See this article:


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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Based on the necessity of laws being consistent.

I didn't realize that was intended to be the answer to the question earlier.

Also, we are not talking about generalized physical harm...

That's what I've been saying. The thread is specifically about spanking, but all you initially wrote was, "As long as it is illegal to physically harm adults...". This is the wording which threw me.

Your second statement reflects my point: Laws need to be consistent. This implies consistency in time, object and generalized in offense. Just as there is no specific law against causing harm by a left hand uppercut or with a 2 foot branch of oak, we don't outlaw spanking specifically, we outlaw causing physical harm. 

I never stated there is a specific law against spanking. The law in practice, however, does not categorically ban physical harm either.

I am not intimately familiar with the penal codes in other countries, however I hardly believes it differs substantially from the one in my country:

Penal code §228: "Any person who commits violence against the person of another or otherwise assails him bodily (...) is guilty of assault"

The broader body of law will be determined by defences for the act, definitions, court rulings and other sections of law providing exemptions or protections against legal action, which is also common. things such as self-defence, medical practice, and yeah, disciplining children often have their own sections in body of law.

According to the article, Kansas already allowed such physical disciplinary action already, and this law merely clarifies the limits.

Canada is similar.

I actually do not agree with that law, but I couldn't just wave it away with 'physical harm'. The Supreme Court is already aware some harm occurs and I would have to argue against the specific problems with the exemption the law provides.

for reference:

Correction of child by force

43. Every schoolteacher, parent or person standing in the place of a parent is justified in using force by way of correction toward a pupil or child, as the case may be, who is under his care, if the force does not exceed what is reasonable under the circumstances.

Well, in the vast majority of the world which has civil law, judges don't interpret laws to any great extent.

@ kris feenstra:

I don't know if you have kids or not, but if you do, please tell me when is the last time your child got into your lap snuggled with you and said: "I love you, please spank me."

It doesn't happen and never will.  Children responded best to love not pain.

People who strike their children have just been to lazy to learn how to be good parents, they try to make excuses to the rest of us to get a free pass to continue to be lousy parents.

I can't really make sense of this post. Is it because I used the word 'consent'?

Having trouble making sense of the world around you...maybe a spanking would a matter of argument I am sure it would.

I as the authority figure here I will make you understand by causing you pain, you will in turn learn this wonderful method of teaching, which will in time lead you to teach other weaker individuals in the same way.

Isn't parenting from ignorance fun?

Kris, there are an abundant number of well written books in your local library on this subject. The educated portion of our society has come to understand that causing children pain results in negative results not positive ones.

Rational intelligent parents have learned a better method then the spanking method their ignorant parents used on them.

We're trying to build a better world here Kris, get on board, the train's leaving the station and you don't want to be left behind.

No, not the world around me. I have no idea what you, specifically, are going on about or what it is you think I am advocating. None of your comments relate to any position I have taken, yet you have named me specifically.

It ain't about you, it's about the content of your posts.

What specifically in the content of my posts is the point of contention? You've made a whole bunch of statements against things I have not argued. You're against spanking -- I understand that -- but I didn't argue for or against it.


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