Friday, 16 March 2007

Anti anti-smacking march

Are you one of the reportedly eighty percent of New Zealanders outraged at Sue Bradford's anti-smacking Bill*?

Are you outraged that Helen Clark is retracting an absolute commitment from the election not to ban smacking**?

Then join other outraged New Zealanders in a march on Parliament Wednesday, 28th March, organised by libertarian Mitch Lees, and tell Nanny you don't want the soft fascism of Nanny's disciplinarians coming into your home telling you how you may and may not treat your children. Says Lindsay Perigo:
The police made it unambiguously clear [on Wednesday]*** that if they receive a complaint about a "light smack" they'll be obliged to make an arrest. And they're right. That's what the legislation says. This will be neighbour-dobs-in-neighbour a la East Germany/Soviet Union et al. And when the police have carted off the parent(s), CYFS will cart off the kids. This is truly disgraceful and must be fought tooth and nail. Hat's off to Mitch for stepping up. ALL [those opposed], please, GET IN BEHIND THIS!!!!!!!!!!
For more information, or to help with the organisation of this march, please e-mail Mitch at, and keep an eye on Mitch's blog.
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UPDATE: March to start at 12pm at the Civic Square (Wellington). Note it is Wednesday the 28th, not next Wednesday. Another strong rumour is that Bob McCoskrie of Family First is organising an Auckland March. More details to come...
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* BARRY SOPER (to Sue Bradford, yesterday):"After this Bill becomes law, will parents be allowed to smack their children?"

**RADIO RHEMA INTERVIEWER (to Helen Clark, before the election): "So you don't want to see a ban on smacking?"
HELEN CLARK: "Absolutely not. I think you're trying to defy human nature."

***Police Association president Greg O'Connor confirmed Wednesday that police guidelines in their current form made it clear they would have no choice but to act on smacking complaints...

Unless there was a change to the guidelines once the law was passed, police would have no discretion. "If it is family violence and there is evidence of violence, the policy is quite clear, the offender must be arrested. "That means an admission or a witness saying they saw someone smack. Police will have no choice but to arrest a person acting on a complaint.


  1. Nice double-speak in your title there, PC.

  2. Oops. Wrote that before the first coffee. :-/

  3. I put your post up on CR as well. And Murray has something up on his.
    Here's hoping people will get off their butts and attend.

  4. :P - yeah the terminology around the whole issue is a bugger.

  5. PC said...
    Bob McCoskrie of Family First is organising an Auckland March.

    Ruth will be there too to participate.

  6. Here is something for Tim W - I hope dear old PC doesn't verbally hit me for saying it...

    I post here cuz his aggression does not scare me - and actually my opinion is well within the main stream - look at Coddington, Rougham etc, whereas his - as a white middle-aged male with no children who wants to be able to smack kids, is quite radical. And it is noticed.

    JESUS never hit a child. Dog trainers and horse trainers (See "Horse Sense for People" by Monty Roberts) are cleaning up their acts, purging their disciplines of the whipping habit and educating the public about nonviolent methods for raising well-mannered, peaceful animals.
    Child psychology is far, far behind due to the influence of "religious" rightwing zealots who use the Bible in obvious ways to justify their violence. Our laws protect domestic abusers rather than their victims, providing endless loopholes for violent adults (so long as they assault people who are younger than 18 years of age.) Bradford's bill will stop this.

    If I was a Christian like Tim and the people at Family First I would sooner face the Judgement Seat of Christ as a supporter of children's rights rather than having to explain why I supported the hitting of children.

    'And He took the children in His arms, put His hands on them and blessed them.' Mark 10:16

  7. THIS IS tO PC i am ruths 12 yr old daughter and dis is wat i think...
    dat it is unfair how when kids do something wrong they get smacked and when adults like yourself do something wrong they dont get hit at all..

    i think the law shud b changed so kids can smack adults. if u think people hav the rite to hit people then the teenage street gangs are free to beat up everyone.

    i dont care if u dnt like me coz i aint goin on dis again anywayz.

    dis msn language if u dnt understand dum arse.

    p.s... i advise u not to hav kids because they wont like you!


  8. Hi Grace!

    I agree with you and your Mum that smacking is wrong: It is something that I would never do to my daughter.

    In fact, I believe all forms of coercive child-rearing are wrong. That includes time-out, confiscation, compulsory schooling etc. I follow the Taking Children Seriously philosophy.

    People in families hurt each other in all sorts of ways: it is not just smacking. TCS families try to resolve conflict by coming up with a solution where no-one suffers. We recognise that children can be right and that parents can be mistaken (and the other way round too!). You are probably familiar with situations where a child has been unfairly punished for something they didn't do because an adult didn't listen and imposed their will anyway. This causes a great deal of distress for the child, whether smacking is involved or not.

    We can't enact laws to prevent bad parenting: the only way to get through to parents is by persuasion. This is why I don't think that smacking laws will solve anything. Bad parents will continue to neglect their children (and most child abuse arises because of neglect); parents who are violent will continue to be violent. If our existing laws are not sufficient to stop them, then no law will.

    Another problem is that under the proposed ban, it is all too easy for good parents to get into trouble. Many people, I think, would disapprove of my parenting practices (teachers especially!). How easy it would be now for someone to cause a lot of trouble for my wife and myself if they thought our daughter should be in school!

    Anyway, those are some thoughts. Do come back!

  9. I wrote: "If our existing laws are not sufficient to stop them, then no law will". Which is not really what I meant! I think Liberty Scott had some good suggestions for cracking down on child abuse, but none of these will be palatable to Labour.

  10. Ruth, your daughter's post is a very good example of why children should be smacked. At age 12 I don't believe I would have known that swear word, and I MOST CERTAINLY wouldn't have been writing it. Also, I could spell.

  11. Anon said...
    Ruth, your daughter's post is a very good example of why children should be smacked.

    That is great Ruth for congratulating your own daughter by posting Anonymously. Perhaps, Grace never made that post, but Ruth herself.

  12. seems to me that Ruth and her foul-mouthed daughter have succeeded in doing the impossible--lowering the standards of the anti-smacking zealots.

  13. Are there any sociological, psychological, etc test results available on the extremely adverse effects of giving time out to children ? Surely parents who intentionally ignore their children are causing more hurt and alienation than a light smack.


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