A related story can be found here: Spoilt little Buddhas! Doting parents turn out children who just can't behave, says teachers' leader
Sadly, while bemoaning the decline in behaviour and the uselessness of modern methods of discipline, the Association of Teachers and Lecturers have also rejected a return to the use of the cane.
There follows the basis of a submission sent in some years ago to the Northern Ireland Executive on the issue of the physical correction of children when proposals were brought forward to make the smacking of children a criminal offence
The use of physical correction has the warrant of Scripture. None less than the God of heaven has instructed us that proper Biblical discipline is the correct way to bring up children. Unless we seek to raise ourselves up above the infinite wisdom of God we must conclude that this is for the well being of children.
Mankind are but of yesterday, and know nothing, because our days upon earth are a shadow, Job 8:9. Whereas in the Word of God we have the word of the Almighty, Creator of heaven and earth. He alone knows all things. He alone is the all wise God. Great is our Lord, and of great power: his understanding is infinite. Psalm 147:5. Being infinite in understanding then He alone knows how best to train up children and therefore His Word should be obeyed and not that of those who ‘know nothing’. The Word of God could not be clearer. Here is a sample:
He that spareth his rod hateth his son: but he that loveth him chasteneth him betimes, Proverbs 13:24.
There is no better way. To turn away from the Word of God is to turn to darkness and ignorance. It is not that those who wish to discipline their children in this fashion want to hang unto something that has not worked and is not working. Successive generations have been raised in this way. The evidence is before our eyes as to which way best leads to order and lawfulness and which way leads to lawlessness. Failure to discipline children properly leads to lawlessness. The evidence is everywhere around. There is not a school, housing estate, youth organisation, etc. which does not bemoan the indiscipline that is aboard among the young. By forsaking God’s way society has not found a better alternative.
Are the ‘experts’ more merciful than God? Those who support the banning of physical correction would have us to think that they are more merciful, compassionate, loving and knowledgeable than God is, about what is best for our children. They set themselves up as being wiser than God Himself. They are saying that they know more than God does about the needs of children. God’s Word says that the ‘rod of correction’ is to be used in the disciplining of children. Those who oppose this, say, that to do so, is inhuman and inconsiderate. It is the very zenith of pride to claim to be wiser than Almighty God.
They are not ‘experts’. They have failed more than one generation and in any other domain of responsibility, relating to our well being, these failed ‘experts’ would have been rejected long ago.
Banning physical correction does not deal with child abuse. Every decent individual is against child abuse. Introducing this proposed law will not eradicate the cases of child abuse. Is the child abuser suddenly going to start obeying the law? After all, there are numerous laws which they break, even at present, to engage in their disgusting abuse. Is this law suddenly going to turn these vile perverts into law abiding, respectful, upright citizens? I think not! Only a fool would think so. This proposed law will only criminalise decent parents and will never stop child abuse.
Abuses are no grounds for criminalising decent parents. By all means deal with those who mistreat children. Laws are already on the Statute Book for dealing with what is unreasonable behaviour towards children. Abuses in any other area, say for example, the medical profession don’t lead to the banning of all Medical Practitioners and rightly so. That would be absurd. Yet that is the reasoning employed in this matter. Deal with the abuses and the abusers and leave the decent individual to raise their children properly.
Proper Biblical discipline is needed. Proper physical discipline is to be done in love. Children are not to be hit in bad temper or because they have annoyed us at a given moment. Children are to be disciplined because they have broken God’s Law and need to learn that to break that holy law is always followed by painful punishment. In learning this, all important lesson, children will be raised to live in obedience to God and man.
What are the motives behind this proposal? As the majority in this Province support the use of physical discipline, why should such a law be contemplated? Is there an ulterior motive? It is not the well being of children but the following of a liberal agenda that energises this lobby. There are those who wish to criminalise anyone who believe the Word of God and seeks to live by it. Freedom to practice religion is on their terms alone.
These so called experts, who set themselves up as definers of that which is acceptable and permissible in society, have no authority for doing so. They are but the equals of those whom they seek to legislate for. Therefore their opinion has to be taken as such. They are but created beings making observations upon other fellow created beings. Therefore, on what basis and on whose authority do these mere creatures claim to be experts? The authority for every law is the Word of God not man’s puny notions. God’s Word supports physical discipline. I therefore call upon you to desist from this course.