Violence Words to Protect Children

A few years ago, Family Integrity published this booklet.

It contains this advice.

With older children (from perhaps 18 months or 2 years onwards): Some things are just plain humiliating and unnecessary: chastisement in public or the idea of pulling pants down to smack. Smacking may be a 10-15 minute process. Go to a private place, collect the smacking rod, then fully discuss the crime. Ask the child to identify which of the four Ds was broken and to explain why he now needs a smack rather than a tongue lashing or isolation. Always give an opportunity to plead extenuating circumstances; be prepared to call in witnesses for cross examination; and if appropriate, do not smack. The child must comply with your direction to hold still while you administer the smacking to the clothed bottom, not the back or legs. Do not be tempted to restrain a struggling child. Their admission of guilt, their agreement that a smack is necessary and the need to master self discipline together make it important that the child voluntarily submits to the discipline of smacking.

Now, to Christians such as myself (to whom this is pamphlet and it’s theological explanations is aimed) the message is clear: don’t just rush up to your child and whack them. Take time, explain the crime and be sure that the child submits to your authority, and learns discipline.

(It does not mean that children are to be subject to 15 minutes of pain – the actual smacking would normally be undertaken in mere seconds. The wording is unfortunate, but as I say, the target audience understands the meaning clearly.)

This is of course, careful and thoughtful discipline, the absolute antithesis of abuse.

Today, Idiot/Savant used it as the centerpiece of his f*** you to the majority of New Zealanders.

Anyone who believes that violence against children is either necessary or acceptable is simply a monster. Anyone who thinks its fine because they were beaten as a child “and it didn’t do me any harm” is simply stupid. Any dead people who feel their parenting style is implicitly being criticised are exactly right, and should get the f**k over themselves. The old law treated children as property, provided legal cover for extreme violence against children. The new one treats them as people, removes that cover, and sends a powerful social message that any violence is not acceptable. To some extent that message is redundant – the use of smacking has dropped precipitously, as today’s parents reject the brutal methods of the past. But that does not protect the children of the hard-core child beaters who organised this referendum, the people who believe in faeries or devils or other bullshit and think they need to beat their delusions out of their children.

When I read something like that, and see that the I/S has full access to the original sources it is very hard to believe that he is being honest.

And He’s not. His statement about the old law “provided legal cover for extreme violence against children” is equally astonishing. Because under the old law 12 people in a jury had to apply the test: “Was this reasonable in the circumstances?”. Those 12 people were recently labeled a “bullshit detector” by I/S himself.

That simple test divided cases of parental force (for correction) into those that were abuse, and those that were not.

The irony here is that I/S is extremely, irrationally, angry about parents doing something reasonable.

Surely extreme irrational anger towards someone being reasonable is the very essence of violence? I don’t know if I/S is a parent, but let’s hope he controls his anger better when a child bothers him, than when he sits down at the computer and spends 15 minutes writing a blog post.

Something to think about.

I’ve spoke to many of the leaders of the anti-smacking debate. Some of them have made the point that their views on child discipline only slightly removed from those people such as I/S holds.Yet because they chose to support smacking, people like I/S subject them to extreme, irrational hatred. There are even cases where this hatred has turned into criminal assault.

Parents are simply asking that the law allow them confidence to to their job. They want to obey the law. Those opposing them seem less enamored with staying within the law, and even less concerned with being reasonable and truthful.

And that’s the irony.

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