Re John Kost letter, March 21:
Hear, hear. I would like to add my take on the problem. Discipline! I am in my 70s and when my peers and I get together and talk we all agree that our parents would all be in jail for what is now considered child abuse but to them it was just discipline. There is a line between abuse and discipline.
I worked with a woman who was one of eight children and she believed that without a certain amount of fear there is no respect. “Wait until your Father comes home,” was enough to instill fear and trepidation in most of us. My mother did not believe in waiting. She doled out the punishment. For a tiny lady (5’ 2” if she stretched) she had a mean backhand. She also had a yardstick that was about 3/4-inch thick and it had no give.
I learned early on not to run, the longer she waited (she knew I would come back eventually), the madder she became and the worse it was for me. I remember my kids threatening me that if I smacked them they would go to school and report me for child abuse. My reply was, go ahead and I guarantee that before they arrest me you will know what abuse really is.
If I am going to jail it will be for something I did, not what you think I did. It is time we put discipline back in school (remember the paddle?) and in the home. Responsibility for one’s actions begins with home and the discipline there.
Ellie Kloes, Longs