Spanking LawsThe Supreme Court of Canada upheld "spanking" laws earlier today. This law permits the use of "reasonable" physical force to discipline children. Basically, Canadians can spank their child within reason and not face criminal charges.

Prior to having children, Taryn and I discussed this very topic and our beliefs when it comes to corporal punishment. At the time, I remember us agreeing that a spank on the bum was okay under certain circumstances. The childless version of myself felt it was perfectly acceptable to discipline in this fashion. So long as it was on the behind, I had absolutely no problem with it.

Approximately five minutes after becoming a father, this entire philosophy changed. James is now two years old and I've never struck him in any manner nor will I. I can't imagine striking his bottom as a corrective action, even with a light tap. I had to become a father to realize how barbaric this practice really is. I simply no longer believe it to be an effective method of punishment. Even the thought of spanking James upsets me.

James is disciplined, and when he misbehaves he's threatened with a time-out. Should punishment be necessary, and luckily James is a wonderful child so this is rather rare, he is given a time-out. A time-out consists of him sitting in a chair in the corner of the room for forty seconds. After a time-out, James never reoffends. He gets the message immediately. Time-outs I can live with. Spankings I can't.

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