Heresies

The Art of Spanking

So, thanks again

for the love in the cradle

and all of the changes that kept me dry.

And thanks again

for the love at our table

and tannin’ my bottom when I told you a lie . . .

It’s a tear-jerker of a song, and the only thing that rescues Ricky Skaggs’ “Thanks Again” from excessive sentimentality is the fact that every word of it is true.  But then again, it was a tear-jerker of a story that I was reading when that song started playing in my head.

The story appeared at Salon.com, and it was about parents spanking children, so right there from the get-go you’re bracing yourself for another left-wing diatribe against what my parents, and their parents, and, well, a fair number of the parents I’ve ever known did and do.  And let us remember, wise King Solomon told us, “He that spareth his rod hateth his son.”

Kevin and Elizabeth Schatz were of a mind to take Proverbs 13:24 literally.  Now I remember Dad’s belt and Mom’s wooden spoon, but neither would qualify as a “rod” in the literalist of senses.  A length of quarter-inch plastic plumbing supply line comes closer. ...

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