Spank No More: Why are fewer parents hitting their kids?
The writer of this article appears to come from a different planet than Murdoc.
The most recent national data from the National Institutes of Mental Health, obtained by a Gallup telephone poll, was encouraging in some respects. Almost every parent regularly tries to reason with a wayward child, and nearly three-quarters redirect misbehaving kids into another activity or use time-outs.
Still, many also hit children regularly…
Remarkably, however, a powerful trend toward abandoning corporal punishment is already under way. There has been a dramatic reduction in its use over the past two generations—an unprecedented change in a pattern that likely had been fixed for millennia. In the United States, for example, 94 percent of parents endorsed hitting kids in 1968, but only one-half approved by 1999.
He quotes a sociologist who believes the decrease is “part of the long term civilizing process of society.”
The issue wasn’t that one group was more or less lenient with bad behavior. Instead, middle- and upper-class parents tended to treat children as peers, with the pint-sized ability to make choices, respond to reason, and have valid emotions. It’s not a huge leap then to see children as having nascent civil rights that conflict with regular corporal punishment.
And he says it like it’s a good thing. And
As a result, these children who experience it develop an “emerging sense of entitlement”—a trait that may carry some negative connotations but generally correlates with better verbal skills, school performance, and a sense that they can actively shape the world around them.
So they’ll be the sort who think they’re owed stuff, but at least they’ll have good grades and be well-spoken. (He left out the “they’ll crap in peoples’ yards while whining about student loans,” but it’s his story and he can tell it however he wants.)
For the record, Murdoc is the father in a household that spanks. And as brutal and savage and uncivilized as that probably sounds to some, spanking occurred fewer than ten times total for two kids. The important thing is to be just and honorable. It seems to work.
Being this is the Christmas season, Murdoc’s spent more time than normal in the mall lately. He’d bet that if you take the 500 worst-behaved kids he’s seen, at least 80% of them come from “no spanking” households. He also did not detect any outward signs of good grades or increased vocabulary.
This guy who wrote the article clearly has a different vision of a good society than Murdoc does. Children are not “little adults” who are in many ways equal to the taller people who live in the same house.