Quoting Quiverfull: Michael Cites Pro Spanking Studies?

Quoting Quiverfull: Michael Cites Pro Spanking Studies? April 9, 2015

quotingquiverfullby Michael Pearl of No Greater Joy in part six of his new foreword for his book “To Train Up A Child” – Attack on Traditional Child Training

Editor note: So now Michael busts out actual legitimate studies, well perhaps Fox News Gretchen Carlson isn’t a legit source, but most of these are from real places and people. Wondering how many of these are cherry-picked bits taken out of context?

Marjorie Gunnoe, a developmental psychologist at Calvin College in Grand Rapids, Michigan, who is not a spanking advocate but is an open-minded researcher, questioned 2,600 people about being smacked. One-quarter of them had never been physically disciplined. The participants’ answers were compared with such behaviors as academic success, optimism about the future, antisocial behavior, violence, and bouts of depression. According to the research, children spanked up to the age of 6 were likely as teenagers to perform better at school and were more likely to carry out volunteer work and to want to go to college than their peers who had never been physically disciplined. “The claims made for not spanking children fail to hold up. They are not consistent with the data,” said Gunnoe. “I think of spanking as a dangerous tool, but there are times when there is a job big enough for a dangerous tool. You just don’t use it for all your jobs.”

Child psychologist Elizabeth Owens, scientist at the Institute of Human Development at the University of California, Berkeley, conducted a study. She concluded, “If you look at the causally relevant evidence, it’s not scientifically defensible to say that spanking is always a horrible thing. I don’t think mild, occasional spankings in an otherwise supportive, loving family will do any long-term harm.”

Akron Law Review published a study that examined criminal records and found that children raised where a legal ban on parental corporal punishment is in effect are much more likely to be involved in crime.

Psychologist Aric Sigman states, “The idea that smacking and violence are on a continuum is a bizarre and fetished view of what punishment is for most parents. If it’s done judiciously by a parent who is normally affectionate and sensitive to their child, our society should not be up in arms about that. Parents should be taught to distinguish this from a punch in the face.”

Jason M. Fuller of the University of Akron Law School says that Sweden is “. . . an ideal laboratory to study spanking bans,” for a generation ago it became the first nation to impose a complete ban on physical discipline. According to Fuller, police reports indicate that since the spanking ban, child-abuse rates in Sweden have exploded over 500 percent. Even just one year after the ban took effect, and after a massive government-run public education campaign, Fuller found that “not only were Swedish parents resorting to pushing, grabbing, and shoving more than U.S. parents, but they were also beating their children twice as often.” After a decade of the ban, “rates of physical child abuse in Sweden had risen to three times the U.S. rate,” and “from 1979 to 1994, Swedish children under seven endured an almost six-fold increase in physical abuse,” Fuller’s analysis revealed. More than half of Swedish schoolchildren are undergoing some sort of therapy in an effort to solve learning problems.

Kenneth Dodge, a professor at Duke University, conducted a long-term study of corporal punishment’s effect on 453 kids, both black and white, tracking them from kindergarten through eleventh grade. Now that is a scientific study. When Dodge’s team presented its findings at a conference, the data did not make people happy. They found that the more a child was spanked, the less aggressive the child was over time. The spanked black kid was overall less likely to be in trouble. Scholars publicly castigated Dodge’s team, but Dodge and Lansford—both of whom remain adamantly against the use of physical discipline—were so horrified by such questions that they enlisted a team of fourteen scholars to study the use of corporal punishment around the world. The researchers failed to find evidence that spanking had negative effects.

Dr. Diana Baumrind of the University of California, Berkeley, aided by teams of professional researchers, conducted what many consider to be the most extensive and methodologically thorough child development study ever done. They examined 164 families for over a decade, tracking their children from age four to fourteen. Baumrind found that “spanking can be helpful in certain contexts” and discovered “no evidence for unique detrimental effects of normative physical punishment.” The study also revealed that children who were never spanked tended to have behavioral problems, and were not more competent than their peers as other professionals had suggested.

If we were to adopt the methods of the professionals, reasoning backward from a select group, we could reference “studies” proving our point. For example, USA Today interviewed 29 CEOs of very successful businesses regarding the cause of their success, and in the process discovered that all 29 were spanked as children. Following their methodology we could conclude that spanking will lead to becoming a very successful CEO. Of course that is not a scientific study, and the correlation proves nothing except that spanking does not prevent one from becoming a successful CEO.

So actual scientific studies lend weight to what the Bible says: “The rod and reproof give wisdom: but a child left to himself bringeth his mother to shame” (Proverbs 29:15).

All presidents of the United States, including Obama, were spanked as children, as were nearly all senators, congressmen, and military commanders. In a 2011 USA Weekend interview, First Lady Michelle Obama admitted to spanking her daughter Malia once or twice when she was little. Laura Bush told Dr. Phil she did the same to her twin daughters, Barbara and Jenna, when they were young.

In a three-way discussion on Fox News, Arthur Aidala says he was “spanked with a belt” and thinks it was a “good idea.” Gretchen Carlson said she “was spanked, but things have changed.” Host Arthur Aidala and Jonna Spilbor, both prosecutors and defense attorneys, said they spank their children as well.

QUOTING QUIVERFULL is a regular feature of NLQ – we present the actual words of noted Quiverfull leaders, cultural enforcers and those that seek to keep women submitted to men and ask our readers: What do you think? Agree? Disagree? This is the place to state your opinion. Please, let’s keep it respectful – but at the same time, we encourage readers to examine the ideas of Quiverfull and Spiritual Abuse honestly and thoughtfully.

Part 1 | Part 2 | Part 3 | Part 4 | Part 5

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  • Mel

    Well, the first paragraph is cribbed from Fox News.

    Dr. Gunnoe would not be happy with the title of the story. There is a correlation between parenting types that use limited spanking and ability of the child to stay out of detrimental behaviors.

    I read the study publication posted at Gunnoe’s website.

    It’s a long read, but the paper was done in a standard, scientifically accurate way.

    What Michael fails to mention – probably because he can’t read the paper because it’s well above his reading comprehension level – is that the definition of spanking used by academic researchers is an open-handed swat to a body part that does not leave permanent damage.

    Hitting kids with anything else than an open-hand OR leaving more than redness that fades w/o bruising is counted as “severe discipline/child abuse”.

    All researchers agree hitting children before age 2 is inappropriate.

  • Mel

    Second paragraph was a study done by two researchers (Drs. Owens and Baumrind), not one.


    Noteworthy exclusion – sound like someone we know?:
    “A small minority of parents, from 4 to 7 percent depending on the time period, used physical punishment often and with some intensity. Although these parents were not legally abusive, they were overly severe and used spanking impulsively. Hitting occurred frequently, but it was the intensity that really identified this group, said Baumrind.

    She said intensity was rated high if the parent said he or she used a paddle or other instrument to strike the child, or hit on the face or torso, or lifted to throw or shake the child.

    This group of parents, identified in the “red zone” for “stop” was removed from the sample at the first stage of analysis. With them went most of the correlations initially found between spanking and long-term harm to children, said Baumrind.

  • Mel

    We’ve discussed the Akron Review before. The Akron Review is a position paper used to support/defend the rights of parents to physically discipline.

    It’s NOT a scientific paper but a review of law findings and some scientific papers.

    Michael’s use of it AS a scientific support for spanking is the best example I have so far in his absolute inability to read, understand or assess primary literature.

  • Mel

    Oh, the freaking jackass.

    I thought his failure to mention Dr. Baumrind was editorial laziness.

    Nope. To make the list look longer, he split the Owens and Baumrind paper into two separate paragraphs.

  • Mel

    I can’t track down the Dodge and Langford paper because the two researchers publish together very frequently, have well over 100 publications each, and are both very anti-spanking let alone Pearlian beat-downs.

  • Mel

    Oh, and the papers aren’t just Dodge and Langford. They have many co-authors so the correct way to cite it would be something like (Langford et al., 2014).

  • Anonyme

    “First Lady Michelle Obama admitted to spanking her daughter Malia once
    or twice when she was little. Laura Bush told Dr. Phil she did the same
    to her twin daughters, Barbara and Jenna, when they were young”

    I doubt these ladies (and I mean it in a genuine, non-snide way) ever whipped the shit out of their kids to the point of injury and/or death.

  • mayarend

    They probably hit their hand when they were reaching for the stove or open-handed smack on the behind and people equate that to spanking, so people like the Pearls equate it with their almost(and sometimes literally) killing children.

  • Nea

    Michael cited something that can’t be independently verified? Color me so unsurprised.

  • Nea

    But it sounds so edumacated! That’s all he needs.

  • jennabobenna

    “According to Fuller, police reports indicate that since the spanking ban, child-abuse rates in Sweden have exploded over 500 percent.”

    You mean that after spanking was banned, there were more people breaking child abuse laws against spanking…you don’t say. *facepalm* I can’t even with this guy. That’s like saying that after banning guns, there was an increase in arrests for illegal possession of firearms. Well duh. That’s what the law is there for.

  • Catherine

    “Mild and occasional” is NOT what the Pearls advocate though!

  • SAO

    Yes, once spanking was illegal, people became much more aware of it and reported abuse more often.

  • persephone

    Child Abuse in Sweden
    By Joan E. Durrant, Ph.D. 1
    April 9, 2003

    For a number of years, various media have carried reports stating that child abuse has increased in Sweden since the passage of the 1979 corporal punishment ban. This statement, which was recently given new life in the Canadian Charter Challenge to Section 43 of the Criminal Code, is completely erroneous. All available evidence indicates that Sweden has been extremely successful in reducing rates of child physical abuse over the past few decades and that reduction has been maintained since the passage of the corporal punishment ban. The purpose of this brief report is to disseminate accurate information on this issue. 1. Reporting Rates vs. Rates of Actual Abuse
    The claim that child abuse has increased in Sweden is primarily based on misinterpretation of assault report statistics. It is the case that reporting of child physical assault has increased in Sweden since the 1970s – as it has in every nation that has raised awareness of the issue of child abuse. Reporting rates are by no means equivalent to rates of actual abuse. They are sharp reflections of/strongly tied to shifts in public awareness.
    For example, in the early 1960s, it was estimated that about 300 children were being maltreated in the U.S. By 1990, the U.S. Advisory Board on Child Abuse and Neglect had officially recorded 2.4 million reported cases. By 1993, they had recorded almost 3 million cases. It is highly unlikely that actual child maltreatment increased by a factor of 10,000 in that period. It is also highly unlikely that only 300 children were maltreated in the U.S. in the early 1960s.

    It is a well-known fact that when mandatory reporting laws, public education campaigns, and other measures are implemented to increase awareness, reporting will increase. This is the goal of such measures. The Swedish reporting figures have been cited as if they are actual rates of abuse, which they are not.

    Recently the Swedish National Crime Prevention Council examined 434 cases of assaults on young children within the family that were reported to the police in 1990 (all cases) and 1997 (every other case). It was found that the proportion of cases involving serious injuries sustained by children in this age range had decreased substantially. The majority of reported assaults result in minor injuries or no injuries at all. On the basis of an extensive analysis of the data, the National Crime Prevention Council concluded that there has been an increase in the propensity to report cases of assault on young children, and that it is this increase that is responsible for most, if not all, of the rise in the number of such offences reported to the police@ (Nilsson, 2000, p. 68).

    2. Prevalence of Child Physical Assault Across Time
    Studies conducted at various points in time demonstrate that the prevalence, frequency and harshness of assaults against children have declined dramatically in Sweden over the last two generations. Substantial proportions of women who became mothers in the 1950s struck their children at least weekly (e.g., 55% of mothers of 4-year-old daughters; 20% of mothers of 8-year-old sons) (Stattin et al., 1995). Among 3- to 5-year-old children of that generation, implements were used by 13% of mothers (Stattin et al.,1995).
    In contrast, 86% of youth who were born in the 1980s report never having been physically punished (Janson, 2001). Of those who were, the vast majority experienced it no more than once or twice in their childhoods (SCB, 1996). Virtually no children are hit with implements in Sweden today.

    It is important to note that legislative reform began many decades ago in Sweden. The corporal punishment ban was the end, not the beginning, of legal changes in that country. Most notably, the provision excusing parents who caused minor injuries to their children through physical punishment was repealed from the Swedish Penal Code in 1957. The explicit ban on physical punishment was implemented 22 years later.

    3. Child Abuse Fatalities
    The incidence of homicides of children under the age of 5 can provide an estimate of child abuse mortality, as it is these children who are most vulnerable to fatal injury and the contribution of other forms of external violence is minimized among this age group. Between 1975 and 2000, the average annual number of homicides of children aged 0 to 4 in Sweden was 4. The average incidence between 1995 and 2000 (2.8) was lower than that between 1975 and 1980 (4.0) – despite population growth.
    The World Health Organization (2002) provides homicide incidence figures for children aged 0 to 4 in Sweden (1996), Canada (1997) and the United States (1998).2 These figures are:

    Sweden: 3
    Canada: 24
    United States: 723

    (Canada’s population is approximately 3 times larger than Sweden’s. The U.S. population is approximately 20 times larger than Sweden’s.)

    Child homicides attributable specifically to physical abuse (excluding homicide-suicides, neonaticide and postnatal depression) are virtually non-existent in Sweden. Between 1976 and 2000 (the most recent year for which statistics are currently available), a total of 4 children died in Sweden as a result of physical abuse.

    There is no evidence to support the claim that child abuse has increased in Sweden since corporal punishment was banned there in 1979. In fact, Sweden has maintained a very low rate of child abuse internationally for more than 25 years.
    Three Important Points

    1. It is important to note that Sweden’s law was intended to affirm children’s rights; it was not expected to end all abuse of children for all time. North American assault laws have not eliminated assaults against adults, yet we recognize their importance in setting a standard of non-violence for the society, sending a clear message, and affording protection to those who have been harmed. This was the fundamental intent of Sweden’s corporal punishment ban.

    2. Legislative reform in Sweden began in 1928, when corporal punishment was forbidden in secondary schools. It was 1957 when the legal defence of reasonable correction was repealed from Sweden’s Penal Code. The ban must be viewed within its historical context to be understood.

    3. Since Sweden passed its ban on corporal punishment in 1979, 10 other nations have followed: Finland, Norway, Austria, Denmark, Cyprus, Croatia, Latvia, Israel, Germany, and Iceland. The purpose of these bans is to explicitly recognize children’s rights to protection under the law – the same rights that adults take for granted. In addition, Italy’s highest court has ruled that “the use of violence for educational purposes can no longer be considered lawful.”
    1 Joan E. Durrant, Ph.D., is a Child-Clinical Psychologist and Associate Professor and Head of the Department of Family Studies at the University of Manitoba. She is an internationally recognized expert on the Swedish ban. Over the past decade, she has conducted extensive research on this law and has lived in Sweden for extended periods to gain a full understanding of its history, implementation and effects.
    2 Rates per population are not available for Sweden and Canada due to their low incidence. Incidence rates are presented here for the most recent years for which data were available in the WHO World Report on Violence and Health (2002).

    Nilsson, L. (2000). Barnmisshandel: En Kartläggning av Polisanmäld Misshandel av Små Barn. Brottsförebyggande rådet; Stockholm.

    Janson, S. (2001). Barn och Misshandel. A Report to the Swedish Governmental Committee on Child Abuse and Related Issues. Statens Offentliga Utredningar; Stockholm.

    SCB (1996). Spanking and Other Forms of Physical Punishment: Study of Adults= and Middle School Students= Opinions, Experience, and Knowledge.@ Demografiska Rapporter, 1.2.

    Stattin, H., Janson, H., Klackenberg-Larsson, I., & Magnusson, D. (1995). ACorporal punishment in everyday life: An intergenerational perspective. (J. McCord, ed.) Pp 315-347. Cambridge University Press; Cambridge.

    World Health Organization (2002). World Report on Violence and Health. Author; Geneva

  • Mel

    And the average severity of the reported abuse tumbled. Since the government preceded enforcement with a wide spread educational campaign, many families recognized neglect or abuse and either changed their ways or were reported. A similar jump occurred in the USA as mandated reporting became law.

  • Mel

    That’s the part that boggles my mind. I appreciate all the concern and studies around spanking – but all of the studies place any corporal punishment of toddlers and any use of an instrument besides a hand in the category of abuse.

    Pearl can’t use these studies to support his book because they exclude his flagrant abusive practices as a matter of course.

  • *salute* Thank you. Thank you so very much for posting this for all of us to read.

  • Plain English

    But he did it believing that God directed him and HE must have, because M felt no anger or frustration, just pleasure in destroying childhood, breaking will and harming a little one….. fucking bastard…

  • Baby_Raptor

    Even hitting a kid with a hand is abuse.

  • Lyric

    Michael writes: More than half of Swedish schoolchildren are undergoing some sort of therapy in an effort to solve learning problems.

    Okay, first of all, I’d love to see the actual statistics on this, but secondly, as a former special ed teacher, I’d like to draw everyone’s attention to how disgusting and weaselly this sentence is. Because we’re not talking about therapy for victims of abuse, or even therapy for kids with depression or low self-esteem or any known abuse symptom—we’re talking about special ed. He’s using the Swedish school system’s attempts to give learning disabled students an effective education as proof that Sweden is full of dysfunctional parents. Which means that, in effect, he’s stating that learning disabilities are a result of bad parenting choices.

    Given what this man thinks good parenting looks like, I’m pretty sure what sort of therapy he’d recommend for dyslexia, speech and language impairments, intellectual disabilities, and the lot. His ideal therapy is white, and goes swish.