I could post stories of how I was spanked as a child and it didn't ruin me, or how some children were spanked and they turned out good, or how others
were not spanked and they turned out bad... but I won't. That is firstly anecdotal, and secondly repetitive. Or I could show the obvious bias and
illogical thinking in the study, instigating arguments about how ignorant or arrogant I am to think that a scientist could be in error. Instead, I
wish to approach this from another angle.
When I was growing up, there was a joke that was going around. I think it has some application here. I present it as it was told to me many moons ago,
which is in the context of the Alabama/Auburn football rivalry. I am sure the intelligent minds here on ATS can see the underlying idea despite this
There once was an Auburn football player and biology major who decided to perform an experiment. He went out and found a frog. He then
placed the frog on his floor and screamed at it "Jump, frog, jump!"
The frog jumped 8 feet. The Auburn football player wrote in his journal: "Frog with 4 legs can jump 8 feet."
He then cut off one of the frog's front legs, replaced the frog on his floor and screamed "Jump, frog, jump!"
The frog jumped again, but a bit sideways. It came to rest 6 feet from where it started. The Auburn football player wrote in his journal: "Frog with
3 legs can jump 6 feet."
He then cut off the frog's other front leg. This time when he yelled "Jump, frog, jump!", the frog skidded more than it actually jumped, but still
managed to make it 4 feet from its starting point. He wrote in his journal: "Frog with 2 legs can jump 4 feet."
This time, he cut off one of the frog's back legs. He replaced it on his floor and yelled again, "Jump, frog, jump!". This time the frog managed to
slide across the floor 2 feet. So he wrote in his journal: "Frog with 1 leg can jump 2 feet."
Finally, the Auburn football player cut off the frog's last leg. He sat the poor legless creature on his floor and yelled, "Jump, frog, jump!"
The poor frog twitched but did not leave its starting position.
The Auburn football player yelled again, "Jump, frog, jump!" The frog still did not move.
For the third time, the Auburn football player yelled, "Jump, frog, jump!" and this time clapped his hands to scare the frog. The frog still did not
So the Auburn football player wrote in his journal: "Frog with no legs cannot hear."
This is what we have in society today, not with this issue alone, but with every major social experiment that we have tried. When the results come in,
we tend to analyze them is the mindset that our philosophy cannot be wrong. Therefore if the results are not what was expected, we look for other
reasons to blame for the obvious problem.
Spanking: widespread attempts to curb corporal punishment have existed in whole within my lifespan. When I was younger, corporal punishment was
considered not only an acceptable method of discipline, but a duty of parents when needed. A parent who did not spank their child when the child
misbehaved was considered a bad parent. I can remember calls for removing children from households that refused to spank them because of
Today, some areas of society have reversed this attitude. In these circles, spanking a child for any reason is seen as brutal and barbaric behavior.
Governmental child abuse centers can be called in to remove a child from such a horrible situation, without regard to why the child was spanked, how
the child was spanked, or any other aspects of the child's family life.
Even among rural areas where spanking is still prevalent, the attitude has changed, in no small part due to legal threats (perceived or real) that
someone who spanks their child is somehow breaking the law and can be punished with removal of the child from the home. That punishment being worse
than actual execution for many parents, there is obviously a tremendous worry in their minds whenever they come across a need for corporal punishment
to be administered.
The results were originally touted to be a less aggressive society in general, with more capable and confident individuals inhabiting it and lower
The actual results are more violent crimes being committed, more criminals (to the extent that many criminals are released to make room for others), a
complete lack of respect for law enforcement, an overburdened family court system, widespread fear and hatred of governmental family intervention,
lower educational standards and achievements, younger and younger criminals (regularly thwarting the past laws that protected minors from severe
punishment), a less productive work force leading to a rapid loss of domestic factories (and the jobs they provided), a declining number of children
in the traditional 'nuclear family' setting, and an overall lack of respect by children for the rights and property of others.
Yet, just as the student in the joke above tried to blame the lack of jumping ability on the frog's hearing, rather than placing it on the painfully
obvious lack of ability, we look at the result as obviously something that is caused by another influence. Obviously spanking is bad, and therefore
the experiment can only be a failure if something else was influencing the results.
Some day, should humanity survive, our children will look back on this era as the second Dark Ages, and shake their heads in wonder at our arrogance
and ignorance. That is our legacy... that is our claim to fame... that is our destiny.
"Frog with no legs cannot hear.