Mothering Forums

Mothering Forums (
-   Gentle Discipline (
-   -   "America and the Roots of Violence" (

IdentityCrisisMama 05-02-2013 11:58 AM

Interesting article:



Significant evidence indicates that the United States is particularly resistant in contrast with other industrialized countries to legally outlawing the hitting of one's children, being one of the last hold outs on signing the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child, a human rights treaty setting out the civil, political, economic, social, health and cultural rights of children, to this day having failed to ratify it.

tracyamber 05-07-2013 02:41 PM

2 Attachment(s)

I wonder why it is so difficult for us to make the leap.

bidica 05-11-2013 12:53 PM

the uk are jst as backward when it comes to changing this law dispite the campaigns involved


i do find it strange though that when it comes to discussions revolvin around school shootings that corproal punishment in us schools isnt the first thing on the agenda. id love to see a study of the states where this is used and if it corrolates to school shooting occurances

Fillyjonk 05-13-2013 05:32 AM

Just to say, corporal punishment is illegal in all UK schools, including private/"public" ones. Teachers who have hit kids or been suspected of it have been taken to court on many occasions, especially when the laws were transitioning in.


While the UK does allow "reasonable chastisement" I'd say our laws are stricter than the US. I think also-and this is a huge generalisation-but that we have a much stronger anti-smacking culture. Yes its allowed-within quite strict limits- but its not something people boast about. I'd say the way smacking tends to be understood as non-criminal in the UK is that there isn't much point criminalising a parent for losing control, because it doesn't benefit the kid, but that there are quite strict rules and guidelines in place so that serious abuse can be caught (note, I'm not saying it actually is caught all the time, simply that the laws exist to prosecute where it is. Our social services are massively overworked and underfunded). Whereas my understanding of the US (and this is a huge generalisation, its a huge country!) is that parents, and schools in around half the states, have much freer rein and that the zeitgeist is more around parental rights to discipline as they see fit. Massive, massive generalisations here and I'm sure other British people might disagree :-)

bidica 05-13-2013 10:59 AM

i know corporal punishment is illegal in uk schools- i said in the us

Linda on the move 05-13-2013 09:09 PM

I looked up to see what the current laws are in the US regarding corporal punishment is schools (because we sure don't use it in the district that I work in!) and found this interesting map:


The laws vary from state to state, but many states have similar laws to many European countries.

phathui5 05-13-2013 10:30 PM

Even in the states where corporal punishment in schools is legal, I don't "see" it actually happening in the U.S. I think it's just that no one in those states has bothered to change the laws yet.

dalia 05-13-2013 11:12 PM

Originally Posted by phathui5 View Post

Even in the states where corporal punishment in schools is legal, I don't "see" it actually happening in the U.S. I think it's just that no one in those states has bothered to change the laws yet.

I'm pretty sure it is still happening in Texas.

bidica 05-14-2013 02:20 AM


the data in this is 2006/07

bidica 05-14-2013 02:22 AM

this is dated 2011- so i guess as an offical letter the data will be relatively up to date

bidica 05-14-2013 02:24 AM


the figures here are 2008

bidica 05-14-2013 02:27 AM



bidica 05-14-2013 02:37 AM

being scottish i dont think i cd know v much compared to a us citizen re how corporal punishment is used in schools- but i do know that legaly it has to be recored.  i know theres been bills to change these laws- but alot like the many proposed changes to uk law there nothing really happens.  while we dont use corporal punishment as such in uk schools there are many settings where restraints are used (residentials, secure units etc) and whilst they are supposed to be used as a last resort when the risks of not using hands on techniques are greater than using them iv seen it used far more commnly than that- kid wont go where told- a memebr of staff holds either arm and froces them etc etc.  childrens rights are v low on the priority list over here- parents rights are allways spoken about with greater priority.  our smacking laws allow many parents rights to be paramount and not childrens. if smacking was illegal here then many children who are at risk wd be easier to remove to saftey (currently between 2 and 3 children each week are killed by their parents - almost all are known to be at risk prior but ss hands are tied as all that can be prooven is 'smacking') and there wd be a general shift in thinking where childrens rights have to be given more respect and physical restraint (which is supposed to be used as protective force only) wdnt be misused as it is. 


maybe someone who is american cd compare the list of schools who use corporal punishment (or have - i believe one or two have out lawed it more recently) and the states where school shootings occur- id be really interested to see if theres any corrolation- i find it strange that the documentarys out there on school shootings have never mentioned the use of corporal punishment in schools- but then mayeb there is no corrolation

Fillyjonk 05-20-2013 02:44 AM

"i know corporal punishment is illegal in uk schools- i said in the us"


I know you were. I was disagreeing with you smile.gif, specifically around the "the uk are jst as backward when it comes to changing this law dispite the campaigns involved".


Because I don't agree. I just don't agree there have been no legal changes. The last change was ten years ago, and massively restricted what forms of physical punishment were acceptable-even more so in Scotland than the rest of the UK. The UK feeling is that smacking is bad but we need to work out best how to approach this, and we need to consider whether, having introduced very strict criteria as to what is acceptable, criminalising parents is the most productive step. The US approach seems to be more about parental rights and individuality. 


Our care system is in crisis as well. I'd be quite opposed to a kid being taken away from their parents for the level of smacking allowed under UK law, which would be a lightish, non-marking, slap. To separate a child from their parents and put them into our frankly appalling lottery of a care system for something like that really does not seem to me to meet their best interests. The horrendous child abuse cases with which I am sure you are familiar are not ever cases where there is a question mark over whether prosecution was possible, where a change to the law could help, but invariably where our underfunded and overstretched child protection services dropped the ball, where they could easily have acted under existing legislation. 


I also think that the situation with restraints is problematic but also complex. 

bidica 05-28-2013 11:12 AM

children wd never be reomved for jst a smack- but at present its incredibley difficult to remove them at all- often all that can be prooved is smacking, and the parents are protected- there are currently 1+ children killed each wk by their parents in the uk, almost all of whom are known to ss first and yet not removed because they can only proove reasonable pyhsical punsihement- change the law and these childrens lives are more likely to be saved

All times are GMT -7. The time now is 09:47 AM.

Powered by vBulletin® Copyright ©2000 - 2020, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
Resources saved on this page: MySQL 0%
vBulletin Optimisation provided by vB Optimise (Pro) - vBulletin Mods & Addons Copyright © 2020 DragonByte Technologies Ltd.
User Alert System provided by Advanced User Tagging (Pro) - vBulletin Mods & Addons Copyright © 2020 DragonByte Technologies Ltd.
vBulletin Security provided by vBSecurity v2.2.2 (Pro) - vBulletin Mods & Addons Copyright © 2020 DragonByte Technologies Ltd.