Tuesday, January 23, 2007

Smack that Brat!

We were out in the car tonight, when the 6:00 o'clock news came on the radio. One of the items reached right out and grabbed me by the throat. It was the story of a three year old girl who threw a tantrum on an airplane that was about to leave the gate here in Ft. Myers. The parents could not get her to sit down and get buckled into her seat, so the plane could leave. Everyone must be strapped in for departure. The mother wanted to hold the child on her lap for takeoff and calm her down, which is against FAA rules. Every passenger on the plane was detained while this family demanded time to deal with their child, who showed no signs that she had ever been taught that certain rules govern public behaviour. I know it is considered bad form these days to use corporal punishment on children, but if a little smack had been used previously on this child --- she would have known who was in charge and could not have held a plane full of adults hostage. The airline finally had to remove the entire family from the flight and they had the nerve to complain. The airline did send them on their way on the next available flight and also gave them three tickets to anywhere in the USA for free! What? People are being rewarded for bad behavior? Get in line folks! The louder you scream and the worse your manners, the more you are rewarded, just to keep the peace. When I was a kid, I did get spanked by my parents, the neighbors, my teachers and any other responsible adult. I never had a ride on an airplane or was allowed to be loud in public or anywhere else. I was sometimes seen, but never heard. Most of my time was spent alone --- hanging out in the neighborhood. Come to think of it --- I literally hung out in any convenient tree! I listened to "The View" this morning and those four women of modest intelligence all supported the idea that children should never be hit. They were in agreement with the California Congresswoman, who has sponsored a bill forbidding
the spanking of any child under four. What do you do when your child has not learned by the sound of your voice
that something bad is about to happen?
They will not run into the street as a car approaches, if your tone implies that they are about to get a smack. They might think it is the "mother is at the end of her tether" and gonna belt me tone, when it is really the "look out sweetheart" tone that saves their life. Do parents of modern children not see the anguished looks on the faces of other adults when their child is raising Cain in public? We bite our lips in an effort to keep from yelling "SMACK THAT BRAT!" I am probably a throwback to the dark ages when we disciplined our children in love to "Train up a child in the way he should go and when he is old he will not depart from it". Proverbs 22:6 I believe that children are a gift from God and we are obliged to teach them the things that will make their later lives happy and fulfilling, instead of self-centered monsters. The day is coming when the government is going to decide our every step --- what we can eat, where we can go, what we can drive, where we can live, how much we must earn, how we can raise our children, et cetera. If I were young, I would think twice about bringing children into a socialist state.


Big Dave T said...

Yeah, I saw that story too. I thought the airline did the right thing in removing the family.

However, I have to quibble a little bit about your advice to "spank that brat." Our second child was prone to tantrums when he was young (heck, still even at 21).

Some of it wasn't his fault; he suffered many ear infections and was often in pain for which ordinary medication was useless. He flew once and was unconsolable the whole time. I'm sure many passengers wanted my wife to "spank that brat."

Thing was, whether the tantrum was just the result of being stubborn, or the result of some pain of some sort, spanking him only made things worse. It was like pouring gasoline on a fire.

What sounds like good discipline to one person doesn't necessarily work on everybody. Believe me, I know. My youngest got his share of spankings. Didn't often help the situation.

Lisa said...


Although I'm not inclined to hit my kids, I have on occasion, and no one is delinquent because of it! I have gotten very brazen in my 40's, however, and I just may have said something to that family if I were on that plane!

One thing I would like to mention, however...did anyone check out the full story to see if maybe that child had a spectrum disorder, such as autism? My best friend has an autistic son who looks like every other kid, but has the inclination to freak out in situations that other kids might be able to handle. Sometimes in this situation, the parents may know best. My friend's son is not above a spank on the rear now and then, but sometimes his tantrums are not because he's spoiled...they're merely because he doesn't have the capability to handle a certain situation that he's uncomfortable with as well as a "regular" child.

Whew, sorry so long!!
Take good care,

Kacey said...

Dear Lisa and Dave --- I must have spoken before I had all my ducks in a row. From the local and national news aroud here --- this was a normal, healthy three year old girl. She refused to use a seat belt, she climbed under the plane's seats, kicked and hit her parents while they tried some very innocous measures to get the child to comply with the rules, sit in her seat and buckle up. I think there were 115 other passenbgers who waited over 15 minutes for this child to stop screaaming and generally running the asylum. She had flown before and was a healthey, normal kid who knew that she could get away with it. She did't understand that there are higher authorities than mom and dad. You would think that the parents would tell their kids that if something happends like this ever again, that there well be no more plane, train, bus car, or soap box trips until she starts to behave like a normal human being. The trouble is --- modern parents will not make the kids aware of what is expected of them, they are too busy making excuses for their boorish behavious. Dave and Lisa both have valid reasons for special childrena and I'm not talking about them. If you are raising healthy kids with lousy manners ---- you know who you are and you had better start another approach soon or you will be as popular as lepers.

Matty said...

I'm 100% in agreement. If this child had no health issues,,she needed a firm reminder who's in charge here. I have spanked my kids and grandkids, and at 3 years of age, you can't reason with them.,,sometimes a firm spank on the bottom is all it takes to turn them into well-behaved kids. Note, I did not say to leave welts here, just a firm smack on the butt!
The airline did the right thing in removing the family so that they could continue their flight, but there is no way that they should have given them free tickets.
I watch the View too, even though I don't always agree with them. Rosie will say exactly what she thinks regardless of the consequences.
One day I drove my friend to the unemployment office, and her child of 4 was acting up,,as she was trying to fill out forms,,,finally out of exhaustion, she slapped him firmly (once) on the butt. The clerk then told my friend, that if she saw this happen again, she would report her the Children Aid Society.
It seems you can't win,,,!

Big Dave T said...

Kacey, I wanted to add to my comment here because I myself did not have all my ducks in a row when I commented previously.

After I posted here, I read up a little bit more myself. I didn't realize this girl was older and certainly capable of controlling her behavior as you said. Our child's tantrums were almost all in the terrible two stage.

When I mentioned to my wife about this story, she repeated what you said almost verbatim--they should have smacked that child. Your original post was right on.

Carine said...

ah, as a former pre-school teacher I can't even tell you how many times I've seen behaviors that I still can't fathom being allowed! I would never have allowed my children to behave anything but civil while out in public! I would tell them "I don't want you're bad behavior at home either, but if you feel like acting up home is where to do it! when we go out, think about what others see-do they see the wonderful kid you are or wonder something totally different?"

allrileyedup said...

Your final sentences reminded me of this. I think you might like it:


Teri said...

Guess I'm a dark age "throwback" back at you chica. Right on.