A Fine Line between Child Abuse and Discipline
Child abuse is the physical injury of a child inflicted by a parent which ranges from superficial bruises, broken bones, burns, serious internal injuries and in some cases, death (Prevent Child Abuse America). Child abuse is a topic that causes rage in many discussions throughout the country because it is outrageous actions against innocent children. Many parents question whether discipline can become child abuse. Bell Hooks is an educated woman, feminist, and writer who has dedicated her life to teaching people about civil rights that every human being deserves. She wrote an essay in which she addresses her personal view on the way children should not be hit under any circumstances, because it neglects love; according to her, love and abuse cannot coexist. However, it is unfair to claim that a slap on the hand is considered abuse, and that if parents commit this type of action, they do not love their child. There is a huge difference between physical punishment and child abuse. A child needs to learn right from wrong, and when the child’s actions turn out of control, it is acceptable to spank or hit them in the hand. As long as the hitting stays to a minimum degree, physical punishment is not child abuse.
“No one can rightfully claim to be loving when behaving abusively” (Hooks, 29). This is a quote from Hooks’ essay in which she declared that if a parent is hitting their child, then they are showing no love towards the child. I disagree with Hooks because she uses the word abuse in such a negative form throughout her whole essay. What exactly does “behaving abusively” mean? If a person sees the words, “behaving abusively” the person might be thinking a child was hit in the face and now the child has a black eye, which is abuse. However, Hooks’ takes the definition of “behaving abusively” as any type of hitting even if it’s the least amount of pain like a slap on the hand, which is not abuse. Hooks gives the...
Cited: Hooks, Bell. “Justice: Childhood Love Lessons.” 29 January, 2011: 27-33.
“Prevent Child Abuse America.” Advocacy. 24 January, 2011.
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