We spanked our kids because that was the way my wife and I were raised. Children learn more from observing than from the things we tell them. If it is okay for you to hit, it is okay for them to hit. (Same with drink, steal, use drugs, ...) Looking back, I wish we had done it different, but we didn't know how. <br />
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I have two grandchildren, 3 and 5. My son and his wife don't spank. They talk. They take away privileges. They give rewards. They praise good behavior constantly. And when the kids just can't behave, they have a time out, which the kids hate. <br />
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A while back I read that the reason most people spank is because it gets immediate results. Not spanking is a lot more work and take a lot more time, but studies have show the children who aren't spanked, are better behaved, happier, and have higher self esteem.<br />
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The problem with spanking is that the immediate results are attained - to put it bluntly - through physical assault. Because assault is not loving, the child internalizes that they are wrong, or even worthless. The child's "cooperation" is attained through violence and intimidation, so the child, like you and me, finds ways to subvert the oppressive authority that is repressing them, which leads to more spanking (physical assault.) The cycle continues.<br />
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My thoughts. No easy answers. Good luck.

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It should be the parents option to either spank or not spank thier children. All kids need disciplined different ways, some learn by getting things taken from them, other learn by being grounded, some learn best getting a spanking. <br />
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I don't but into the fact that a spakning ruins the kid for life and turns them violent. <br />
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Kids now adays are 100 more times out of control than 10 or even 20 years ago. The average age of violent crime is on a continious downward spiral. Spankings are also way down over that time since its now politicly incorrect to spank your child. See the trend? Children now adays have very little respect for consquences. Not saying the decrease in spankings is the reason, but I am sure its at least a small part of it. <br />
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PS -- I am talking a spanking, not abuse, there is a big difference.

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Apples and oranges. Yes, spanking is less common than fifty years ago. Yes, crime and violence are up compared to fifty years ago. But far more than that has changed in our country. Fifty years ago, when a child got bad grades, we blamed the child; now we blame the teacher. In the process, we teach the child irresponsibility. As a society, we stopped stigmatizing antisocial behavior, ridiculed manners, and glorified punks. This gave children permission to be crude and antisocial. In the sixties and seventies, huge advances were made by "entertainment" in glorifying and portraying violence. Criminals became the "Good Guy." All cops were crooked or renegades. We have several generations that don't know what personal honor and responsibility are. It's not the spanking that made us less of a country. It's people caring more for themselves than anyone or anything else. Sorry if this is a little preachy. I think we all want the same things, it is just so damn hard to figure out what is right.

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For my parents, it was an absolute last resort, and never done without prior warning, which I think is fair enough. The problem with legislating it is the practical problem with all libertarian policies - there are always going to be people who just cross the line. If you tell parents they can hit their kids, someone will decide that means they can do it with a billiard ball in a sock. You have to decide if that rare case is worth the consequences and practicalities of attempting to legislate against spanking.

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