Parental Corporal Punishment
In different households across the nation many parents spank, whip, swat, or paddle children in order to punish them for doing wrong or to act as a buffer against unacceptable behavior. These types of actions are acts of corporal punishment. Researchers Abraham Andero and Allen Stewart of Alabama State University define corporal punishment as “a discipline method in which a supervising adult deliberately inflicts pain upon a child in response to a child’s unacceptable behavior” ( Andero and Stewart 90). Proponents of corporal punishment argue there is no harm in using corporal punishment in order to correct a child’s behavior. Corporal punishment is a controversial subject among parents, teachers, and the medical community. It is agreed among researchers that children should be disciplined for their improper behavior; however, corporal punishment is an unacceptable disciplining tool because it teaches children to use violence, causes physical and psychological damage, and there are other ways to discipline a child besides corporal punishment. Corporal punishment teaches children to use acts of violence against their peers or other members of society. Douglas Fry, a well- known anthropologist, noted that “Psychological research shows that parents or adults that use physical punishment, there is a tendency for recipient child to imitate the adult and act aggressively” (Fry 53). Fry conducted an observation on children ages three to eight years from two different communities: La Paz and San Andres. Fry recorded data on the children’s fighting and play fighting behavior. The results of his study concluded that the children of La Paz had lower levels of serious aggression and play aggression than the children of San Andres. The reason the children of La Paz had lower levels of aggression was because their parents used nonviolent techniques to discipline them (Fry 51-54). The conclusion of this particular study coincides...
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