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<span style="font-family:Arial;"><span style="font-size:small;"><i>This NC reporter deserves a response. I hope you will respond to her: (email at the end of her story)</i><br><br></span></span>
<div style="text-align:left;"><span style="font-family:Arial;"><span style="font-size:small;">Here's the original story</span></span></div>
<div style="text-align:left;"><a href="http://www.news-record.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20061020/NEWSREC010201/610200301/1013/NEWSREC0202" target="_blank"><span style="font-family:Arial;"><span style="font-size:small;">http://www.news-record.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20061020/NEWSREC010201/610200301/1013/NEWSREC0202</span></span></a></div>
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Article published Oct 20, 2006<br><br><span style="font-size:medium;"><b>Roberts: Should students be paddled?</b></span>
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When I was growing up in small-town Dixie, the school principal had a wooden paddle hanging on a peg in his office. As you passed his office, you occasionally heard the whack of his dreaded paddle being used against an errant student's backside.<br><br>
Rowdy boys felt the sting of the paddle with far greater frequency than girls. But one girl, a fifth-grader, was an incurable talker who was constantly reprimanded by her teacher to no avail. A couple of times that year she was trotted down the hall to the principal's office for a quick whack.<br><br>
By the 1970s, corporal punishment had begun to earn a bad reputation. The paddle was replaced by less physical forms of punishment. Today, "time out" is in vogue. Johnny or Jane is consigned to a quiet corner to reflect on unacceptable behavior.<br><br>
Today, 28 states have banned corporal punishment. Medical organizations such as the American Academy of Pediatrics, the National Association of School Psychologists and the American Medical Association are on record as opposing corporal punishment.<br><br>
Back in the days when paddles, switches and spankings were the preferred form of reprimanding a child, it rarely occurred to anybody that these methods might be construed as violent and even abusive, especially if they left welts and bruises. The motto was: "Spare the rod and spoil the child."<br><br>
Then came the invention of child psychology. Psychologists said corporal punishment inflicted scars on children's psyches and encouraged youngsters to think that problems were solved by physical means. In other words, violence begets violence.<br><br>
So the hand that wielded the paddle or spanked the child went limp. Even the vocabulary for correcting a child's behavior went soft. Parents and school officials no longer told a child that misbehavior was "bad." Instead, they said it was "unacceptable."<br><br>
Paddling, however, has not been totally abandoned. According to a recent story in The New York Times, some parts of America -- especially the rural South and Midwest -- are even resurrecting the old-fashioned paddle.<br><br>
"Nearly three-quarters of all corporal punishment in the U.S. in 2002 took place in Texas, Arkansas, Mississippi, Tennessee and Alabama," according to a Times survey.<br><br>
Nor have most school districts in North Carolina shelved the paddle. The Times story said that paddling "is legal in 70 percent of the state's districts although, since they tend to be small and rural, fewer than half of the state's students are covered." Cities such as Greensboro and Charlotte forbid corporal punishment.<br><br>
Sociologists say corporal punishment fits with the South's conservative outlook. In fact, the Bible says something about not sparing the rod. But critics of paddling say it's another stark manifestation of the South's proclivity for settling things by physical means.<br><br><b>Focus on the Family, a Southern conservative group founded by James Dobson, the child psychologist and evangelical leader, is a big cheerleader for restoring the paddle to American schools.</b><br><br>
At least one pediatrician agrees. Dr. DuBose Ravenel, a High Point pediatrician and the son of the late Dr. Sam Ravenel of Greensboro, is quoted in The Times as being a proponent of the old-fashioned spanking.<br><br>
"I believe the whole country would be better off if corporal punishment was allowed in schools by parents who wished it," said Dr. Ravenel, who is an adviser to Focus on the Family.<br><br>
But what do you think, fair reader? Older generations reared with spankings and paddles often see no harm. But younger parents, especially well-educated ones, are reluctant to apply force. And some of us see both sides of the issue.<br><br>
As for that fifth-grade girl who was sent to the principal's office for a whack from his paddle, the punishment didn't cure her. I'm still chatty.<br>
Rosemary Roberts writes a column on Fridays for the News & Record. <span style="font-size:medium;"><b>She can be reached at</b></span> <a href="mailto:[email protected]">[email protected]</a>.</td>
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Please e-mail comments against hitting children to this reporter.</b> We have had some significant issues with corporal punishment in NC schools leading to injured children, including disabled children: <a href="http://nospank.net/n-o05r.htm" target="_blank">http://nospank.net/n-o05r.htm</a> Here is a link about violated children, corporal punishment induced trauma. (<b><span style="color:#FF0000;">caution</span></b>: very graphic and disturbing photos): <a href="http://www.nospank.net/violatn.htm" target="_blank">http://www.nospank.net/violatn.htm</a><br><br>
Here is a list of professional organizations opposed to corporal punishment that can be cited:<a href="http://www.nospank.net/endcp.htm" target="_blank">http://www.nospank.net/endcp.htm</a><br><br>
Thanks for even a short note stating opposition to the government authorities hitting children. Permission of parents is not required in NC, nor notification before corporal punishment is implemented. You can check if your state still utilizes corporal punishment here: <a href="http://www.stophitting.org/disatschool/statesBanning.php" target="_blank">http://www.stophitting.org/disatscho...tesBanning.php</a><br><br>
Pat
 
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