Punishing 17 Year Old Children
Debate Rounds (3)
I will be pro and take the position supporting the pastor on his views on the corporal punishment of teenagers. My opening argument is this is a matter of religious freedom and the pastor is merely advocating what is preached in the Bible..
#1 The First Amendment guarantees the free exercise of religion. The pastor has chosen as part of his ministry distilling advice on what he believes to be the proper way to correct disobedient children and teenagers.. A way which he finds clearly spelled out in the Bible in various places.
#2 The pastor does not believe what he is advocating if practiced as he advises is not child abuse as is understood in current case law. The mere fact of using a switch to punish a 17 year old child or any child for that matter is not in and of itself abuse. It is a myth that the use of an implement, a switch, belt, paddle etc is against the law and using them is child abuse. It is not and case law-- that is decisions by appellate courts generally agree it is not abuse. What is abuse is what could result from the use of an implement if not handled properly while corporal punishment is being administered. A heavy leather belt can cause serious bruising that is abuse- a switch on bare skin can cut the skin-- each of those things is abuse-- but merely using the implements is not
#3 Yes a parent who follows the pastor's advice runs the risk of ending up in jail but only if they follow it no further than deciding to use corporal punishment. Additional advice is given on how to use the switch when punishing a teenager.
Let me give you the name of the church-- I think it is a real church located in Nebraska-- La Vista Church of Christ,
If one is going to abuse a child through unreasonable or excessive corporal punishment one doesn't have to use an implement. The open palm can also work.
Here is the point. The pastor differs from most of the experts in that he believes the use of a switch to punish a older teenager is both effective and not abusive as long as the totality of his advice is followed. I don't know if it is effective or that there aren't better ways but it is not child abuse as defined by current statutory and case law.
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