This week's LBC topic comes from Ashok.
Everyone is opposed to child abuse - or it seems they pay lip service to being opposed to child abuse. If, however, I had a nickel for every time I've read a comment like "If I spoke to my parents like kids thee days do to theirs I would not be here" - or something similar. Or "my parents used to beat me with a switch....".
So why is it that there was such hue and cry when professional football star Adrian Peterson was accused of child abuse for doing punishing his son by hitting him with a switch? I'm sure the fact that Peterson is a rich black athlete had nothing to do with it. Ahem.
My point is that definitions of child abuse vary widely among different cultures. My exposure to black culture has shown black parents to be much more willing to engage in corporal punishment than white parents. White parents are much more likely to view corporal punishment as abusive in my experience.
Now - in steps the government to establish rules and laws. It's what they do. Whereas in my youth corporal punishment was accepted, these days - at least here where I live - a child can have a parent arrested on a domestic abuse assault charge for the simple act of corporal punishment. Imagine that. Back when I was 15 I could have had my dad arrested for assault when I chose to pick a fight with him, even though he hit me with my guitar and broke it. I deserved it by-the-way - but the fight ended when I held him against a wall and told him to back off before he got hurt. File it under stuff happens.
We need to use caution and utmost clarity when determining what constitutes abuse - for the sake of all involved.
Clearly our children are our future - and steps must be taken to protect them. But we need to be careful that we do not create a larger problem. Statistics regarding child abuse are staggering. We spend vast sums of money on government assistance programs trying to feed children yet many people want the amount scaled back. They cite fraud as the reason - along with the notion the assistance has created generations of people who expect nothing but hand outs from the government (states and federal).
I am of the opinion child abuse - in all its forms - is the most dangerous issue faced by this country today, ISIS and their ilk get all of the press and attention but they are pose much less danger. W have much work to be done.