Good parents are being criminalised under anti-smacking law, contrary to PM’s assurances

Parents’ hell after choice to strap child. By Ian Stewart. Fairfax NZ News. 3 June 2012.

A  mum’s “considered decision” to strap her son led to an assault conviction, and a judge told her that thinking about it first made it worse than if she’d done it in anger.

The woman and her partner, both South Island teachers, were convicted after they strapped their 8-year-old son, over his pyjamas, with a belt in January last year.

But after taking their case all the way to the Court of Appeal, they were discharged without conviction.

Anti-smacking law critics say the case is an example of good parents being criminalised, contrary to assurances from politicians when the law came in.

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World Leading Neurosurgeon Dismisses Anti-Smacking Law

In a Media Release issued today …. Family First NZ [a registered charity with the Charities Commission] is welcoming comments made today by an internationally renowned neurosurgeon visiting the country rejecting the anti-smacking law and labeling it as part of a ‘politically correct bandwagon’. [Family First has vigorously lobbied for some years now to have the law repealed or amended]. 

Dr. Ben Carson, Director of Paediatric Neurosurgery at Johns Hopkins Hospital in Baltimore, is in Auckland to raise funds for the Starship Foundation to help rebuild their Neuroservices and Medical Specialty Wards. 

When asked about smacking and NZ’s anti-smacking law on Newstalk ZB this morning, he said

 “I think (smacking) is very appropriate when they’re very young and cannot reason. A smack – and I’m talking a smack and not a beating – can be very appropriate for a child who’s trying to establish themselves as the authority and doesn’t recognise where the real authority lies and doesn’t have the mental capacity to engage in intelligent conversation. And I think it’s completely wrong for people to get on their politically correct bandwagon and saying ‘you may never smack a child and if you do that that’s child abuse’.”

 “Dr Carson as a paediatric neurosurgeon can understand the difference between a smack and child abuse – as can almost 90% of NZ’ers. Dr Carson speaks common sense which is sadly lacking in Parliament, but his words will be appreciated by good kiwi parents who are doing their best to raise law abiding productive members of society in a non-abusive manner,” says Bob McCoskrie, National Director of Family First NZ.