• Monday, November 24, 2014

Beating children does them more harm than good

Sir Frank Peters

There is a horrific misconception in some societies that beating children helps them become better people. Some people even have the audacity to equate corporal punishment with discipline, which is totally ludicrous.
The many lifelong dangers caused to children by corporal punishment in schools (and homes) is well documented. In 1979 Sweden became the first country in the world to ban the torturing of its children. 35-years later many countries still see no harm maiming a child for life, physically or mentally or both; despite the overwhelming evidence collected over the decades that clearly show corporal punishment to be morally wrong and of no benefit to society.
This is a fact eminent Bangladesh High Court Justices Imman Ali and Sheikh Hasan Arif recognised and made corporal punishment unlawful on January 13, 2011, for the greater benefit of Bangladesh.
Indian psychologist Usha Nursaria said most Indians beat their children during their growing years. Then the children repeat the mistake with their own children.
The same applies to Bangladesh.
The idea that inflicting violence on children is going to make them better citizens is illogical, preposterous, and totally absurd; just like squeezing fruit doesn't enhance its quality.
No sane human being would inflict torture on the child they profess to love and cherish, or allow anyone else to. It speaks volumes for the mentality of the 19 American states that still condone paddling in their schools and why their prisons are full to capacity.
Anurag Pandey, Principal of Suyash Convent, said corporal punishment is destructive to a child's development, but there is an alternative.
 “Showing positive appreciation for students goes a long way in boosting their morale.
 “This appreciation is complemented by incentives to work hard and it focuses enduringly at the non-performers by making them realise the worth of responsibility through assignment of posts like class monitor to these children. We have a unique tradition of awarding the 'Star of the fortnight' to a child showing drastic change. In cases where teachers find a child extremely unruly, the current teachers interact with the former teachers for earlier experience with that child; which is to find the reason behind the child's behavior and address that.”
Corporal punishment benefits no one, but harms everyone in society. Stop the rot.


The writer is a former newspaper and magazine publisher and editor, an award-winning writer, humanitarian, a royal Goodwill Ambassador, and a loyal foreign friend of Bangladesh.

Published: 12:00 am Sunday, July 20, 2014

Last modified: 2:10 pm Sunday, July 20, 2014

TAGS: Child rights childhood chil abuse

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