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bill introduced by a Wichita lawmaker would ease some restrictions on spanking in Kansas, allowing parents, caregivers or school officials to hit children hard enough to leave redness or bruising.

Rep. Gail Finney, D-Wichita, who introduced the bill, said it attempts to define corporal punishment, restore parental rights and protect parents who spank their children from being charged with child abuse.

“What’s happening is there are some children that are very defiant and they’re not minding their parents, they’re not minding school personnel,” Finney said Tuesday.

“What it (the proposed law) does is it tries to give a definition. … But it does not allow hitting, punching, beating, because that is still considered abuse.”

Current Kansas law allows spanking that does not leave marks. The proposed legislation, House Bill 2699, would define corporal punishment as “up to 10 forceful applications in succession of a bare, open-hand palm against the clothed buttocks of a child.”

The bill also would allow “reasonable physical force” to restrain a child during a spanking, “acknowledging that redness or bruising may occur on the tender skin of a child as a result.”

It would continue to ban hitting a child with fists, in the head or body or with a belt or switch.

The bill would allow parents to give permission to others, including school officials, to spank their children, including students over 18 who are enrolled in high school.

“Corporal punishment is already allowed by law in Kansas,” Finney said. “It’s just trying to get a definition, because what’s happening is our kids and some of our law-abiding parents are entering into DCF (the Department of Children and Families) and law enforcement custody when it could have been avoided.

“It could be a small amount of a bruise (and) a parent could still be charged with child abuse when it wasn’t anything serious,” she said.

Sedgwick County District Attorney Marc Bennett said current state law is plenty clear on the difference between spanking and abuse.

Abuse of a child, a felony, is defined as “torturing or cruelly beating” a child, shaking that results in bodily harm or “inflicting cruel and inhuman corporal punishment.”

Battery, a class B misdemeanor, is “knowingly or recklessly causing bodily harm to another person or … causing physical contact with another person when done in a rude, insulting or angry manner.”

“We don’t arrest people for giving their kid a swat on the behind,” Bennett said.

“There seems to be an effort here to line-item all the things that can be done and can’t be done. … I’ve been doing this for 19 years now, and there’s no ‘redness rule’ or ‘10-strike rule’ or ‘closed-fist rule’ in Kansas law. I don’t know, frankly, what’s driving this.”

Opponents of spanking called the measure disturbing.

John Valusek, a retired Wichita psychologist and teacher who spearheaded a decades-long crusade against spanking, said any use of force against children is unnecessary and damaging.

“If you hit kids when they’re small, for whatever reason you’re hitting them, you’re planting the idea that it’s OK to use pain to accomplish an end,” he said.

What do you think about it being legal to the point of "leaving a mark." ???

Me personally.....I'm astounded that we're even discussing this. But......I am against it (of course.)......and appauled. We should be able to spank our lawmakers when they misbehave. THAT would be awesome! LOL!!!

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I studied German 40 years ago, but I don't think I was familiar with the term way back then, either. I had to look it up in Wiktionary:


Ausbildung f (genitive Ausbildung, plural Ausbildungen)
training, apprenticeship, vocational education

This is a bit different from your definition, which seems a bit self-serving in terms of your arguments.

At any rate, teaching skills is what school is all about, and anything disruptive to that cheats the nondisruptive students and must be addressed effectively. The main duty is to the kids who are there to learn, not the ones who are there to act out, vent, or otherwise misbehave.

From wiki: Ausbildung umfasst die Vermittlung von VermögenKenntnissen und Wissen an einen Menschen beliebigen Alters durch eine ausbildende Stelle, bspw. eine staatliche Schule, eine Universität oder ein privates Unternehmen.

In English: Training includes the provision of assets, skills and knowledge to a person of any age through a forming point, for example, a state school, a university or a private company.

As a speaker of a Germanic language I can tell you it doesn't translate well. Ausbildung is education (Utdannelse in Norwegian). Bildung translates (via Norwegian) as etiquette or manners.

Perhaps you should study the Scandinavian model of learning. Their intent is to produce individuals with all the tools to be a productive member of society. This includes social skills that go way beyond reading, writing, and mathematics. Their children by the way perform at an extremely high level of competence compared to other cultures.

Why is it that Singapore, which has institutionalized and official corporal punishment as well as the death penalty, apparently does not teach that "violence is okay"? In fact, it has one of the lowest violent crime rates in the world. 

If what so many of you say is true, violent crime should be rampant there, yet the opposite is the case.

And if you have sex with a man you go to jail for two years and if you tag down a building you get caned. Not exactly a paragon of liberty you are making an example out of.

If North Korea has a low level of crime, is it still a good system?

Some of their values are contrary to ours, but you clearly intend to distract readers from my point: corporal punishment can produce a society which is safe, whereas under the proposition often used to criticize corporal punishment—that violence (like spanking) simply begets more violence—Singapore should be rife with street crime and murder.

"corporal punishment can produce a society which is safe"

How do you know it's corporal punishment which makes the society safe, and not the imprisonment of gay men? Or people spitting? Or chewing gum?

As you see, the problem is that any difference in values can be taken as evidence that their values produces a more harmonious society than yours/mine, which is actually the exact argument the CCP is making. 

Please make a credible argument for homosexuality, spitting, or chewing gum having any effect on the safety of a society. Punishment, whether properly or improperly directed can modify behavior. That is so obvious it hardly needs proof. It works in training animals and people, we sometimes forget, are just animals, too.

When my cat disobeys in a way I feel must be curbed, I might squirt it with water or air or shoot a rubber band at its behind, and it learns to avoid that behavior. People are no different.

I don't have to: Putin and Museveni are making those arguments for me, unfortunately. I previously brought up this widely cited paper on corporal punishment:

I have also brought up a cat. I didn't have to discipline it, I broke it's will. However, I cannot do this with children, but that doesn't make eligible to hit it.

And yet, there is Singapore, that hotbed of violent criminality. The study seems to have missed something. According to the study, corporal punishment is good only for what it terms "immediate compliance," and yet Singapore show that corporal punishment, if not a cause, is compatible with a society characterized by nonviolence and respect by citizens for each other.

Scandinavia has approximately the same level of crime, but here spanking is illegal and criminal penalties are mild. I doubt you can demonstrate a cause and effect relationship between spanking and a low crime rate.

shoot a rubber band at its behind

Hmm, interesting idea. Performed often enough, all that should be needed after a while would be to make a "twang" sound on the rubber band, and you wouldn't even have to go pick it up afterward.


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