Tag Archives: Corporal Punishment

Spare the Rod

Posted by: Asa Don Brown on September 26, 2014 8:24 am

“Power is of two kinds. One is obtained by the fear of punishment and the other by acts of love. Power based on love is a thousand times more effective and permanent then the one derived from fear of punishment.” ~ Mahatma Gandhi

spare the rodThe argument for corporal punishment has been the longstanding acceptance by those who have endured this form of punishment. The debate for corporal punishment has varied from religious instructions to parental rights. Corporal punishment has not only been excused by religious texts, familial familiarity, and governmental avoidance of change; it has been made allowable because of its longstanding relationship with society. “My father did not spare the rod, therefore I won’t spare the rod either.”

Parents, teachers and school administrators have frequently argued that there are no, or limited, alternatives. For a number of parents, religious leaders, teachers, and school administrators the argument is corporal punishment will realign and adjust a child’s behavior.


The Canadian Parliament has ruled in Section 43 of the Criminal Code that:

Section 43 of the Criminal Code reads as follows:

            Every schoolteacher, parent or person standing in the place of a parent is justified in  using force by way of correction toward a pupil or child, as the case may be, who is  under his care, if the force does not exceed what is reasonable under the circumstance.

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*The views expressed by our authors are personal opinions and do not necessarily reflect the views of the CCPA

What Would You Do?

Posted by: Asa Don Brown on November 25, 2011 9:52 am

What would you do?

In the past few months, I have enjoyed watching the show, “What would you do?” with John Quinones of ABC News.  I have benefitted from watching Mr. Quinones approach to querying a host of ethical, moral, legal, and life questions.  His show has reengaged many of my own questions on life, as well as, creating new questions for me to ponder.  In this article, I will be using John Quinones line of questioning and theoretical approach, to asking the tough questions.

What Would You Do, if you were privy to the knowledge of a child being harmed?

In my practice, I have sadly received the egregious reports that a child has been intentionally harmed.  I have received these reports directly from the lips of those being abused, as well as, through those who have either witnessed or been informed of the abuse.  Unfortunately, the authorities will not pursue legal action against “all” types of abuse.  As a therapist, this can drive you mad when you recognize how your client-patient is being negatively impacted by the abuse.  Furthermore, as a therapist you want your client-patient to feel safe, secure, and capable of reaching out for help; but when the abuser is capable of winning through the legal authorities’ incompetencies, or through the restraints placed on the authority, you become like the mad hatter seeking ways to positively influence the authorities’ decisions. 

How do we define abuse? What is abuse? Are not many forms of abuse subjective?  Indeed, many forms of abuse are subjectively influenced, so how do we come to an agreeable definition, when the definition of abuse is in the eye of the beholder? The characteristics of abuse can be defined as maltreatment, neglect, repression, oppression, subjection, or any form of cruelty intentional or unintentional.  Abuse does not stop with direct solicitation, it can be experienced on a vicarious level or through indirect experiences.  Abuse can target an individual on a barrage of emotional, financial, sexual, physical, or psychological experiences.

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*The views expressed by our authors are personal opinions and do not necessarily reflect the views of the CCPA