The Instigator
ScarletGhost4396
Pro (for)
Winning
26 Points
The Contender
medic0506
Con (against)
Losing
24 Points

Resolved: Parents ought not use corporal punishment to rear children

Do you like this debate?NoYes+0
Add this debate to Google Add this debate to Delicious Add this debate to FaceBook Add this debate to Digg  
Vote Here
Pro Tied Con
Who did you agree with before the debate?
Who did you agree with after the debate?
Who had better conduct?
Who had better spelling and grammar?
Who made more convincing arguments?
Who used the most reliable sources?
Reasons for your voting decision - Required
1,000 Characters Remaining
The voting period for this debate does not end.
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 8/5/2011 Category: Health
Updated: 6 years ago Status: Voting Period
Viewed: 4,718 times Debate No: 17788
Debate Rounds (4)
Comments (8)
Votes (9)

 

ScarletGhost4396

Pro

This section can be for acceptance of the debate at hand and the position being held. The next three rounds will be for the presentation of cases and arguments.
medic0506

Con

I thank ScarletGhost for the challenge, and gladly accept. I will be taking the con position, defending the use of corporal punishment, as defined below, by parents.

In debate, it is important to have definitions and rules to properly outline the position taken by the participants, and how the debate will be conducted. Since none were provided, I'd like to offer the following definitions and rules.


Definitions


Corporal punishment: Spanking on the rear, or smacking the hand or behind of a child. A non-abusive punishment used by parents, designed to correct harmful behaviors in children who refuse, or are not able to process, logical commands (i.e. Don't stick your fingers in a light socket).

Children: Youths, ages 0-18.

Child-rearing: Parenting; providing a nurturing and constructive environment that promotes growth and development in a child or children.

http://medical-dictionary.thefreedictionary.com...


Rules

Videos may be used, provided that enough commentary is provided to explain the purpose, and relevance to the argument. Videos are not mandatory, and neither participant should be penalized for not using a video.

The final round will be used for rebuttal and summation only. No new arguments will be introduced.

A forfeit of any round equals a forfeit of the debate.


Again, I would like to thank ScarletGhost for the challenge, and look forward to a fruitful discussion of this controversial topic.

Debate Round No. 1
ScarletGhost4396

Pro

I thank my opponent very greatly for accepting my debate and engaging with me in this discussion. The rules that he established are acceptable enough, so I agree with them. Most of his definitions are fine for the debate as well, except my opposition to his definition of "corporal punishment." I will also provide a definition of "ought."

Corporal Punishment: intentional infliction of physical pain as a method of changing behavior. Corporal punishment becomes abuse if it results in injury. (National Association of School Nurses)
Ought: Used to indicate duty or correctness, especially when criticizing someone's actions; used to give or ask advice.

Now, to my debate:

Contention 1: Corporal punishment is not proper for child rearing.
In order for a parent to fufill his/her full duty as a parent, the parent must provide the most effective use of discipline against a child's behavior in order to be of aid in both the short and long term. Although corporal punishment has been proven to be effective in the short term for at the very least most children, it is utterly useless in the long run and can even end up to be harmful for the child in question. The use of corporal punishment against a child, thus, is not the proper choice for parental rearing of a child and goes against a parent's duty and idealisms of correctness.
Sub 1a. Corporal punishment is ineffective in the long-term.
The primary intention of corporal punishment is to install discipline in the child and make him/her learn what is correct behavior. The main problem with corporal punishment is that it serves well to discipline children in the immediate short-term, but as a practice to discipline children, it is ineffective to achieving the means as to what the punishment itself was meant to be for. Scientific studies display this well.
In E.T Gershoff's 2002 study on the effects of corporal punishment: " She found that CP decreases internalization of moral rules. This is concerning in that parents are more likely to use corporal punishment when they believe the child is at fault for some misbehavior. Thus, using a method that decreases moral internalization to respond to a failure to adhere to internal rules the child should have known is likely to perpetuate the problem."
Gershoff, E. T. Corporal Punishment by Parents and Associated Child Behaviors and Experiences: A Meta-Analytic and Theoretical Review. Psychological Bulletin, 128(4), 539-579
In the same study as well as others, Gershoff reports to us that the use of corporal punishment encourages a child's use of aggression: "She found that CP is associated with increased aggression. This is especially troublesome, she notes, in that parents are more likely to use aggression to stop aggression. However, one study showed that use of corporal punishment to halt aggression increased risk for aggressive behaviors by 50%, regardless of whether the parent or the teacher rated the child’s behavior. Use of aggression after being physically punished for aggressive behavior is likely to be seen as an escalation of misbehavior, which was also associated with greater use of corporal punishment. Thus, corporal punishment is likely to perpetuate the problem"
http://ace.ucr.edu...
http://www.coe.int...
http://www.nospank.net...
http://www.neverhitachild.org...
http://www.cyc-net.org...
Sub 1b: Corporal punishment can cause physical and psychological harm.
In addition to the general ineffectiveness of corporal punishment, the use of it thereof can lead to psychological harm and can go leeways into abuse as a result. These mental afflictions as a result from corporal punishment can result in alcohol abuse, adult psychological distress, and other negative effects in the future. This is not including the effect on the child's use of aggression to assert means.
http://www.questia.com...
Also, the line between corporal punishment and abuse is very thin. Corporal punishment can end up resulting in injury as shown in several cases and studies, including the previous Gershoff 2002 study, where she reported the following: She found that CP is associated with increased adult abusive behavior. She reports studies have shown that 2/3s of abusive parent-child incidents begin as an effort to discipline the child and “teach them a lesson.” If this means that adult antisocial behavior is more likely after being spanked as a child, given that other research shows antisocial parents are at greater risk to abuse children, then this could mean that spanking one’s child may increase the risk of abuse for one’s grandchildren."
http://www.nospank.net...
Sub 1c: There are effective alternatives to corporal punishment.
Not only are there so many disadvantages to the use of corporal punishment, but there are also alternatives to the use of corporal punishment that are more effective than corporal punishment. This is mainly shown by the success of European countries that had outlawed corporal punishment and had reducing numbers in the amount of child abuse cases as well as reductions in public opinion where people believed that the use of corporal punishment is required for any child for effective parenting: http://www.neverhitachild.org...
Other experts report on the same thing:
http://www.psychologytoday.com...
http://www.unicefusa.org...

Contention 2: Corporal punishment is a violation of human rights.
The argument that corporal punishment is a violation of human rights (defined by both European organizations as well as the UN with their Universal Declaration of Human Rights) is starting to take root, and these leading groups have made the argument that corporal punishment is indeed a violation the human rights of the child:
"Judgments of the European Court of Human Rights (the Court) have progressively condemned corporal punishment, first in penal systems and schools and more recently in the home. Other decisions have also made clear that banning all corporal punishment does not breach family privacy or religious rights. The Court increasingly applies the standards of the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child in judgments related to children."
" Once visible, it is clear that the practice [of corporal punishment] directly conflicts with the equal and inalienable rights of children to respect for their human dignity and physical integrity.The distinct nature of children, their initial dependent and developmental state, their unique human potential as well as their vulnerability, all demand the need for more, rather than less, legal and other protection from all forms of violence." -- United Nations Convention on the Rights of a Child
http://www.coe.int...
https://wcd.coe.int...
Because corporal punishment can result in injury, the subjection of it to a child is a violation of a child's human rights defined by the Universal Declaration







medic0506

Con

I thank my opponent for his argument and will address his points later. First though, we have a disagreement on the definition of corporal punishment (CP).

Though there is some room for flexibility, I would ask the voters to consider our arguments based on my definition, for the following reasons.

1. Corporal punishment is a very broad term, and if not defined, would require me to defend ANY type of physical punishment, including obvious abuse.
2. With due respect to ScarletGhost, with his challenge to debate, no definition was provided until my definition was given and seen to possibly limit the scope of his argument.
3. Definitions are important to delineate what is being defended or challenged by the participants. My definition clearly lays out the punishments that I defend, those who have the right to use them, when they may be used, and why. His definition is extremely broad, leaving room to make arguments that those in favor of corporal punishment do not defend. Using his definition, though extreme, I could even be forced to defend stoning or waterboarding as a punishment.

Opening Arguments

The resolution indicates that opponents believe that it's wrong to spank ANY child, in ANY way, for ANY reason, at ANY time. Such a blanket statement is difficult to defend, and I challenge this one for several reasons.

History as Evidence

Corporal punishment has been used for thousands of years, in fact most of us over the age of thirty probably had it used on us as the primary source of punishment. Though I would be remiss if I didn't acknowledge that abuse exists, or that abuse "can" lead to emotional problems, I contend that the vast majority of us came out of it alright, without emotional damage, without being abused, and without becoming murderous child abusers. This is true for all of history. There are literally billions of people who were spanked as a child, some of them even abused, who turned out to be perfectly normal, productive citizens, who went on to be loving parents that raised another generation of loving parents, and productive citizens.

Parental Rights and Decision Making

Throughout our country's history the rights of parents, to raise their children as they see fit, have been legally protected. Most proponents of CP would agree that society, through laws, has a right to define what is injurious. Most of us though, don't need laws to tell us that, and we have enough love for our kids to know that we don't want to do harm to them physically, or to their psyche. Though there are obviously child abusers, the vast majority of us are loving parents who respect the limits of effective CP. There are already laws against child abuse yet abuse continues, therefore I contend that the actions of a few, do not warrant unilateral governmental, or societal, interference in the parent-child relationship.
The more outspoken opponents of CP seem to think that they know what's best for all kids, including mine and yours. How could that be?? All kids are different, learn lessons differently, respond to verbal instruction differently, etc. Who is in the best position to make that decision, and responsibly decide what works and doesn't work?? The parents, of course, that's why I contend that they have no rationale for claiming that they know what's best.

Positives of Responsible CP

Responsible CP, as I defined it, has the benefit of teaching a child that certain things are harmful to them. I agree that other measures should be tried first, such as redirecting the child's attention, but occasionally a swat on the behind, or smacking the hand of a stubborn toddler teaches them to associate pain with electrical plugs, without having to experience electrocution. It also instills, at a young age, the idea that the parents are the authority figures and that they are subject to that authority. This makes it much easier to get them to respond to other forms of direction when they are mature enough to process verbal instruction. When used as most proponents use it, and at a young age, later childhood can be a much more enjoyable time for the child, and the parent, because they already have the knowledge that there are boundaries, as well as consequences for going beyond. The responsible use of CP involves trying other methods first, using CP as an infrequent thing, and using it mostly to teach the child not to do things that might cause harm to themselves, or others. We do not support spanking a child because he is in front of the TV and won't move, or some other such harmless acts.

No Causal Link

Opponents claim many things about the effects of CP, however there is little in the way of a causal link between responsible use of CP, and the long term-effects claimed. My opponent will probably provide some corollary arguments, but I predict that the causal link will not be there. For that, he will need to delve into areas that we'd all likely agree, would be considered abusive, and thus I shouldn't be required to defend. This furthers the need to use my definition of what it is that I'm defending. There are claims that it CAN cause this, and it CAN make them do that, but until that causal link is provided, without going to obvious abuse to get it, the blanket statement made by the resolution remains unsubstantiated.

Refutation

Contention 1- This is a blanket statement that remains unsubstantiated. Who am I to say, and how would I know, what is proper for your child??
There is no argument about long term value because CP, as I defined it, is used to correct immediate behaviors that can harm the child. Please note that my opponent stipulates to the effectiveness of CP, in the short-term, saying that it has been proven. If it is effective with most children, and can't be proven harmful, who's to say that it's improper??

Sub 1a- There is no assertion of long-term effectiveness. CP is a way of fixing short-term issues. I disagree that it's intention is to instill discipline, though that is a benefit of responsible CP. That's only true when CP is used as the main method of punishment, which I do not believe is a responsible use. Gershoff's study is largely irrelevant to this debate because it considers practices that I do not defend as responsible. Information from the other studies is irrelevant as well because it gives no information about what kind of punishment, ages, or any other factors. The argument relies on linking aggression and CP, and it doesn't even consider the use of responsible CP, or list any ill-effects from it. It simply assumes that it leads to escalating aggression, and gets the conclusion from that escalation.

Sub 1b- Unsubstantiated. CAN lead to, CAN result in does not show the causal link, and again, Gershoff has to go into abusive situations in order to gain a conclusion. This is not reflective of the responsible use of CP.

Sub 1c- There are other effective alternatives, granted, but to say those alternatives always work, with every child, in every situation, thus CP is never warranted has yet to be proven. Does it surprise anyone that people tend to answer so that they are compliant with the laws of the land?? What questions were they asked that drew this conclusion?? Still doesn't show that CP ought not be used in any case.

Contention 2- The UN Universal Declaration has not been ratified by the US, and thus has no jurisdiction here. Why?? Because it's recognized as a massive intrusion on parental rights, that our government has no constitutional right to implement.

In closing I'd like to say that nothing in my opponents argument substantiates the resolution, or his intent. In fact most of it deals with what most would call abusive situations, and does not reflect the responsible use of CP. The argument depends on getting you to link CP with abuse, without providing that causal link, which is crucial in debate.

Again I thank ScarletGhost, and look forward to the next round.



Debate Round No. 2
ScarletGhost4396

Pro

Alright, sorry for the holdup in responding to my opponent's debate. Before continuing to go anywhere into my opponent's argument, I would like to point out to the judges that he has placed an argument for himself outside the realm of this debate inside the comment section in order to uphold his definition, which is pretty much an unfair advantage in this debate because he is making an argument outside the time constraints, rules, and regulations within the debate that we both have a burden to uphold. So, make sure to take a not of that when you are making considerations on who is winner of the debate.
Now, to his argument. The argument begins at the definition level as I remember it, where my opponent has given a definition that does not stretch very well to encompass the entirety of what corporal punishment really is. It is not only construed to a slap on the wrist or on the bottom or anything of the sort, but it can also extend to belting, shaking, or just hitting them in order to change behavior. My opponent states that we must look toward his definition because he put one first before I did and because my definition can encompass abuse as well, but he seems not to understand my definition well if he is saying so because my definition made it distinct what the point of abuse was, so abuse is not included in my case. It really doesn't matter who makes what definition first, but what definition is more official or credible for the judgement of this debate, and as my opponent has said in his argument outside of the realm of the debate, he didn't get his definition from any sources whereas I got mine from an official source in medicine. Plus, it extends to include many things about corporal punishment, so you can consider my definition over his.
Because of this, my opponent's argument against Sub 1a is knocked down because I have shown you how my definition is better to look at than his own, you can extend my subppoint across the flow. The other two subpoints within my contention and the rebuttals thereof are pretty easy to argue in, especially since in the second subpoint, my opponent actually upholds what the argument was saying. Corporal punishment CAN lead to these negative effects. At the point where we know that this can cause terirble injury physically and psychologically, as I have shown you in my case, and a parent still uses it to discipline a child, that is nothing but immoral because you are subjecting your child to something that can you can possibly, and very likely bring him harm. These studies are all for all of corporal punishment, including the study that my opponent briefly mentioned for this subpoint, and since my opponent doesn't argue against the rest, you can extend it across the flow.
Then, the greatest thing about his argument for Subpoint 1c is that his own rebuttal can work against his own argument. Every alternative is not guaranteed, including corporal punishment, which means that corporal punishment may not always work, and we need to find a better alternative. The best thing about my case is that if one alternative doesn't work, there's plenty more you can use to reach the objective that corporal punishment tries to acquire, and as I have shown you with the evidence in my case, this is something actually real. He also didn't argue the consideration that corporal punishment doesn't bring these outcomes so effieciently. Since I have uphelp all of my subpoints, it clearly shows us that corporal punishment simply isn't the best thing to use for a child, so I have upheld my contention there.
My opponent brings up a pretty irrelevant case against my contention 2, where he says that the UN document hasn't been ratified by the Constitution, but his argument would only be relevant if we were talking in a United States context alone, which we are not. Corporal punishment extends to many societies outside of the US, and the doctrine only serves to be an interpretation of the human rights of all. As I have proven to you, there's so much argumentation by lawyers studied in this realm that corporal punishment in all forms is a violation of human rights, which my opponent also does not argue, so extend that across the flow as well.
Now, to move on to my opponent's argument:
You will notice, judges, that my opponent puts a lot of statements here in his argument, but not one of them has a credible link to uphold anything of what he is saying, especially with the history and the positives of corporal punishment as well as the little casual link. You will see that his entire case falls under this limited definition of what corporal punishment really is, and for that matter, in addition to the lack of evidence, that already makes his entire statement shaky and questionable.
The big argument you can take off his argument about the lack of a casual link because it doesn't have evidence and doesn't look at the correct thing. When it comes to the positives of CP, he is also doing this in addition to upholding spanking on the bottom (which I have shown in one of my evidence cards that can actually cause injury), so ignore that point as well. Then, there's the history as evidence, but even then that is questionable as well considering that he offers no evidence to make the links that he is linking. Society turned out great even when corporal punishment existed, but there have been heavy levels of abuse and murder of children and other negative things during that time, but since he has no evidence of the sort for that argument, there's no way to critically analyze that point. Much of his argument is nothing more than just rhetoric from what I read from it, and I'm sure judges that you will get the same analysis.
That only leaves the argument about parental rights. I'm sure many of us are loving parents who do not want to bring injury to our children, but as I have proven in my case, that is exactly what you can bring to these children with the use of CP, as I have proven in my case. I have shown you how corporal punishment is inefficient and potentially dangerous, and as a responsible parent with a duty to the welfare of your children, you will see that corporal punishment is not the best choice.
So what have I proven? I've shown you how my opponent's argument is very lacking in evidence to connect the dots of his points and make a serious analysis instead of putting so much rhetoric to uphold his case alone. I have shown you that my opponent has placed an unfair advantage for himself, so you might as well vote for me because he is in essence cheating at this point, and I was able to defend all of my points. Therefore, you must vote for the PRO.
medic0506

Con

Ok, this has now become an embarrassment to both of us, but I'm going to continue anyway. First, I asked several good debaters, including the DDO president, what to do about the definition problem. I was told to make a case for mine in the comments section. That is not cheating, and my opponent is welcome to post whatever he wishes there, in response. He won't do that though, because it seems he is hoping for a win on a technicality.

I'm introducing an independent analysis of Dr. Gershoff's work, by the American Psychological Association (APA)(1). This is an official press release from June 2002. I'll refer to this analysis several times, in this round, but the first quotes show evidence for the need for a reasonable definition.

"Furthermore, studying the true effects of corporal punishment requires drawing a boundary line between punishment and abuse." (emphasis mine)

"The meta-analysis also demonstrates that the frequency and severity of the corporal punishment matters."

In the first quote we see that even the APA feels that the scope of the evidence used, WILL effect the conclusions. In order to see the true effects of what you're studying, you have to draw a line, and exclude evidence outside that scope. The second quote, also regarding Gershoff's work, shows why the first quote is true, and it pretty much speaks volumes about this entire debate. The actions taken against the child will determine the outcomes you get, thus the need to clearly delineate what is, and what is not, "normative punishment", a good term btw.

I accepted this challenge thinking that pro wanted a legitimate discussion of the pro and con side of the reasonable use of CP. He even mentions "shaking". I ask you, who would advocate the shaking of a child as a legitimate form of punishment, and who would knowingly accept a debate challenge, where you were required to defend that position??

Contention 1- No argument offered by pro, against my refutation.

Sub 1a and 1b- First, pro has not addressed my argument against the relevancy of long-term effectiveness. Again, his case stipulates to it's effectiveness in the short-term, which is what it's for.

Secondly, pro is mistaken when he says that I admit to those causes. When I said it CAN cause, I was merely mimicking HIS argument. He says it CAN cause this, and CAN result in that, but he has not shown that it DOES lead to those things. Even Dr. Gershoff is careful how she words her statements. Let's look at a quote from his opening.

" If this means that adult antisocial behavior is more likely after being spanked as a child, given that other research shows antisocial parents are at greater risk to abuse children, then this could mean that spanking one’s child may increase the risk of abuse for one’s grandchildren." (emphasis mine)

Pro mocks my argument for the need for a causal link, but both his and Gershoff's statements show the need for that link. Without it, these statements are nothing more than speculation. One other note, pointing out that there is a "risk" for something is, at best, a tenuous argument because it does not speak to actual incidence. The possibility of a causal link is brought up in the APA analysis.

"While the nature of the analyses prohibits causally linking corporal punishment with the child behaviors..."

Pro's entire case against my "Causal Link" argument, and thus his ability to prove anything, using Gershoff's work, falls with that single statement. The nature of the analysis prohibits finding a causal link between CP and bad outcomes.


Third, pro depends on Gershoff's work for points 1a and 1b, so the validity of her work must be established. The APA says:

"But, Gershoff also cautions that her findings do not imply that all children who experience corporal punishment turn out to be aggressive or delinquent. A variety of situational factors, such as the parent/child relationship, can moderate the effects of corporal punishment."

This begs a number of questions. If situational factors effect outcomes positively, what role does ADVERSE situational factors play in those bad outcomes?? Can you rule out those adverse situational factors as the actual cause of the bad outcomes?? Which kids DO have bad outcomes, and what punishments were used??


All these questions, and many more raised by her work, remain unanswered by her meta-analysis, and other evidence provided by my opponent. I would argue that her work shows no causal link between CP and the conclusions she finds. Further, her work is useless when it comes to determining outcomes for the reasonable use of CP, because the data she examines uses extreme forms of punishment. Let's refer again to the APA analysis.

"In a reply to Gershoff, researchers Diana Baumrind, PhD (Univ. of CA at Berkeley), Robert E. Larzelere, PhD (Nebraska Medical Center), and Philip Cowan, PhD (Univ.of CA at Berkeley), write that because the original studies in Gershoff's meta-analysis included episodes of extreme and excessive physical punishment, her finding is not an evaluation of normative corporal punishment."

I would like to note, at this point, that pro, in defense of his definition this round stated that, "abuse is not included in my case". A peer-review of Gershoff's work, by three Phd's, clearly shows that to be a false statement.

So, does any evidence presented by pro give us any information that is provable, relevant to reasonable CP, or of any value when discussing the resolution of this debate?? I say no, but let's go again to the APA, for a quote from the three Phd's, in the above paragraph.

"The evidence presented in the meta-analysis does not justify a blanket injunction against mild to moderate disciplinary spanking," conclude Baumrind and her team. Baumrind et al. also conclude that "a high association between corporal punishment and physical abuse is not evidence that mild or moderate corporal punishment increases the risk of abuse."

The other studies, which I did contest for largely the same reasons, are admittedly by pro, based on the same things.


Sub 1c- My rebuttal does not work against me. There is no assertion, nor is there burden on me to show, that CP is the BEST punishment. Different things work for different kids. This gives validity to my "Parental Rights" argument, that parents are the best ones to decide for their children.

Contention 2-
Until the laws of our land reflect a human rights violation, what other countries choose to call it has no bearing on whether or not, I should use it. Does this document specifically speak to normative punishment?? When did lawyers become experts in child health??

History- Does my opponent need a link to this debate to show that we've survived in spite of CP??

Parental Rights-
Pro did not accurately, or efficiently address this argument.

Positives of CP-
Pro's case stipulates to the only assertion made here.

Causal Link-
Evidence for this argument is shown in my sub 1a and 1b section, this round. Pro provides no cogent refutation.

My opponent offered no real challenge to my opening arguments, and I have shown this round that the evidence used in pro's case is inadequate, so all he's left with is opinion. His belief, and choice not to use CP, is his to make, but it does not affirm the resolution.

I look forward to the final round.


1. http://www.apa.org...

Debate Round No. 3
ScarletGhost4396

Pro

Seeing as how this is the final round of the debate, I'm going to wrap things up by giving a summary of my opponent's rebuttal, a review of what has gone on so far in the debate, and why the judges should vote for me in the considerations for who is the winner of this debate.
There are now two reasons why my opponent has cheated in this debate and one reason as to why I didn't repeat the action that he did. My opponent has made an argument in the comment section, and while he asked several good debaters and the DDO president as to what he should do, it is still unfair that my opponent has made an argument outside of the bounds of this debate, outside of the regulations, the rules, the time constraints, all for the action of trying to sway the audience toward accepting his definition over mine. The DDO president is only charge of the rules that guide the site in general about conduct toward the other members, but outside of that, he/she has no control over the rules of this debate. If my opponent has something to say about my case, he needs to keep it here within the bounds of the debate he accepted and out of the comments section. Everything he wrote in the comment section has just been an unfair advantage against me, so for the sake of the integrity of this debate, I suggest to the judges to ignore anything he's written there. Not only that, but he mentioned himself that he asked for help from other debaters about his definition when in an honest debate, he shouldn't be turning for more than one person to help him with his case. While I'm here arguing my case alone, he's got more than one person helping him out in this debate, which is also an unfair advantage against me. My opponent says that I could've done the exact same thing, but I wanted to stay within the bounds of the debate in order to ensure an honest debate against my opponent, and I can assure the judges that I certainly didn't need the help of 5 or 6 or however many other debaters (and POTENTIAL JUDGES OF THIS DEBATE) to help me out with my own case. If I don't win the debate in the judges eyes, I certainly, at least, deserve the point for conduct in this debate.
Most of my opponent's case surrounds his own definition of corporal punishment, which my opponent himself has said was not from a dictionary or a reliable source of any sort. My opponent attacks my case saying that I needed to provide my own definition just to be able to uphold my case, but if that condemns me in any way, that would also knock down his own case because his entire debate is centered around his own perception of what is corporal punishment, his own definition, and as I have explained to the judges in this debate, his definition is a very limited and narrow to fully encompass what corporal punishment is. Corporal punishment is not just spanking, but it can also be belting or hitting with a switch or slapping on the face. It encompasses that as well, and while my definition is more broad, still gives the determining factor as to what is abuse and keeps it distinct, and comes from a reliable medical source, my opponent continues to give this very limited, unofficial definition made by his own perception of what is corporal punishment as well as this strawman argument that I'm also placing in abuse as a part of corporal punishment when I made it clear the distinction between corporal punishment and abuse. Because of this fact, that pretty much knocks down the majority of my opponent's debate because his entire case was centered around this definition he provided, meaning that he was analyzing the wrong thing or very limited thing whereas my case encompassed the entirety of the definition.
Probably the funniest part of the debate was where my opponent tries to mock my case where I mentioned that corporal punishment can lead to these effects, but in reality, he's making a strawman by saying that I'm somehow trying to prove that corporal punishment will always lead to these effects. I'm also arguing that corporal punishment can lead to these effects, and what my rebuttal was (which my opponent didn't really properly respond to) that because corporal punishment can at all increase the risk for these negative effects in the future, that makes corporal punishment's use immoral and something that a parent ought not use when the primary responsibility is to ensure the full security of his/her child. Just the fact that it can lead to these effects makes corporal punishment something that oughtn't be used. I have responded to his rebuttal against Sub 1a considering that I have spoken against his definition of this debate, and if you look back at his rebuttal against that point, you will realize that this was the main thing that he used: his own definition.
If my opponent really wants to knock down my subpoint 1c, he's going to have to prove that all of the alternatives to corporal punishment are ineffective for use against children. What my argument was that there are so many alternatives to whooping a child that corporal punishment is not required. My opponent is very right when he says that not every punishment will work the same on every child, which is why there are alternatives that are effective and humane.
Probably the most notorious of his case is his argument against Gershoff's study. My main response is that he makes this blanket statement against the entirety of my evidence posted in this argument, but the only thing he argues against is Gershoff. Even if my opponent is right and my evidence isn't 100% effective, that's okay, because I have 10 or 11 more studies that my opponent did not respond to entirely, and he's really going to need to make analysis on all of my studies in order to show that all of them are ineffective, which he can't do now considering that would be a violation of his own rules because he would be posting new evidence at the final round. So, at this point, extend all of my other evidence across the flow.
As I have proven, corporal punishment is not the optimal mode of punishment against children, and considering that was the entire thesis of my first contention, I have indeed fully upheld my contention because I have successfully upheld my subpoints.
My opponent really failed to make an effective argument against my second contention. It shows that he really does not have an understanding of the resolution because he keeps bringing this back to the US and himself when he says that he doesn't care about what the documents I've posted say until this country ratifies the document in question. Some questions to ponder: is my opponent the only parent in the world? Is the US the only country in the world? Does the resolution specify anywhere the United States? The answer to these questions is no. The document serves as a definition of what is human rights and is more universally accepted, and though the laywers in question are not child health experts, they certainly are experts at knowing what the rights of the human being are. So, since my opponent didn't really effectively respond to the main meat of my second contention, extend it across the flow.
My opponent's rebuttal is very weak. He makes no real defense of his definition of corporal punishment, other than his unfair advantage in the comment section. There was no real point in the argument about parental rights other than the parent has to decide what is best for his child, but I have shown you that corporal punishment is not the best. My opponent analyzes the wrong thing in his third point as well. My opponent has no evidence linking corporal punishment to good of society in history and no analysis as to the amount of corporal punishment among society nor frequencies, so ignore that point. As for casual link, look at my rebuttals in 1a and 1b.
Judges, you will vote for me because I was the most fair and gave you the most optimal analysis of corporal punishment as well as effectively tackled my opponent' entire case. Thus, you must vote PRO.
medic0506

Con

I'd like to start by saying that I did not cheat. I did not ask for help from others for my argumentation. I asked advice on what to do for a difference on a definition, once the debate started. This is a procedural matter that I had never had happen before. Exactly what rule says I can't do that?? I did what I was advised, and will leave that to the voter.

I'm not even going to spend much time on definitions this round because frankly, my opponent proved NOTHING about ANYTHING. As I predicted in my opening, he was not able to provide that causal link.
The majority of his case depended on Dr. Gershoff's work, but as I showed last round, it's value to this debate is nil. In fact, a peer-review of her work shows that a causal link is prohibited by the nature of what she was using. The lack of a causal link extends to all the data supplied by pro. Without that causal link, everything he presented is mere speculation. Unless he provided something proving CP to be the cause of something, ruling out situational factors as being the cause, he has no support for and did not uphold the resolution.

My opponent, even in this round continues to claim that his case does not include abuse, but I showed that to be a blatantly false statement, not by my opinion, but by 3 Phd's who peer-reviewed Dr. Gershoff's work. "...Gershoff's meta-analysis included episodes of extreme and excessive physical punishment...". That same work by Gershoff was the centerpiece of his case, therefore, there was abuse in his case.

He speaks again about risk, but provides no causal link showing a risk of anything. He can claim that CP leads to an increased risk in athlete's foot, but unless he can show the actual incidence of, and that CP is solely responsible, his claim is again, speculation and opinion.

He does not have to show that it leads to those things in ALL cases, but he does have to show that it leads to, and is responsible for enough cases, to justify the blanket indictment made in the resolution. He failed, and did not prove anything.

My opponent is wrong about Sub 1c. It seems he doesn't understand his burden in this debate. I don't have to show that CP is the BEST, or the OPTIMAL punishment, as he states. It is HIS burden to affirm the resolution. He seems to think that all he has to show is that it's not the BEST, but that's untrue. He needs to show that it ought not be used at all. That is the resolution.

As for the UN document, try as he might, my opponent cannot go get a document from some other governing body, and claim it has application in this country. This country does not recognize the validity of the document, and we are not bound by the morals and values of other countries. It has not been shown that the document speaks specifically about normative punishment, or that the findings agree with medical principles accepted in this country, just that it's examined by lawyers. He says it is universally accepted, but that is obviously not true. If it were universally accepted, why has it not been ratified in the US??

I have shown, and common sense dictates, that in spite of CP being used for thousands of years, we have survived and grown as a people.

I have argued, and my opponent did not refute, that parental rights to make decisions for their child are legally protected. He also did not refute my argument that the parent is the best person to decide what ought to be used for their child.

My opponent stipulates, as does his evidence, that CP is effective in the short-term.

I have shown, and provided peer-review of his evidence, showing that no causal link can be found.

I have upheld my own arguments, as well as refuted his evidence, therefore, I ask a vote for con.
Debate Round No. 4
8 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 8 records.
Posted by medic0506 6 years ago
medic0506
The only one I commented on is Kohai. He is a habitual votebomber, who's RFD is ridiculous. This isn't the first time he's bombed me. Unless you or he can show what rule I broke, there is no cheating. I AM going to call him out on that when he does it, call it what you will. If someone gives a fair critique that goes against me, that's fine, I'm not afraid to lose. But an obvious votebomber should be called out to defend his vote.
Posted by ScarletGhost4396 6 years ago
ScarletGhost4396
medic0506, what has been said has been said. The debate is over. If the judges believe you in the argument, they believe you. If the judges believe me in the argument, they believe me. That's just the way it is. For you to post a comment against a judge when he/she gives a decision against you is nothing more than bad sportsmanship. With all due respect, you need to leave the judges alone and let them make their own decisions on the debate and not have you pestering them when they vote down against you.
Posted by medic0506 6 years ago
medic0506
Kohai, no matter what definition you use, he didn't prove anything. Do you understand the importance of a causal link?? Without it, you can't show that CP leads to, causes, or increases the risk of anything, and he showed nothing to rule out other factors as the cause of his claims. If you don't require someone to show a causal link, they can CLAIM that CP can lead to herpes and heart disease. Your reasoning is ridiculous.
And how much more do you need to show that the evidence he used is useless in proving his case, thus refuting it??
As for cheating, what rule did I break?? If you can't show me that rule, you can't say I cheated. That's bunk and you know it. This is just ANOTHER vote bomb by you.
Posted by Ore_Ele 6 years ago
Ore_Ele
(from RFD) - While he can clearly show many times CP leads to abuse and negative side effects, nothing was shown that, when done correctly, it is effective. Since it can be effectively applied, one cannot say that parents "ought not do it." To make a blank claim like that, one must show that there is never a good reason to do it.
Posted by innomen 6 years ago
innomen
Organizationally things got a little messed up, but i don't see "cheating". It's too bad that some of the text of the debate was dedicated to the misunderstanding. I doubt either debater will makd that mistake again. It's pretty hard to cheat here, especially since there is the conduct vote.
Posted by medic0506 6 years ago
medic0506
Thank God this fiasco is finally over.
Posted by medic0506 6 years ago
medic0506
I think that how one judges this discussion will come down to who's definition they accept. Not having a clear definition indicates that con is expected to defend the entire gambit, even extreme cases, that everyone agrees is abusive. I think that's an unfair expectation, and it is not what proponents of CP advocate. That's why I provided a clear, concise, definition of my position in the first round. Though not taken from a dictionary, my definition of CP clearly falls within the scope of CP. Most importantly though, it accurately reflects the position of proponents of CP. No disrespect intended, but Pro was not concerned with definitions until he saw mine, and realized that it might limit what he could use in his argument. He needs that broad definition because there is no factual evidence that the responsible use of CP is harmful. Opponent's arguments depend on being able to use more extreme cases of punishment, that often involve emotional abuse, neglect, sometimes even sexual abuse, along with CP. Without those things, there are no conclusions that support their beliefs. All they have, basically, is opinion. Therefore, it's imperitive, to his case, that a broad definition be used. To me, this taints the discussion, on this issue, because it totally misrepresents the position taken by proponents of responsible CP.
Posted by Man-is-good 6 years ago
Man-is-good
Wow, Pro allowed Con to introduce rules on his own, along with definitions...That is not good for Pro...
9 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 9 records.
Vote Placed by bsh1 4 years ago
bsh1
ScarletGhost4396medic0506Tied
Agreed with before the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Agreed with after the debate:Vote Checkmark--0 points
Who had better conduct:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Made more convincing arguments:Vote Checkmark--3 points
Used the most reliable sources:Vote Checkmark--2 points
Total points awarded:50 
Reasons for voting decision: I was convinced by Pro. Esp. insofar as corporal punishment impedes the internalization of moral rules/values.
Vote Placed by bluesteel 5 years ago
bluesteel
ScarletGhost4396medic0506Tied
Agreed with before the debate:Vote Checkmark--0 points
Agreed with after the debate:Vote Checkmark--0 points
Who had better conduct:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Made more convincing arguments:-Vote Checkmark-3 points
Used the most reliable sources:--Vote Checkmark2 points
Total points awarded:03 
Reasons for voting decision: The refutation of Gershoff was really good. Pro could come back from that either with other studies (but merely say he "has" other studies is not enough; he must explain them in more depth) OR by talking about Sweden and other European countries that have banned corporal punishment and how time outs are just as good. This was a great argument that Pro dropped in the last round. Con does a good job refuting one study but gets lucky that Pro lets the round all hinge on this one study, in the end.
Vote Placed by Man-is-good 6 years ago
Man-is-good
ScarletGhost4396medic0506Tied
Agreed with before the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Agreed with after the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Who had better conduct:-Vote Checkmark-1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:-Vote Checkmark-1 point
Made more convincing arguments:-Vote Checkmark-3 points
Used the most reliable sources:Vote Checkmark--2 points
Total points awarded:25 
Reasons for voting decision: Both sides might have done some errors in conduct (Medic--for posting an argument in the comments section, and ScarletGhost4396 accusing his opponent of 'strawman' arguments), so I grant them a tie in conduct. Scarlet might have had more sources, though Medic showed at least some fallacies in his case: the correlation vs causation, the flaws in Gershoff's research--...Medic also gains points for spelling and grammar since Scarlet's presentation of the debate was lacking (the font was too small)
Vote Placed by izbo10 6 years ago
izbo10
ScarletGhost4396medic0506Tied
Agreed with before the debate:-Vote Checkmark-0 points
Agreed with after the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Who had better conduct:Vote Checkmark--1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Made more convincing arguments:Vote Checkmark--3 points
Used the most reliable sources:Vote Checkmark--2 points
Total points awarded:60 
Reasons for voting decision: The adding a debate to the comments that is suppose to be addressed in the topic is why I voted conduct. Pro used sources to back up their case. I would have liked to see con do some more.
Vote Placed by ReformedArsenal 6 years ago
ReformedArsenal
ScarletGhost4396medic0506Tied
Agreed with before the debate:-Vote Checkmark-0 points
Agreed with after the debate:-Vote Checkmark-0 points
Who had better conduct:-Vote Checkmark-1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:-Vote Checkmark-1 point
Made more convincing arguments:-Vote Checkmark-3 points
Used the most reliable sources:-Vote Checkmark-2 points
Total points awarded:07 
Reasons for voting decision: FREEDO's Comments seem to reflect an inability to understand argumentation. Beyond that Kohai, although an expect in cheating... because he has done it multiple times in the past, has no grounds for stating Medic Cheated. Normally I would Ping Conduct for arguing in the comments... but to counteract the ridiculous votes of previous judges, I'm not. Pro showed no causal link and gave no definition. He then turned the debate into a definition battle, without actually fighting. Con Wins.
Vote Placed by FREEDO 6 years ago
FREEDO
ScarletGhost4396medic0506Tied
Agreed with before the debate:Vote Checkmark--0 points
Agreed with after the debate:Vote Checkmark--0 points
Who had better conduct:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Made more convincing arguments:Vote Checkmark--3 points
Used the most reliable sources:Vote Checkmark--2 points
Total points awarded:50 
Reasons for voting decision: Pro makes solid, well-sourced arguments. Con seems to be blogging most of time, giving his opinion. He does not prove Pro's arguments wrong.
Vote Placed by thett3 6 years ago
thett3
ScarletGhost4396medic0506Tied
Agreed with before the debate:-Vote Checkmark-0 points
Agreed with after the debate:-Vote Checkmark-0 points
Who had better conduct:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Made more convincing arguments:-Vote Checkmark-3 points
Used the most reliable sources:-Vote Checkmark-2 points
Total points awarded:05 
Reasons for voting decision: Con showed corporal punishment to be effective if used properly. That is enough to win the debate , because it shows that parents ought to use it in certain cases. I give Con the sources because Pro didnt use sources to back up his arguments, he used them as arguments themselves.
Vote Placed by Ore_Ele 6 years ago
Ore_Ele
ScarletGhost4396medic0506Tied
Agreed with before the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Agreed with after the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Who had better conduct:-Vote Checkmark-1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Made more convincing arguments:-Vote Checkmark-3 points
Used the most reliable sources:Vote Checkmark--2 points
Total points awarded:24 
Reasons for voting decision: Pro - for future reference, always give definitions and rules in the opening R1, so this kind of stuff doesn't happen. If you give rules and definitions in R1, Con has no right what-so-ever to challenge them as they were posted when he accepts. For the actual debate, Pro failed to meet his burden. While he can clearly show many times CP leads to abuse and negative side effects, nothing was shown that, when done correctly, it is effective. Since it can be effectively applied (more in commen
Vote Placed by kohai 6 years ago
kohai
ScarletGhost4396medic0506Tied
Agreed with before the debate:Vote Checkmark--0 points
Agreed with after the debate:Vote Checkmark--0 points
Who had better conduct:Vote Checkmark--1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Made more convincing arguments:Vote Checkmark--3 points
Used the most reliable sources:Vote Checkmark--2 points
Total points awarded:60 
Reasons for voting decision: CON attempted to make this more of a definitional argument rather than anything else, plus pro clearly gave evidence con cheated. In addition, I don't feel con did not refute pro very well.