This image has been making the rounds lately.

Oh, really?

I call bullshit.

 

You see, when it comes to parenting, the predictors of violence and gang behaviour in youth are:

Corporeal punishment
Neglect
Child abuse/Severe punishment

(For reviews see[1][2])

 

Some of you will think that

SPANKING = CHILD ABUSE

Therefore

SPANKING = CHILD ABUSE → HIGHER RISK FOR GANG VIOLENCE

But the research doesn’t utilize that description.

 

HOWEVER…

The research does say that

SPANKING → SEVEN TIMES THE RISK FOR CHILD ABUSE & TWO AND A HALF TIMES THE RISK OF SUFFERING ABUSE-RELATED INJURIES THAT REQUIRE MEDICAL ATTENTION[3][4]

Therefore

SPANKING → HIGHER RISK FOR CHILD ABUSE → HIGHER RISK FOR GANG VIOLENCE

(For a review, see [5])

 

[In the full spirit of honesty, there is a caveat in that children from Conservative Christian homes do not show the same detrimental effects from spanking.  However, if you are trying to suggest that all gang violence is due to children from Conservative Christian parents who happened not to spank, give me a call.  I have this bridge I’m looking to sell and I think you might be interested.]

 

SO…

If this image makes you think that you need to spank your child to prevent them from becoming violent and delinquent later, stop.

Seriously, STOP.

Not only will you NOT accomplish this, but you will actually increase the risk of the very thing you are trying to prevent.

 

Feel free to share this wherever you see this image.  Children should not be forced to live with violence because their parents are ignorant of the facts.


[1] Chisholm JF.  Violent youth: reflections on contemporary child-rearing practices in the United States as an antecedent cause.  In Eds. LL Adler & FL Denmark, Violence and the Prevention of Violence.  Westport, CT: Praeger Publishers (1995).

[2] Haapasalo J, Pokela E.  Child-rearing and child abuse antecedents of criminality.  Aggression and Violent Behavior 1999; 4: 107-127.

[3] Clément ME, Bouchard C, Jetté M.  La violence dans la vie des enfants du Québec.  Québec (QC): Institut de la statistique Québec; 2000.

[4] Crandall M, Chiu B, Sheenan K.  Injury in the first year of life: risk factors and solutions for high-risk families.  Journal of Surgical Research 2006; 133: 7-10.