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April 20, 2010 - Kylie Saari
A report was recently conducted in which 306 American watched a video highlighting the findings of a study that spanking increased aggression and lowered IQ scores in children and then were asked questions about their view of spanking as a form of punishment.
The majority (60%) indicated that even after learning the results of the scientific study, they did not believe spanking caused increased aggression.
The report also showed a decrease in the prevalence of spanking between the parents' experience and their own children's. 85 percent reported were spanked, and the children, in which the parents reported 60 percent spanked their children.
It begs the question — was the video not convincing, or are parents so set in their ways that even if what they are doing can harm their child they will do it anyway rather than risk admitting made the wrong choice.
The study was small, and the press release I got didn't define spanking — is it exclusively taking a child over your knee after requiring them to get the wooden spoon from its special place before you hit them on the butt with it, or does a single swat with a bare hand over clothes count?
Spanking — like breastfeeding, homeschooling, and pacifier use — is one that splits ordinarily happy playgroups. There are strong feelings on both sides of the issue — after all, it is said that sparing the rod can spoil the child, and most parents of young children I know live in abject terror of they day someone tells them their sweet child has been spoiled.
I wonder if they will continue to research this, and if the results will be replicated. I know the one or two times I was spanked didn't lead to a violent lifestyle for me, but I have definitely seen an increase between aggressive behavior and violent video game playing, so it seems entirely plausible to me that for a child to see his or her parent become so frustrated they strike out can teach improper behavior.
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