Guest Editorial: "Viewer Feedback and Child Abuse"

MONTGOMERY, AL (WSFA) - Many people responded to my editorial urging victims of domestic abuse to seek help and citing NFL star Adrian Peterson's arrest on child abuse charges as the latest high profile example.

Most viewers agreed with the editorial, but some did not.

Devon wrote:

"The man disciplined his kid. Leave him alone"

And Cindy said…

"…that's what is wrong with most kids these days, there is no discipline, we are all afraid."

I firmly believe that parents should be able to raise their children as they see fit. It doesn't take a village to raise a child. It takes parents.

But sometimes it may take a village to protect a child.

Our village… our society… confers rights on children as well as adults. The child's right not to be abused supersedes the parents' right to discipline in the extreme. The child cannot fight for his or her own rights.

Then it comes down to defining abuse. We have courts that determine when, to put it simply, a spanking turns into a beating.

And as Supreme Court Justice Potter Stewart famously wrote about pornography, "…hard to define, but I know it when I see it."

Bleeding, bruising, injuries that take time to heal?  As for child abuse, I believe most of us know it when we see it.

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