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Swiss court rules parents can only smack children occasionally

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LauraK Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Jul-10-03 09:21 AM
Original message
Swiss court rules parents can only smack children occasionally
LAUSANNE, Switzerland, July 9 ? Parents have only a limited right to smack their children to punish or educate them, Switzerland's highest court ruled Wednesday.

The Swiss supreme court said an occasional smack is acceptable but anything more would constitute a criminal offense. <cut

In their ruling, the supreme court judges said parents and others acting in a parental capacity had the right to smack a child occasionally ''following inappropriate behavior and with the aim of educating the child.'' But if the punishment is repeated or regular, that could not be justified.
In hitting the children 10 times, the man went beyond what was acceptable. Furthermore, the kicks given to the children represented ''degrading treatment'' and could not be justified in terms of a duty to educate a child, the judges said.
A number of European countries, especially Nordic ones, have made it a criminal offense to smack children. Other countries have tightened their rules, including outlawing corporal punishment by teachers.
Switzerland in the past has considered introducing laws on parental behavior but no such law has been passed. Corporal punishment is banned in Swiss schools.
<cut
http://famulus.msnbc.com/FamulusIntl/ap07-09-193013.asp?reg=EUROPE

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DCDemo Donating Member (847 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jul-09-03 10:08 PM
Response to Original message
1. And my friends don't understand why I'm so proud of being 1/2 Swiss
They have a lot of the right takes on issues that challenge us here so much.
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trotsky Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jul-09-03 10:42 PM
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2. Kicks??
KICKS?!?

My goodness, that's insane. (Kicking a child, no matter what they did!)
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TankLV Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jul-09-03 11:32 PM
Response to Original message
3. Plus one swift kick to the rear in a year,
about 3 intense shakings in a 4 month period;

indefinite nightly screaming and yelling - especially for those in their teen years;

any amount of "because I said so"s.

2 witholdings of dinner a year


& 13 forced baths.
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underpants Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Jul-10-03 09:05 AM
Response to Reply #3
8. Yeah you better make it count
:eyes:
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JohnOneillsMemory Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Jul-10-03 12:49 AM
Response to Original message
4. Europe continues to reject violence as acceptable behavior.
I'd move there if they would embrace the American rejection of tobacco smoke as an acceptable public environment...
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booksenkatz Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Jul-10-03 05:52 AM
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5. Sorry
Even an occasional "smack" is absurd. I don't "smack" my husband (even occasionally) nor do I "smack" my friends or co-workers when they disagree with me or they don't do as I ask. Why do people think it's ok to do it to smaller human beings when they wouldn't dream of doing it to another adult?

My husband was never spanked or "smacked" (I was), and he and his siblings are the kindest, least violent people you'd ever want to meet. I've never spanked or "smacked" my son, and all of his caregivers, and all of the mommies in our group, say he is the most beautifully behaved child they've ever seen. My 4-year-old simply does not hit other children; violence just doesn't seem to be a part of his makeup. I wonder why?

Hitting is not needed... EVER. Not even an occasional "smack." Let's get more creative as a species, shall we?

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Michael Daniels Donating Member (133 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Jul-10-03 07:22 AM
Response to Original message
6. So they basically outlawed "child abuse"... This is a major event?
Edited on Thu Jul-10-03 07:25 AM by Michael Daniels
I'm not quite sure how a "smack" is defined, but they basically said that you can do it within reason but if you overdo it then you can be in trouble.

We say the same thing here. Not sure why people think this is some morally superior view to what standards are in the US.

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JNelson6563 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Jul-10-03 08:37 AM
Response to Original message
7. *applause*
Hitting kids as discipline only causes anger. Violence begets violence.

Non-violent discipline requires more creativity and effor though so it's not quite as popular.

Julie--who doesn't hit her kids
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Voice_of_Europe Donating Member (262 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Jul-10-03 10:04 AM
Response to Reply #7
9. Not all that important as it may seem..
Nobody says it's morally superior here in Switzerland or anything...

It was just some high profile case and the highest Swiss court made a deision.


The case involved a concerned father who lives apart from his ex-wife and child and a step-father namely the new friend/husband of the ex-wife.
The father complained that the step-father had no right to slap his child.
The step-father claimed his right of education.

Here in Switzerland it is broadly viewed as bad parenthood if you slap your child and we have very strict rules against child abuse. But the law is reasonable enough not to take away the children of a mother who gives the child one slap for bad behavior.

If you forbid your child to play with matches ten times and it still doesn't comply then one slap may be much healthier than terrible injury by a fire in your house...

This is not a black and white issue but a matter of reason...

The court now simply stated that in some situations a slap/smack (by hand not with any object) is ok...

But the step-father who often slapped the child and even kicked him was definitely stepping over the line of reason ... therefore the laws for child abuse come into play which makes you a criminal...


There is no new law or anything.... just an example court case.
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