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11/09/2011 at 12:00 PM ET

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Stella Bella on

The book describes how to make a switch and beat the child all over the body (starting at six months?!) and the headline calls it spanking?! The headline was ridiculously misleading. I guess I shouldn’t expect any better from The New York Times, though.

Erika on

I agree with Stella Bella. I don’t like the idea of spanking, because I don’t think it is an effective long-term discipline method, however, the punishment in the book was far from the average swat on the butt, or slap on the hand. Of the three kids who died, one was from hypothermia and malnutrition, a second was whipped to the point of suffering severe tissue damage, and the third choked to death after being strangled by a blanket. I don’t know how anyone allowed this book to be published, and the pastor who wrote it, along with the parents who were stupid enough to follow it, should be charged appropriately. This was not a book that was encouraging spanking as a last resort, but instead encouraged abuse. It’s very sad that anyone actually followed the advice of this book.

Rachel on

There is no possible way that “spanking” can lead to death. I agree with the above commenter – that is incredibly misleading. An individual who is going to beat a child (because that’s what that would be) is abusive and evil! There is a HUGE difference between a child abuser who beats their child out of anger or sheer meanness and someone who spanks/swats their child on the behind to correct a behavior.

I was “spanked” as a child. I am not scarred, and I would definitely spank my own children. I remember being spanked only a few times and I do not remember them really hurting. If a parent hits a child hard enough to leave a mark or truly hurt the child, then they are not spanking, they are abusing and they should be beaten themselves. Period.