Saturday, February 18, 2006


interesting debate over at Frog Blog about the anti smacking bill
Basically there is position 1

"Sweden was the first country in the world to ban all forms of physical punishment, in 1979. Dr Durrant’s research argues that this has reduced child abuse in Sweden to “virtually zero”. New Zealand, by contrast, where the use of “reasonable force” is still permitted, has the 6th highest rate of child deaths from abuse or “undetermined causes” in the world."
With the assumption "police will never abuse the system"

Then there is the counter position

In working out if something will be a crime if [BRADFORD'S LAW IS PASSED] ask yourself “if I did this to the next person I don’t know who passes me on the street would it be a crime?” If the answer is “yes”, then it will be a crime to do it to your child.

Would it be a crime to pick up the next person whom I hear swear in the street and carry them to a corner and tell them to stand there and think about what they’ve done?

Yes. Then it would be a crime to do treat your son or daughter in the same way.

Making this potentially a badly thought out law.

Personally I find the second argument quite compelling - not as an argument against an anti smacking law but as an argument against a badly thought out law. the law should be clear what it allows and what it doesn't and disallow only the things it wants to disallow as opposed to relying entirely on judges and police to figure that out.


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