Mel Lazarus, writer of Angry Fathers, showed by describing his relationship between him and his father, as he recalled an incident that happened when he was 9 years old, back in 1938, when corporal punishment was most used to correct bad behavior, “They’ll live, don’t worry “, was the common idea, that event marked his relationship and trust with his father for life. Lazarus’ family stayed at a boarding house in Catskills for the summer during school vacations, and he and two buddies were hanging out one August afternoon, bored.
So what they decided to do was engage in a little remodeling, as the owner of the place was furious, the three mothers basically decided to let their husbands discipline the boys. The bingo players felt a strong lust for vengeance; they wanted to see some beatings. As Lazarus tells it, his friends’ fathers came home first, one at a time. The first dad, took off his belt and began whipping his son, the second father came home and when he learned what happened, began thrashing his boy, slamming him to the ground and kicking him.
Lazarus was now terrified; his father had never raised his hand in violence, but after seeing this, the young boy was truly afraid that he’d crossed the line. His father came home; the owner explained what had happened. Lazarus’s dad stared at his son for a moment. Then he suddenly left. He got back into his car and drove off. He returned an hour later with a stack of Sheetrock boards tied to the top of his car. He took the sheetrock into the remains of the casino, and then took a hammer he’d bought at the hardware store out of the front seat, and went to work.
He said not a word to anyone; he just rebuilt the casino, taking most of the night to do it. Lazarus was still worried about retribution in the morning, but none came. The father never mentioned the incident and the weekend went perfectly fine. Lazarus says that, while he knew his father was angry, the father also believed that beating one’s child is criminal, that children “always remembered the pain but often forgot the reason. ” The father also understood that a child learns nothing by humiliation – he was not going to “play into a conspiracy of revenge and spectacle” by publicly flogging his own son.
That was not his way, Although many years has passed since then, corporal punishment still being used sometimes with hard consequences, often we notice on television real cases of parents going too far, they are different ways that corporal punish is used, the most popular is within the family, typically children punished by parents or guardians; within the schools when students are punished by teachers or administrators’ or as part of a criminal sentence ordered by a court of law.
Corporal punishment of minors within domestic settings is lawful in all 50 states and widely approved by parents. “They’ll live, don’t worry “, Stanishly the consequences of corporal punishment are vivid, a 14% of all men in prison in the USA were abuse as children, 36% of all women in prison were abused as children and of course children who experience child abuse are 59% more likely to be arrested as a juvenile, and 28% more likely to be arrested as an adult.
On the other hand we were very fortunate that my parents had the same level of understanding when it came to punishing us, (we were five kids growing up together), I called my sisters Nora and Veronica, to asked them if they recalled my parents ever punishing us that way, but they told me as I remembered, our parents used discipline on a different way, even then, almost 30 years ago, they lead us the way by using the scriptures,(Jehovah Witnesses), always talking to us, showing up “The bible’s way” and when, there was something very bad they showed us how to work, replace, put together, apologize, return anything that we just may had broken or misplaced.
The golden rule, according to my parents must live in my mind and heart “Do unto others as you would have them do unto you”, somehow it work for all of us, finally Angry Fathers, show us just how important is that parents understand their children and find other ways to make sure their children are safe and trust in them. It’s a good example for all of us to see the father’s refusal to get into a psychodrama are the fact that he also solves the problem of the destroyed casino.
The other fathers, likely just as capable of putting up Sheetrock as Mr. Lazarus was. And Mr. Lazarus obviously understood that hitting his son was not going to fix the casino. And that the sound of the hammer banging on sheetrock not only allowed him to get out some aggression, but also served as a stern reminder to the young boy about what he did to the building, and how that lesson lasted a life time.
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