Saturday, 15 November 2008

Family First still not letting the facts get in the way of a good story


Usual story. A 'good' parent due to be dragged before the courts for exercising his 'Christian right' smack on the bottom to his defiant and verbally aggressive child due to that draconian anti-smacking law but the case was dismissed just before the trial.

But just like a startling number of these 'good parents' cases, we find out that Family First conviently forgets a few facts to the story. First up the case wasn't dismissed the Crown had decided not to offer any evidence in the case, which was different from saying it did not believe the alleged offences had taken place because the interests of the child had to take precedence. Next up we find up out that he was actually up five charges of assaulting his son and also one charge of assaulting a female. But wait there's more, it isn't just a 'loving' smack on the bottom, there was also a wooden spoon used and he also 'clipped' him around the face. Yikes. I'm not sure of the specifics of this case, but clearly there is something going on to cause the child's negative behaviour and the father clearly isn't as angelic as Family First would paint hime to be.

Let me be clear that I abhor the use of violence on children. I don't care whether it is dressed up as a 'loving smack,' the only difference between assualt and 'smacking' is that kids are the only people in society we expect to endure such an indiginity and we prefer that when parents assualt their children they try not to use an implement and ideally don't leave any marks. I realise that right now my opininon is a minority. The majority of people in New Zealand seem to think that the parents have the right to use 'some force' against their children, but I often wonder how many of those parents that smack would condone the behavior that is so often used to advance their 'rights.'

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