When a Texas woman was caught on camera spanking her son with a belt after he stole her BMW for a joy ride, the long-standing debate about corporal punishment for children was once again reignited. The question is…to spank or not to spank?
The American Academy of Pediatrics just came out with a new policy statement urging parents to steer clear of both “physical punishment and verbal abuse of children.” The statement also goes on to say that physical punishment such as spanking and verbal abuse can cause “an increased risk of negative behavioral, cognitive, psychosocial, and emotional outcomes for children.”
“The good news is fewer parents support the use of spanking than they did in the past,” stated Dr. Robert D. Sege in a statement. “Yet corporal punishment remains legal in many states, despite evidence that it harms kids—not only physically and mentally, but in how they perform at school and how they interact with other children.”
The AAP also cites research that claims corporal punishment or harsh verbal abuse can lead to making children more aggressive at younger ages, in addition to causing the children to grow into adults that commit dating violence.
Sound-off, we want to hear from you? Do you believe that spanking will cause children harm in both their short-term and long-term lives or do you think that it is okay to spank?