Spanking only abusive if there is proof of harm, Utah Supreme Court says

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  • K Mchenry, IL
    Aug. 16, 2017 1:50 p.m.

    Who wrote this? What was the outcome of the case that brought the question? A pillow fight isn't being hit with a belt. It you can't hit your elderly mom with a belt or a stranger with a belt you can't do it to a kid. This isn't complicated.

  • TheWalker Saratoga Springs, UT
    Aug. 13, 2017 8:49 p.m.

    I believe when the judges say that 'as a society we've progressed to the point where it's not acceptable', they have added powerful force behind empowering children and disempowering parents. While I don't support using a belt to discipline a child, I also believe that sometimes an unruly child needs to learn what behavior is appropriate and what is not. Sometimes a spanking can achieve the desired results quicker and easier than reading an encyclopedia on child rearing.

    We need to empower parents, not children.

  • DrGroovey Salt Lake City, UT
    Aug. 13, 2017 6:19 p.m.

    I read the Court's actual ruling.

    The problem was not with the belt, but that the Juvenile Court did not specify in it's findings what harm the belt did. If the Juvenile Court had mentioned any physical marks on the child or any emotional trauma they endured, then the case would have been sound.

    Nothing will change with this ruling except that the lawyers and the judges will need to be more specific in how they draft their findings of law.

  • Mayfair City, Ut
    Aug. 13, 2017 2:08 p.m.

    I agree with Hutterite on very little on these forums.

    But this is profound: "It is psychological and physical terrorism. It is torture. It is assault."

    Amen. Amen. Amen.

    If you can control a child only with these, you might need to invest a little of your time learning how to be a better parent.

  • xert Santa Monica, CA
    Aug. 13, 2017 11:03 a.m.

    I've heard many parents claim that a good spanking, delivered devoid of anger and causing no lasting harm, is no big deal--but striking out in a moment of passion is truly harmful.
    But George Bernard Shaw saw it differently. He looked at it that a slap across the cheek in a moment of genuine anger is honest and does little lasting harm--but a thoughtful, planned out and dispassionate use of violence to aid getting what you want out of a kid is incredibly harmful and shouldn't be forgiven. "I am bigger than you and although I love you, I will now beat you into submitting to my authority and doing things the right way."--Though I don't believe in using violence to achieve any goal except self preservation, this has made more and more sense to me over the years.

  • Hope & Faith give us strength Utah County, UT
    Aug. 13, 2017 8:50 a.m.

    Irony Guy,

    Thanks for the quote! I found more of it. It's wonderful!

    "You can’t force your boys, nor your girls into heaven. You may force them to hell, by using harsh means in the efforts to make them good, when you yourselves are not as good as you should be... Fathers, if you wish your children to be taught in the principles of the gospel, if you wish them to love the truth and understand it, if you wish them to be obedient to and united with you, love them! and prove to them that you do love them by your every word or act to them... Use no lash and no violence, but... approach them with reason, with persuasion and love unfeigned."

    There's a man who truly understood how Heavenly Father teaches us, and applied it to his own life.

    I wouldn't condemn anyone who spanks. I recognize that we respect each parent's right to learn how to parent on their own. For myself, I believe there's no question it's wrong. But others believe its no question that things I've done are wrong. None of us are the Savior. All we can do is try to be more like Him as we learn more of Him.

  • Hutterite American Fork, UT
    Aug. 13, 2017 8:41 a.m.

    To threaten, restrain and beat someone has to have some negative sanction that cannot be dismissed as 'parenting'.
    It is psychological and physical terrorism. It is torture. It is assault. One is not the recipient of such a beating, one is the victim. One does not receive such a beating willingly or 'with love'.
    Many a child has been attacked by a supposed loved one self enabled by the tired proverbs quote, poorly translated as it is, picked from among the thousands of ignored biblical admonishments to be interpreted literally and forcefully.

  • JKR Holladay, UT
    Aug. 13, 2017 7:08 a.m.

    The children were removed from the home pending resolution. Court cases like this with an appeal are not quick, and can take years. The older kids may have been placed with their father, but what about the younger ones? That first judges ruling damaged this family greatly.

  • 1aggie SALT LAKE CITY, UT
    Aug. 13, 2017 7:06 a.m.

    The NIH reports:

    "Numerous studies have found that physical punishment increases the risk of broad and enduring negative developmental outcomes.
    No study has found that physical punishment enhances developmental health.
    Most child physical abuse occurs in the context of punishment.
    A professional consensus is emerging that parents should be supported in learning nonviolent, effective approaches to discipline."

    I know when my parents spanked us, I lost respect for them. (For one thing, it undermines any instructions to children about not harming or hitting others). Spanking is too often done in a fit of anger and shows a lack of thinking.

  • lorigrad Logan, UT
    Aug. 13, 2017 5:51 a.m.

    There are many ways to discipline without the use of physical punishment. Many times, if spanking is done in anger it creates fear and anger in the child which can be far more challenging to handle. Consider communication, timeout, removal of privileges, and control over yourself.

  • Irony Guy Bountiful, Utah
    Aug. 12, 2017 9:37 p.m.

    Don't spank your children. You'll regret it.

    Joseph F. Smith said, “you can only correct your children . . . in kindness, by love unfeigned, by persuasion, and reason.”

  • SomeClarityPlease Salt Lake City, UT
    Aug. 12, 2017 9:14 p.m.

    I still subscribe to Proverbs 13:24 which says "He that spareth his rod hateth his son: but he that loveth him chasteneth him betimes.” I do not enjoy disciplining my children, but I would rather they learn it now rather than have the world teach it to them later.

  • Hope & Faith give us strength Utah County, UT
    Aug. 12, 2017 4:23 p.m.

    I despise spanking more than anyone I've ever met. I really hate do.

    But I still can't imagine a judge having the audacity to tell a parent to stop what's a common enough practice and pretending that the written laws justify their principled aggression toward the public. It's a political statement. It's taking out a pen and pretending you can write laws, just cause you don't like how other people live their lives.

    It's one thing to believe you're right. It's another thing to overstep your authority. We live in an age where judges do this continually. Well, we know what happened after judges did it in the Book of Mormon. If judges keep pretending they are law makers in this country, there won't be a country left in a short number of years.

    What Rehnquist said about Roe v Wade seems to apply to 90% of the judges in our country now. The judges somehow found it within themselves to find text in the constitution that even its authors were unaware of.

    Did we just forget that judges have no right nor any authority to act like socialist parents?