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Old 04 May 2014, 12:21 AM
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Cervus Cervus is offline
 
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Default Public humiliation of children

Earlier today, on the corner of a busy intersection, there was a kid who couldn't have been more than 11 or 12 years old, wearing a dunce cap and holding a sign that said "Because I chose to EMBARRASS my parents by getting EXPELLED they have asked me to return the favor!!" (Or something to that effect, I didn't quite catch the last few words.)

This is the first time I've ever seen such a thing in person, and it made me sick and mad. I wanted to pull over and ask the kid what his parents' names were so I could humiliate them on the news. I wanted to flag down a cop and ask if this counted as a form of child abuse. In my book it is. (Also, there was no adult in sight near the kid).

All this is going to do is cause the kid to lose any respect for parents and authority figures. It's emotional abuse and bullying. Plus, it was slowing down traffic as people stopped to read the sign, and although I didn't see anyone shouting or throwing things at the kid from cars, I wouldn't be surprised if a few people did. I'm sure someone took pictures and is going to post them on Facebook to have a laugh at the kid's expense. It's such a disgusting excuse for "parenting" made worse by total strangers who endorse it.
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Old 04 May 2014, 12:29 AM
Magdalene Magdalene is offline
 
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I'm of two minds about this....

In most cases, I don't see the point in publicly humiliating a child for a number of ordinary kid behaviors. I agree it defeats the purpose.

On the other hand....a kid getting expelled from school tends to be pretty serious business, and I wonder if the parents are at their wits' end in this particular case. Not saying that it makes it right, but they might be at a "We need to get through to this kid SOMEHOW, and fast" juncture.

Magdalene
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Old 04 May 2014, 12:29 AM
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Whenever I hear about kids standing with signs like that I always wonder how parents who apparently had so little control over their child that they got into enough trouble to get expelled somehow can control them enough to compel them to stand on a street corner with a sign. If the kid is afraid enough of mom and dad to allow himself to be humiliated like that where was that fear when he was screwing up at school? I know there must be a myriad of explanations but it always puzzles me anyway.
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Old 04 May 2014, 12:35 AM
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I wouldn't be surprised if, in households where this is considered appropriate punishment, much more serious threats are laid on the table if the child doesn't comply.
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Old 04 May 2014, 01:11 AM
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Controlling your child when they are at arm's length is completely different than controlling them at a distance, Sue.
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Old 04 May 2014, 01:17 AM
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Originally Posted by Cervus View Post
I wouldn't be surprised if, in households where this is considered appropriate punishment, much more serious threats are laid on the table if the child doesn't comply.
Fair enough, but depending on the circumstances of the expulsion that still makes me wonder where the fear of parental reprisal was when that was going on. In our schools explusion is very much a last resort unless something pretty dire has happened. I guess what it comes down to isn't really control of a child though it's saving parental face within the community. I mean we all know how admired the parent who humiliates a child is .
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Old 04 May 2014, 01:58 AM
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Little Pink Pill Little Pink Pill is offline
 
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Controlling your child when they are at arm's length is completely different than controlling them at a distance, Sue.
Cervus did say there were no adults in sight.
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Old 04 May 2014, 02:15 AM
Gayle Gayle is offline
 
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For once, Cervus, I am completely 100% in agreement with you. No. Under no circumstances is a parent allowed to sink to the level of childish retaliation to publicly humiliate a child.
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  #9  
Old 04 May 2014, 05:29 AM
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Johnny Slick Johnny Slick is offline
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Magdalene View Post
I'm of two minds about this....

In most cases, I don't see the point in publicly humiliating a child for a number of ordinary kid behaviors. I agree it defeats the purpose.

On the other hand....a kid getting expelled from school tends to be pretty serious business, and I wonder if the parents are at their wits' end in this particular case. Not saying that it makes it right, but they might be at a "We need to get through to this kid SOMEHOW, and fast" juncture.
Does this punishment even begin to look like something done precisely because the kid got expelled, though? It looks an awful lot to me like what really cheesed off the parents is that the kid got expelled *and embarrassed them in the process.* If the kid learns anything, it's "if you embarrass mom and dad they will publicly humiliate me in response", not "don't get expelled from school anymore", at least not necessarily.

I wonder what the kid got expelled for, because depending on the reason it strikes me that there are a million better ways to get this kid to see the error of his ways. Which, again, doesn't even seem to be what mom and dad care about in the first place. Little Billy, it appears, can be a little NFBSK for all they care, so long as he doesn't drag their good name into it.
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Old 04 May 2014, 08:10 AM
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I'm with Sue on how I just don't follow the logical process here.

There's an absolutely huge gaping... well plot hole in these cases of parents publicly shaming their children.

Let's follow the basic flow of events. Parent tells child to do or not do X. Child doesn't or does do X anyway. Parent then makes child publically humiliate themselves.

How the bloody hell do you make a child that you can't make follow simple instructions publically humiliate themselves? Why not just do whatever you did to make them publically humiliate themselves but do it to make them do the thing you were trying to do in the first place?

Public humiliation isn't a denial of a something like grounding them or taking away their allowance or whatever. It's making them do something. How is the punishment the exact definition of what you are punishing them for? If you can make child stand on the side of the road with a sign you are obviously in enough control of the child to make them do things. "I'm making my child do this as punishment because I can't make them do other things" doesn't really pan out.

And this is children and teens we're talking. Public humilate is the last thing they are going to do willingly. If you can make them do that then frankly it is obvious that you're in full of the child. If you can make a teen humilate themselves in public then you have zero excuse for not being able to get them to do anything else.

Some have say we'll they are threatened or whatever. Again why not just do that then? If you're a parent and willing to threaten your child to make them do this, why not just threaten them to do the original thing? I'm not coming up with a long list of things children would rather do less then publically humilate themselves so I'm not really imaging a lot of scenarios where a child gives less resistence to this then to whatever you were trying to get them to do in the first place.

I do wonder if some of these cases aren't weird attempts at some sort of publicity or attention seeking.
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Old 04 May 2014, 08:20 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Magdalene View Post
On the other hand....a kid getting expelled from school tends to be pretty serious business, and I wonder if the parents are at their wits' end in this particular case. Not saying that it makes it right, but they might be at a "We need to get through to this kid SOMEHOW, and fast" juncture.
I'm not sure if it is telling but it is interesting, to me anyway, that of the dozens of cases of this public humiliation trend I've read about in this news, this is the first one I recall where the "crime" was anything worthy of real punishment. Usually these cases are all about children that are vaguely "disrespectful" or "out of control."
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Old 04 May 2014, 03:29 PM
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I know nothing about the public school systems around here, so we don't know if the kid was expelled for ongoing criminal behavior, or for something ridiculous like making a finger gun or "sexual harassment" for kissing a classmate with her consent. It's really hard to judge how out of control the kid is when you don't know the circumstances of the expulsion.
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Old 04 May 2014, 03:57 PM
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Kids that are constantly 'bad' and get punished for it learn very quickly to appraise the punishment and just take it when they can. This is one of the many reasons that corporal punishment is a bad idea. My guess is these kids probably thought it out and figured this punishment was better than the alternative so they went along with it.
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Old 04 May 2014, 04:08 PM
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these kids probably also get punished a lot for small things.
I used to get beat the same for being 1 minute late or 3 hours late -- so guess how many times i was 1 minute late vs almost not coming home?
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Old 04 May 2014, 04:36 PM
fitz1980 fitz1980 is offline
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cervus View Post
I know nothing about the public school systems around here, so we donbulow if the kid was expelled for ongoing criminal behavior, or for something ridiculous like making a finger gun or "sexual harassment" for kissing a classmate with her consent. It's really hard to judge how out of control the kid is when you don't know the circumstances of the expulsion.
Very true. In middle school I was picked on a lot & I was twice sent to in school suspension for defending myself from bullies who regularly assulted me. Teachers' justification was that since I defended myself it was "fighting" and both had to be punished.

That was all years before Columbine & zero tolerance. Chances are these days I'd have been suspended or expelled.
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Old 04 May 2014, 04:43 PM
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And you know there's a cadre of idiots on Facebook right now shouting things like "Give those parents a medal!" and "Finally, some parents actually taking a stand! Not enough do these days!" or "Back in my day, we'd have WISHED our parents did this to us!"

Gah, it hurt just to type that.

Anyway, I'll fall back on my usual response: Show me the scientific evidence that this kind of parenting A) is effective and B) less harmful than the alternative(s) and I'll reconsider. Until then, I have to vehemently disagree with it.

Why would you bring the entire community into a private matter? Any punishment is humiliating enough. I can only imagine how much I would hate my parents for taking our business out in public like that.
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Old 05 May 2014, 02:47 PM
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I hate public humiliation as a punishment. Not only that, but the parents haven't even addressed the actual issue. Like Johnny said, the parents are punishing the embarrassment the kid caused them, not the action that got him expelled, which I'm sure is the more serious of the two.
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  #18  
Old 05 May 2014, 06:17 PM
Gayle Gayle is offline
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JoeBentley View Post

Let's follow the basic flow of events. Parent tells child to do or not do X. Child doesn't or does do X anyway. Parent then makes child publically humiliate themselves.

How the bloody hell do you make a child that you can't make follow simple instructions publically humiliate themselves? Why not just do whatever you did to make them publically humiliate themselves but do it to make them do the thing you were trying to do in the first place?
Impulse control. Think about what most kids get in trouble with at school. An opportunity presents itself to push someone, take something, make people laugh, get attention, etc. Boom! Trouble descends. How many times do kids say "I didn't think X would happen." They just do it and the punishments come down later.

Now for the humiliation portion, you've got a kid told to do something by at least one adult. Kids may be afraid of a parent hitting them, but know the teacher can't. They’ll promise six hundred ways to Sunday that they won’t push other kids or take something that doesn’t belong to them. Then the opportunity arrives and there’s 1 adult and 25 kids (possibly some egging him on), so that impulse control fails.

I was in a parent-teacher conference one time discussing one of my students. The student was called in from class to join us. He was explaining how blameless he was when the counselor said “Leslie, what’s that on your hand?” He’d written “F**k you” on his palm and had been flashing it to other kids in the class. His dad had been sitting there telling us how Leslie didn’t DARE act out with him, we just weren’t tough enough. Yet, even though he knew his parents were BOTH coming in that day, he couldn’t control the impulse to act out. Believe me he was very much yes sir, no sir when his dad was there.

As people mature, the impulse control improves. Or it should. That’s one of the reasons I abhor the tit for tat approach of public humiliation. I think the parents who inflict this exhibit a remarkable lack of social maturity and brain development.
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Old 05 May 2014, 11:35 PM
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Originally Posted by Amigone201 View Post
Anyway, I'll fall back on my usual response: Show me the scientific evidence that this kind of parenting A) is effective and B) less harmful than the alternative(s) and I'll reconsider.
You should possibly add that if this type of parenting used to be more common and was also more effective, then why are 'kids these days' allegedly so poorly disciplined? I mean, weren't their parents taught how to behave?
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Old 13 May 2014, 02:13 PM
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Ramblin' Dave Ramblin' Dave is offline
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gayle View Post
Impulse control. Think about what most kids get in trouble with at school. An opportunity presents itself to push someone, take something, make people laugh, get attention, etc. Boom! Trouble descends. How many times do kids say "I didn't think X would happen." They just do it and the punishments come down later.

Or they've been putting up with being bullied for heaven knows how long and finally hit back, without checking to see if the teacher is looking first. Seasoned bullies know to strike when the teacher isn't looking, so guess who ends up in trouble under zero-tolerance (or as Fitz1980 said, sometimes even before that)? I guess it's easy to still blame that on poor impulse control on the grounds that two wrongs don't make a right, but there does come a point where it's not fair or reasonable to expect a kid to turn the other cheek.
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