Friday, January 8, 2010


Hmm. I finished the Kay Arthur book last night. Up until the point that I last wrote, I was enchanted. However, the couple of chapters I had left -- well, they bothered me a bit. Part of it is that I think she was trying to tackle too much in the book. She broke focus from the marriage to talk about finances and about child-rearing. Now, don't get me wrong, both of these things are extremely important elements in a marriage and should have been discussed. But the way she went about it made me feel as if both subjects should have had a separate book, and she didn't really relate them back into the whole realm of marriage. It began to feel preachy. And, quite unfortunately, I finally disagreed with her on two strategic points.

One point is that she believes in the whole "hands are made for loving, and discipline should be done with an object to spank with' thing. A paddle, a 'rod'. I don't agree that this should be interpreted literally from the bible. Certain things were done in the day and should not be done in this day. If you spank your child, it should be with your hand only, and only on the bottom, and only up until a certain age where that child can have other reasonable punishment. I do not believe in beating a teenager with a belt because they missed curfew, because all they get from that is pain and humiliation, not a life-lesson, and it's not a relative punishment befitting the 'crime'. Another disagreement I had with Kay Arthur is in her financial section about giving, she said that the New Testament disregards tithing as a percentage and it should be whatever you feel you can give, and to give cheerfully. I firmly believe in giving 10%, and that God set that because it's not an amount, it's a percentage. If you make a lot of money or a little money, you can give what God asks of you. It's to be returned to him as an acknowledgment that all we have and all we are comes from him. If left to their own devices saying, oh, just give whatever you feel like... well, we won't learn the discipline of tithing or the acknowledgment of God's gifts. We're human and we'll be stingy and we'll stick 40 cents in the offering plate because we want to go out to dinner later. I don't believe the New Testament does away with our giving.

Overall, it was a really great book, however, and I suggest everyone read it, and take the last few chapters with a grain of salt.

I stared "About Alice" last night and will likely finish it today. It's a quick, witty read by Calvin Trillin about his wife, Alice. Thus, the book is aptly named.

I'm enjoying the Steve Martin book so much I could read it twice even though it won't count.

Fun with theatre friends tonight! Happy weekend, everyone!



  1. Spirit of the law or letter of the law?: The vast majority of professionals agree that child buttock-battering isn’t healthy. A marginal few (mostly religious fundamentalists as those at Calvin) think that child bottom-slapping is good. They use the same selective literalist interpretation of the Bible as was used to justify “witch”-burning, depraved torture methods for those accused of sin and heresy, slavery, racism, wife-beating, oppression of women and a host of other social ills.

  2. People used to think it was necessary to "spank" adult members of the community, military trainees, and prisoners. In some countries they still do. In our country, it is considered sexual assault if a person over the age of 18 is "spanked", but only if over the age of 18.

    For one thing, buttock-battering can vibrate the pudendal nerve, which can lead to sexual arousal. There are multitudinous other physiological ways in which it can be sexually abusive, but I won't list them all here. One can use the resources I've posted if they want to learn more.

    Child bottom-battering/slapping vs. DISCIPLINE:

    Child bottom-battering (euphemistically labeled "spanking","swatting","switching","smacking", "paddling",or other cute-sounding names) for the purpose of gaining compliance is nothing more than an inherited bad habit.

    Its a good idea for people to take a look at what they are doing, and learn how to DISCIPLINE instead of hit.

    I think the reason why television shows like "Supernanny" and "Dr. Phil" are so popular is because that is precisely what many (not all) people are trying to do.

    There are several reasons why child bottom-slapping isn't a good idea. Here are some good, quick reads recommended by professionals:

    Plain Talk About Spanking
    by Jordan Riak,

    The Sexual Dangers of Spanking Children
    by Tom Johnson,

    by Lesli Taylor M.D. and Adah Maurer Ph.D.

    Most compelling of all reasons to abandon this worst of all bad habits is the fact that buttock-battering can be unintentional sexual abuse for some children. There is an abundance of educational resources, testimony, documentation, etc available on the subject that can easily be found by doing a little research with the recommended reads-visit

    Just a handful of those helping to raise awareness of why child bottom-slapping isn't a good idea:

    American Academy of Pediatrics,
    American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry,
    American Psychological Association,
    Center For Effective Discipline,
    Churches' Network For Non-Violence,
    Nobel Peace Prize recipient Archbishop Desmond Tutu,
    Parenting In Jesus' Footsteps,
    Global Initiative To End All Corporal Punishment of Children,
    United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child.

    In 26 countries, child corporal punishment is prohibited by law (with more in process). In fact, the US was the only UN member that did not ratify the Convention on the Rights of the Child.