By Mike Ullery
Spare the rod and spoil the child. We have all heard the phrase, which traces its origins to the Bible.
Some media outlets have been giving a lot of press this week to the issue of corporal punishment. The issue has risen to the top again due to a young lady who came forward to show that she had been beaten as a child, by her father, a pillar of the community.
The media, of course, was quick to cite examples of countries, such as Sweden, where corporal punishment is not allowed.
To get straight to the point, there is a difference the size of the Grand Canyon between a swat on the rear end to discipline a child and the beating or abuse of a child.
Granted, there are adults who do not seem to understand that difference and they should be dealt with in a manner that they will never forget.
If you have not guessed, by now, I have no objection to physically disciplining a child. One of the main reasons why today's teachers have so much difficulty with some students is that we have a generation of children who are growing up knowing that there are no real consequences for bad, even violent, behavior.
It is growing increasingly difficult to physically discipline children at home. They are quick to threaten parents with a claim on being beaten. Nosy neighbors are quick to call the police if they hear so much as raised voices.
One only has to look as far as many of your young adults, the selfish and entitled generation. For the past 25 years, teachers have been unable to adequately discipline students and far too many parents don't care or have been scared into not taking matters into their own hands at home. The result is a generation of adults who have no respect for themselves or anyone around them. They feel that if they want something, they can just take it. Why? Because they deserve it.
Today's children don't respect their parents. They don't respect their teachers. They don't respect themselves.
The above statement can be traced to one significant change in America — the failure to discipline children.
In sports, there is a motto, "no pain, no gain." The same can be said for children in growing up to be respectful.
We have become a nation where is our kid places 57th out of 57 teams in a contest, we must give him/her an award for participating. They are entitled to it because they tried. They are all winners.
Again, there are no consequences to losing. Yes, I said losing. Not everyone wins. Winners are those who work harder. They feel the pain, even at a young age. Winners earn the victory.
We all would love the luxury of raising our children and have them avoid any sort of pain in their lives. Unfortunately, "No pain, no gain," relates to life, not just sports.
Sometimes as parents, is it necessary to inflict a little pain on your own child in order to make them a better person. Yes, it hurts you as a parent to carry out the punishment.
Kids must learn that while good behavior and high achievement carries rewards, so does bad behavior carry a penalty, a penalty that must be carried out, not just threatened.
And to parents who claim that, "My kid shouldn't be treated like that. He/She is more gifted or smarter than the other kids," I will say that you, and your kid, probably need a good whack on the butt. That is the kind of attitude we need to get rid of in this country.
Those of us who grew up in a society where teachers doled out appropriate penalties for our childhood indiscretions know that we became better citizens for the efforts of our teachers. We are the same group who knew that when our parents said, "If you get spanked at school, you will get the same thing when you get home," they meant it. Our parents respected our teachers, and their judgement, because our parents had been raised properly — quite unlike most children being raised today.