Beat My Child; Just Don’t Put Her in Prison – GET REAL!!!

This house would bring back corporal punishment. (2012, January 26). Retrieved December 29, 2015, from

In this link there are four different perspectives on the pros and cons of Corporal Punishment for adults, in particular criminal offenders.  The majority of the arguments are based on the question of whether the current criminal custodial sentences (incarceration) are effective.  If not then what options are we, as a society left with?  Answer: Corporal Punishment.  It was really interesting to see the results of the pre / post polls.  Before the arguments were presented only 25% of the pollsters were for Corporal Punishment of adult criminals rather than imprisonment, 25% were mildly against, and 33% were strongly against.  After the debate 50% of the pollsters were for and 50% were mildly against. NO ONE was in between or strongly against.  In the arguments for, criminologist Peter Moskos claims that, “… most of us, if given the choice, would opt to receive ten lashes rather than spend five years in prison.”  So, I asked my 15 year old daughter if she would rather get spanked or grounded.  She sort of laughed and said, “Duh, spanked!”  I do not know if I have ever even spanked her before so I do not know what she was basing her decision on but it did not take her long.  This source also presents the pros and cons of incarceration on the offenders’ families. Is it better to take away a family member thereby protecting the family from future criminal behaviors or is it better to use Corporal Punishment and allow the offender to quickly resume life, hopefully in a rehabilitated manner?  Is it better to ground the star athlete and keep them out of a game or two or is it better to have them clean the locker room after the game?

I love this website.  I found it through as directed by the Ballenger Journal activity.  The International debate education association or IDEA portal is a website that allows a person or group to search a debate topic database with pro/con arguments.  Most of the debates are based on information that comes from some, if not mostly, credible sources (very rarely is there a .com).  The purpose of the source is to provide the leading arguments for and against a social issue.  I chose it because of the situation I read about concerning the Washington teen in the KTLA 5 News post.  Should the father have recorded the incident, for any reason?  Would he, could he have modified her behavior with less extreme measures?  I am assuming from her name they were Middle Eastern, or Muslim.  In many Muslim cultures a woman’s hair is her treasure.  In most traditional cultures it is such a precious commodity that no man is allowed to see it except close family members and the husband. I am assuming this family was at least in some aspects conformed to tradition since it was the cutting of the hair the father uses as a powerful lesson.  If this was the case for Izabel then I am positive this was a horrific ordeal for the young lady.  Should Corporal Punishment resume the traditional norm in behavior modification it had throughout most of the 1900’s.  In their source on Social Influence Cialdini and Trost introduce us to the Societal-Value Perspective which tells us that a norm is neither good nor valuable in and of itself.  What is important is whether or not it is accepted. Perhaps, if the father had felt able to utilize corporal punishment he would not have resorted to the course of action he did.  Still, if as a society we cannot even bring ourselves to whip, lash, or otherwise punish a criminal offender, I do not think corporal punishment as a method of behavior modification will have a resurgence any time soon.

I always like seeing before and after pictures so I really like the before and after polls.  I also like how easy it is to cite these articles with the cite option at the bottom below the Bibliography. What I do not like about this source for academic research is the lack of knowledge I have about the author, the actual poll that was administered, or the timeliness.  As far as the material I actually read I did not find very much of it to be shocking or confusing.  However, I did find it interesting that so many of us, if came down to being punished ourselves would prefer Corporal Punishment, and all the humiliation it brings, to incarceration.  Why?  Is it because we believe we can recover from physical pain quicker than the mental / emotional damage incarceration might cause.   Is it because we are afraid of having a cell mate named “Bubba”?  If incarceration is so horrible, just the thought of it is so horrible, that I would rather get ten lashes (that would scar me for life) then why is it not effective in behavior modification?  Why do we, as a society have such a high repeat offender rate?  Finally, if I do something and am going to be punished for it I would rather get the lashes than be put in jail.  My husband loves me, and thinks I am sexy, even with my birthing scars.  However, would I want my daughter beat with 5-6 lashes for a DUI?  Not on your life!

3 thoughts on “Beat My Child; Just Don’t Put Her in Prison – GET REAL!!!

  1. sarahsjs96 says:

    Your closing lines are what really caught my attention, of course i wouldnt want to see any of my loved ones receive lashes but i wouldnt want to see them in prison either. I think an interesting way to decipher this could be based on the severity and type of crime.


    • rosalyng2015 says:

      Sarah, thank you for your reflection! I agree that the severity and type of crime should be considered. According to Cialdini’s and Trost’s definition of a social norm being defined as something that is accepted though how do we decide who should make that decision? I did not grow up in the U.S. so as a child capital punishment was common. I did not dare speak back to my mom because to do so would have earned a whipping. Even as I got older and the pain was less the humiliation was still significant. Today, in the U.S. I do not dare punish my daughter this way because the law and social norms have evolved to such a point where as the parent I am not “able” to make the judgement of when behavior warrants such corrective measures. If the father in the article about the suicide daughter felt the same way they he was trying to use a modem he thought would work with his daughter, videoing the punishment and threatening to post it. Would it have been better if he had simply been able to “spank” her as she grew up?


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