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[P]
For Whose Own Good?

By KPalicz in Culture
Sat Sep 06, 2003 at 07:02:09 AM EST
Tags: Freedom (all tags)
Freedom

Two 5-year-old boys who had been locked inside small roach infested cages for 4 months were discovered by authorities this week in Arizona. Their makeshift cage consisted of cribs wired together and sealed with plastic crates. The boys slept on a dirty mattress spattered with urine and feces and were fed through a small hole in the cage. The boys wore filthy pajamas and were covered in bedsores. Their parents confined the toddlers for 20 hours out of every day. Neither of the boys were toilet trained and they did not know how to speak.

Their mother explained to police that the boys were placed in cages for their own protection.


What strikes me about this story is not just the appalling cruelty of it, nor the fact that this kind of terror occurs all too often. What strikes me is the calm explanation the parents gave to the authorities. This was for their own protection. Louis and Estelvina Rodriguez are no different from parents all across the nation who abuse their children. Abuse, from the mildest control of one's life to the most horrific damage, is always justified by the claim "its for your own good." No doubt all of us have heard the plea "I'm only doing this because I love you." or "you'll understand when you are older." Every parent who locks their child in a closet for 6 months, every parent who burns cigarettes on their child's arm, and every parent who controls and restricts the lives of their children use this plea.

Despite the cruelty this abuse often adopts, the method is of less consequence than the reason. To make the claim something is for your own good is the worst invalidation of one's personhood, and perhaps the worst affront of one's human dignity that exists. Pain and torture masquerading as love is the most twisted abuse humanity has yet created. George Orwell's monolithic state in 1984 made this point chillingly clear when it tortured the main character, Winston, to the point where he accepted this was for his own good and he began to love Big Brother. Not only had his captors violated his body, but by passing this abuse off as love done for his own good they violated his very soul. It is this, most twisted of all abuses, which children suffer under today.

"You can chain me, you can torture me, you can even destroy this body, but you will never imprison my mind." No victim to physical hardship, Mohandas Gandhi knew that a violation of one's mind would be far more destructive than a violation of one's body. The physical abuse parents inflict upon their children heals much faster than the mental and emotional abuse they inflict. This abuse includes all the ways in which authorities seek to deny the personhood of youth.

Imagine for a moment how even the most mundane denials of your personhood and freewill feel. Just imagine being at a restaurant with friends or colleagues, the waiter is taking everyone's order and before he gets to you, your good friend tells the waiter you will have a Chicken Caesar salad. Annoyed, you speak up and declare what you'd really like is the New York Strip. Your friend turns to you to say you don't know what you want, and is ordering you the salad for your own good.

Its difficult to imagine anyone having the audacity to say such a thing to you, but if you can suspend disbelief and think of the anger you would feel if that happened. There is simply nothing you can do to defend yourself either, imagine if you expressed how offended and upset you were. Your friend just responds, "you don't know what you are saying, some day you will thank me." At every step you are invalidated. Not in a mean way, but invalidated none the less. Again reflect on the anger you'd feel. What to have for dinner is quite a mundane detail. Whether you have a steak or a salad is inconsequential to your life, you may not even mind having a salad. However the fact you were denied the choice and had your own freewill questioned and discounted makes this a terrible affront.

When we deny the intelligence, competence, and individuality of a person we commit a grave harm. When we do this to a developing young person we do a greater harm. They are taught not only to subject their will to authority, but that they have no freewill to begin with, and the authorities must control their behavior to protect them from harm. Whether those controls involve roach infested cages, curfews, or censorship it makes no difference. At the time we should be cherishing a person's independence and unique spirit, the standard approach is to quash it. To be raised in a world in which freewill is denied, freedom is associated with danger, and physical violence is used "for one's own good" does something to a young person. It gives them the soul of slaves.

The scars of abuse and control do not leave a person, they shape a person. Shape a person into one more likely to abuse and control others, and to later accept abuse and control of their own lives. Are things like the Patriot Act or lawsuits against McDonalds any wonder when we consider people have been raised to accept authorities' control and deny their own freewill?

This problem is widespread and severe. 500,000 children are injured by their caregivers every year. 3,000,000 are reported to social services every year. Tens of millions are invalidated by those they love and care about most.

We are all too familiar with oppression in the name of hatred. Whether against Blacks, Jews, Homosexuals, or a variety of ethnic groups all over world we see the damage caused by hatred. Oppression in the name of love is far more sinister, and far less acknowledged. It is this horror under which young people suffer, a horror inflicted upon them for their own good.

If the KKK burns a cross in your yard, you know they hate you and you hate them back. When a parent beats you black and blue, or applies electrical currents to your testicles while saying they do this because they love you, where does that leave you? Do you love them back, do you hate them? Worse yet, what kind of mental harm must this cause when love becomes associated with pain and suffering?

Those twin boys in Arizona will recover from bedsores and will learn to talk, but will they recover from their other forms of abuse? Can they learn self-respect and trust when they've been locked in roach filled cages "for their own protection"? Can they have healthy, normal love again after this grotesquely abusive experience? I don't know.

Lack of respect lies at the root of their abuse, and the abuse of all children. The adults in their lives do not respect them as human beings worthy of equal respect and care, so they feel justified in disregarding their will to control, abuse, and dehumanize them "for their own good."

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Related Links
o discovered by authorities
o "its for your own good."
o locks their child in a closet for 6 months
o monolithic state in 1984
o "You can chain me, you can torture me, you can even destroy this body, but you will never imprison my mind."
o lawsuits against McDonalds
o widespread and severe
o applies electrical currents to your testicles
o Also by KPalicz


Display: Sort:
For Whose Own Good? | 211 comments (184 topical, 27 editorial, 0 hidden)
OH MY DEAR GOD (2.80 / 15) (#1)
by RobotSlave on Thu Sep 04, 2003 at 06:09:24 PM EST

WHO WILL THINK OF TEH CHILDERN????!?!?11?

nice (4.33 / 3) (#4)
by KPalicz on Thu Sep 04, 2003 at 06:13:25 PM EST

excellent, did this one make it? I confess I missed it.

[ Parent ]
Your answer... (5.00 / 2) (#20)
by JahToasted on Thu Sep 04, 2003 at 07:20:09 PM EST

Lies in the first comment on the page.
______
"I wanna have my kicks before the whole shithouse goes up in flames" -- Jim Morrison
[ Parent ]
Don't worry (4.81 / 32) (#2)
by SocratesGhost on Thu Sep 04, 2003 at 06:10:10 PM EST

We're going to take those children away from the parents for their own good.

-Soc
I drank what?


Har har (3.00 / 2) (#191)
by riceowlguy on Mon Sep 08, 2003 at 12:28:25 PM EST

Very funny, Mr. Ironypants. I'm sure that goes over quite well with the others in your coffeehouse discussion group.

Get a life.

"That meant spending the night in the living room with Frank watching over me like some kind of Lovecraftian soul-stealing nightmare creature-Azag-Frank[ Parent ]

Actually... (3.83 / 6) (#7)
by MTremodian on Thu Sep 04, 2003 at 06:18:40 PM EST

"Those twin boys in Arizona will recover from bedsores and will learn to talk..." -- um, I don't think so. If I remember my developmental linguistics right if they aren't exposed to enough language to learn to talk by the age of four, then they will NEVER learn to talk because of irreversible changes in brain structure that occur around this age.


...speed overcomes the fear of death.

Never say Never (5.00 / 5) (#17)
by JahToasted on Thu Sep 04, 2003 at 07:15:33 PM EST

You're right that there is a critical window for language development, but they can still learn. It will just be a lot harder for them.
______
"I wanna have my kicks before the whole shithouse goes up in flames" -- Jim Morrison
[ Parent ]
Indeed - Consider Helen Keller...Or Nell [nt] (5.00 / 3) (#21)
by CheeseburgerBrown on Thu Sep 04, 2003 at 07:46:08 PM EST


___
I am from a small, unknown country in the north called Ca-na-da. We are a simple, grease-loving people who enjoy le weekend de ski. Personally, I pref
[ Parent ]
Not true... (5.00 / 3) (#110)
by debillitatus on Fri Sep 05, 2003 at 12:09:56 PM EST

There are many examples of learning-disabled children starting to speak much after the age of four. Hell, when they're also hearing-impaired, they haven't even heard spoken language, yet they do ok at some point. A very famous example is Helen Keller, of course, but there are many examples, and infinitely many sources on this, for example here. A slightly different topic, for example, learning a second language with disabilities, is covered here

Don't bet against the human brain. I'm sure learning to speak will be quite challenging for these kids, but they most probably will manage.

Damn you and your daily doubles, you brigand!
[ Parent ]

circumcision, corporal punishment (3.33 / 9) (#9)
by tetsuwan on Thu Sep 04, 2003 at 06:27:40 PM EST

why is this so popular in the US?

Most Europeans have already realised that barbarism begins at home

Njal's Saga: Just like Romeo & Juliet without the romance

barbarism (4.25 / 4) (#10)
by KPalicz on Thu Sep 04, 2003 at 06:30:42 PM EST

Americans don't yet have a problem with barbarism.

[ Parent ]
No, but (5.00 / 2) (#13)
by notcarlos on Thu Sep 04, 2003 at 07:01:20 PM EST

As soon as their empire is up, they will. Still, I don't see anything like Tacitus' Germaniae wandering in anytime soon. 'Look at those Canadians', it might say, 'look how morally upright they are compared to you decadent Yanks!'.

Sorry, this has wandered off, hasn't it? Tch.

He will destroy you like an academic ninja.
-- Rating on Rate My Professors.com
[ Parent ]
But oh, they do. As my favourite Briton put it: (5.00 / 3) (#16)
by tetsuwan on Thu Sep 04, 2003 at 07:07:39 PM EST

Unruly boys, who will not grow up, must be taken in hand
Unruly girls, who will not settle down, they must be taken in hand

A crack on the head is what you get for not asking, and a crack on the head is what you get for asking
...
A crack on the head is just what you get
WHY ? Because of who you are !
And a crack on the head is just what you get
WHY ? Because of what you are !
A crack on the head, because of :
Those things you said
Things you said
The things you did
...

Njal's Saga: Just like Romeo & Juliet without the romance
[ Parent ]

Who said that? (5.00 / 1) (#108)
by Noodle on Fri Sep 05, 2003 at 11:42:35 AM EST

Mike Skinner?

{The Nefarious Noodle}
[ Parent ]

Boy, you are too young: (5.00 / 1) (#125)
by tetsuwan on Fri Sep 05, 2003 at 06:14:00 PM EST

Morrissey sang that, while still being the singer in the Smiths. Track 9 on "Meat is murder".

Njal's Saga: Just like Romeo & Juliet without the romance
[ Parent ]

Haha (5.00 / 1) (#134)
by Noodle on Sat Sep 06, 2003 at 12:24:19 AM EST

I've heard of the Smiths, but, tragically, have never actually heard them.

It just sounded like a rap lyric to me.

{The Nefarious Noodle}
[ Parent ]

Why, (5.00 / 1) (#151)
by tetsuwan on Sat Sep 06, 2003 at 04:12:24 PM EST

crack as in the dope?

Njal's Saga: Just like Romeo & Juliet without the romance
[ Parent ]

sounds familiar (4.66 / 3) (#11)
by KPalicz on Thu Sep 04, 2003 at 06:55:42 PM EST

"Those guys have procedures that are more extensive than the criminal courts and operate without sticky things like the constitution in mind." Sounds like schools and the juvenile justice system.

Oh, please. (4.70 / 20) (#18)
by Kasreyn on Thu Sep 04, 2003 at 07:15:47 PM EST

Whether those controls involve roach infested cages, curfews, or censorship it makes no difference.

Please remove your head from your ass. There is quite a large difference between ignorant inbred parents keeping their children in parents, and wise, caring parents keeping their kids away from booze and firearms. If you can't see that difference, and the need for parental assistance and protection for children, you're too fucking stupid to deserve to be at k5.

I will admit that parents who automatically deny anything a child does to try to be independant are going on a power trip. "You'll understand when you're older" is usually an excuse used when the parent is too tired or distracted to explain, or underrates the child's intelligence (thinking them to be perhaps some form of subhuman monkey, rather than their own offspring and quite possibly more intelligent than themselves). IMO children deserve full explanations for the rationale behind most, if not all, denials parents make them in the interests of their health and development.

Overall, this story reads like you consumed the gassy food of a tear-jerking child abuse article, and released a huge, ill-thought fart in the queue. Rethink, examine your story, and if you can actually find a coherent thread of meaning (which I couldn't), then by all means resubmit. As is, you attempt to draw a connection between ignorant/demented parents who torture their kids, and parents who deny their children full free will because they are not yet wise enough to exercise it safely. That's a link you haven't, and I submit never will, prove. -1.


-Kasreyn


"Extenuating circumstance to be mentioned on Judgement Day:
We never asked to be born in the first place."

R.I.P. Kurt. You will be missed.
Ack! "...children in parents ^W cages -nt (5.00 / 4) (#19)
by Kasreyn on Thu Sep 04, 2003 at 07:18:58 PM EST

rather than "in parents". God, that looks stupid. =\
"Extenuating circumstance to be mentioned on Judgement Day:
We never asked to be born in the first place."

R.I.P. Kurt. You will be missed.
[ Parent ]
"IMO" (5.00 / 2) (#101)
by Timo Laine on Fri Sep 05, 2003 at 09:28:36 AM EST

IMO children deserve full explanations for the rationale behind most, if not all, denials parents make them in the interests of their health and development.
IMO you are being too modest. Institutional transparency is one of the key ideals of modern democracy. The functioning of the system should never depend on the citizens' lack of knowledge (or misunderstanding) about how it works.

Of course a family is not a state or a democracy, but it is similar in relevant respects: if there is someone with authority, and there is, the authority has to be justified. It can only be justified if the ones over whom it is exercised have reason to accept it (and actually do accept it). And rational acceptance is only possible if all the facts are available.

Of course one can deny that children are capable of rationality, which would mean that transparency is not necessary. But I think they are capable of at least the limited rationality and understanding of the world what the idea requires. And rationality is something that can only be improved through practice; if you only teach your children to obey, that's the only thing they will know how to do as adults.

[ Parent ]

hmm (none / 0) (#214)
by Liet on Fri Oct 10, 2003 at 11:51:38 PM EST

"inbred parents keeping their children in parents" no doc i want to keep it in there, ive gotten used to this lump thanks

[ Parent ]
I don't understand (4.61 / 13) (#22)
by awgsilyari on Thu Sep 04, 2003 at 07:47:34 PM EST

Are you trying to imply that children deserve adult rights?

Quaint.

If you're trying to educate us that electrocuting and caging your children is terrible, well... What the fuck else is new? Otherwise, I really have no idea what your point is.

--------
Please direct SPAM to john@neuralnw.com

Adult rights for children (4.50 / 4) (#56)
by the on Thu Sep 04, 2003 at 09:04:36 PM EST

These people make such a demand. Among them is David Deutsch, the 'inventor' of the quantum computer. Of course it's well known that the correlation between ability in physics and skill in dealing with people is low, maybe even negative.

--
The Definite Article
[ Parent ]
two words (5.00 / 1) (#144)
by Battle Troll on Sat Sep 06, 2003 at 12:27:12 PM EST

William Shockley.
--
Skarphedinn was carrying the axe with which he had killed Thrainn Sigfusson and which he called 'Battle Troll.'
Njal's Saga, ca 1280 AD
[ Parent ]
I'm going to profoundly disagree with you (4.00 / 14) (#23)
by SocratesGhost on Thu Sep 04, 2003 at 07:58:23 PM EST

I'm going to give a less flippant reply this time, but this article only makes sense in a fascist state. I'm going to come back to this sentence, but it's ultimately what is wrong with your stance.

I remember this time when I was in Mombasa, Kenya. Kenya is considered one of the wealthier and more advanced Third World nations in Africa. There's business, technology, and plenty of trade and resources. Mombasa isn't exactly San Francisco, it's probably closer to Acapulco.

I was horrified to see a child whose face had melted. I asked my Indian friend what happened, fearing it was some sort of disease. My friend told me that the mother poured battery acid on the kid's face. It was a common practice in that area of the world. Why, ask I. My friend told me: so that the the kid can be a more effective beggar. It worked on me. He was probably the first child beggar I ever took notice of in my life. Even the kids selling chiclets on the Tijuana border didn't move me nearly as much as this kid did.

Through the rest of my time in Kenya, I noticed others. Some were missing limbs or parts of limbs. Bruises and scars were common. What a brutal life, I think to myself. Later a beggar comes up to me and asks for money. Playing the arrogant ugly stupid American (I was a teenager) I say that I only carried 100 shilling notes (each were about $15) . He said, "That's OK. I can make change," and the man proceeded to pull out a huge wad of cash.

I don't think all beggars probably did as well as this guy, but it really gave me pause to think about what the parents had tried to do for the son when they poured battery acid on his face. They were trying to give him a life in the only way that they knew how.

I'm soft on parents now. They are the gods of their children, commanding the life, death and soul of the child. They teach them when to fart, how to eat, whether to walk, and who to love. They do this based on their best knowledge of what is best for the household. If you don't agree, what makes you think you're right? Oh, I see: because everyone else thinks the same way as you.

Parenting is about life and death, right from the start. These cases in Africa prove it. If you trust people to bring other people in the world, you must also trust them with the right to take them out of the world and even to abort them. If you can trust them with that, you have to trust them with everything in between.

Are these parents worse than those who teach their children to hate Jews? I'd say not. An anti-semite can harm many lives. These parents can harm only two and yet you perceive them as criminals.

I'm not worried about slippery slopes. If you take away the child when they're abusing them, I'm not concerned that you'll take away the child because the parents teach it to be Satanists. I am concerned though when society (and let's face it, when we say society, we're really talking about the state) says that it knows how to parent better.

The moment that the state says that it knows what is for the best of the child, it's wrong. The state only has it's own interests at work. It wants healthy intelligent workers to help fuel the economy. The state wants contributors to the social security fund, taxes to keep medicare afloat, bodies to fill the trenches of its wars, and minds to keep the nation at the forefront economically, technologically, and militarily. The U.S. federal government's interest in the health of children is defined by the Constitution's commerce clause. You're guilty of this if your interest in children includes the reason "a chance to become a healthy productive member of society."

If you believe that every person is a servant to the society instead of vice versa, then you're subscribing to fascism.

-Soc
I drank what?


Do you have kids? n/t (5.00 / 1) (#24)
by Bill Melater on Thu Sep 04, 2003 at 08:07:34 PM EST



[ Parent ]
what do you think? (4.25 / 4) (#27)
by SocratesGhost on Thu Sep 04, 2003 at 08:14:56 PM EST

People who have kids usually say (to those that don't) "You don't know what it's like to have kids."

Meanwhile, everyone says "You're raising them wrong. Here's how things should be done."

To which group would you give more authority?

-Soc
I drank what?


[ Parent ]
to neither (5.00 / 1) (#31)
by KPalicz on Thu Sep 04, 2003 at 08:18:39 PM EST


I'd give the authority to the kids who are actually in that situation.  

[ Parent ]
so (4.50 / 2) (#38)
by SocratesGhost on Thu Sep 04, 2003 at 08:34:25 PM EST

so, the 5 year old should decide his sleeping conditions? What kind of food it should receive?

-Soc
I drank what?


[ Parent ]
yes (5.00 / 1) (#45)
by KPalicz on Thu Sep 04, 2003 at 08:43:30 PM EST


give it a shot.  

In fact its being done all the time right now, and children raised in such a way grow up to be smarter, more responsible, and better adjusted than children raised with a boot on their throat.

[ Parent ]

My uncle (4.50 / 2) (#53)
by SocratesGhost on Thu Sep 04, 2003 at 08:56:20 PM EST

He was a conscientious objector to the Vietnam War. In New York state, only 20 people qualified for CO deferment and he was one of them. To this day, he refuses to use force on his kids.

His first child is brilliant. Well mannered, he received an athletic scholarship and was in the top 10 of his class. Really, one of the nicest sweetest people that I know.

His second child is sorta fat and lazy. Gets in fights all the time. He hopes someday to be able to work on cars, but I doubt he has more interest in cars than the Nintendo.

But I guess children are mere formula that can be governed through laws by remote control since they're all the same, right?

-Soc
I drank what?


[ Parent ]
There is a vast, wide chasm (5.00 / 1) (#138)
by tzanger on Sat Sep 06, 2003 at 08:21:17 AM EST

There's a vast, wide chasm between "boot to the throat" and teaching things like discipline and routine.

Maintaining a bedtime routine and ensuring healthy eating is hardly "boot to the throat" child-rearing.  To even try to equate these things clearly shows that you're either not a parent or simply trying to argue for argument's sake.

[ Parent ]

What a bunch of crap! (5.00 / 1) (#165)
by webwench on Sat Sep 06, 2003 at 11:06:51 PM EST

I have to say that the author of this article must be about fourteen, and very angry about his curfew.

The tiny percentage of parents who are so deranged or so destitute of human kindness should not invalidate the good sense required of most parents who make decisions for their children every day.

I don't know how crap like this makes it through the queue, honestly. It's embarrassing.

[ Parent ]

Nope... (5.00 / 1) (#182)
by Canar on Mon Sep 08, 2003 at 02:29:32 AM EST

Check his link. He's in the board of directors or something there. He looks around twenty, but the beard (!!) adds a level of uncertainty to it. Certainly couldn't have kids, though... I'm inclined to disregard anything anyone has to say about child-raising until they've experienced it. I don't even bother bringing my bull-shit-o-meter out when non-parents speak of child rearing, it's almost always pegged.

[ Parent ]
You're absurd. (5.00 / 1) (#113)
by Canthros on Fri Sep 05, 2003 at 12:41:40 PM EST

You have no perspective on this whatsoever, do you?

--
It's now obvious you are either A) Gay or B) Female, or possibly both.
RyoCokey
[ Parent ]
It's a simple question (4.50 / 2) (#49)
by Bill Melater on Thu Sep 04, 2003 at 08:49:21 PM EST

You speak about parenting as if you had either a great deal of education about kids or a great deal of experience with kids. Hence the question.

[ Parent ]
I'm trying to find my quote (5.00 / 3) (#51)
by SocratesGhost on Thu Sep 04, 2003 at 08:52:57 PM EST

I've actually written about this before and I said it better. It was something like this:

"No, I don't have kids. Parent's will say that I have no right to speak because I don't know what's involved. And that's exactly my point."

-Soc
I drank what?


[ Parent ]
Speak, please! (5.00 / 1) (#116)
by Kyle on Fri Sep 05, 2003 at 02:48:19 PM EST

I won't tell you that you don't have the right to speak, but knowing what experience is behind your words helps me decide how to listen. I don't give much weight to the elctrician's opinion on plumbing. Likewise, the child's opinion on parenting.

I didn't notice until I was a father that I'd been a child all along, but YMMV.

[ Parent ]

Missed My Point (5.00 / 1) (#29)
by KPalicz on Thu Sep 04, 2003 at 08:16:05 PM EST


I'm afraid you missed my point entirely.  I am not advocating an all knowing nanny state to take over the job of parenting.  

I'm saying that we as a society need to respect children and stop treating them as property.  To take this principle to a legal context, youth should be given greater ability to divorce their caretaker.  

Our current system gives total power to parents and then are surprized when they commit horrible crimes against their children.  Then the state yanks the kids out of the home and turns over total power to the state or to foster parents.  Then we are surprized when they both commit horrible crimes against the children.

When you put a child entirely at the mercy of any authority whether the state or parents or whoever, you are asking for trouble.  Young people need to be respected as free, independent human beings.  To argue otherwise is to support fascism.

[ Parent ]

Parents pay the bills (3.00 / 3) (#32)
by SocratesGhost on Thu Sep 04, 2003 at 08:21:14 PM EST

So they make the rules. How is that fascist?

Remember, you're the one who made the parent's actions into crimes. They didn't commit a crime until some busybody know-it-alls declared it illegal. No one was shocked that parents took a wooden spoon or a belt to their kids 20 years ago. Now, watch out if you so much as raise your hand to smack the child's hand before he grabs a hot iron.

-Soc
I drank what?


[ Parent ]
Outlawing child abuse = fascism? You scare me (3.66 / 3) (#39)
by KPalicz on Thu Sep 04, 2003 at 08:34:54 PM EST

So you would rather the actions of these parents not be a crime?  And I'm some busy body for outlawing assault and murder?  Should we relegalize infantacide to appease your bloodlust?

Lets just roll back the clock 170 years so you'll be happy with husbands beating their wives, parents beating their children, and masters beating their slaves.  No busy bodies making all these things crimes.  

[ Parent ]

you don't get it, do you? (3.66 / 3) (#46)
by SocratesGhost on Thu Sep 04, 2003 at 08:46:43 PM EST

an appeal to community laws should arise only when there is a conflict in the community. Where there is no conflict, why create one?

You assume that the child is better off alive. Tell that to an Inuit during periods of famine who just bore her fifth daughter in a row. Tell that to people who choose not to live in houses, I guess they can't have children, can they?

Yes, you are a busy body, telling people how to live. I'm not bloodthirsty. You're just a control freak. That's what makes you a fascist.

Incidentally, I'm not trolling you. People generally think it's OK to impose their foreign wills on communities hundreds of miles away. "Backward people that they are, how dare they not teach Darwin in their schools..."

-Soc
I drank what?


[ Parent ]
Whats wrong with shaping society? (4.50 / 4) (#54)
by g8se on Thu Sep 04, 2003 at 08:57:57 PM EST

Why should society accept or allow a parent to acid burn their childs face? I don't want to live in a society like that.
I want to live in a society that asks the harder question "Why did the parent feel they had to do that, and how can that situation be changed?"


[ Parent ]
have you ever been to the Third World? (4.50 / 2) (#57)
by SocratesGhost on Thu Sep 04, 2003 at 09:04:55 PM EST

You wouldn't ask that question if you had. These are people who live just better than hunter/gatherer societies. Your trash is their tuxedo.

But you've already shown your busybody nature. Who says that they didn't want to live like beggars in the first place? But, I guess you know better.

-Soc
I drank what?


[ Parent ]
I live in the third world (5.00 / 2) (#141)
by Daniel Yokomiso on Sat Sep 06, 2003 at 10:13:29 AM EST

Or so USA citizens classify Brazil. I've seem people live in conditions you wouldn't imagine, but IMO if the parents think the best thing to happen in the life of their kids will be beggars, they shouldn't be parents. I had the privilege to go to college and a guy in my class came from a really poor family. His parents had eight children and earned something like US$200.00 per day (a really small amount, even where they lived). They had almost no education and no future, but their kid was talented, went to college (one of the top 5 in Brazil, and it's public) to get a physics graduation, getting better grades than me (the third best student from my year). Later he decided to get a agronomy degree and dropped physics, AFAIK he graduated. If his parents decided to "improve his future" by denying education (something people do here) and make him get a job earlier in his life he probably would never go to college. He may be an exception, most of kids have no chance, but that's way having children is a privilege not a right. If you don't know better or can give your kids a good life (at least food, education, medicine and shelter) don't fuck like a druken rabbit.

[ Parent ]
All I've got to say is ... (4.66 / 3) (#120)
by pyramid termite on Fri Sep 05, 2003 at 05:02:03 PM EST

... I'd teach my kid to be a revolutionary before I poured acid on her face. Really. If things are that godawful, one might as well go down fighting as go down begging.

On the Internet, anyone can accuse you of being a dog.
[ Parent ]
Interesting! (5.00 / 9) (#25)
by the on Thu Sep 04, 2003 at 08:07:38 PM EST

Those twin boys in Arizona will...learn to talk
Their progress will be interesting.

I've been looking out for a story like this for a long time. There have been plenty of "wild child" stories over the years. It seems that in each case the child is unable to learn a language beyond a certain point in life. But what I've always wondered is whether or not, when two kids are "wild" together, they spontaneously develop any kind of communication at all. I look forward to seeing the papers published by psychologists and linguistsdocumenting their current abilities and future progress.

--
The Definite Article

Indeed. (5.00 / 3) (#124)
by Alarmist on Fri Sep 05, 2003 at 05:42:27 PM EST

There are a handful of documented cases of twins developing idioglossia, which is usually a very distorted version of the snippets of speech they pick up from adults.

The human brain seems to be wired for language by default; it is likely that two or more who are otherwise isolated will develop a language of their own as necessity arises.

A list of recorded cases of feral children can be found here, along with summaries of their condition and development.

[ Parent ]

Wild children (5.00 / 1) (#164)
by levesque on Sat Sep 06, 2003 at 09:58:26 PM EST

It seems that in each case the child is unable to learn a language beyond a certain point in life

What impressed me with most of these cases was the teaching environment, it seemed to me that any chance of development was mostly negated by the clinical environment and the inadvertent emotional pressure rather than support placed on the children.

[ Parent ]

Are you still in your teens? [nt] (3.58 / 12) (#28)
by Stick on Thu Sep 04, 2003 at 08:15:16 PM EST




---
Stick, thine posts bring light to mine eyes, tingles to my loins. Yea, each moment I sit, my monitor before me, waiting, yearning, needing your prose to make the moment complete. - Joh3n
I guarantee he is. [nt] (3.50 / 6) (#34)
by porkchop_d_clown on Thu Sep 04, 2003 at 08:24:55 PM EST


--
Monkey in the middle of a metal detector... Do you have yesterday's time?


[ Parent ]
now now .. (4.00 / 3) (#59)
by davedean on Thu Sep 04, 2003 at 09:10:09 PM EST

dont go getting all sexist.

she's probably really hot, too.

-Dave
--
Dave Dean
Google loves me again! New Formula!
[ Parent ]

Easy way to find out. (3.40 / 5) (#63)
by ObviousTroll on Thu Sep 04, 2003 at 09:33:58 PM EST

Ask him how big his tits are. If he tells you their huge, he's a guy. If he gets all huffy, he's a girl.


Somewhere in America / There's a street named after my dad / And the home we never had.


[ Parent ]
Perhaps you should read a book (4.18 / 11) (#33)
by porkchop_d_clown on Thu Sep 04, 2003 at 08:21:55 PM EST

say, on developmental psychology?

Perhaps then you will understand why it is important to place restrictions on children. Giving a 3 year old the same freedoms as a 15 year old is as negligent and abusive as treating a 15 year old like a 3 year old.


--
Monkey in the middle of a metal detector... Do you have yesterday's time?


read some books yourself (4.50 / 6) (#35)
by KPalicz on Thu Sep 04, 2003 at 08:28:58 PM EST

here are a few to start with:
How Children Learn - John Holt
How Children Fail - John Holt
Birthrights - Richard Farson
Framing Youth - Mike Males
Dumbing Us Down - John Taylor Gatto
Escape From Childhood - John Holt
An American Gulag - Alexia Parks
Summerhill - A.S. Neil

And if you are so confident in behavioral studies, do you believe in the "proven science" backing up the following claims?

"He, the Negro, is but a grown up child, and must be governed as a child...The master occupies toward him the place of parent or guardian." - George Fitzhugh, "The Universal Law of Slavery," 1857, Virginia lawyer and advocate of slavery

"Women preserves the infantile type physically, mentally and morally, woman is a kind of adult child." - J. McGrigor Allan, anthropologist, "On the Real Differences in the Minds of Men and Women," Journal of the Anthropological Society, Vol. 7, page 210, 1869

"Women represent the most inferior forms of human evolution and are closer to children and savages than to an adult, civilized man." - Gustave Le Bon, "The Crowd," 1895, scientist and a founder of collective behavior and social psychology fields

Science is a product of what biases the scientists bring to the table.  Wait a few years and the books you are reading will be disproven.

[ Parent ]

Bonus points! (5.00 / 1) (#37)
by porkchop_d_clown on Thu Sep 04, 2003 at 08:33:04 PM EST

Wow! You've learned how to google. I'm so proud.

On the other hand, those strawmen you added after the book list need work. Prove to me there's a correlation between the mental abilities of adult women and negros and the mental abilities of a 6 year old.

Go ahead. I dare you.


--
Monkey in the middle of a metal detector... Do you have yesterday's time?


[ Parent ]
thats my point (2.66 / 3) (#40)
by KPalicz on Thu Sep 04, 2003 at 08:38:01 PM EST

thats my point, idiot.  Scientists are as biased and biggoted as regular people.  Racists back in the 19th century "proved" that Blacks were inferior to whites.  Just like ageists of the 21st century "prove" youth are inferior to adults.

Its all junk science.  

[ Parent ]

No, it's not your point. (3.66 / 3) (#43)
by porkchop_d_clown on Thu Sep 04, 2003 at 08:40:59 PM EST

YOUR point is that there's no difference between racism and sexism and child rearing.

MY point is that there is no connection between the developmental restrictions placed on children and your strawmen.

Who, exactly is the idiot here. Besides, isn't this a school night? Don't you have homework you should be doing?


--
Monkey in the middle of a metal detector... Do you have yesterday's time?


[ Parent ]
Reminds me (5.00 / 1) (#161)
by levesque on Sat Sep 06, 2003 at 09:45:51 PM EST

No, it's not your point. YOUR point is...

Reminds how annoying I find it when people tell others what they are meaning or trying to say.

When I was young this was worse than being beaten, at least that was clear, but the branding of my intentions was insidious and had the effect of grinding away at my sanity.

[ Parent ]

I'm confused.... (5.00 / 3) (#65)
by thefirelane on Thu Sep 04, 2003 at 10:21:43 PM EST

So, are you saying that at no point it is morally ok for a parent to deny a child of their wish to do anything?

It sounds like you are trying to make this point, which is pretty tough to defend. Are you trying to say that a curfew and a metal cage are morally equivalent? If so, please reply as I would like to continue this discussion


---Lane

-
Prube.com: Like K5, but with less point.
[ Parent ]
Exactly. (5.00 / 2) (#72)
by porkchop_d_clown on Thu Sep 04, 2003 at 10:59:04 PM EST

Not only does he think choosing food for your child is abuse, apparently he thinks adulthood is a happy land where no one can tell you what to do.

Boy does *he* have a surprise coming.


--
Monkey in the middle of a metal detector... Do you have yesterday's time?


[ Parent ]
I didn't want to say this, but.... (4.00 / 4) (#77)
by thefirelane on Thu Sep 04, 2003 at 11:14:54 PM EST

The most ironic thing about the whole thing is that the author completely negates his own point. This is because in his argument he displays such a specific kind of hubris that it could only have come from someone in their teenage years. It is because of this exact attitude that parents are most needed during these years.


This is not to discourage the author from replying however. Merely saying "you don't understand, kid" isn't the correct method to deal with any line of thought. It only entrenches both sides of an argument.

That is why I sincerely hope the author takes up my offer to engage in a debate with me, as I hope to lead him down a path that might show the logic behind my (and others) opinions.


---Lane

-
Prube.com: Like K5, but with less point.
[ Parent ]
my age (5.00 / 1) (#158)
by KPalicz on Sat Sep 06, 2003 at 08:59:59 PM EST


It is both funny and offensive how in every debate I get into regarding Youth Rights issues, the first stab at me is to guess I have a young age and discount my words based on that.

Your attempts to do so are both irrelevant and wrong.  My age has no bearing here, and you have no clue as to how old I am in the first place.  Instead you (and this is a general 'you') hide behind your accusation as if it lends you moral superiority.  Well forget it.  If I were 12 and you 80 would my words have any less weight?  Or if I were 80 and you 12, would it make any difference?  No it wouldn't.

This kind of arguing is petty and ageist.

[ Parent ]

Giveaway (5.00 / 1) (#203)
by esrever on Tue Sep 09, 2003 at 06:02:48 PM EST

This kind of arguing is petty and ageist.
I think this kind of gives away the game as far as mindset and worldview. Let's take this 'ageist' example and highlight it appropriately:
The law makes plenty of distinctions denying children things based on age; for example, it prevents children from having sex before a certain age *for their own good*. You show me that this is not a valid application of discrimination and I'll show you a member of NAMBLA.
Or a second example, the law prevents children from driving a car at whatever age they want both *for their own good* and *for the general good of society around them*. You show me one valid reason that I should acqueisce to my four year old's wishes to drive my car, and I will show someone in the mould of the parents whose children recently decided to go outside and shoot some cars.

Children need guidance, and need boundaries, and *often* it *is* for their own good. How one *puts this* to them, is, however, another matter. Treating your children with respect is an entirely different thing to allowing them to take whatever actions they feel like.
Cheers,

Audit NTFS permissions on Windows
[ Parent ]
What? (2.66 / 3) (#36)
by handslikesnakes on Thu Sep 04, 2003 at 08:31:12 PM EST

Giving a 3 year old the same freedoms as a 15 year old is as negligent and abusive as treating a 15 year old like a 3 year old.

Maybe I'm confused... You mean like the right to come out of the closet?



[ Parent ]
So, pay attention then. (5.00 / 7) (#41)
by porkchop_d_clown on Thu Sep 04, 2003 at 08:38:29 PM EST

He conflated abuse with the normal restrictions a parent places on a child and blames them both on a "lack of respect".

If I let my kids eat only what they chose, they would live on macaroni and cheese, and pop-tarts. Yeah, their preferences are much more important than actually teaching them a proper diet and appreciation of a variety of foods.


--
Monkey in the middle of a metal detector... Do you have yesterday's time?


[ Parent ]
you are wrong (3.00 / 3) (#44)
by KPalicz on Thu Sep 04, 2003 at 08:41:16 PM EST

how on earth do you expect your children to learn if they are not allowed to decide for themselves?  

You can't force feed responsibility.

[ Parent ]

Wrong. Please play again. (5.00 / 2) (#47)
by porkchop_d_clown on Thu Sep 04, 2003 at 08:47:47 PM EST

If you had actually read a book on actual brain development, or anything that seriously tackled learning, or even if you actually respected children enough to consider them to be individuals instead of an undifferentiated mass, you would realize that a parent actually monitors their child's development, and expands that child's horizons - sometimes against the child's wishes - as the need, opportunity and ability arise.


--
Monkey in the middle of a metal detector... Do you have yesterday's time?


[ Parent ]
I personally had mixed feelings about the article (5.00 / 4) (#67)
by nuntius on Thu Sep 04, 2003 at 10:41:19 PM EST

but still voted it +1...

Anyway, its always good to wake up the populace to the evil which lurks among us; this article did a good job with that.  However, as you point out, the modern trend is to attack parents who discipline their children...  So I'm stuck in the middle saying discipline is good, torture is bad, and children are not adults.

Let me also say that people who can't understand and accept both sides are probably trolling.

[ Parent ]

I Agree, and Disagreed, and gave it a -1.. (5.00 / 2) (#93)
by Chiron on Fri Sep 05, 2003 at 06:56:57 AM EST

I definately believe there is a middle road in disciplining a child; you must allow them some latitude, to allow them to develop the decision-making skills that should serve them for their adult lives; that stifling them can prevent them from ever having an independant life of their own. It is tragic that some parents consider their own convenience first, and their child's welfare falls much lower in their priorities.

Having said that, I found the article to have little value, except as a match to light a powderkeg of derision, poorly considered opinions and name-calling. It had holes in its logic large enough to drive trucks through, made dangerous generalisms, and was, overall, a sophomoric rant. Therefore, I moderated it down.



[ Parent ]
My heart pumps purple piss (3.66 / 3) (#55)
by rho on Thu Sep 04, 2003 at 08:59:48 PM EST

Child abuse is bad, mmkay?

I didn't even click on your "widespread and severe" link, because it's probably bogus. Numbers can lie with a straight face that no human can manage. Piffle.


"The thought of two thousand people munching celery at the same time [horrifies] me." --G.B. Shaw

This is a clever troll (3.75 / 4) (#58)
by Bill Melater on Thu Sep 04, 2003 at 09:09:19 PM EST

The opening theme is that "child abuse is bad". He cites an egregious recent case of child neglect. He then casually equates imposing any sort of rules on children as abuse.

So my telling my kid he can't spend all day watching Cartoon Network is equivalent to attaching elctrodes to his nuts.

I nodded my head when I first skimmed through this (yeah, I'm a skimmer) ... "Gee, child abuse is bad.". Then I read it again and I realized that his parents must have just grounded him for something.



ouchies! (5.00 / 2) (#60)
by mjfgates on Thu Sep 04, 2003 at 09:13:06 PM EST

So, would letting the kids play Cartoon Network all day long be equivalent to wiring up my nuts?

[ Parent ]
It depends. (5.00 / 2) (#62)
by ObviousTroll on Thu Sep 04, 2003 at 09:23:02 PM EST

are they watching Toonami or Ed, Edd and Eddy?

Somewhere in America / There's a street named after my dad / And the home we never had.


[ Parent ]
Come on. (4.77 / 9) (#64)
by kitten on Thu Sep 04, 2003 at 10:19:00 PM EST

Whether those controls involve roach infested cages, curfews, or censorship it makes no difference.

Give me a break. Roach-infested cages are one thing; curfews are completely different. I don't think I was being abused when my mother told me to be home by ten when I went to a friend's house when I was nine.

Censorship? Would that be like telling your child not to call his sister a fat idiot? Or telling your ten year old that no, he can't watch R-rated movies? Are these children being abused?

They are taught not only to subject their will to authority, but that they have no freewill to begin with, and the authorities must control their behavior to protect them from harm.

You could have made this into an interesting comparision to the government, where victimless laws are created (drug laws, most sex laws, etc) "for your own good", or a variety of other things, but instead you careened down a bizarre path of essentially stating that any parenting is a bad thing if it involves telling your kid to quit hitting his brother or to eat her dinner and quit whining about the broccoli.
mirrorshades radio - darkwave, synthpop, industrial, futurepop.
that was my point (4.00 / 5) (#66)
by KPalicz on Thu Sep 04, 2003 at 10:35:12 PM EST


Perhaps I should have given more examples, but the ways the government is parralelling parents in doing things "for your own good" was my point.  

[ Parent ]
But what is your solution? (4.85 / 7) (#68)
by livus on Thu Sep 04, 2003 at 10:41:41 PM EST

You imply all through this article that you want some sort of positive social change but don't give any suggestions or hints as to what that change might be.

Except for some comments you make about "respect", but at no time do you explain what the concrete form of such respect would entail.

I was left with the impression that you equate any type of control of any children by adults with totalitarian fascism. Is that true?

Given that your example case is inhumane treatment of toddlers by people with a seemingly very peciliar understanding of cause and effect, I am left wondering whether you mean us to infer that you think any and all control of toddlers by adults is oppressive fascism.

I would be very interested to know if you differentiate at all between your own extreme example and this example of mine, at the other end of the spectrum:

say, a toddler is about o step out into the road in the path of an oncoming truck. The toddler has no idea that to do so will result in his death or severe injury. A parent puts out an arm and restrains the toddler as the truck passes.

If you do, why? If not, why not? I'm not trolling, I just really can't quite get what you are suggesting.

---
HIREZ substitute.
be concrete asshole, or shut up. - CTS
I guess I skipped school or something to drink on the internet? - lonelyhobo
I'd like to hope that any impression you got about us from internet forums was incorrect. - debillitatus
I consider myself trolled more or less just by visiting the site. HollyHopDrive

Respect is the Solution (3.80 / 5) (#71)
by KPalicz on Thu Sep 04, 2003 at 10:54:54 PM EST


Of course that would be alright.  The reason why?  Because you would do the same for an adult.  My solution is respect, equal respect for youth as for adults.

You respect your peers and would still step in to safe them from certain harm like stepping in front of a bus.  However would you force a fellow adult to eat all his broccili?  No.  Why?  Because you respect him.

Most adults I know do not eat healthy, but no one presumes to force them or tell them how to eat.  I ask for that same level of respect to people of all ages.

It will increase the quality of life for youth, and make them into better adults.  People learn through experience not lectures.  How can we expect people to learn if we do not give them a chance to make decisions on their own.  


[ Parent ]

Are you pro-child porn??? Pro child labor?? (4.66 / 6) (#73)
by livus on Thu Sep 04, 2003 at 11:05:52 PM EST

Because if you don't differentiate at all between a three year old and a 23 year old I can only concur that you must be.

An adult had an education of some sort, a larger vocabulary, a more developed body and a lot more experience. That is why we have no ethical responsibility to force him or her to eat broccoli or what have you -it's an informed choice.

A child, particularly a small one, lacks all this knowledge. He does not know for instance that a lack of iodine will give him goitre, that a lack of vitamin c will cause his developing teeth to fall out and his eyesight to deteriorate. In today's environment if the average child could eat whatever it wanted it would probably be a sick specimen.

I think you're either not very good at thinking things through, frm a particularly well off and sheltered upbringing, or just a tiny bit insane.

---
HIREZ substitute.
be concrete asshole, or shut up. - CTS
I guess I skipped school or something to drink on the internet? - lonelyhobo
I'd like to hope that any impression you got about us from internet forums was incorrect. - debillitatus
I consider myself trolled more or less just by visiting the site. HollyHopDrive

[ Parent ]

Child Porn, Respect And Freedom (5.00 / 1) (#97)
by freestylefiend on Fri Sep 05, 2003 at 09:14:32 AM EST

Are you pro-child porn??? Pro child labor??

Because if you don't differentiate at all between a three year old and a 23 year old I can only concur that you must be.

If, by child porn, you mean that stuff which shows actual rape, then there is no parallel between child porn and the adult variety. This kind of child porn is prohibited by the line that the story takes, so your objection on the grounds of porn is not good.

If, OTOH, you mean material that shows child nudity, consentual teen sex or simulated abuse, then the child-respect view will only allow this if it allows such material when no children are involved. Some of the objections to (arguably) non-abusive child porn also apply to adult porn. There are additional reasons to disapprove of child porn on the grounds of immaturity, but not all objections are on this basis. It would be easy to make this case if you oppose all porn, but then it would not apply to the argument for treating children with the same respect as adults.

As a(n extreme) freedom of speech advocate, I believe that only the act of abuse should be prevented, not the portrayal.

[ Parent ]

If you consider them responsible... (5.00 / 2) (#107)
by zakalwe on Fri Sep 05, 2003 at 11:32:44 AM EST

I think the point was that if you allow child the same responsibilities as an adult, you are allowing them the ability to choose all sorts of things, including sex. If the child wants to go off with the strange man offering sweets, and nothing you say about the dangers dissuades them, are you seriously not going to try to prevent it up to an including forcibly restraining them? Don't you think that maybe in this case you do know better than the child, enough to override their wishes? If you knew that their very life is in danger through a choice, are you really going to let them go through with it when they aren't capable of understanding the risks?

[ Parent ]
Exactly my point. Thank you n/t (5.00 / 1) (#132)
by livus on Sat Sep 06, 2003 at 12:05:37 AM EST



---
HIREZ substitute.
be concrete asshole, or shut up. - CTS
I guess I skipped school or something to drink on the internet? - lonelyhobo
I'd like to hope that any impression you got about us from internet forums was incorrect. - debillitatus
I consider myself trolled more or less just by visiting the site. HollyHopDrive

[ Parent ]
yes & no and my solution (5.00 / 1) (#156)
by KPalicz on Sat Sep 06, 2003 at 08:24:27 PM EST


I would certainly try if I knew they would be in danger.  The problem however involves what will happen when I'm not there?

It is unlikely a parent will be present for 100% of their child's life.  In fact is is physically impossible.  So if your child is absolutely determined to run off with a sexual predator she will probably find a way to do so when you are not around.  The key is to raise them in such a way that they'd be able to develop their own sense of responsibility to the point where they would do the right thing on their own.

John Stossel from ABC's 20/20 had a parenting segment a few weeks back that discussed this point exactly.  The show profiled parents who were at their wits end running after their young children, constantly yelling at them and controlling them.  The parents were exhausted from all this and still were unable to get their son to behave.  

The child development expert, who happened to be Quarterback Drew Bledsoe's dad, told the parents what I said above.  That if you try to control you children at every opportunity they'll have no chance to learn things for their own and they won't be responsible when parents aren't around.  

This was shown quite strikingly on camera when the mother was making dinner and stepped out of the kitchen very briefly, the young son then climbed up on the kitchen counter and grabbed a huge carving knife.  Seeing the video played back the mother nearly fainted in shock.  The message is you can't be there to protect your children at every possible moment, so the key is to teach them how to behave responsibly when you are not around.  This takes respect and space.

My best friend is another example of this.  His step dad, while never physically abusive (much), raised him in the same hardass way many of the posters in this forum advocate.  He gave my friend no freedom whatsoever, he was expected to come home straight after school and not leave the house again except to go to work or school the next morning.  He even had to get permission to hang out with me *at school* and I had to be interviewed by his step-dad.  He was controlled and never had a chance to learn responsibility for himself.

The consequence of this is once he was finally out of the house he went wild.  He never built up internal restraints, he had them always imposed on him from the outside.  Once those external restraints were removed he had no limits and no sense of responsibility.  He got into hard drugs and crime.  He is currently serving a 3-18 year term in prison for running a Meth Lab.

If he was given more choice and freedom while growing up I'd like to think he wouldn't be there.

[ Parent ]

Exactly (5.00 / 1) (#204)
by esrever on Tue Sep 09, 2003 at 07:33:02 PM EST

So the problem wasn't in fact that the parent stopped the child from doing something. The problem was the *manner* in which the parent stopped them. Interestingly, the argument that you use above highlights the untenable position that your argument is in; if the child 'went wild' as an adult (and obviously you consider this to be a bad result, as you use it as the punchline of your argument), then *how much worse* would it have been had he been allowed to "go wild" as a child?

The problem is not one of restraining a child's wishes being bad; the problem is one of communicating this restraint effectively to the child.

Audit NTFS permissions on Windows
[ Parent ]
wtf, nambla is everywhere these days (5.00 / 1) (#133)
by livus on Sat Sep 06, 2003 at 12:18:48 AM EST

Are you suggesting that all sex with children that doesn't involve actual rape is okay?

Because if you take everyone's consent as valid and actionable, even a two year old's, than you are.

---
HIREZ substitute.
be concrete asshole, or shut up. - CTS
I guess I skipped school or something to drink on the internet? - lonelyhobo
I'd like to hope that any impression you got about us from internet forums was incorrect. - debillitatus
I consider myself trolled more or less just by visiting the site. HollyHopDrive

[ Parent ]

I agree in principle... (5.00 / 5) (#105)
by jmzero on Fri Sep 05, 2003 at 10:48:33 AM EST

...but I don't think you're being realistic, and I don't think you remember the nature of being 4 years old.

Whether you're trolling or not, I think there's real questions here, and here's my two bits:

Children are not little adults.  A 4 year old can occasionally be reasoned with, but not really.  

While it might be entertaining to watch, you would not convince any of my 4 year old nieces to brush their teeth: not with threats of plaque nor warnings about developing bad habits.  How can they be expected to be responsible for their teeth until they understand what their choices mean?  Giving a child too much responsibility for their own welfare, in terms of choice, is abuse.  

At birth, you are 100% responsible for your child's welfare.  As the years go on, a good parent will pass that responsibility to their child as they are mature enough to handle it.

Does this open the door to abuse?  No.  That door was always and will always be open to parents.

Parents have a million decisions to make that affect their children's welfare, and their own.  A parent who has not given a child enough responsibility and freedom will have made a poor choice.  So will a parent who has passed on too much.  Either way, a bad enough choice will constitute abuse.

.
"Let's not stir that bag of worms." - my lovely wife
[ Parent ]

Misconstruction of Respect (4.33 / 3) (#122)
by virg on Fri Sep 05, 2003 at 05:15:19 PM EST

> You respect your peers and would still step in to safe them from certain harm like stepping in front of a bus. However would you force a fellow adult to eat all his broccili? No. Why? Because you respect him.

Incorrect assesment of respect. There's a problem with your extension, which is part and parcel of why children don't enjoy the same freedoms as adults. That problem is responsibility. The reason I don't tell my adult peer to eat all of his broccoli is that I am not personally, societally and legally responsible for his well being. I'm not going to be paying his doctor bills if he falls ill from malnutrition. The authorities are not going to take my peer away from me, or fine me, or incarcerate me for neglecting his well being, because he's an adult, and therefore has the experience necessary to understand what it takes to protect his health. In trade for the responsibility, society sees fit to give me authority over the person in my charge. I tell my child to do things because he's young enough not to understand things that an adult reasonably would. I forbid him to play in the street, something I would never presume to tell my wife, because he doesn't recognize the danger. As he ages, he'll learn what those dangers are, and my restriction will start to deteriorate (from "no playing in the street" to "look both ways" to "watch for cars while you ride your bike") as he is better able to comprehend the consequences of his decision. Your call for universal respect ignores the concept that my placing rules on him that I wouldn't place on an adult is required by the simple fact of his lack of world experience. I don't use that particular phrase with him, but in many cases I do know better than he does what is best for him, and until he has amassed enough real world experience to make fully informed decisions as to which risks he is willing to accept, it's my place to restrict his freedom to protect him from the dangers he doesn't know about.

Virg
"Imagine (it won't be hard) that most people would prefer seeing Carrot Top beaten to death with a bag of walnuts." - Jmzero
[ Parent ]
The difference is (5.00 / 1) (#167)
by motherlode on Sat Sep 06, 2003 at 11:44:07 PM EST

that children's bodies are still growing and someone needs to see to it that their nutritional needs are being met. An adult can eat all the crap they want; their bodies, for better or worse, are already formed.

Someone also has to cook for the child unless you would turn a 3 year old loose in the kitchen with knives and a hot stove? The bottom line is that a young child is not capable of performing adult tasks like cooking and shopping. It's a question of physical development. You can certainly involve them in the decision making process by giving an either/or choice, i.e. "you can have broccoli or carrots but not just oreos." It's not disrespectful or bad parenting, just common sense.

[ Parent ]

False assumptions (5.00 / 1) (#171)
by drsmithy on Sun Sep 07, 2003 at 04:02:30 AM EST

Of course that would be alright. The reason why? Because you would do the same for an adult. My solution is respect, equal respect for youth as for adults.

You have (at least) two massive false assumptions underlying your reasoning.

Number one is that children possess the same levels of knowledge, experience and cognitive ability as adults.

Number two is that of legal responsibility. A child does not have the same level of legal responsibility for their actions as an adult. An adult (or at least most adults) have no legal responsibility for the actions of other adults - they most certainly *do* for their own (and often other people's) children.

Your solution of "respect" is not a satisfactory answer to the extremely important issues these two assumptions raise. You cannot "respect" a five year old's decision to pretend to be superman by jumping off the roof, because they do not understand the consequences of falling two stories onto a concrete driveway.

[ Parent ]

Wow you guys would get really mad (4.16 / 6) (#74)
by omghax on Thu Sep 04, 2003 at 11:07:19 PM EST

if you saw what I had in MY closet.

My Article (3.44 / 9) (#75)
by KPalicz on Thu Sep 04, 2003 at 11:08:27 PM EST

I am saddened to see that very few people have taken half a moment to consider the article I have written with an open mind.  

This article is focusing on a progression of ideas.  Demonstrating that when a person (such as the many posting here) who have so little care, respect, and concern for the lives and will of youth they will justify any abuse.  Hardly anyone is really addressing the bulk of this paper, instead just jumping ahead to be the next one to demonstrate your anti-youth bigotry.  

When you say "my kid my rules, I know best he will do what I say or else" you make the exact same case and justification as those who throw their children in cages.  I am not comparing the severity or methods at all, and I stated that in my paper, but the principle that leads to one leads to both.  The exact same justification.  This isn't my opinion this is right out of the mouth of the mother.  

Instead of telling me how stupid kids are you should examine your own conscious and how you can make the exact same case and argument as the monsters who murder and brutalize their children.  

Finally one would hope everyone on here is mature enough to put their own personal beliefs aside and rate an article impassionately.  I see posters unable to differentiate "i disagree" from "this is a bad article" they are not the same and should not be treated the same in voting.

An open mind? (5.00 / 5) (#78)
by porkchop_d_clown on Thu Sep 04, 2003 at 11:15:50 PM EST

No. An open mind is one willing to consider a variety of view points. An open mind does not assert, a priori, that two different phenomena are in fact identical.


--
Monkey in the middle of a metal detector... Do you have yesterday's time?


[ Parent ]
Open Wide... (5.00 / 2) (#115)
by Pluto on Fri Sep 05, 2003 at 01:32:14 PM EST

An open mind is one willing to consider a variety of view points.

An open mind does not assert, a priori, that two different phenomena are in fact identical.

Actually, your first sentence is an argument against your second sentence, negating both. Don't you hate it when that happens?

In reality, both of your sentences describe different processes of the "open mind." Your second sentence is, in fact, the thought-experiment at the foundation of quantum mechanics, and more often than not, theoretical physics.
_______________________________________
Burgeoning technologies require outlaw zones... deliberately unsupervised playgrounds for technology itself. -- William Gibson
[ Parent ]

Oh, no. (5.00 / 3) (#79)
by strlen on Thu Sep 04, 2003 at 11:36:17 PM EST

Discrimination against youth? I didnt even realize you were wrong.

Disagree? No one suppots child abuse, and I don't really like the logic of nanny-style "for your own good" justification either (though, mostly when it comes to the government.. parents are and should be allowed to make decisions of what's best for their children.. to a degree, obviously; there's a  J.S. Mill essay on the topic, but I can't find the URL at the moment).

But claiming that not-toilet training children, locking them in a cage, and/or electric shock to the genitals is somehow similar to a parent decided their kids should be home at 9PM, is at most ridiculous. Or even claiming those parents had t Or claiming that a kid who's not allowed to view porn (not particularly wise decision, but not necesserily something incredibly horrible) is like Winston Smith is just horrible writing style.

As I said, your problem is the over-wide ad-absurdum. It's not that I have a problem with your conclusion, I have a BIG problem with the incredible logic leap you make.

--
[T]he strongest man in the world is he who stands most alone. - Henrik Ibsen.
[ Parent ]

Error in first paragraph (5.00 / 1) (#80)
by strlen on Thu Sep 04, 2003 at 11:36:55 PM EST

s/were wrong/were young/

--
[T]he strongest man in the world is he who stands most alone. - Henrik Ibsen.
[ Parent ]
not a wide leap (5.00 / 2) (#81)
by KPalicz on Thu Sep 04, 2003 at 11:47:21 PM EST

I wasn't comparing the substance or severity of the different examples I cited.  I was comparing the reasoning behind it, and I made that the focus of this article.  The "for your own good" reason is common to all interactions with youth, from the severe (cages) to the more mundane (meal choices).  I'm not making a comparision between the two on degree, only on principle.  

[ Parent ]

So... what are you saying then? (5.00 / 6) (#82)
by thefirelane on Fri Sep 05, 2003 at 12:15:17 AM EST

Isn't that like saying:

Government officials say that are adding flouride to the populations water "for the health of society"... but isn't that the same justification the Nazis used when killing the Jews?

Are you saying that because reasoning has been used incorrectly for one bad purpose, that reasoning then becomes invalid for justifying any other action?


---Lane

-
Prube.com: Like K5, but with less point.
[ Parent ]
Thank you (5.00 / 1) (#85)
by strlen on Fri Sep 05, 2003 at 12:50:08 AM EST

For stating my point precisely. Just because someone says they're using same reasoning, doesn't mean they are, and if they are, that can also mean they're criminally mentally insane (and any parent that would torture their children is, and should be treated as a pedophile). So "some parents abuse their kids" does not under any circumstances no parents should have any authority.

--
[T]he strongest man in the world is he who stands most alone. - Henrik Ibsen.
[ Parent ]
Pedophile (5.00 / 2) (#86)
by xL on Fri Sep 05, 2003 at 03:53:45 AM EST

If you look at the literal meaning of the word, it would be a strange word for someone who tortures children, unless if you buy into the validity of the "it was done out of love" argument.

[ Parent ]
off topic: joke (5.00 / 2) (#102)
by Viliam Bur on Fri Sep 05, 2003 at 09:51:34 AM EST

Question: "What is the difference between pedagog and pedophile?"

Answer: "The pedophile loves children."

[ Parent ]

"criminally insane" (5.00 / 2) (#95)
by TheModerate on Fri Sep 05, 2003 at 07:48:34 AM EST

I like this word. It sounds much better than "sub-human" or "possessed by Satan." It even has the benefit of being all scientific-sounding.

And if you're not careful after using language like this you just might forget that we are all apes afterall. We don't even have the same form of insanity...

"What a man has in himself is, then, the chief element in his happiness." -- Schopenhauer
[ Parent ]

For your own good (5.00 / 1) (#169)
by drsmithy on Sun Sep 07, 2003 at 03:45:39 AM EST

The "for your own good" reason is common to all interactions with youth, from the severe (cages) to the more mundane (meal choices).

Firstly, that principle is not limited to interactions with youth.

Secondly, it exists for a reason - it's often true. For example, there's a very good reason why your parents tell you not to stick knives into power sockets "for you own good" - because they know it's dangerous and you don't.

I have to agree with someone who posted further up. Implying that since some particularly poor parents take "because it's for your own good" to a psychotic and abusive extent does not change the fact that - particularly in a child's early years - there are many things that need to be done for the child's "own good".

The reasoning is sound. It is the extent and motives that mark the difference between good parenting and child abuse.

[ Parent ]

0 for liberal, pinko commie propaganda /nt (3.00 / 2) (#118)
by President George Bush on Fri Sep 05, 2003 at 03:16:30 PM EST



[ Parent ]
Two mistakes (5.00 / 2) (#150)
by Eloquence on Sat Sep 06, 2003 at 04:00:58 PM EST

First: People don't abuse or humiliate their children because of rational arguments. They do so because they themselves have grown up in a certain way. The rational arguments come later. Only very few can transcend their own emotional programming. To fix future parents, you need to fix present children. But how do you do that when the present parents grew up in the same way? The idea that education alone, information -- not emotion -- will somehow enable people to "do the right thing" is fallacious. You can exercise this kind of control if you control the mass media, because then you can use their authority to amplify your message. But you don't. So aim lower.

You wrote in one of your comments that you advocate the right of children to divorce their caretakers. That's a good idea but curiously missing from the article itself. If you want to make a difference, advocate that solution and justify it with science and emotional anecdotal evidence. Then you need to convince lawmakers, not parents, to do the right thing. Which, ironically, may be easier. Bonus points if you can use net media like K5 to get people to support such legal changes.

Second: Discussions on K5 live from dissent. People post if they disagree. Few people will post if they agree. Don't take this to mean that everyone thinks you are wrong.
--
Copyright law is bad: infoAnarchy · Pleasure is good: Origins of Violence
spread the word!
[ Parent ]

YouthRights.org (5.00 / 1) (#154)
by KPalicz on Sat Sep 06, 2003 at 06:30:25 PM EST

I didn't mention emancipation in the article cause I just wanted to make a moral case for now. Before laws can be changed, people's minds need to be changed and that was what I was going for with this. Just encouraging people to rethink their relationships with children, and consider treating them with more resepct.

As for the more legal approach of actual political change I encourage you to check out the National Youth Rights Association. This is the non-profit that I lead. We have chapters around the country, and many good campaigns and successes under our belt. Getting our ideas out there is one large responsibility, and thats what I wanted this article to accomplish.

I encourage you to check out our website.

[ Parent ]
Are you sure? (4.66 / 3) (#76)
by poltroon on Thu Sep 04, 2003 at 11:11:25 PM EST

Abuse, from the mildest control of one's life to the most horrific damage, is always justified by the claim "its for your own good."
Do you believe that there are no sadists or psychos or addicts or plain old idiots in the world who happened to turn into parents? That is, people who'd never bother with your supposedly universal claim. Or, they'd even weepily ask for forgiveness after doing something nasty to you.

Surely the explanation thats wrong .... (4.50 / 4) (#88)
by craigtubby on Fri Sep 05, 2003 at 04:50:06 AM EST

I'm not exactly sure what you are arguing about.  Is it the explanation "for your own good" thats the problem?

Lets take your resteraunt meal example, Your friend turns to you and says "George, your a fat basterd, the doctor told you that you needed to cut down else you will die of a heart attack - I know I shouldn't have presumed to order, but I value your friendship and would like that friendship for a long time, please have the salad"

As another example "Paul, stay away from the buring hot fire" "Why?" "Its for your own good" ("You'll get burnt and have to go to hospital")

Surely it's the explanation thats wrong, rather than the restriction of choice.

try to make ends meet, you're a slave to money, then you die.

* Webpage *

It's the restriction of choice (5.00 / 2) (#130)
by localroger on Fri Sep 05, 2003 at 10:24:30 PM EST

The author's point is that the choice is pre-made for you and explained post-facto, "for your own good." You don't get a chance to challenge this choice that's been made for you. You don't even get asked. You don't get an apology, because, why should we apologize for helping you? It's a pervasive attitude which, as the author suggests, erases your humanity.

What will people of the future think of us? Will they say, as Roger Williams said of some of the Massachusetts Indians, that we were wolves with the min
[ Parent ]
I'm Going to be blunt (3.72 / 18) (#91)
by creo on Fri Sep 05, 2003 at 06:48:49 AM EST

You obviously have no children and thus have absolutely no idea of how offensive it is to equate me denying my child another scoop of icecream to a person who mutilates their child.

NO FUCKING IDEA OF HOW ANGRY this makes me

I'm going to let you in on a few home truths little boy. When that little squalling bundle turns up in your hands you have no idea of how your life has changed. This little bag of meat has no morals, no concept of right or wrong.

Being a parent is being a teacher, provider and friend all in one package. So how do you teach? Well, you introduce the concepts of boundaries, rules, knowledge. After a time the bag of meat expands and starts to become a little independent - it questions your rules, it complains, it begins to learn on its own. One day, it decides it knows better and it leaves. Thats how life works.

When you have kids I would love you to follow your own advice - except for the fact it would completely fuck them up. If you see a whiny, bratty kid who is a selfish bullying turd, I can almost guarentee that it's lack of boundries that has caused the child to be that way.

- 1 for calling me a child abuser.

Fuck You
Creo

even though some folks weren't parents (4.00 / 7) (#106)
by phred on Fri Sep 05, 2003 at 11:27:05 AM EST

they were children.

Given your language, your hostility, I can already guess that your kids are probably going to be a miserable pack'o'losers, I'll buy more locks for my doors because of your post. See how easy it is for me to completely judge you?

When we deny the intelligence, competence, and individuality of a person we commit a grave harm.

Why you couldn't reconcile your own parental skills with this statement or otherwise reflect thoughtfully on the complexity of human nature and childrearing could be an entire thread in itself, but suffice to say your hostility to a persons writing about society hints of trouble in your own house.

I know of parents who couldn't take the time to explain life to their children, and its this sad disrespect for the humanity of all ages that makes this world what it is today. Too sad.

[ Parent ]

A little sensitive, aren't we? (3.25 / 4) (#129)
by localroger on Fri Sep 05, 2003 at 10:21:03 PM EST

to equate me denying my child another scoop of icecream to a person who mutilates their child

Well I read the article pretty closely and I didn't get that sense from it. The people quoted were not denying their children a scoop of ice cream, they were torturing their children. There is an implicit link but you'd be at the opposite far end of the scale the author is exploring.

So why did you fly off the handle about it, exactly?

NO FUCKING IDEA OF HOW ANGRY this makes me

Um, actually I have a pretty fucking good idea how fucking angry this might fucking make certain fucking people. Fuckingly speaking.

This little bag of meat has no morals, no concept of right or wrong.

Three words for you.

BAG. (pause) OF (pause) MEAT.

After a time the bag of meat expands and starts to become a little independent - it questions your rules, it complains, it begins to learn on its own.

IT. This is one of the most horrific sentences I have ever read. At least if you turn out to be a parent, that is. And I have written some pretty horrific shit myself.

For myself, I know I'm fucked up (a lot of psychological child abuse has something to do with that) but I responsibly kept out of the perpetuating-the-cycle game. What's your excuse?

What will people of the future think of us? Will they say, as Roger Williams said of some of the Massachusetts Indians, that we were wolves with the min
[ Parent ]

oh please, localroger (5.00 / 1) (#139)
by tzanger on Sat Sep 06, 2003 at 08:57:18 AM EST

I call my kids monster, bear and turkey.  Or sometimes weiners or other nonhuman words.  I actually think I'll add "bag of meat" to my repetoire.  I hardly see it as being offensive.

I'm also sure that creo's going for effect here, which is probably why I don't see it as offensive -- If someone called their children bags of meat in a psychological, "that's all they are" sense it would be disturbing.  creo's obviously not doing that, though.  He's using it literally -- people are bags of meat, when you come right down to it.  Would "pile o' atoms" be any more or less offensive?

Also with regard to the word 'it' -- what's wrong with it?  Would you prefer s/he or "the child" or some other "correct" word or phrase?  Perhaps it's my lack of ability to understand why you must be able to name phrase order and conjunctions and dangling participles, but creo again is trying to remove the human aspect from "a child" -- when something this huge comes into your life -- it changes all the rules.  Children are humans; creo's not detracting from that, IMO.

I dunno -- you and I have both been around here for quite some time.  As I mentioned at the start of this post, I'm a parent myself.  creo's right -- when a child comes into your life your life changes drastically.  Stylizing his stance shouldn't have made his point any less valid.

[ Parent ]

no no (3.00 / 2) (#143)
by Battle Troll on Sat Sep 06, 2003 at 12:12:59 PM EST

localroger knows that the child is always right. How can you go against that, you inhuman monster?
--
Skarphedinn was carrying the axe with which he had killed Thrainn Sigfusson and which he called 'Battle Troll.'
Njal's Saga, ca 1280 AD
[ Parent ]
i see nothing (5.00 / 1) (#189)
by werner on Mon Sep 08, 2003 at 12:03:29 PM EST

wrong with referring to a child as "it" until its gender has been clarified.

having said that, that's not even what the author does: i think you will find that in the offending sentence, "it" refers to "bag of meat". while germans and french folk may see a bag as being either male or female, that is not the case in english with its oh-so-easy natural genders.

bag is an "it". what is so horrifying about the sentence? that it is grammatically correct? does the correct agreement of pronoun and noun disturb you?

[ Parent ]

Re: You obviously have no children (5.00 / 1) (#174)
by Toshio on Sun Sep 07, 2003 at 02:07:57 PM EST

I don't have any children either. But judging from your comment:

NO FUCKING IDEA OF HOW ANGRY this makes me

and

Fuck You
Creo

I sure wouldn't want to be in the skin of your kids. While you do make a valid point, you make it in a way that, to me at least, screams "I'm abusive personality." It seems to me, that the comment you wrote lacks certain 'grown-up' qualities. It's nothing wrong with having the boundaries, but you don't go around enforcing them using the expletives.

- 1 for calling me a child abuser.

You are putting the words in your own mouth.

Thank you for your time.

---


--- To boldly invent more hot water ---
[ Parent ]
a misunderstanding (4.90 / 10) (#92)
by Timo Laine on Fri Sep 05, 2003 at 06:53:07 AM EST

I think most people misunderstand the matter. Maybe even the author does. The idea is not that there is no difference between horrible violence and not letting your children watch the television all day long.

Instead, I think that it is a responsibility of a parent (or any authority, really) to be able to argue for one's case. It's not an argument to say that "I know best, now do what I tell you to do." If you really are doing what you're doing for the child's own good, you should also be explain why you think that is the case. This would generate respect and trust between the parties, and also help the child to deal with things more critically later in life.

But I don't really think this has much to do with serious child abuse. If a person is deranged to begin with, he probably doesn't care much about reasoning or other people's rights.

it's not always easy (5.00 / 1) (#188)
by werner on Mon Sep 08, 2003 at 11:56:14 AM EST

to reason with a child. their intellect is under-developed and subordinate to their short-term desires.

i often thought it would've been better if my father had explained his edicts to me rather than say, "cos i said so" or "this is my house, and while you live in it, you will do as i say", but now i'm not sure if it would've helped. stubborn little bastard, i was. still am, but slightly reasonable with it now.

by all means, you should try to explain to your child why he/she must do x and not y, but don't expect him/her to understand or capitulate to logical argument. kids don't work that way.

as for child abusers, i think you're spot on. the saddest part is that abused children often turn into abusive parents.

[ Parent ]

Alice Miller on Hitler's childhood (4.83 / 6) (#94)
by MichaelCrawford on Fri Sep 05, 2003 at 07:43:39 AM EST

Funny you should talk about the phrase "For your own good".

A really good book to read is Alice Miller's For Your Own Good: Hidden Cruelty in Child-Rearing and the Roots of Violence.

She makes a pretty good case for explaining Hitler's adult psychopathology, by saying it was caused by abuse he received as a child.

I heard Gloria Steinem speak once when she was on a book signing tour. She asserted that if we all stopped beating our children, there wouldn't be wars anymore.


--

Live your fucking life. Sue someone on the Internet. Write a fucking music player. Like the great man Michael David Crawford has shown us all: Hard work, a strong will to stalk, and a few fries short of a happy meal goes a long way. -- bride of spidy


Alice Miller (5.00 / 1) (#96)
by KPalicz on Fri Sep 05, 2003 at 08:45:54 AM EST

Yea, I linked to her book on Amazon.

[ Parent ]

Why is it for their own good? (4.75 / 4) (#98)
by simul on Fri Sep 05, 2003 at 09:16:30 AM EST

When abusive parents say things are for "the childs own good", they often mean it... truely and wholly. They believe that only through ritual torture will the child learn a level of fear required to avoid life's harms.

In many ways, people around the world believe that failure to respect authority is the *worst* that can happen to a developing child. And that any punishment that is required to ingrain absolute repsect for authority is justified.

What's more... many seemingly respectable peolple, in your life, will agree with that fact that "fear of authority" is required to live life.

Of course these same people spend their time paradoxically worshiping sports heroes and televsion figures who, for the most part, have set aside their fears of ailure, success, authority, or anything other then their excellece in their sport, science and art.

Read this book - first 24 pages are free to browse - it rocks

Endless cycle (5.00 / 1) (#170)
by Josh A on Sun Sep 07, 2003 at 03:49:36 AM EST

This is how the sins of the father are visited upon the son. Thanks for bringing it up.

---
Thank God for Canada, if only because they annoy the Republicans so much. – Blarney


[ Parent ]
I am voting this down (4.60 / 10) (#99)
by daragh on Fri Sep 05, 2003 at 09:21:40 AM EST

It's for his own good.

PS there is abuse, yes, and obviously that's a terrible thing. But let a child do what it wants all of the time (which is implicit in your suggestion)? You have to set limits to acceptable behaviour at times. This sort of limited direction is necessary otherwise you end up with a spoilt child with a lot of awareness of what its "rights" are (I can do everything) because I'm allowed) and no idea about what its responsibilities (it's wrong to hit my friends).

PPS if you are a troll, it's the best one I've seen in a long time.

No work.

-1, buy an ad (4.50 / 2) (#103)
by kableh on Fri Sep 05, 2003 at 09:56:08 AM EST

Just kidding, sorta...

Yes, abuse happens. As for the statistics you quote about how many caregivers are reported to Social Services, how many of those cases ends in kids being place in foster care? As much as this deserves attention, I think the media playing this up leads to parents who refuse to discipline their children for fear of being "turned into the authorities".

On the other end of the spectrum, a relative of mine worked for the HRS in my state, and ended up losing her job because her superiors would not remove a child who was obviously being abused from his home. Eventually this relative ran off with the kid, and now he has a second lease on life. But the cookie cutter bureaucracy in our social services allows real abuse to go on, and even classifies necessary discipline as abuse. The solution? I have no idea.
They are taught not only to subject their will to authority, but that they have no freewill to begin with, and the authorities must control their behavior to protect them from harm.
Isn't that what public education does?

Reposting this top level... (4.14 / 7) (#119)
by thefirelane on Fri Sep 05, 2003 at 04:27:46 PM EST

Because I really want it answered.

Don't mistake the bashing this article is getting for our own "bigotry". I have a feeling many of us are at best confused about what your saying. To me (and I suspect many others) it really sounds like you are trying to make an argument akin to:

Government officials say that are adding flouride to the populations water "for the health of society"... but isn't that the same justification the Nazis used when killing the Jews?

Are you saying that because reasoning has been used incorrectly for one bad purpose, that reasoning then becomes invalid for justifying any other action?


---Lane

-
Prube.com: Like K5, but with less point.
the difference is force (4.66 / 3) (#127)
by KPalicz on Fri Sep 05, 2003 at 07:04:21 PM EST


since we live in a democratic society, we can indirectly decide whether we want flouride in the water or not.  The Jews of course could not decide whether they wanted to be killed.  

I make my comparison because of the common element of force.  Once this threshold has been passed a slippery slope develops.  The relationship then becomes one of a long progression of gray area.  It is considered good parenting to smack your child.  Violence that would be considered assault if done to an adult is considered necessary to proper upbringing by many.  Then we must ask, where is the line drawn?  Open fist ok, closed fist not?  A hit in the face not ok, but on arm and butt ok?  Bruises ok but not broken bones?  

Most parents have more humanity than to let things go to far, but there are no real barriers to stop them.  If your child doesn't obey you when you hit them 20 times with your hand, then maybe a paddle will work.  If not a paddle then maybe a belt.  If not a belt then maybe an iron rod will work better.  After all its for their own good.

[ Parent ]

Slippery slopes are much overrated (5.00 / 2) (#128)
by the on Fri Sep 05, 2003 at 10:15:22 PM EST

You simply draw a line on the slope and that's the end of that.

For example, rather than get stuck on a slippery slope about when kids are mature enough to have sex, you declare the age of consent to be 18. Simple really. The problem goes away.

--
The Definite Article
[ Parent ]

usually (5.00 / 2) (#140)
by tzanger on Sat Sep 06, 2003 at 09:03:15 AM EST

Then we must ask, where is the line drawn?  Open fist ok, closed fist not?  A hit in the face not ok, but on arm and butt ok?  Bruises ok but not broken bones?

With physical discipline (corporal punishment) I believe the line is drawn at whether there is a lasting mark or permanent damage left.  Smacking an ass or a cheek leaves a red mark for what, 5 minutes tops?  Raising welts is something completely different.

I personally take it to the level that if you're angry you should not be doing the physical discipline.  Anger should not be involved.  Disappointment sure, but never anger.

[ Parent ]

spanking (5.00 / 1) (#187)
by werner on Mon Sep 08, 2003 at 11:47:33 AM EST

violence doesn't work, i would suggest going and throwing your child's playstation out of the window. or his pc. or her dollhouse. whatever. hell, i think that's a much better punishment that spanking. unless you brutalize your child, the pain will be gone in minutes. the sulk a bit later. smash your kid's favourite toy to pieces, and they won't be so quick to re-offend (unless granny buys them a new one). i know my parents had much more success disciplining me by smashing up my stuff than hitting me.

the point of such punishments (hell, of any punishment) is to show children that their actions have consequences and these consequences may be bad for them. it is controlled distress. like rubbing a dog's nose in its piss, there has to be a clear correlation between the distress you inflict and their action which caused it.

it's about teaching children to restrain themselves before someone else has to do it for them. children are pretty self-centred and disinclined to take factors other than their own wishes into account. if you don't teach them to consider others, and the consequences of their actions, they'll end up in heap-big trouble sooner or later, either as a child or as an adult (not that they ever grew into a real one).

[ Parent ]

Uhm.. slightly OT, but.. (5.00 / 1) (#195)
by strlen on Mon Sep 08, 2003 at 04:18:22 PM EST

Jews are only a 3% of a population, so if the majority of the population decides "ve shoudl gaz the jevs", you wouldn't have a problem with it?

As for your point against hitting children and using violence against them.. why didnt you just stop at that in you article? I'm entirely with you in opposition to beating children, but your point was that parents can't restrain and set rules for their children at all!

And I don't know what conspiracy theory sites you read, but every piece of child rearing literature from this part of the century, from places other than Taliban controlled areas of Afghanistan, highly advise against spanking.

--
[T]he strongest man in the world is he who stands most alone. - Henrik Ibsen.
[ Parent ]

The central fallacy in your argument is ... (4.00 / 4) (#121)
by pyramid termite on Fri Sep 05, 2003 at 05:11:59 PM EST

... that you're taking the spoken motives of obviously psychotic people at face value. What's next - an argument against religion based on some paranoid schizophrenic hearing God tell him to shoot a bunch of people?

Louis and Estelvina Rodriguez ARE different from the millions of parents in the country - they're fucking nuts.

Got it?

On the Internet, anyone can accuse you of being a dog.
The nuts don't exist (5.00 / 1) (#123)
by levesque on Fri Sep 05, 2003 at 05:37:37 PM EST

It's a continuum.

Labeling is counter productive unless it's not.

[ Parent ]

Take some f-ing time to understand the article (5.00 / 3) (#162)
by alexwcovington on Sat Sep 06, 2003 at 09:52:13 PM EST

This isn't about how they are different, it is how they are the same. Granted, they're nuts. But they are following a procession of perverted logical steps that have roots in commonly held assumptions and bigotries.

[ Parent ]
what is this? (3.40 / 5) (#126)
by Work on Fri Sep 05, 2003 at 06:19:35 PM EST

First it starts off a story about child abuse. Then it goes off on a tangent about the phrase 'for your own good', and throws some 1984 in there, followed by a random ghandi quote, and then some kind of fictional debate between persons at a restaurant, thus implying that any commentary of 'for your own good' is bad.

But then you swing back towards the child abuse thing. So whats the point of this crappy story? That there are mentally defective people who abuse their children in horrific ways? Well, yes there are.

Also, how in the fuck does a lawsuit against mcdonalds (thrown out) raise "wonder when we consider people have been raised to accept authorities' control and deny their own freewill?" And what does this have to do with child abuse?

-1 for a rambling, pointless mental abortion. I award you no points, and everyone in here is dumbing for having read this.

Gandhi. Not Ghandi. (5.00 / 1) (#142)
by splitpeasoup on Sat Sep 06, 2003 at 12:11:55 PM EST

Dear Wrok,

It's Gandhi. Not Ghandi.

-SPS

"Be the change you wish to see in the world." - Gandhi
[ Parent ]

McDonalds (5.00 / 1) (#146)
by OneEyedApe on Sat Sep 06, 2003 at 01:22:11 PM EST

I am guessing that the example of the lawsuit against McDonalds was to indicate people that "deny their own freewill", and believe that the rest of the world will act in their interest.

[ Parent ]
yep (5.00 / 1) (#153)
by KPalicz on Sat Sep 06, 2003 at 06:12:02 PM EST

Exactly.

[ Parent ]

Where are the rest of you? (3.40 / 5) (#131)
by KPalicz on Fri Sep 05, 2003 at 11:02:18 PM EST

190 people voted for 190 against, with 80 some recommending front page.  Why have we only heard comments from the ones who hate this article with a passion?  What about the nearly 200 who think this is a good article?

Or are all the more mild K5 users simply cowed by the antagonism of the rest of you?

No, they didn't read this far.. (5.00 / 1) (#135)
by Chiron on Sat Sep 06, 2003 at 02:40:44 AM EST

I'd suspect that many of the ones who modded you up didn't read below the fold.. They saw a nice tabloid bit about an incident of child abuse, then modded you up.

[ Parent ]
Other countries (5.00 / 1) (#137)
by Repton on Sat Sep 06, 2003 at 07:31:02 AM EST

Of course, in (many) other countries, they don't have things like food or clean water...

--
Repton.
They say that only an experienced wizard can do the tengu shuffle..

Respect for children (4.50 / 4) (#145)
by splitpeasoup on Sat Sep 06, 2003 at 12:28:00 PM EST

While I believe parents most certainly should be telling their kids what to do, I do believe children are often disrespected just because.

'Shut up!'
'Little brat!'
'You're going to get a good ass-whooping.'
'I don't want to get any crap out of you.'

These are various forms of disrespect that society has decreed it is perfectly acceptable to apply to one's children. It is not acceptable, for instance, for a man to say the same to his wife (though it was acceptable in the past).

It is hoped that at some time in the future it will be recognized that children, similarly, do not deserve to be disrespected just for being children.

This has nothing to do with broccoli. By all means make your kids eat their broccoli.

-SPS

"Be the change you wish to see in the world." - Gandhi

I can't believe this story poisted. (3.66 / 3) (#147)
by jabber on Sat Sep 06, 2003 at 02:01:19 PM EST

*looks around for the Floridian palm trees*

[TINK5C] |"Is K5 my kapusta intellectual teddy bear?"| "Yes"

Beats me (5.00 / 2) (#152)
by KPalicz on Sat Sep 06, 2003 at 06:10:44 PM EST

I am equally baffled.  Though comments are factored into the equation.  

My guess is when you all were gleefully ripping apart my article and rating each other's comments as high as you could, you inadvertently boosted the rating of this article sufficient for it to be posted.  

:)

Thanks guys.  :)

[ Parent ]

Now, now. (5.00 / 1) (#175)
by jabber on Sun Sep 07, 2003 at 07:17:50 PM EST

I didn't rip the story. In fact, I've been busy, and missed its stay in the queue. What I can't believe is the score, hence my quip. It's a decent enough story, but I would have made some editorial comments, had I seen it pending. So, really, no need to get all passive-aggressive, defensive or snooty. Relax. It's only a web site.

[TINK5C] |"Is K5 my kapusta intellectual teddy bear?"| "Yes"
[ Parent ]

Sorry (5.00 / 1) (#176)
by KPalicz on Sun Sep 07, 2003 at 07:36:49 PM EST

Those comments weren't directed at you specifically.  Just in general the others who commented.  I was initially as puzzled as you to see this story got posted.  

[ Parent ]

Umm (4.00 / 2) (#148)
by gyan on Sat Sep 06, 2003 at 02:26:12 PM EST

 how did this article post?

 it has a score of 6 (!!!!) from 499 votes.

 What Site News have I missed?

 It can't be the old arbitration formula:

 X = (5*FP + 4*section + 2*Abstain + Dump)/Total votes

 If X > 4.0, post to front page, X > 3.2 post to section, X < 3.2, dump....  

 ..coz X = 1301/499 = 2.6, Y = err,  4+

 !!fuck!!

 The formula needs to be changed. Now.

********************************

Correction, my post as intended (5.00 / 1) (#149)
by gyan on Sat Sep 06, 2003 at 02:27:36 PM EST

 how did this article post?

 it has a score of 6 (!!!!) from 499 votes.

 What Site News have I missed?

 It can't be the old arbitration formula:

 X = (5*FP + 4*section + 2*Abstain + Dump)/Total votes

 Y = weighted average of comments

 Z = avg(X,Y)

 If Z > 4.0, post to front page, Z > 3.2 post to section, Z < 3.2, dump....  

 ..coz X = 1301/499 = 2.6, Y = err, 4.0+

********************************

[ Parent ]

It failed to hit -20, and it generated hundreds (5.00 / 1) (#159)
by porkchop_d_clown on Sat Sep 06, 2003 at 09:00:52 PM EST

of messages.

The way the score system works, a topic that gets lots of comments can get posted to section even if it didn't get voted up.


--
Monkey in the middle of a metal detector... Do you have yesterday's time?


[ Parent ]
That's a shame (3.20 / 5) (#155)
by Richard Stallman on Sat Sep 06, 2003 at 07:38:14 PM EST

Perhaps your parents will let you go to the next party.

You're a fool (3.00 / 2) (#163)
by alexwcovington on Sat Sep 06, 2003 at 09:54:50 PM EST

I don't know why you feel it necessary to denigrate the author in such a manner. With a little effort digging into who he is you'd see just how much of a fool you are.

[ Parent ]
Quite right (5.00 / 1) (#166)
by Richard Stallman on Sat Sep 06, 2003 at 11:43:58 PM EST

What a fool I've been!

[ Parent ]
Responsible Parenting (4.87 / 8) (#157)
by KPalicz on Sat Sep 06, 2003 at 08:33:33 PM EST

I am reposting a response to someones question buried below. He asked if I would let my child run off with a strange man offering him candy, presumably a dangerous pedophile. He asked whether I would prevent my child from going off with this man. My answer:

I would certainly try if I knew my child would be in danger. The problem however involves what will happen when I'm not there?

It is unlikely a parent will be present for 100% of their child's life. In fact it is physically impossible. So if your child is absolutely determined to run off with a sexual predator she will probably find a way to do so when you are not around. The key is to raise them in such a way that they'd be able to develop their own sense of responsibility to the point where they would do the right thing on their own.

John Stossel from ABC's 20/20 had a parenting segment a few months back that discussed this point exactly. The show profiled parents who were at their wits end running after their young children, constantly yelling at them and controlling them. The parents were exhausted from all this and still were unable to get their son to behave.

The child development expert, who happened to be Quarterback Drew Bledsoe's dad, told the parents what I said above. That if you try to control you children at every opportunity they'll have no chance to learn things for their own and they won't be responsible when parents aren't around.

This was shown quite strikingly on camera when the mother was making dinner and stepped out of the kitchen very briefly, the young son then climbed up on the kitchen counter and grabbed a huge carving knife. Seeing the video played back the mother nearly fainted in shock. The message is you can't be there to protect your children at every possible moment, so the key is to teach them how to behave responsibly when you are not around. This takes respect and space.

My best friend is another example of this. His step dad, while never physically abusive (much), raised him in the same hardass way many of the posters in this forum advocate. He gave my friend no freedom whatsoever, he was expected to come home straight after school and not leave the house again except to go to work or school the next morning. He even had to get permission to hang out with me *at school* and I had to be interviewed by his step-dad. He was controlled and never had a chance to learn responsibility for himself.

The consequence of this is once he was finally out of the house he went wild. He never built up internal restraints, he had them always imposed on him from the outside. Once those external restraints were removed he had no limits and no sense of responsibility. He got into hard drugs and crime. He is currently serving up to 18 years in prison for running a meth lab.

If he was given more choice and freedom while growing up I'd like to think he wouldn't be there.

Some places to go for more information on this parenting philosophy and Youth Rights in general: http://www.takingchildrenseriously.com/
http://www.youthrights.org

free will, obedience, and drugs (4.50 / 2) (#160)
by KPalicz on Sat Sep 06, 2003 at 09:10:20 PM EST

Another point made in the John Stossel special dealt with free will and defiance.  Parents always seek to demand total obedience.  "what I say goes, cause I'm the parent"  Any attempt to stand up to the parent is treated as a rebellion and punished severely.  For many reasons this is wrong as I stated before, but on a practical level as well.

The teen assertive and self-confident enough to tell their parents no is assertive and self-confident enough to tell drug dealers no as well.  If you want to create a sheep person that obeys the commands of everyone around them, then you have raised a person to be heavily influenced by peer pressure and more at risk of getting into drugs.  

"Just Say No" takes a person with self-respect to work.  If you dominate your child he will have no self-respect, and won't have enough self-respect to tell his friends or druggies no.  

Think about it.

[ Parent ]

Backwards (5.00 / 1) (#178)
by driptray on Sun Sep 07, 2003 at 08:53:50 PM EST

The teen assertive and self-confident enough to tell their parents no is assertive and self-confident enough to tell drug dealers no as well.

It sounds like you've never bought illegal drugs in your life. If you had, you'd know that drug-dealers do not go around pressuring people into a sale. You have to find the drug dealer. You have to want it. It's "pull", not "push".

An assertive and confident teenager is one that is likely to resist anti-drug propaganda. But that's not a bad thing :)
--
We brought the disasters. The alcohol. We committed the murders. - Paul Keating
[ Parent ]

well ok.. (3.00 / 2) (#179)
by KPalicz on Sun Sep 07, 2003 at 10:26:48 PM EST


Well ok, it was a dramatization.  Not the drug dealers, but the teen's friends who would be out a party somewhere doing drugs and your teen's confidence to not feel pressured to join in.

[ Parent ]
drug pushers (4.50 / 2) (#185)
by werner on Mon Sep 08, 2003 at 11:28:35 AM EST

there was actually a lad at my university who more or less "pushed" drugs. he would walk around the bar asking everyone if they wanted to buy some pot. i think he got arrested within 2 weeks. idiot.

it's funny (and scary) how utterly ignorant people who have never taken drugs are about the whole thing. many truly expect dodgy dealers to be standing outside the school gates, trying to persuade their kids to smoke a joint. they also honestly believe that anyone who smokes pot will inevitably end up in rehab with a heroin addiction.

the sad thing is, if parents say one thing (i.e. drugs will destroy your life!) and friends say another, the friends will be believed. if what the friends say turns out to be true, then respect for the parents is undermined.

An assertive and confident teenager is one that is likely to resist anti-drug propaganda. But that's not a bad thing :)

how very true. just be aware that a parent's proclamations on something they know little about will be ignored like so much propaganda. do not underestimate children's intelligence, or parents' ignorance.

[ Parent ]

Here here! (5.00 / 2) (#186)
by JohnnyCannuk on Mon Sep 08, 2003 at 11:32:54 AM EST

I agree 100%.

I am a former child care worker and for 6 years I worked with children afflicted with the top 2% of behaviour disorders in North America. I can tell you from daily experience working with these kids, both in their homes and in a residential care setting, that the approach that Mr. Bledsoe advocates works great. It worked for the kids I worked with and it works for my own 2 kids.

If you don't develop self-respect and self-confidence in kids, you get people like the parents from the incident that started this story.

What truly amazes me about our school systems across North America is that we teach English as if all our children will grow up to be 'literati'. We teach math and economics like all of our kids will grow up to be business persons. We teach phys-ed like all our kids will grow up to be world class athletes. None of this is bad. It's actually quite a good thing. But at the same time we don't teach our kids how to be parents and we don't teach them how to live with and treat themselves and other people with respect. Just watch a few recesses at some of our elementary schools and you see that.

And then we act surprised when they do bad things or bad things happen to them...

Maybe we ought to look at our societal standards for child rearing. Seems to me you need a licence to drive a car, a licence to go fishing and a licence to hunt but any moron with the where-with-all to rut can become a "parent". Hell, I at least have to take a driver's - ed course to get my dirvers licence. But no-where do we give our children "lessons" on being a parent. And isn't the responsiblility of being a parent far more dangerous if missused than that of driving a car?

Talk about screwed up priorities....
We have just religion enough to make us hate, but not enough to make us love one another - Jonathan Swift
[ Parent ]

i'll have to pull you (5.00 / 1) (#190)
by werner on Mon Sep 08, 2003 at 12:11:27 PM EST

up on that last point: an incompetent parent will, at most, fuck up a dozen kids (who will likely fuck up their children in turn). an incompetent driver is capable of killing many times that number in one fell swoop.

apart from that, i agree totally. there are definitely some people out there who shouldn't be allowed to have kids until they prove they can look after them.

the case of grazia springs to mind. she was an unemployed lass i worked with. she had a baby. the social services took the kid away, cos grazia was incapable of looking after it. so she had another. they took that one away, too. then she had another, which the social services also spirited away to a better life. then she got pregnant again. and so on.

my own greatest character flaws i can clearly see in my parents.

[ Parent ]

I agree but... (4.50 / 3) (#194)
by JohnnyCannuk on Mon Sep 08, 2003 at 01:13:32 PM EST

I can see you point but even if you are not a very good driver, the odds are still in your favour that you'll not be in an accident, or that the accident will not be one that injurs people. Even with little or no training, the odds of a bad driver killing 20 people is relatively low.

On the other hand, if your a bad parent, I can almost garrantee you will mess up your kids, who may mess up their kids and so on. My point has rather to do with the certainty rather than the possiblility or size of an event. If there is an almost certainty that, without proper training, I will kill 1 person driving a car vs the possiblilty of killing 25 driving a motorbike, but that possiblility is very low, which one should you train for? (I pick the car)

(OK a completely contrived example I admit)

In my experience, 90% of the kids I worked with responded positively, sometimes 'miraculously' when they weren't at home and in a proper, nurturing environment. I'd also say that about 90% of those reverted back or got worse when they got home because the parent did not change. They did not know how to be parents and many were not willing to learn. Say what you will about other factors such as ADD or Oppositional-Defiance Disorder (yes, check the DSM-III), being underaged/too young to be parents or being poor (which they all were), NONE of the parents I worked with were good parents. I often dealt with a kid one year and their siblings a few years later (or at the same time). A great many of these kids are now guests of our criminal justice system, mental health system or welfare system - sometimes all three.

I have met and worked with a great many poor folks who were good parents and I never had to work with their kids. I know of kids with various disorders with good parents whom I did not have to work with. I have met the children of teenage mothers who were good parents and I did not have to work with them. The only common link with all of the parents of the kids I did work with is that they didn't know how to be parents.

And of course the majority of these problems could be fixed early or avoided or mitigated to be less severe than they are if only we would teach proper parenting (including self-confidence and non-violent dispute resloution) in schools. To everyone regardless of the class they take. In my example above one bad parent affects the lives of 2 to 3 kids, who in turn affect the lives of a few people around them and so on. In the long run, wouldn't this one simple and relatively cheap early intervention in schools prevent a great deal of crime and hardship in the future, which would make us a better society, which would make us better parents, which would make us....? (Get it?)

Anyway sorry for the rant, thanks for responding to me.
We have just religion enough to make us hate, but not enough to make us love one another - Jonathan Swift
[ Parent ]

i see your point (5.00 / 1) (#196)
by werner on Mon Sep 08, 2003 at 07:17:29 PM EST

true enough that there's a very good chance that bad parenting will result in fucked-up children. certainly more likely than my killing a crowd of people if i decided to take a car for a spin (i can't drive).

having said that, i'm not sure if parenting is something you can teach, particularly because a lot of these bad parents are not overly intelligent or receptive.

i think it has too much to do with personality and emotions, like any relationship. there are folk who were born to be wonderful parents and others who simply aren't good with kids, same as there are those who get along well/badly with any other kind of person. some have the intelligence and character to compensate, many don't.

i don't doubt that if we were taught how to be good parents in school, it would help, but i don't think it would help a lot (perhaps most) of those kids who have bad parents: like father, like son, they say, and i don't believe that the fathers paid any more attention to anything they were taught at school than their kids do. i think the net result would be that kids with good parents have better parents, and kids with shit parents still have shit parents.

i just don't see education as helping particularly, because there is such a deep disinterest in it amongst a lot of these trouble parents/children.

i may be deeply wrong - i don't work with delinquent kids or their parents, while you seem to be a social worker of sorts - but i am a teacher, and i am very aware of how thoroughly many kids ignore or forget everything you tell them, something i suspect they have learnt to a large extent from their parents.

[ Parent ]

Right... (5.00 / 2) (#202)
by JohnnyCannuk on Tue Sep 09, 2003 at 03:20:34 PM EST

That's why we teach it to Kids while they are in school. By the time they already have kids themselve and are bad at it, you are correct, teaching them likely won't work (Oh boy do I have experience with that).
We have just religion enough to make us hate, but not enough to make us love one another - Jonathan Swift
[ Parent ]
What about the child-free? (5.00 / 1) (#210)
by Belgand on Thu Sep 11, 2003 at 02:29:43 AM EST

A good point and I strongly agree that something needs to be done about the unwashed hordes of total idiots allowed to have children, but what about the students forced to sit through the class? Not all of us want those disgusting things. Personally I'm child-free, something I've known for a long time. I have an intense dislike for children and don't want anything to do with them, let alone have one of my own. It would be a complete waste of my time, therefore, to make me sit through yet another worthless class (along with the worthless Phy Ed and Sex Ed class where I knew enough to test out without cracking the book, not to mention all the pep rallies and crap where I lost a day of class). Schools are increasingly oriented towards the lowest common denominator, which might help the stupid kids (unfortunately most of them) but only hinders the rest. Sure, many schools offer parenting classes already in some form or another, but kids don't take them, so how to get them to take a class, but not force people who have no need of it to sacrifice valuable classes.

[ Parent ]
Strange article (4.80 / 5) (#168)
by dzimmerm on Sun Sep 07, 2003 at 12:14:09 AM EST

I am a parent. My daughter has grown and is now working on creating a life for herself.

The one thing I have seen missing in most comments is that there is a bond of love and affection between a parent and a child that if properly used can be much more effective than punishments and restraints.

When she was young my daughter wanted direction. She probably understood at some basic level that she needed help to get food and keep clean and stay healthy. She also understood that I cared about her. That last understanding probably is what helped the most in my parenting and in her growing up.

There were frustrations and times when I wanted her to do things that I felt would be wise for her to do. We had a few pitched battles about her attending highschool in her senior year. There were times when she did not want to go and I wanted her to at least finish high school since she had already come so close.

The compromise was she graduated, barely.

An interesting side note. I was forced to attend graduation ceremonies in high school. I did not want to attend. My father forced me to attend. I never forgave him for doing that. I did not force my daughter to attend her graduation ceremonies and she chose not to attend.

You would be amazed at how hard it was for her to get her diploma because she chose not to bow to big brothers ceremonies. It took her well over two years after her graduation for her to receive a physical diploma. First they said she owed money for something she never participated in. Then they lost the diploma. Finally, years later, they gave her a diploma that they had to have reprinted due to them not being able to locate the original.

Public education seems to be very unkind to those who challange the ceremonies even when those ceremonies have nothing to do with the actual education achieved.

I tended to let my daughter do what she wanted unless a clear physical danger was likely. I also taught my daughter that being different is a harder road to travel but that it is a road that has its rewards beyond anything the crowd has to offer.

I probably cheated a bit as I am an antisocial person who has never drank alcohol, used tobacco, or taken illegal drugs. I tried to teach her that peer pressure is much more dangerous to her freedom than any other force. She learned from me that peers could be ignored if their wishes did not align with hers.

I do not know if my daughter uses illegal drugs. I know she is a rather outspoken non-smoker and that she drinks alcohol very rarely. She has a husband that cares about her and who is becoming a friend of mine.

I think I did OK, given my personality and the personality of my daughter.

I can not imagine what a parent that did not love their child would do. I would think lack of love would be the root of most child abuse cases. Please do not think for one moment that I am confusing the difference between a parent saying they are doing something because they love their child and a parent who truely loves and cares about their child judging from that parents actions.

Many humans prevaricate a lot. If someone prevaricates then they can easily say they love someone or that they are doing something for reasons that are in no way true.

If you judge a person by their actions then that persons prevarications will be fairly obvious.

dzimmerm

Public school. (4.50 / 2) (#183)
by lb008d on Mon Sep 08, 2003 at 09:49:43 AM EST

Public education seems to be very unkind to those who challange the ceremonies

Amen. I hated standing for the pledge, but you should have seen what happened the first time I didn't ....

[ Parent ]

Brings up another point... (5.00 / 1) (#193)
by bgalehouse on Mon Sep 08, 2003 at 12:52:50 PM EST

So many people have trouble putting up with school, it is an entirely interesting debate whether Gatto and his though provoking essay are far more correct that most people are willing to believe.

I mean, seriously. Such arguments lead naturaly to the question of whether you could actually build a school in America along these lines. But if such a school worked, even for a moderate fraction of students, it suddenly seems to me to be of questionable ethics start with a normal school.

But then, I have my own biases against standard grade schools.

[ Parent ]

i wish i was your father (3.14 / 7) (#172)
by The Central Committee on Sun Sep 07, 2003 at 04:06:42 AM EST

so i could teach you some discipline

You personaly are the reason I cannot believe in a compassionate god, a creature of ineffable itelligence would surely know better than to let someone like you exist. - dorc

The article does make an important point (4.40 / 5) (#173)
by Nuke Skyjumper on Sun Sep 07, 2003 at 04:14:10 AM EST

The article doesn't advocate raising children free of all parental influence.

It explains the existence, along with the problems with, an attitude that some parents have toward their children. Some parents believe that kids can't be trusted to think for themselves because they're kids. Those parents will downplay the kid's intelligence, ignoring the kid's ability to make conclusions.

A lot of people believe curfews are necessary. While there is the obvious safety argument, are there any other consequences to letting a kid socialize with friends at late hours? Kids don't think radically different than adults do. The difference is in the amount of life experience they have.

To a kid, everything they're doing is important. If they're out with friends and it's getting late, the kid's brain is telling them that socializing with friends is more important than laying in bed at that specific time. For ideal development, the kid has made the right conlusion. They shouldn't be sleeping, they should be playing. A kid who's had curfew rules imposed on them will learn that their own interpretation of when to stop playing is not the correct answer to the question, it's the parents' preference that is correct. If their own interpretation is never correct, interpretation itself becomes pointless, so they stop interpreting.


Sounds like a troll (4.00 / 5) (#177)
by pornking on Sun Sep 07, 2003 at 07:51:52 PM EST

The author starts out by describing some horrific abuse, but then goes on to ignore it and talk about the evil of restricting your children for their own good.

The essential trollness is revealed in the restaurant example. All you need to do is apply that example to the actual subjects of the article, namely a parent and child. The author is saying that it is cruel to choose your child's meal for their own good. I would have liked to eat a lot more ice cream and etc. when I was a child, but that decision was made by people who were, at the time, far more responsible that I.

The problem is that one of a parent's primary responsibilities is to set boundaries and rules specifically for the child's own good.

The abuse was horrific, and that is the problem. Their reason for inflicting the abuse is essentially correct. That is most certainly not the problem.

Children can be considered successfully raised to adulthood if they have demonstrated that they have earned the right to make their own decisions. It is both a right and a responsibility, and they aren't born with either.


pornking

Justice be Done (5.00 / 1) (#180)
by Alex D on Sun Sep 07, 2003 at 11:00:15 PM EST

Let's just hope the perps get at least four times the sentence they wittingly imposed on the twins. Justice? No, but it would be a start...

Justice = Punishment? (5.00 / 1) (#197)
by andreiko on Mon Sep 08, 2003 at 07:59:03 PM EST

While I understand your anger, I wonder whether Justice is really about Punishment.

If it is about Punishment then maybe Punishment and Revenge can easily pass for Justice.

Actually, when I look at the culture we live in, it is obvious that there are no clear distinctions between the three.

Such attitude allows for easy understanding the the motivation of terrorists - in their minds Justice is clearly about Punishment! (Cruel people use all kinds of religious/non religious rules/beliefs as an excuse for cruelty!)

My suggestion in the described case would be for the parents to never see the children again and maybe get diagnozed - It may be that they were treated in similar ways or otherwise abused as children.

For these 2 boys I can only pray.

[ Parent ]

¡Human Genital Mutilation! (2.44 / 9) (#181)
by Walabio on Mon Sep 08, 2003 at 12:24:26 AM EST

In the United States of North America, parents circumcise (mutilate) their children for their own good. If their do not reduce the amount of erogenous tissue and make it impossible for gliding action to occur, their children will masturbate and as a result, become blind and insane. If they masturbate anyway, we send then to Tranquility-Bay, where they cannot masturbate.

I wonder:

¿Why does the US becomes a Fascistic State?


--

¡Sign For Bodily Integrity, With Nobel Laureate Biologists And The Rest Of Us!

¡Impeach Dubya!

For everyone's good (4.33 / 3) (#184)
by werner on Mon Sep 08, 2003 at 11:07:59 AM EST

When we deny the intelligence, competence, and individuality of a person we commit a grave harm. When we do this to a developing young person we do a greater harm.

Yes, but children, while they may be intelligent, are hardly competent to make many of their own decisions.

Quite rightly I would be annoyed should a friend take it upon himself to choose my meal for me, or what I should wear "for my own good", even if his decision were clearly better than mine. I am an adult and responsible for myself. Children are not responsible for themselves, their parents are.

Children are simply not mature enough to make their own decisions. Their individuality must take second place to their wellbeing and other practicalities.

Keeping children under conditions which would get a zoo into trouble is not the same thing as making your child go to school or not letting him/her eat chocolate all the time.

Children must be taught to respect authority. And to question it. But that they have no freedom to start with? I don't think so. Obeying authority is not the same as relinquishing freedom.

The fact is, children have to be forced to do things against their will, because they are too immature to reconcile their desires with their obligations to themselves and others.

Not to deny the (undeveloped) intelligence and (lacking) competence of your child on occassion will result in an unhealthy, irresponsible and unruly child not suitable to take part in society.

Have you not noticed that it's the children who run unsupervised through the streets all day long who steal cars, grafitti walls and generally cause all the trouble? Delinquency and juvenile crime is almost always traceable to parents who neglect to exercise control over their offspring. Exactly what you appear to be in favour of.



Rights and Responsibilities (5.00 / 1) (#199)
by alexwcovington on Tue Sep 09, 2003 at 03:56:19 AM EST

Rights and responsibilities go hand in hand. If you take away someone's rights and insist on them maintaining responsibilities, you are perpetrating slavery. It also works in reverse. One cannot keep their rights if they do not take on responsibilities. But then this is supposed to be common sense. Black people and women were once thought of in the same manner children are regarded today - which is property, more or less. It wasn't right then, and it isn't right now. It's not an issue of physical capability, because it is there. It is an issue of YOUR psychological ability to accept it.

[ Parent ]
sorry, but (5.00 / 1) (#200)
by werner on Tue Sep 09, 2003 at 04:35:04 AM EST

children do not have the right to eat whatever they want. children do not have the right to have the latest nike trainers bought for them.

i never said that children should be denied their rights until the take responsibility.

i never even mentioned childrens' rights.

what are you talking about?

maybe blacks were once thought of as property. maybe some people think of children as property. i certainly don't.

nevertheless, it is an unfair comparison. regardless of how you perceive black people, they are, when adults, no different to any other colour of people. their kids, too.

rights and responsibilites do indeed go hand in hand. and exaclty because children do not have the same responsibilites as adults, they do not have the same rights.

[ Parent ]

absolutely correct... (5.00 / 1) (#201)
by esrever on Tue Sep 09, 2003 at 06:53:18 AM EST

...I couldn't agree more. ...Do I need to mention the children who recently took their parents guns outside and started shooting at the traffic because they were bored? Actions have consequences, and it is a parents job to make darn sure they know it long before they get to the point where their actions harm others. Good stuff.

Audit NTFS permissions on Windows
[ Parent ]
I hope it helps...2answer these questions (5.00 / 1) (#198)
by chanio on Tue Sep 09, 2003 at 01:07:19 AM EST

read this2answer these questions

I hope it helps!
________________
Farenheit Binman:
This worlds culture is throwing away-burning thousands of useful concepts because they don't fit in their commercial frame.
My chance of becoming intelligent!

Having hard time (5.00 / 2) (#208)
by epepke on Wed Sep 10, 2003 at 03:00:59 PM EST

Website being that, and so! Like it is.


The truth may be out there, but lies are inside your head.--Terry Pratchett


[ Parent ]
won't somebody please think of the children (3.00 / 3) (#205)
by treat on Wed Sep 10, 2003 at 03:32:55 AM EST

From the Guardian article:

Estelvina Rodriguez, 42, told police her 69-year-old husband wanted the active boys in cages because he suffers from health problems and couldn't keep up with them. She said they were trying to control the children, not punish them.

``Mom reported that the kids once got outside the house and were bitten by a dog,'' Sgt. Randy Force said. ``She said they kept the kids in the cage for their own protection.''

So what should they have done? Allow their children to wander off into the street? In the US, if the government finds out that children this young are getting out of the house unattended they will probably be taken away. And that's the best that could happen, if they're not attacked by dogs or kidnapped by a pedophile and tortured with pictures of the abuse put on the internet.

But...But....The children can't talk!

``They can't talk,'' said Edna White, who has lived next door to the family for 27 years. ``When they tried, just noises would come out.'' This White lady is probably a racist who believes Spanish to be "just noises". This happened in Phoenix, which is completely overrun by Mexicans. (The parents' names are Louis and Estelvina Rodriguez.) It is understandable that the few white people remaining would feel racist hatred towards the "invaders", despite the fact that the land in question was Mexico before it was USia.

But...But..The cockroaches! Anyone who has lived in New York knows that cockroaches are impossible to get rid of. It's clearly a more serious problem in Phoenix - a google search for ``"new york city" cockroaches'' finds 8860 hits, but a search for "phoenix cockroaches" finds 5940 hits. Phoenix has a population of 1,321,045, while New York City has a population of 8,008,278. On a relative basis, Phoenix has 4 times the cockroach problem of New York.

But...the urine and feces! which contained a blanket and small mattress stained with feces and urine.

Note that there was no urine or feces present, just stains. A stain is a mark on cloth that does not come out no matter how well you wash it. The mattress could be immaculate and still have stains. Furthermore, it is not possible that the stains could have been identified as caused by urine and feces without proper lab tests. Surely this information was not yet available at the time of the report.

Interesting, by the way, that a UK publication is used to criticize a Mexican family living in the US. Why not pick an article written by a news organization that is located close enough to actually properly investigate the situation?

Child Abuse Apologist (3.00 / 2) (#206)
by KPalicz on Wed Sep 10, 2003 at 09:17:37 AM EST


You sir are a dangerous person. Next you are gonna tell us the Holocaust was a lie concocted by the liberal, Jewish media.  

I read several articles on this case.  The officers tried to speak Spanish to the children, but their response was the same.  THey just can't talk because they were so badly neglected they never learned.

And your use of Google to excuse cockroaches is just stupid.

I read through several articles in the US and I liked the Guardian article the best.  It was the most complete and didn't leave out the "for their own protection" part.  

Finally if you think locking children in cages like animals for 4 months is an acceptable way to "protect" them from dogs then I sincerely hope you never have children.  

[ Parent ]

you are the true abuser (5.00 / 1) (#207)
by treat on Wed Sep 10, 2003 at 01:57:26 PM EST

You sir are a dangerous person. Next you are gonna tell us the Holocaust was a lie concocted by the liberal, Jewish media.

Is it not true that the media in the US is mostly Jewish controlled? Although with the exception of the Village Voice and salon.com, I would hardly call the US media liberal. Perhaps you're not aware that Jews represent a minority of the deaths in that war, despite how angry Jews get when this is brought up (e.g. the recent incident with Poland). Of course in some countries, pointing out that more Russians than Jews died could get me branded a "Holocaust Denier" and sent to prison.

And your use of Google to excuse cockroaches is just stupid.

So how would you excuse cockroaches?

I read several articles on this case. The officers tried to speak Spanish to the children, but their response was the same. THey just can't talk because they were so badly neglected they never learned.

The Washington Times states:

The boys do not speak and are not toilet-trained and it's unclear if they were born with developmental problems or if their lack of development was caused by mistreatment.
Finally if you think locking children in cages like animals for 4 months is an acceptable way to "protect" them from dogs then I sincerely hope you never have children.

According to the article, the children were never even locked up for a full day, let alone months. They were allowed out on weekends and in the evening after their mother got home. The time spent imprisoned is no greater than if they spent the day in school and day care.

[ Parent ]

um (5.00 / 1) (#209)
by mariahkillschickens on Wed Sep 10, 2003 at 10:37:49 PM EST

in school and daycare kids aren't locked in cages, at least not legally.

i think i need more info on this before forming a complete opinion but so far i think you're just arguing for the sake of arguing. it's not really a nice topic to do that on.
"In the end, it's all dirt."
[ Parent ]

uh (5.00 / 1) (#211)
by treat on Thu Sep 11, 2003 at 03:41:02 AM EST

in school and daycare kids aren't locked in cages, at least not legally.

Is the exact mechanism of confinment really relevant?

[ Parent ]

yes (5.00 / 1) (#212)
by mariahkillschickens on Fri Sep 12, 2003 at 07:46:46 AM EST

there's a difference between keeping kids from running all over the town and keeping kids from moving or standing or sitting.
"In the end, it's all dirt."
[ Parent ]
Our Culture (5.00 / 1) (#213)
by Sesquipundalian on Sat Sep 13, 2003 at 02:03:53 AM EST

is transitioning from savagry ( live by the sword, die by the sword ); to civilization.

The kids and other helpless ones tend to get pounded during such.


Did you know that gullible is not actually an english word?
For Whose Own Good? | 211 comments (184 topical, 27 editorial, 0 hidden)
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