Arguments Against Physical Punishment

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The use of physical punishment to discipline children is a widely accepted practice in the United States. This longstanding tradition has become commonplace all across American households. There are many reasons why people justify the use of physical punishment. Some will argue that physical punishment had no effect on them when they experienced it, so they think that it is acceptable. Others may say that it is the quickest and most effective way to discipline children. Although the majority of parents approve of physical punishment as a disciplinary strategy, this practice can be detrimental to the mental health of their children. Physical punishment is a controversial topic. Although the use of physical punishment is commonly used in the…show more content…
Parents will argue that this type of punishment is a quick and effective way to teach them a lesson they will not forget. The Social Work Research published a study conducted by Straus and colleagues (1997) has revealed that there is a link between physical punishment and poor cognitive problems. We’ve all heard the expression “children are like sponges”, and this proves to be true as the first years of a child’s life are the most crucial. When a parent uses physical punishment, it can be confusing to the child, as the person they love and respect are causing them fear and pain. Also, the level of anger coming from a parent that used physical abuse to discipline was the strongest cause of depression. These studies have also shown that physical punishment can have negative effects on children such as “future spousal abuse, child abuse, depression, suicide, and alcohol abuse.” Overall, the mental effects of physical punishment ties into physical effects. Either the child will have antisocial behavior that includes depression and suicide or more aggressive behavior such as spousal abuse, child abuse and etc. Either way, both effects are equally detrimental to the…show more content…
This belief could not be further from the truth. It is proven by Larzelere et. al (2010) that calmer tactics such as explaining what they did was wrong, grounding them and putting them in timeout are much more effective in changing the child’s behavior. The Social Work Research published multiple studies conducted by Vuchinich et. al (1992), Straus (1997), Strassberg et. al (1994) and Davies (1999) that has proved that nonphysical punishments can actually reduce antisocial behavior compared to physical punishments. Other than being more effective, there are also no negative consequences to the child when nonphysical punishments are
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