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College Students More Likely to Be Lawbreakers If Spanked as Children

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posted on Nov, 24 2013 @ 07:21 AM
College Students More Likely to Be Lawbreakers If Spanked as Children

From ScienceDaily:

Nov. 22, 2013 — No matter where they live in the world, university students who were spanked as children are more likely to engage in criminal behavior, according to new research by Murray Straus, co-director of University of New Hampshire Family Research Lab. Even young adults whose parents were generally loving and helpful as they were growing up showed higher rates of criminal behavior.

Straus will present the research results, "Crime by University Students in 15 Nations: Links to Spanking and Positive Parenting at Age 10 by Father, Mother, And Both Parents," today at the annual meeting of the American Society of Criminology in Atlanta.
"The results show that spanking is associated with an increase in subsequent misbehavior, which is the opposite of what almost everyone believes. These results are consistent with a large number of high quality peer-reviewed studies," Straus said.


The 15 countries are Hong Kong, Taiwan, Belgium, Greece, Italy, Norway, Poland, Russia, Scotland, Slovenia, Spain, Switzerland, Israel, Canada, and the United States. Straus took into account the influence of such factors as parental education, misbehavior as a child, loving and positive approach to correcting misbehavior, student gender, student age, and nation. One of the most interesting findings was related to the effect of parents who took a loving and positive approach but who also spanked their children.
"So many parents and child psychologists believe that if spanking is done by loving and helpful parents, it has no harmful effect," Straus said. "This study and only one other study I know of that empirically investigated this belief found that it is not true. Spanking seems to be associated with an increased probability of subsequent child behavior problems regardless of culture and, regardless of whether it done by loving and helpful parents."
"Children need lots guidance and correction, but not by being physically attacked under the euphemism of 'spanking,' " Straus said.

I find it hard to grasp that "most people" don't know this. But, on the other hand, I'm not surprised.

People, please DO NOT SPANK your children. It is counterproductive in every way.

Recently I have been participating in a thread on the Religion Forum, for which purpose I dug up some of the research on physical abuse and its after-effects done in the name of religion as related to 'mental illness.'

But it isn't ONLY physical abuse administered "in the name of God" that causes antisocial behavior. ALL physical abuse can lead to maladaptive behavior in later life, depending, of course, on the resiliency of the child. So can emotional and psychological abuse, but this article talks about spanking/hitting particularly.

Please have a look at it and review your parenting, or the manner in which you were parented. This thinking is not "new" - it's been around for decades now. One of the reasons I think ALL parents should be screened for knowledge of positive parenting skills.

I'll leave it at that for now.
Make of it what you will, folks.

edit on 11/24/13 by wildtimes because: (no reason given)

posted on Nov, 24 2013 @ 08:17 AM
I was spanked, and I'm not a lawbreaker. In fact, I'm probably about as far as you can get for the most part. I found a roll of loose 20s lying on the ground and turned them in. Most people think I'm nuts for not just taking them; it would have been an easy $320, but all I could do was think that it might have been some retirees entire supplemental paycheck after cashing or something. You know, someone might have needed it more than me.

But then, I was spanked exceedingly sparingly. Every step of the way, I was given an opportunity to know where my actions and choices were leading, and my parents never, ever spanked in anger. Spanking was always the very last step in an exceedingly long chain.

And once I reached a certain age, spanking was no longer used because the amount of force they would have had to use in order to make an impression would have been abusive. The intent was never to cause pain or injure but to get my attention with a short, sharp shock. I never received more than one or two swats at any time.

The mental sensations I remember getting after being spanked was never one of pain as much as one of disappointment that I had pushed my parents that far. It meant that I had been really bad as opposed to just a little bad.

And yes, I do spank my son right now. There are two things that will provoke it: when he gets on a string of being mean to the cats (pulling tails, poking eyes, basically doing things that could cause the cats to really hurt him as they have claws and teeth and two of them have been known to make free use of them), I feel that behavior that is hurtful to others or animals needs to be nipped in the bud very strongly, but I give him multiple warnings and choices. "Do you want a spanking?" "No." "Then leave the cats alone." The other is when he does something to put himself in immediate life and limb peril like running off in a busy parking lot or darting off toward our street which is very busy with cars going way too fast. Thankfully, we've only been there once.

I should also mention that he is still below five where his ability to reason and understand is limited, but it's getting better all the time. Now the mere warning of a spanking is often enough to stop him.

In both cases, I do it for things that could bring him real physical harm or are instances where he brings physical harm to others. For everything else, the usual tactics suffice - timeout, going to the car with an angry parent, praising good behavior when you catch him at it, offering small rewards for continued good behavior or simple behavior redirection to something you want him to do.

Spanking should never, ever be your first resort and it's not intended to hurt physically and cause lasting pain. It's an attention-getter more than anything else, and it will lose its effectiveness very quickly but that's OK because once you reach that point the other techniques in discipline are much more effective because your child reaches a higher stage of reasoning ability where you can tell him WHY you don't want him running off into traffic and expect him to get it.

posted on Nov, 24 2013 @ 08:26 AM
I was spanked growing up but I wouldn't say I am a lawbreaker. I push and bend the rules as much as I can when appropriate, but I don't go out of my way to be defiant.

posted on Nov, 24 2013 @ 08:33 AM
Hmm.. I was spanked. I'm no lawbreaker (though I could have taken that path at one time). My son has been spanked when behavior goes over the top of what lesser things address. He's responded about how I did. He doesn't repeat the major things and understands the severity conveyed by the discipline method.

Something these studies don't seem to take into account, or just write off as meaningless right out the the fact corporal punishment in SCHOOLS, let alone the home, was accepted and fairly common place for the formative years of the 'Baby Boomers'. Corporal punishment at home was more or less a given as I've understood my parents generation.

So where are the endless ranks of criminals among the Baby Boomers? Oddly enough, the numbers for criminals didn't start skyrocketing until follow-up generations where touchy/feely in discipline had become a major social question. I'm not saying there is a link...but certain saying there is not a link the other direction. A lot of factors are different between homes.

History and previous statistical fact show this ONE factor, taken alone, doesn't hold water for contribution in my humble opinion.
edit on 24-11-2013 by Wrabbit2000 because: (no reason given)

posted on Nov, 24 2013 @ 08:48 AM
I was spanked as a kid and it hurt like crazy. It taught me useful things. 1. Avoid getting caught or it will hurt. 2. Don't do something if you will get caught. 3. if you can get away with something without getting caught, you only have to worry about your own feelings of guilt.
4. If it doesn't hurt anyone to break a law, the law is really stupid.
5.Might makes right. The guy with the bigger gun or larger force is always right if you have a brain.

As far as right versus wrong, religion pops up. People who were not taught to follow any religion probably do whatever they can get away with without punishment.

6. If you got spanked, the cycle of violence will be really hard to break because you will have a desire to use force. Can't think of any other effective means of punishment? Spank away.

7. Some parents do far worse than spank their kids. Not effectively punishing their kids at all will cause them to grow up as law breakers and out of control. Spankng is preferable over ineffective punishment in my opinion.

8. I learned not to break the law and stayed out of trouble. Most people break some law just about every day without trying. Ever go over the speed limit? Ever jay walk? You law breaker, lol.

posted on Nov, 24 2013 @ 08:52 AM
WAIT! I think the OP is on to something. Maybe TPTB were all spanked too much as children and that is why they continually commit horrific crimes against the people. LOL I grew up in a home that believed in severe spanking, and yes I have done my share of bad things but I think that I have a pretty strong set of moral values. Neither of which I directly attribute to being spanked.

posted on Nov, 24 2013 @ 08:59 AM
I also was spanked. Sometimes hit with a wooden spoon (all mom had to do was enter the room holding it in the air)....

and if Dad was home and I was fighting with my brothers? All we had to do was call out: "DAD!!" and the problems stopped.

I WAS a lawbreaker.

I am now in my 50s. People, I did mention about 'resilience'. I just posted the thread to see what ATS would say.

spanking is unnecessary. NOT ALL kids who were spanked become lawbreakers.

Thanks for your posts.

posted on Nov, 24 2013 @ 09:00 AM
I was spanked as a child.

Now I break laws. All because I was disciplined as a child. When I was held accountable for my actions as a child, it created the urge to not be held accountable as an adult and become a criminal.

When I was told right from wrong, when I was punished for doing wrong, it created a situation where now all I do is criminal behavior.

The other day?

I went swimming after waiting only 25 minutes after eating.
And last month? I rode down an escalator and didn't use the handrail.
Next week? I may run with scissors.

beezzer, breaking bad.

posted on Nov, 24 2013 @ 09:02 AM
Okay, so none of you are criminals. (I break "rules" now, too - and taught my kids that some rules are just plain stupid. I did NOT spank them. They turned out fine.) Should I have spanked them?

Do you think that 'spanking' KEPT YOU from becoming a lawbreaker?

I already mentioned resiliency.

The point is that OTHER PARENTING METHODS than spanking ALSO produce kids who are adapted to life.
It isn't necessary.

Cheers, all....

posted on Nov, 24 2013 @ 09:12 AM
I was spanked as a kid, my record is shiny clean. This study is flawed.
If anything, I learned from being spanked. One thing being, I didn't do things I wasn't supposed to do. And two, I respected my parents authority.

Ever see a kid in a store, running around messing with things they shouldn't be, but their parent(s) are too damn lazy to do anything? I wasn't that kid. I imagine that type of kid is more likely to break the law in the future because they don't learn respect or consequence growing up.

There is a difference between abuse and spanking. I find nothing wrong with spanking, being a criminal and all (sarcasm).

posted on Nov, 24 2013 @ 09:17 AM
The average person, spanked or not, will break several laws in their lifetime. Why? Because there are so many laws, and so many outright stupid ordinances, written to do one thing. Criminalize the citizenry, and make them guilty until proven innocent. It's how the system works.

Most everyone I know, at least in my own age group were spanked. Other than most of them being asleep at the wheel in life, they're good members of society. No offense to you Wild, but I personally think this study is a fraud. I think it's just one more way to say this...

posted on Nov, 24 2013 @ 09:26 AM

No matter where they live in the world, university students who were spanked as children are more likely to engage in criminal behavior,

Off the top of my head

Is this the result that more kids spanked as children go to college and therefore the more likelihood of them to engage in a negative manner? So it would be beneficial to spank your kids in order to increase their changes to get them to college.

Also I believe that is a likely hood that there are more spanking going on the lower class and poverty level than the more upper class due to Political Correctness. When you fight for everything from the lower bottom to the upper class you can't always play by the rules in order to make it. So in this case its more of a economic class issue than spanking issue on how they were raised.

Due to Political Correctness how truthful were the ones who said no they didnt get spanked?
edit on 24-11-2013 by interupt42 because: (no reason given)

posted on Nov, 24 2013 @ 09:27 AM
reply to post by beezzer

Rofl!! Your officially my favorite person for the entire day.

To the OP, I'll say that whippings are a last resort for me, but time outs and grounding, from what I've seen of my new age friends parenting, doesn't work unless your children know that a more unpleasant punishment, is on the back burner.

I got my share of whippings, and I hold no grudges. My step brothers were never whipped, and all three have felonies, and one is facing 20 years.

So I'll not be listening to this progressive propaganda.

posted on Nov, 24 2013 @ 09:30 AM
reply to post by wildtimes

OP, I don't mean to pick on you. Everyone should be free to raise their children as they see fit.

Every once in a while, one of these studies comes out. It's "Dr. Spock" redux. It doesn't take into account single-parent families, one or both parents working. . .

It's yet another attempt to support legislation (down the road) of government involvement in how you raise your child(ren).

posted on Nov, 24 2013 @ 10:16 AM
reply to post by Klassified

Well said.

How about their "new research" says what they say it says, and means what they say it means.

posted on Nov, 24 2013 @ 10:27 AM
OP I am with you on this. I do agree with others that stats and studies can usually be skewed to show whatever you like but my logic tells me this one is probably correct. As for folk thinking it wasn't true in their case, the study claims it is more likely not a given!

My LO is only 2 but it's plain to see she looks to us, her parents for guidance as far as to say she wants to copy what we do, this is totally natural. We shout, she shouts, we spank (or smack as we say here in the UK), she thinks it's OK to smack. Fortunately she has never hit as she has not witnessed that behaviour.

I would much rather she learn and understand why it is wrong to do something than for her to simply be too scared to do it because she knows she'll get whacked (or to just avoid being caught). It kind of reminds me of when folk wonder what an atheist's reasons for obeying the laws are if they do not have God's wrath to fear! As if the only thing that would keep me from committing murder was the fear of an eternity in hell!

Yes she is young and it sure takes a lot of time and patience using distraction and reason rather than simply scaring the hell out of her but for me the latter is just not an option.

It's been shown time and time again that violence breeds violence, abuse breeds abuse, obviously there are different levels of violence and abuse but for me no level is an acceptable level.

posted on Nov, 24 2013 @ 10:33 AM
I have been around long enough to see the results in my own children and those they grew up with. Parents do talk amongst themselves about discipline and other child raising issues, so I know who spanked and who didn't. As things turn out, I have seen the opposite of what is being put forward in this study. Most children around here who grew up being spanked have turned out pretty well, whether they have seen fit to go on to college, or learn a trade or skill. There are other roads in life than attending a collegiate establishment.

It needs to be said that there is a real difference between spanking as a last resort punishment and beating a child. But a swat on the butt when called for is still the most effective way to teach appropriate behavior. And I have seen it in action and the end result in people's lives.

posted on Nov, 24 2013 @ 10:41 AM
reply to post by wildtimes

I totally disagree...There's more violence, shootings and murders committed by teens now than in previous years. I don't recall having police officers walking the school halls and metal detectors at school entrances back in the day. There's more disrespect, inconsiderate and foul mouthed teens today than in the years most parents disciplined their children with spankings and groundings. There has also been much more physical fighting among girls than in the past.

Today's teens no longer have consequences for their actions. Ask the majority of teachers who have taught for over 20 years. The day they took the paddle out of the school is the day education started to decline. Kids no longer have consequences for their poor behavior or belligerent action. They simply have no fear of repercussions. They no longer fear being escorted to the principals office. Their idea of out of school suspension is a three day vacation from school. They now know they can say what ever they want and get away with it. Their famous line now to parents is, "touch me and I'll call the police." Children have been given more rights than their parents today! They no longer know their place in society, and consider themselves "know it alls" when they're still immature children and haven't experienced the responsibility of being on their own and holding down a job.

Today's society has given the wrong message to children. They're bombarded with violent video games, reality TV that glorifies immorality and indulgence in sexuality. They feel they can get away with criminal actions when they watch poor role models who just pay fines, continue to be in the lime light, and who continue in their lucrative careers such as, Paris Hilton, Miley Cirus, Chris Brown, Lindsay Lohan, Kim Kardashian, Michael Vick, Tiger Woods, Scottie Pippen, Ruben Patterson just to name a few. The feel good attitude of having young children play sports without having a winner or loser, is ALSO setting children up with a lack of coping skills later in life when they will lose in competitive sports or in everyday life situations.

Today's parents give everything to their children. In return, children feel entitled to get or have anything they ask for, even if it means stealing it.

No, I think kids not being spanked has proven without a doubt, created a generation of lazy, disrespectful, rude, violent, inconsiderate, and incompetent young adults. My apologies to those in that generation, who had enough sense to realize and avoid the negative and poor attitudes of their generation.

posted on Nov, 24 2013 @ 11:24 AM
I was spanked as a child. You want to know what it taught me?

1. My parents were the boss and I needed to listen to them.... or else.
2. It made me think before I acted, because pissing off my dad was the last thing I wanted to do. I knew the consequences of my actions before I acted and that helped me make better choices.

I don't have trust issues. I don't hate my parents. I don't feel that I was abused in any capacity.

I am a law abiding citizen with nothing more than a single speeding ticket on my record.

Since the advent of the 'don't spank your kids!' parenting style, I have watched the behavior of kids go downhill; disrespectful, getting into trouble with the law at increasingly younger ages, lazy, no regard for others, mouthy, entitled, etc..

Don't spank.
Don't tell them no.
Tell them they are special and the world revolves around them.
Everyone gets a trophy.
Everyone is a winner.

Is the problem with 'kids these days' that they got spanked?


Is it that they aren't taught to function in the real world, aren't given consequences for their actions, made to believe that the world revolves around them, and that the world at large should think they are special and treat them as such?

edit on 24amSun, 24 Nov 2013 11:27:57 -060013SundaySunday1311 by daryllyn because: (no reason given)

posted on Nov, 24 2013 @ 11:33 AM
I think my entire generation was spanked. Both at home and at school. At school was worse - it was the strap.

For the last 30 years (at least), it's been illegal to spank children, or lock them in their rooms, or ground them, etc

I don't see this generation of unspanked people as any more well behaved than the generations that were spanked, or beaten with straps, wooden spoons, etc

The prison population should prove that

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