In Scandinavia, anything entailing physical violence against a minor is considered a criminal offense (not misdemeanor). Spanking a child carries the same jailtime as beating an adult half to death.
I was quite shocked to hear that spanking is not uncommon in the US, in fact it is closer to the norm (correct me if I am wildly misinformed).
Do you think spanking or any physical punishment of a child is ever acceptable?
Really... I honestly think parents this day and age are way too easy on their children... to the point that it is absurd. I am a pre-k teacher and I work with other people's children and I see what types of parental practices work and what doesn't. Parents who are to "free range" or "lassiez faire" typically have horribly behaving children and parents who spank their children as a primary means of discipline typically have horriobly behaving children. I've worked with at least 1000 families at this point in my career. I don't generally advocate the use of physical punishment but some children do not respond to redirection or time outs or whatever else you have up your sleeve ... those children do typically respond to a spanking here and there. I think you are overestimating the physical punishment my parents gave me and the physical punishment I am talking about... I got spanked maybe once every 2 months and when I did I realized I stepped over a major line. I agree that generally physical punishment is not necessary and when used too often is detrimental, when I have my own children I hope to completely avoid spanking them but if they really push the boundaries I might just resort to a whack or two.
And you can do so without causing physical harm, although even under those circumstances there are those who would like to see you jailed as though you had beaten someone half to death. What then? What do we do with the children who are left orphans while their parents rot in jails after having done nothing more than try to discipline their children?
I'm glad someone here seems to understand that you don't have to beat your child violently to administer a spanking.
Thank you for understanding what I'm talking about. Throwing people in jail for spanking a child will do more harm to the child than a parent spanking the child once in a great while when the parents are at their wits end with non physical forms discipline that are not working.
@Heather: Instead of arguing from opinion, please attempt to find journal articles supporting your view.
Here's one I could easily find: "The results generally indicated a linear positive association between physical punishment and child aggression."
I would even go so far as to say that even if there is no negative effects of corporal punishment for children, it is still immoral behavior.