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Beating Children In The Name Of God

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In 1977, Dobson wrote a book called Dare To Discipline, whose purpose was, essentially, to get parents to beat their children.

In his book Dobson glorified a sadomasochistic/spiritual ritual of “discipline.” He said he wanted to stop a “liberal” trend in America that was moving away from the godly thrashing of infants. He wanted to help “restore” America to God and the good old days of child hitting. This fit in well with the notion of God as retribution-in-chief that evangelicals endorse.

A Terrifying Trend

This is a terrifying trend. Perhaps with the prosecution of the parents who on September 29 were charged with homicide by abuse after the death of their child, the cruel logic behind this discipline will be brought to light.

I hope so. As someone who was brought up in the Church of England, I have to question how these child disciplinarians can be called “religious.”

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9:41AM PST on Feb 14, 2013

Thank you for sharing.

8:54AM PDT on Jul 5, 2012

I'm a born again Christian and I think this is totally against what the Bible means. Anything other than your hand or a wooden paddle (as in the kind that comes with a bouncing rubber ball attached to play ping-pong) on any place other than the buttucks is abuse....and to BEAT a child with anything instead of merely spank them is abuse....and to spank them at an age where they are too young to comprehend right and wrong is abuse. The parent must be calm, not a hypocrite, and the child must have known beforehand that they were doing wrong when they did it to warrant a spanking. I also feel spanking should be a last resort.

I know people who grew up undisciplined and grew into tyrants who have narcississtic personality disorders, always thinking of themselves first...sometimes you NEED "the board of education applied to the seat of learning."

5:03PM PST on Dec 18, 2011

I did vote "leaning yes" but it should be noted that I mean "only in a controlled, disciplinary fashion" and not one that would constitute abuse. ie. on the clothed bottom only, using only the bare hand, with a few (responsible number of) strikes.

4:58PM PST on Dec 18, 2011

Lika S. - I couldn't have said it better. There IS a huge difference between discipline & abuse and many more people need to understand that.

5:44AM PST on Dec 15, 2011


3:55AM PST on Dec 15, 2011

too much harm has come to too many in the name of religious training

3:54PM PST on Dec 6, 2011

I never spanked my child ever. I thought it was sick. There is something REALLY sick about taking a person's pants off and hitting them. I think it might set somebody up for strange sexual and psychological issues.
I just wanted to love my child and go sailing. I think the kayak I got him was the best thing besides the freedom of the bicycle. Nice things.
In my generation, everybody got hit, spanked, belted etc. I think it either teaches you to do the same or to learn that spanking just teaches violence. I AM TOTALLY AGAINST SPANKING or any OTHER BEATING of children. Always have been. Soap in the mouth? Never.

8:51AM PST on Nov 23, 2011

It's always interesting to me how Care2 only prints articles about so-called Christians whenever they do something bizarre, stupid, bigoted or awful, like this, but they never print similar articles about Islam's perverts like this C2NN member post of the imam who inflicted a horrendous beating on a little 7 y/o boy, hung him upside down in a tree and beat him for an hour, breaking his leg, giving him internal injuries and knocking him unconscious. All because the little boy forgot a verse from the Qur'an (probably being forced to memorize it in Arabic, a language he doesn't even understand or speak, which is usual). Oh, & the police will not prosecute the imam. Very typical in Islamic societies.

This story should have made the headlines on Care2 but their anti-Christian, pro-Islamism bias is too strong for fairness in reporting, like their big deal made about some backwoods preacher who burned one Qur'an, but they didn't say a word about the pogrom going on right now in Iran against Christians & the Muslim clergy burning 6000 Bibles, did they? Of course, Christians didn't riot around the world, burning mosques & Qur'ans, & killing Muslims like Muslims do every time someone 'offends' them. So who cares? Mustn't ever show Islam in a bad light. What hypocrisy.
(And no, I am not a believer in any religion, but I believe in fairness and that is something not to be found on this very biased site)

5:48AM PST on Nov 23, 2011

Scott is right. The beating in these cases is bad enough, but the emotional abuse leaves scars which may never heal. The real problem behind all of this is that somehow the abuser feels more righteous every time they abuse their children, because some how in their sick minds they think they are doing God a favor by forcing their children into their sick little world. The mental abuse always incorporates shame into the process which leaves a lasting impression of imperfection on the child who is being shamed. Shame translates into you are not a good person and do not deserve anything better than this, not now not ever. It is only years later that the child might understand that he or she grew up in a dysfunctional family and is not at fault at all.

5:27AM PST on Nov 23, 2011

I keep seeing all these comments about spanking. The article was NOT about spanking. It was about outright cruelty to children. I grew up in one of these type organizations. I witnessed kids being tied up hand and foot, tied to a bed at night, placed in corners for whole days to stand motionless with bags over their heads,deprived of food and water and placed in the sun, beat until their upper legs were black and blue. And that was just the physical abuse. The psychological abuse was even worse. That is not spanking, that is not love, that is just plain abuse and should not go on. Don't try to minimalize this by talking about spanking. Come tubing on infants? Seriously...when you start relating that to a light swat on the is not the same...not even close and you might as well be the cheering section.

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