"Domestic Violence" Mixed Media by Laurie Proctor
It's part of an environment of violence in many American families.
As many as seven in 10 U.S. families reported some form of abuse between couples, such as slaps, slugs and kicks or keeping a partner from seeing his or her family.
KIDS WHO GET SPANKED MOST
Children who have the highest odds of being spanked were those kids whose parents are aggressive toward each other, according to new research published in the journal Pediatrics.
In homes where both parents were aggressive or violent toward each other, the odds of a child getting spanked were doubled, the study reports.
The study included a broad sweep of families from 20 large cities across the country. Led by Catherine A. Taylor, Tulane University School of Public Health and Tropical Medicine in New Orleans, researchers interviewed mothers and fathers from nearly 2,000 families when their children were three years old.
Findings showed that although mothers were more likely to spank the child, both parents tended to use spanking more if they had been victims of aggression by their partner.
"This study is important because it is one of very few studies to look at both mothers' and fathers' use of corporal punishment," Elizabeth Gershoff, a child development and family relationship expert at the University of Texas at Austin, told Reuters.
AN ENVIRONMENT OF VIOLENCE
"These results clearly show that corporal punishment of children is part of an environment of violence in many U.S. families," said Gershoff.
Although hitting children, or spanking, is still prevalent in the U.S. an increasing number of countries have made spanking illegal, with national bans against corporal punishment of their children. Ethic Soup has written a number of posts about spanking, including the most recent post on Tunisia's ban against parents spanking.
KIDS NEED "A GOOD HARD SPANKING"?
As evidence of our violent environments, a 2008 U.S. survey found that 77 percent of men and 65 percent of women agreed that a child sometimes needs a "good hard spanking."
"Nearly two thirds of the toddlers in these families (the 2,000 families in the study) were spanked by a parent within the last month," explained Taylor.
The more a parent is abused, the more that parent abuses the children.
BIG CHICKENS HURT THE LITTLE GUYS
Sounds like chickens and their pecking order. Kids are like the chicken "runts," who get pecked-on. At least for the chickens there is a lotion called "Peck No More."
Imagine being a toddler, still rather unstable on your feet. A parent can push you down with their little finger. If you're an average two year old you stand about 34 inches tall and weigh about 27 to 28 pounds. What you weigh very likely is about how much weight your obese American parents need to loose.
Yet the majority of American parents don't believe in "Spank No More," but rather believe children sometimes need "a good hard spanking." And the parent who is going to do the spanking is at least six times bigger than a toddler -- a giant with a dangerous wallop.
PRO BOXING IS MORE FAIR & ETHICAL
Even our violent sport of boxing has the fighters in classes where their weights are similar. (Pictured right is boxer Evander Holyfield at weigh-in.) Everyone knows someone who weighs a lot more, beating on another is both unfair and dangerous. But we don't give kids the same benefit.
"What's really surprising is that something we know isn't effective with kids is still so accepted and used," Lori Evans, professor of child and adolescent psychiatry at The Child Study Center at NYU Langone Medical Center in New York City, told U.S. News & World Report.
"It all goes back to the old analogy that while you need a license to drive a car, nobody ever says you should take a basic parenting class before becoming a parent. It's all about prevention, and teaching parents how to cope with stress and teach alternative ways to discipline."
SEE SPANKING LINKS BELOW
by Sharon McEachern
CLICK AND READ: "SPANKING: KIDS ARE STRUCK DUMB, LOWER IQ"
CLICK AND READ: "SPANKING IS ILLEGAL: SWEDEN CELEBRATES 30-YEAR NATIONAL BAN"
CLICK AND READ:"COUNTRIES WHERE SPANKING IS BANNED"