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2011 Archives

Texas judge beating video: brutal lashing or parental discipline?

Excerpt

The following is from the Nov. 3, 2011, edition of the Christian Science Monitor. Psychologist George Holden provided expertise for this story.

November 8, 2011

By Patrik Jonsson

Atlanta - The YouTube video of powerful belt lashes administered by a Texas judge on his then-16-year-old daughter has given the US a stark, unvarnished view into the widely accepted – but, for many, brutal – parental practice of corporal punishment.

The judge in question, Aransas County Judge William Adams, cancelled hearings on Thursday and was seen packing his truck with belongings and rifles as threats against him mounted. While child-safety advocates have called for Judge Adams removal from the bench and local police say they've opened an investigation, many Americans have come to the defense of the judge, saying it's a parent's responsibility to discipline a child in order to shape character....

One recent study by Southern Methodist University researcher George Holden, which videotaped 37 north Texas parents, showed that nearly all hit or swatted their child in a 36-hour period. The finding was widely seen as the first accumulation of real-time spanking data.