reply to post by muzzleflash
Although I have not read all 78 pages of responses to this video, I can see that the responses tend to fall into one of three categories:
1. This isn’t child abuse; I had it much worse as a kid.
2. This is child abuse and this judge should be tarred and feathered for even thinking about doing this to his daughter.
3. It doesn’t matter if this is child abuse or not, it’s a personal family matter and we need to mind our own business.
Whether the ‘discipline’ as seen in the video amounts to child abuse or not is not really up to us to decide. At this point, that decision falls
to the individuals involved in the investigation. As to those who fall into category 1, just because your punishment was worse does not mean this is
not child abuse (and I’m not saying it is or isn’t). It is quite possible that you were also abused as a child and no one stepped in to help. As
to whether this video is illustrative of child abuse, I don’t know. I’m inclined to say that, given the alleged event (illegally downloading music
and games) this punishment seems a little extreme. However, if the daughter has continued this behavior after previously being punished
(non-physically by having the computer taken away – I’m fairly certain I heard the parents talking about giving the computer back to the daughter
had been a mistake), then perhaps the physical punishment was warranted.
Do I think it was overboard? Yes. Do I think it classifies as child abuse? Not if it was a single event. If this is a regular occurrence for many
different types of transgressions, maybe. Regardless of personal opinions on the level of the discipline seen in the video, if the child broke the
rules, then she should be disciplined. People are going to differ in their beliefs about what is an appropriate level of discipline – corporal or
not – for their children given the information they have about the situation (that we do not have from the information seen in the video), such as
what happened, past behavior, was it repeated behavior, etc. Only the parents and daughter have all of the information in this video. For us to pass
judgement is a little premature.
In response to the individuals who fall into category 3, I have this to say. I am a public school teacher, which means I am a mandatory reporter. If I
see the results of suspected child abuse – whether physical, sexual, verbal, or neglectful – I am required by law to report it to the authorities
(e.g., CPS and the police department). It is then up to CPS and the police to investigate the issue and determine if child abuse is actually
occurring. In response to Muzzleflash’s opinion that the government has no place interfering in how parents raise and choose to discipline their
children, I agree to a point. The reason this country has a body called CPS is to serve as advocates for children who are in positions where they
cannot always help themselves. Children who are abused do not always realize that they are being abused. After all, it’s Mommy and Daddy abusing
them, so it must be okay. Older children in this situation have been abused for so long that they don’t even realize it is wrong. Alternatively, if
they do realize it is wrong, they are so enveloped in the fear that has been established that they would never even think about telling someone about
it, because they are afraid of the punishment that would occur if they did tell someone.
In summary, I will defend a parent’s right to discipline (not beat) his or her child. However, I will also defend a child’s right to grow up in
home free from abuse of any kind.