Newspaper article The Daily Mercury (Mackay, Australia)

The Right to Discipline

Newspaper article The Daily Mercury (Mackay, Australia)

The Right to Discipline

Article excerpt

WE need a national campaign to give parents back the right to discipline their kids, allowing them to learn right from wrong and to grow into happy healthy adults.

Legislation is required to give parents back this right and to require welfare officers to substantiate claims that excessive force was used before they can threaten to take kids from their homes.

You can't reason with a four-year-old that they should not touch a boiling pot.

However, for them to independently learn that lesson they will get burnt, possibly with dire consequences that is the last thing a parent wants.

A quick smack if they reach up to the stove prevents the child being hurt and tells them not to do it again.

Parents are often called upon to make their kids go to school. How can they do so?

You can't physically drag them to school because that's corporal punishment; reason with them and they'll tell you to jump in the lake. What should parents do?

Even young teenagers need the threat of discipline to restrict them from staying out all night and getting involved in alcohol and drugs - illicit, dangerous and potentially life-changing activities.

There is an epidemic of fear being created by these self-righteous dobbers who call the police if you spank your child in the supermarket.

We're seeing children forcibly removed from their homes after being disciplined by their parents, and, even more prevalent, welfare officers handing out threats of removal.

Little has changed since the era of the stolen generation. Now both white and black kids are being taken at seven times the rate of that era.

To take a child from their parents is the worst of crimes.

When this became a matter of public debate nearly all of the Members of Parliament had similar stories: Good parents coming to them heartbroken after having their kids taken from them because of a smack.

The right of the parent has been eroded away. This is threatening to break down the institution of the family.

We've had enough.

The right of a parent to discipline their kid needs to be restored.

BOB KATTER, State Member for Kennedy

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