friends can.....then I might listen to your arguments

Socratic Question #1
1. How do you punish a toddler and make them see what they did wrong in the language capacity of an adult?

Socratic Question #2
2. How do you ensure that your form of punishment has gotten their attention, identified what the did wrong, and spelled out what will happen to them if the behave badly again....when in an hour, they turn around and do the exact same thing?

Socratic Question #3
3. Do you really think that spanking is the root of all evil physical abuse in this world and could have nothing to do with the advent of gang culture, television, the internet, video games, etc??



posted on Feb, 8 2009 @ 12:13 AM
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As usual, socratic answers first.

Answer #1: You can't. But you can try with the language capacity of a child.

Answer #2: Repetition, consistency, patience. It's a lot to expect from a child to learn something at once. Oh, well. When it happens twice. Try again. You're the adult. The role-model. How can you expect a child to be self-dsiciplined if you give up yourself at that stage?

Answer #3: No. Not at all. A child can turn from good to bad or from bad to good at any stage during their life cycles. Too many influences we have no control over it. But at least, if you don't smack, you can at least say, they didn't learn that from me.

It seems to me that far too many parents misunderstand the concepts and differences between discipline and punishement. I associate the term discipline with teaching, guiding, nurturing that takes time and patience for the parent and child alike. Smacking as a form of punishement just teaches a child that violence is a problem-solver. Appart from making a child feel resentfull. If you make them feel bad, they most likely think that they are bad. Maybe the repetition after one hour?

My opponent states: ”Praising good behavour works; some of us call it bribery, which works as well” Praising and bribery are two completly different things.

As I feel I am ready for the close, I will ask 5 socratic questions that will further help me to convince the jury that smacking is abuse.

Socratic question #1: Does smacking children make them smack their own children later in life?

Socratic question #2: Does not smacking children ensure that they don't smack their children later in life?

Socratic question #3: How would you react or advise your own children after observing them smacking your grandchildren?

Socratic question #4: How do you react or what do you think observing a complete stranger on the street smacking their child?

Socratic question #5: Is smacking effective?

I know this is a rather short reply but as I am already working on my close and make sure it will be only a few characters short of the 10.000 limit, I hope you hang in there with me till the end.

Thank you all.

Regards
Benarius



posted on Feb, 8 2009 @ 01:42 PM
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As to my opponent's answers to my Socratic Questions....



Answer #1: You can't. But you can try with the language capacity of a child.


So, my opponent concedes that it is really difficult to verbally punish a toddler with a "talking to". There is a vast difference between the language capacity of a toddler and that of an adult. In fact, I would think it would be close to impossible to reason with a 2 year old in a way that the toddler got a lasting lesson from the talking to. A swat on the bottom would certainly get their attention and make them realize that they had done something wrong. It wouldn't hurt and it would teach them a lesson.



Answer #2: Repetition, consistency, patience. It's a lot to expect from a child to learn something at once. Oh, well. When it happens twice. Try again. You're the adult. The role-model. How can you expect a child to be self-dsiciplined if you give up yourself at that stage?


So, repetition and patience assures that a child will not repeat the bad behavior again or make the same mistake again. Doesn't seem to work, though, when the parent has to correct the same bad behavior over and over and over and over again. Once again, we fall into the trap of "what does the child understand?" What will get their attention. A swat on the bottom gets their physical attention, makes them uncomfortable, and shows them that if they don't want to get that swat again then they need to avoid performing the bad action again.



Answer #3: No. Not at all. A child can turn from good to bad or from bad to good at any stage during their life cycles. Too many influences we have no control over it. But at least, if you don't smack, you can at least say, they didn't learn that from me.


No, you can't say that. Parents are the center of their child's world. They learn almost everything in their formative years from their parents and what their parents allow them to be exposed to. Spanking is not evil; it is not abuse. It is a tool that parents can employ to help discipline their children to help them learn right from wrong. That is the parents job....training their children.

Now, onto my opponent's main points.....



It seems to me that far too many parents misunderstand the concepts and differences between discipline and punishment


Discipline: punishment inflicted by way of correction and training
Punishment: a penalty inflicted for an offense, fault, etc

Source

They look to be pretty much the same thing to me. And, they are the prerogative of the parents. It is at their discretion.



My opponent states: ”Praising good behavior works; some of us call it bribery, which works as well” Praising and bribery are two completly different things.


Not always. Depends on the type of praise. If a parent rewards good behavior with a treat or a toy or a special privilege, then that is the same thing as bribery.

Socratic Question Answers

1. No. It also isn't shown to lead to abusive behavior towards partners later in life, either.

Source


Although some people who abuse their partners were themselves abused as children, this does not mean that being spanked, as opposed to abused as a child, will lead to abusive behavior as an adult. He notes that most men from his generation were spanked as children, but the majority did not grow up to be abusive toward their partners.


2. No. Just because a child was not spanked by their parents in no way ensures that said child will not use physical discipline on their children later in life.

3. My grandchildren are not my children. If I saw my children spank their kids, well, then, that is their prerogative. If I saw my children abuse their kids, well, then, I'd have a lot to say and several phone calls to make. Spanking is not abuse.

4. If I saw a stranger on the street spanking their child, then I would do nothing. It is their child and their prerogative. If I saw a stranger abusing their child on the street, then I'd step in and call the cops. Spanking is not abuse.

5. Yes....in many cases. Especially with young children.

Source


He explains that with a toddler age 24 months or so, a quick spank on the butt, followed by the reprimand (i.e., "No, I will not let you spit at me"), then by the consequence is effective. For a young child, placing the child in a chair with the warning, "You will stay there until I say you can get up" followed by taking a step backward, waiting one second, and then telling the child, "Now get up" is sufficient. This catches the child's attention, provides a rule, provides and consequence, and established that you are in charge.


Socratic Question 1

What effects in society today can you definitely attribute to parents spanking their children?

Socratic Question 2

What do you think would happen, given the results from the Swedish ban on smacking cited earlier in the debate, if other developed countries were to ban spanking and take that choice away from parents?



posted on Feb, 9 2009 @ 06:40 AM
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Have to use my 24 hour extension.



posted on Feb, 12 2009 @ 12:40 PM
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Closing Statement

....I am posting my closing now due to the fact that my opponent has not come back to this debate for the past 3 days. I would prefer not to have to do this, but after much discussion, it was decided that 3 days was a good amount of time to allow my opponent time to return to this debate. If the Moderator of the debate decides to allow my opponent more time to come back and present their closing, that is fine with me. If not, then whatever happens, happens......

No one argues that children should not be abused...physically, emotionally, sexually, or mentally. Children should not be slapped. Children should not be punched. Children should not be kicked. Children should not be shoved. Children should not be hurt. Children should not be abused.

But, spanking is not abuse.

What is spanking, again? According to the definition, it is to strike with an open hand on the buttocks in punishment.

Spanking is a form of parental discipline. Spanking is a way to train children. Spanking is a way to show children that there are consequences to inappropriate actions. Spanking is an immediate way to get a child's attention, point out the mistake they have made, and hopefully teach them not to repeat that mistake.

But, spanking is not abuse.

My opponent has alluded to spanking leading to more violence in society, saying that we see the effects more today than in the past, when spanking was the punishment of choice. Well, not according to US statistics:

Source


A careful look at U.S. crime statistics also refutes the idea that spanking equals more societal violence. Between 1985 and 1993, violent crime actually decreased by 20 per cent among males 25 or older, while it increased 65 per cent for males 18 to 24 and by 165 per cent for 14- to 17-year-old males. So those who grew up in a period of more spanking were, and are, less violent than younger people who have grown up in a period of declining approval and practice of spanking.


My opponent has stated that talking to a child is more productive than spanking. Well, how do you talk to and reason with a child of 2 or 3? They don't speak on our level and we don't do a good job of communicating on their level, either. But, a swat on the bottom seems to bridge the communication gap....and seems to get the child's attention, "telling" them that they have done something wrong and not to do it again.

My opponent has stated that children do not approve of spanking. Well, what punishment do they approve of? Punishment is not to be enjoyed by the child. Punishment is to teach a lesson and point out incorrect or bad behavior. Spanking gets their immediate attention and shows that there are consequences to actions.

My opponent has stated that talking, consistency, patience, and repetition are better teaching and punishment techniques than spanking. That doesn't always work. It doesn't work with small children due to the communication/language barrier.

Spanking should not be the only form of discipline that a parent employs with their children. But, they should not be demonized for spanking. Most do not spank to hurt, but to teach and discipline. The politically correct society we live in today should not be able to twist a physical form of punishment that is not used to hurt a child into a horrific form of physical abuse.

Because, spanking is not abuse.



posted on Feb, 27 2009 @ 02:02 PM
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Off to the Judges

Semper



posted on Feb, 28 2009 @ 12:43 AM
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And the winner is!!!!


Opening Arguement - Benarius:


clearly a badly inherited form of social conditioning




Great point and one that should be the foundation for the rest of his argument. I expect to see alternative strategies for the 'conditioning' of one's offspring.

Opening Argument - skeptic1


but to physically get my attention to point out that I had done something improper or wrong.




An excellent rebuttal to the topic. I expect to see a focus on what constitutes abuse from her subsequent arguments. The citing of the Swedish experiment goes a long way in refuting Benarius' argument of:


I also beleive that many of the worlds problems today would be handled differently by a generation that never experienced this ill behaviour of social injustice upon children.




By showing that 'minor vs minor' physical conflict jumped. A relevant point that without parents to demonstrate some sort of reference point for physicality that it will be used somewhat indiscriminently by those who don't know better. I wish skeptic1 had gone further in depth with this point...but overall she succeeds in taking the Opening Arguement.

First Rebuttal - Benarius:

A very reactionary presentation as he goes on suppositions based upon his feelings. He feels that a smack could turn into irreperable damage. His suggestion to talk instead of hitting is a valid one and I only wish that he had expounded upon this to include a linear timeline of childhood development and strategies for teaching. He did not and as such his entire first arguement is unnecessarily defensive.

And unfortunately, this theme dominates Benarius' argument the rest of the way. His contention that it is the parents shortcoming to use physical means is a valid one but not necessarily what this debate was about as resorting to physical means is not necessarily abuse.

Skeptic1 was more successful at rebuttal and presented her argument in a far more concise and organized fashion.


In fact, I would think it would be close to impossible to reason with a 2 year old in a way that the toddler got a lasting lesson from the talking to. A swat on the bottom would certainly get their attention and make them realize that they had done something wrong. It wouldn't hurt and it would teach them a lesson.



The above quote demonstrates quite clearly her position and was never successfully rebutted by Benarius.

Winner by a very comfortable margin is skeptic1.



Challenge Match: Benarius vs skeptic1: "If You Do That Again, You Will Get Such A Smack!!!"

While Benarius started off fairly strong, he was actually falling behind even in the opening salvo under the barrage of skeptic1’s massive source material and complete logic.

Benarius’ comment when asked by skeptic why smacking is abuse now and was not before;

The „victims” have learned to talk about it and not be ashamed anymore. None of the children actually ever liked it.


Really tells the tale in this debate, for no one likes discipline. Yet discipline is necessary.

Benarius could have taken this debate in a good direction and made a battle of it, however combined with a lackadaisical approach and missing posts, the debate easily goes to ….

Skeptic1


skeptic1..!!!!!

Congratulations





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