What does "discipline" mean to you?

Posted:
in General Discussion edited January 2014
According to Sherlock's dictionary, one of the multiple definitions is:



Training to act in accordance with established rules; accustoming to systematic and regular action; drill.



of course another is:



Severe training, corrective of faults; instruction by means of misfortune, suffering, punishment, etc.





Personally, I've never equated discipline with violence. To me, those are two very separate beasts.



Sadly, it seems some in Tennessee don't agree. In particular, school board member Michael Hooks, who is pro-paddling (as in hitting students with a paddle in order to "discipline" them). Mr. Hooks went on record saying "I just foresee it causing situations in the long run where students believe you can no longer be disciplined," he said. "I hope not."



I don't believe violence solves problems with kids. It simply teaches them that if you don't like how someone else is behaving then go ahead and hit them in order to "correct" their behavior.
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 85
    brussellbrussell Posts: 9,812member
    I think parents who spank their kids should be charged with assault.
  • Reply 2 of 85
    as i was spanked as i kid, i can definitely say that it did not "teach" me anything. no lesson, nothing really changed except i just got scared of my dad for a while. spanking=bad!!!
  • Reply 3 of 85
    trumptmantrumptman Posts: 16,456member
    Quote:

    Originally posted by BRussell

    I think parents who spank their kids should be charged with assault.



    Tell us of your own parenting methods and their outcomes since you are so readily willing to condemn others please.



    Nick
  • Reply 4 of 85
    bergzbergz Posts: 1,045member
    It's generally very easy to tell who got smacked as a kid, and who should've been but wasn't. As they say, Te faltaban dos hostias a tiempo.



    --B
  • Reply 5 of 85
    Quote:

    Originally posted by bergz

    Te faltaban dos hostias a tiempo.



    --B




    Sherlock didn't translate that one two well for me, mind putting it in English?
  • Reply 6 of 85
    Quote:

    Originally posted by trumptman

    Tell us of your own parenting methods and their outcomes since you are so readily willing to condemn others please.



    Nick




    You seem to imply that hitting a child does work. By your statement, if I got a child to behave by burning their hands with a hot iron, then who are you to criticize; however, I believe most Americans would agree that is abuse, not "discipline" and that method would be condemned.



    So, come out and say it, do you support violence perpetrated on children in the name of "discipline" or don't you? If you do, then why? If you tell me "I was spanked/beat/belted as a kid, and I turned out okay", well that argument simply won't fly. That's like saying jaywalking isn't dangerous because you've never been hit by a car when doing it.



    Finally, regarding asking one person for their "methods and outcomes" and comparing them to yours proves nothing. Test cases can be illustrations, but scholars/professionals know not to derive generalities from test cases alone.
  • Reply 7 of 85
    bergzbergz Posts: 1,045member
    Quote:

    Originally posted by fuzz_ball

    Sherlock didn't translate that one two well for me, mind putting it in English?



    Hard to do, friend, due to the cultural and linguistic baggage it brings to bear, but it basically means something to the effect of "Too late for the two good wallopings you needed so bad." It speaks to the good that can come to an asshole if you put him in his place in time.



    --B
  • Reply 8 of 85
    brussellbrussell Posts: 9,812member
    Quote:

    Originally posted by trumptman

    Tell us of your own parenting methods and their outcomes since you are so readily willing to condemn others please.



    Nick




    Benadryl. Lots of benadryl.



    [edit]I don't have any secrets. You slog through the best you can. I believe in discipline and teaching manners and good habits. But there are laws about smacking other people around, and I agree with those laws, and I think they should apply even if it's a family member doing the smacking.



    In general, I'm not at all convinced that specific parenting techniques really make much of a difference one way or the other in the long run, except at the extremes, like neglect. Kids are born with personalities and they are influenced heavily by the culture - for better or (mostly) worse - and unfortunately what we do as parents doesn't have as much of an influence as most of us would like to believe.
  • Reply 9 of 85
    Too. Many. Idiots. Here.



    God, and to think that you own Macs too. Glad that's all we share in common.



    Reinforcing a message with a tangible punishment DOES lead to greater retention. Varying the severity of tangible punishment effects the retention level also. Beating a child for a simple offense will not lead to learning. Gentle reminders with escalating consequences works very effectively. The real question isn't a moral question, it's a logical one. With no tangible reinforcement of behaviours, how do 'non spankers' produce well adjusted children? By infliciting equally damaging psychological damage to children.



    I do not condone any form of child abuse. Disciplining my children, which includes spanking, is not open for discussion.



    Lets put it to you this way. If your child does something very bad. Lets say stabs another child with a pair of scissors. Should you put them in 'time out'? If your child runs into the street and narrowly misses getting hit by a car, should you take away their Nintendo? No. If you do, you are not only an idiot, but shortly, you will be relieved of your parenting duties when your child is creamed by a bus.



    The level of simple moral density that people have on this is amazing. Simply amazing.
  • Reply 10 of 85
    brussellbrussell Posts: 9,812member
    Oh look, someone on the internet is breaking up a sentence into individual words and separating them with periods. I've never seen that before, that's really cool.



    It's true that the severity of punishment increases the learning of an avoidance response. Take some rats, shock them when they go near one side of the cage, and the rats that get the most painful shock will show the greatest behavioral change. Yup.



    A couple of problems though:



    1. You can't use high-pain punishment with a child, because you might injure them. Or if you can, you're sick. And if you don't use high-intensity pain, then what's the point? You might as well just use time out or take away their favorite toy. If, like most people, you say you draw the line at mild hitting, why not draw it at no hitting? Isn't that a clearer line? Or barring that, how do you justify not going all out and just torturing the child with lit cigarettes? If it's not about morality, but rather effectiveness, then the more pain, the more effectiveness. IMO people only use mild hitting because they instinctually know it's wrong in the first place.



    2. The goal of parenting is internalization. You want the kid to act appropriately not only when you can catch and smack them, but also when you're not there, and also when they grow up. You want them to learn a lesson, not just be controlled by you. And the way to get internalization is to let them learn lessons on their own, and to use the least amount of coercion possible.



    3. Kids do internalize one lesson from hitting: That the use of physical violence to get someone to do what you want is appropriate. How come we don't allow a husband to hit a wife? Or a boss to hit an employee? It's because we believe it's immoral. And yet most parents hit their kids. It's inconsistent, and sends inconsistent messages to kids.
  • Reply 11 of 85
    hirohiro Posts: 2,663member
    I disagree spanking is inconsistent. If used jusiciously in it's proper place it is quite effectively seperated from the wonton hitting idea. Just like anything though, used poorly it will create more mess than it was supposed to fix in the first place. Anyone who thinks there is a one size fits all solution on either side of the fence has removed themselves from the big picture.
  • Reply 12 of 85
    Quote:

    What does "discipline" mean to you?



    Black Leather
  • Reply 13 of 85
    bergzbergz Posts: 1,045member
    The part of the brain in certain apes (us included) that gives members of a social group a sense of right and wrong has been identified. One not so startling parallel discovery is that this region of the brain in humans does not begin developing until at the very least three years of age, sometimes not even until 5. What this means is that children are psychopaths, unable to differentiate right from wrong, and totally self-involved. However, training them to make the right choices doesn't necessarily presuppose that they know why they're the right choices (a memorable quote from Matrix seems appropriate here). 200 million years of mammalian development has ingrained in us a certain way to moderate behavior. The problem is that members of our particular society are so obsessed with the cult of the individual that they seem to take a spank to heart. They don't understand that it's not about you, but what you did. In many less "advanced" cultures, this distinction is so self-evident that parsing child-abuse and discipline makes as much sense as parsing the difference between poverty and robbery. It's just a part of life. Like hardship. Life is hard. That doesn't necessarily make it unjust.



    --B
  • Reply 14 of 85
    trumptmantrumptman Posts: 16,456member
    Quote:

    Originally posted by fuzz_ball

    You seem to imply that hitting a child does work. By your statement, if I got a child to behave by burning their hands with a hot iron, then who are you to criticize; however, I believe most Americans would agree that is abuse, not "discipline" and that method would be condemned.



    First, there is a large difference between hitting a child, and giving them a startling slap on the most padded part of their body. (their butt)



    The second sentence is what we with reasoning skills call a strawman argument. An extreme example meant for no other purpose than to knock down and apply the inference to the real argument.



    Here's a nice reverse example. If I could find someone who managed to discipline their child through nothing more than stern looks and stares, could I claim that you are verbally abusing any child to whom you speak in a tone or raised voice?



    Quote:

    So, come out and say it, do you support violence perpetrated on children in the name of "discipline" or don't you? If you do, then why? If you tell me "I was spanked/beat/belted as a kid, and I turned out okay", well that argument simply won't fly. That's like saying jaywalking isn't dangerous because you've never been hit by a car when doing it.



    I do support spanking, especially in very young children. They don't always have the reasoning skills or self-control to think about a situation at that age. In instances where I use spanking, the alternatives are often much worse.



    What I find quite amusing is most leftist types don't automatically assign rights just because one is human. This is especially true with an abortion argument. One must have a certain level of cognition and development to be afforded certain rights. Very young children do not have the same sense of abstraction or the same level of reasoning as say preteen children or adults.



    Quote:

    Finally, regarding asking one person for their "methods and outcomes" and comparing them to yours proves nothing. Test cases can be illustrations, but scholars/professionals know not to derive generalities from test cases alone.



    I didn't BRussell to compare his methods to mine. I simply asked him to express what he used in lieu of spanking since he disapproved of it.



    Nick
  • Reply 15 of 85
    trumptmantrumptman Posts: 16,456member
    Quote:

    Originally posted by BRussell

    Benadryl. Lots of benadryl.



    Cute, very cute. Although in this age, it is almost a little too true to be funny.



    Quote:

    [edit]I don't have any secrets. You slog through the best you can. I believe in discipline and teaching manners and good habits. But there are laws about smacking other people around, and I agree with those laws, and I think they should apply even if it's a family member doing the smacking.



    Yes, but the law does deal with the shades of gray, including those involving spanking. Yet most people with anti-spanking views choose to ignore those. If you slapped a knife away from a family member who had become a danger to themselves, that wouldn't be considered assault. If you tackled, restrained, or even sat on someone who was out of control this wouldn't be considered harmful, in fact it wouldn't be so even if it were teacher to student.



    There are lots of gray areas you seem to choose to ignore involving physicality.



    Quote:

    In general, I'm not at all convinced that specific parenting techniques really make much of a difference one way or the other in the long run, except at the extremes, like neglect. Kids are born with personalities and they are influenced heavily by the culture - for better or (mostly) worse - and unfortunately what we do as parents doesn't have as much of an influence as most of us would like to believe.



    I'll have to agree and disagree here. If we see some very heavyset parents, we often aren't surprised that the children are as well. My children love books in part because our entire houses is loaded down with books and we happen to go to book stores all the time. Now culture does play a part in that they might desire a SpongeBob or Scooby Doo book, (Evil marketing!) but I know the desire to read has been cultivated by my wife and me.



    Also I do believe that most parents simply don't take the time to create very deep bonds with their children. They take the attitude that nothing urgently wrong must mean everything is alright. That simply isn't true. Children can't watch an average of five hours of television a day and have their folks be called "parents" in my eyes. Plus remember that is an average which means that the chidren like mine, who watch 0-1 hours are offset by some nice parents who are allowing that tube to raise their children for 9-10 hours a day.



    Nick
  • Reply 16 of 85
    trumptmantrumptman Posts: 16,456member
    Quote:

    Originally posted by tonton

    I can't believe Trumptman, a teacher, condones corporal punishment.



    Let me ask you something Ton. Was there ever a time in your adult life where you didn't listen to good reasoning? Where those around perhaps told you a certain person or situation was going to turn out badly and it was evident to those around you, but you were blind to it yourself? Certain things are right and wrong regardless of our ability to be aware of it at the time. Plenty of folks don't realize the worth of water until the well runs dry.



    I ask this because if that can happen as an adult, it can certainly happen to say a four year old.



    Quote:

    "Spare the rod, spoil the child!" Give me a fucking break. This isn't the dark ages. There ARE ways to punish children that don't involve violence. There are very effective ways, indeed, especially in these days of instant gratification in entertainment.



    All these parents that are sparing their child from the "dark ages" as you put it are also drugging their children with record numbers of drugs when they fail to understand and act on their reasoning. Most of these drugs induce permanent changes in their brain chemestry. I'd rather use a tap on the bum at a very early age than deal with such nonsense. Also you don't seem to realize that any sort of external force used to communicate and enforce any sort of external values is wrong according to the folks who admonish against spanking. You are just as guilty as someone who swats by their reasoning. Believing there are universal, transcendent, external values independent of ourselves is just as "dark ages" as the swats you condemn. You've obviously not read up on this or even really dove into any sort of multiculturalism or postmodernism.



    Quote:

    The kid doesn't clean his room? No TV. The kid doesn't do their homework on time? No video games. The kid lies or disobeys a direct order, a grounding is in order. Meanwhile you can teach them the value of reading while they're not allowed to watch TV or go out or play video games.



    Wow, what a lot of assuptions you suppose there. First you obviously only care to discuss school age children. I've said specifically that spanking is effective for very young children who don't have full reasoning capacity yet, and for whom the alternatives are worse when not obeying. Also look at the choices you are endorsing there. They sound terrible. I would not restrict my child from going outside for any lengthy period of time. That sounds much more cruel than a quick swat. Do you believe isolating a child for some extended period isn't cruel? I believe that form of punishment has been removed even from most prisons.



    I would remind you though that external rewards and disincentives are considered just as bad as spanking. The child still does not reach a conclusion on their own. The decision making and rationals are still not internalized, rather it is just external forces of a different sort bringing about a desired result. Threats of a swat vs. threats of isolation or loss of material possessions are still threats. You need to do a little more reading in this area because you don't seem to realize the trendy bandwagon you jump on would still condemn the measures you advocate. You are still in the "dark ages" yourself.



    I'll give you a very clear example of when I spanked my child. We had a pool at our house. We didn't want the young ones around it so it had a five foot protective fence installed blocking access to it. The gate had a latch at that five foot level. My two year old son had figured out how to pop that latch using basically anything with a handle he could find. He would pop the latch and open the gate. I didn't want to put a lock on the latch because heaven forbid if he found another way in and happened to fall in, I would be the one trying to undo the lock while he drowned.



    Now he had several timeouts and discussions about why not to go toward that pool without adults supervising. The reality though is that two year olds really don't have a very good understanding of death and what it constitutes. Most of them sort of equate it with sleeping which doesn't sound too terrible. So when the timeouts and discussions didn't work, he got some startling swats. Perhaps at the two year old level I only got compliance via his fear of that spanking. However the thing he ought to properly fear, his death and the grossly high amount of risk he was undertaking, he didn't understand yet.



    Quote:

    Even in very young kids, an unhappy parent is usually enough for them to feel sorry for what they've done, especially if they value that parent's love, which most non-neglected children do. I don't know. Maybe Trumpt's kids don't care if he's unhappy because they never see him anyway (I'm not saying that's true, just that it might be an explanation for his idea that young children respond best to physical discipline). Getting no dessert at dinner time is enough to make them feel they've done something wrong. Maybe, however, in Trumpt's case there is no family dinner time, so that wouldn't affect them, eithe



    Are you high? My wife stays home fulltime and I work as a teacher. I only work about 175 days a year. I have every weekend, every holiday, and three solid months off from work each year. I'm home each day by four o'clock and we have a family dinner daily. Take your accusations elsewhere. I'm not the one subjecting my kid to a broken home and a girlfriend of the moment. (I'm not saying this is true, but you know it makes me feel better if I put this disclaimer in while making obvious personal attacks )



    What sort of sick individual has their children thinking only of what might please or displease the adult in their lives? Do you have your child believing your love for them is so conditional that they fear losing it at every turn and so blindly obey you? Your chief tool sounds like guilt trips.



    Look at all the external rewards and guilt tools you use to bring about compliance. You really feel like these cultivate an internalized value system and use of it? Homework isn't done because it reflects a educational values. It is done because Dad will give me a guilt trip, induce isolation while showing conditional love and externally threaten me by showing that the items he has granted me are only there conditionally as well. Perhaps this child, alone in the "cell" called their bedroom can ponder whether their existance in the family is conditional as well. After all when Mommy and Daddy didn't get along, he tossed her away so maybe he will do the same with me.



    Sorry if that sounds cruel, but you certainly judge others. Since I have a pretty clear understanding of the folks you use to judge with, I can use their language to reflect on your methods as well. Amazingly, it makes you sound just as abusive and terrible as someone who spanks.



    Quote:

    And for older kids, if you have so little control of your child that you are unable to enforce a grounding, that's your fault, and it's not because you didn't spank them.



    I absolutely agree with BRussell. Parents who think there's a a need to spanik kids are just too stupid or too lazy to come up with alternatives.



    And I've told you some of mine.



    What you fail to realize is that your "alternatives" would be just as readily condemned by the same "experts" who condemn spanking. Really, the irony is almost laughable. Being a teacher and having read pretty extensively in this area, I can tell you that most experts would consider your signs of conditional love, forms of extended isolation, and various external threats to be just as cruel if not more so than spanking. Of course you would also realize that most of these experts believe children are born perfect and are only taught any naughty habits by their parents and the company they keep.



    Really, do some reading on say John Dewey and values clarification. You would quickly realize that you would be condemned as a horrible parent, just as you condemn those who externally enforce their will via a swat.



    Nick
  • Reply 17 of 85
    Quote:

    Originally posted by trumptman

    What I find quite amusing is most leftist types don't automatically assign rights just because one is human. This is especially true with an abortion argument. One must have a certain level of cognition and development to be afforded certain rights. Very young children do not have the same sense of abstraction or the same level of reasoning as say preteen children or adults.





    Why did you have to bring 'leftist types' into this discussion about discipline? We were getting on fine without it. Why did you feel the need to do this? This thread was perfectly OK without all that.
  • Reply 18 of 85
    None of the books about dog training I've read advocate violence, in fact most go to great lengths to explain why it is counter-productive. Bloody hippy dog trainers!
  • Reply 19 of 85
    brussellbrussell Posts: 9,812member
    Quote:

    Originally posted by trumptman

    Cute, very cute. Although in this age, it is almost a little too true to be funny.



    There was actually a much-discussed case in my state of a daycare that was regularly giving benadryl to kids for nap time and one of the kids died.
    Quote:

    Yes, but the law does deal with the shades of gray, including those involving spanking. Yet most people with anti-spanking views choose to ignore those. If you slapped a knife away from a family member who had become a danger to themselves, that wouldn't be considered assault. If you tackled, restrained, or even sat on someone who was out of control this wouldn't be considered harmful, in fact it wouldn't be so even if it were teacher to student.



    There are lots of gray areas you seem to choose to ignore involving physicality.



    Yeah, you're allowed to hit people under certain conditions. Hell you're allowed to kill someone under the right conditions (e.g., self-defense). But I don't think any of those conditions match up to how people use spanking. You haven't cleaned your room I'll give you one more chance OK that's it you're getting it that'll teach you. And yet if my wife didn't clean the dishes after dinner it would be felony assault for me to hit her, as it should be.
    Quote:

    I'll have to agree and disagree here. If we see some very heavyset parents, we often aren't surprised that the children are as well. My children love books in part because our entire houses is loaded down with books and we happen to go to book stores all the time. Now culture does play a part in that they might desire a SpongeBob or Scooby Doo book, (Evil marketing!) but I know the desire to read has been cultivated by my wife and me.



    Also I do believe that most parents simply don't take the time to create very deep bonds with their children. They take the attitude that nothing urgently wrong must mean everything is alright. That simply isn't true. Children can't watch an average of five hours of television a day and have their folks be called "parents" in my eyes. Plus remember that is an average which means that the chidren like mine, who watch 0-1 hours are offset by some nice parents who are allowing that tube to raise their children for 9-10 hours a day.



    Couldn't agree more. TV is one of those evil corrosive, horrible things that most of us accept without questioning.



    Let me comment on the other issues though: When you see the fat parents with the fat kids, its not only possible that the kids have been taught how to eat, but it's also possible that genes are playing a role. For example, it's pretty well established that abusive parents have kids who grow up to be abusive themselves. But although it's always been assumed it's caused by nurture, it's also possible that it's at least partially genetic. I bet genetic explanations are ignored in favor of nurture explanations quite often.
  • Reply 20 of 85
    trumptmantrumptman Posts: 16,456member
    Quote:

    Originally posted by BRussell

    Yeah, you're allowed to hit people under certain conditions. Hell you're allowed to kill someone under the right conditions (e.g., self-defense). But I don't think any of those conditions match up to how people use spanking. You haven't cleaned your room I'll give you one more chance OK that's it you're getting it that'll teach you. And yet if my wife didn't clean the dishes after dinner it would be felony assault for me to hit her, as it should be. Couldn't agree more. TV is one of those evil corrosive, horrible things that most of us accept without questioning.



    Again, you could also divorce your wife for refusing to do the dishes. You could not divorce or leave your child for refusing to do your bidding. Different tools for different roles.



    Quote:

    Let me comment on the other issues though: When you see the fat parents with the fat kids, its not only possible that the kids have been taught how to eat, but it's also possible that genes are playing a role. For example, it's pretty well established that abusive parents have kids who grow up to be abusive themselves. But although it's always been assumed it's caused by nurture, it's also possible that it's at least partially genetic. I bet genetic explanations are ignored in favor of nurture explanations quite often.



    Suppose you were right and it can be assigned a nature vs. nurture value. What are we really doing then and how do we really solve it? Are we legislating against nature and will future court cases give one the right to be violent much as they now give one the right to commit sodomy or be homosexual? Also how then is the problem solved, eugenics?



    I think I would almost rather be deluded and believe it nurture than go down those paths.\



    Nick
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