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Parental Child Beating vs. Children's Rights

Failure of human kind, lack of intellectual skills, unprecedented stupidity


By Rutagengwa Claude Shema

Regional Coordinator

Great Lakes Peace Initiative (GLPI)



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It has become gradually routine to hear or see parents/close relatives beating up children as just the only way to make them obey an order.

Unfortunately, this is going beyond punishment, to abuse and murdering - to death.

The situation is getting more chaotic in our era, and I would link the gravity of the situation to a result of q long time-unsolved issue. And of course this is the dissemination of what we have been through in our old time, when we were children as well. That means that actually it is a closed cycle of dissemination of what we have been through. Thus we are on the level of transmission as well.

Every single day we are experiencing the molestation of kids, killing those small angels, in the deadly beating of tomorrow’s generation, mutilation of their parts, of sex, and more many other untold and horrific acts on the children. This has been seen and reported on in different scenes from USA-Africa-Europe-Asia and Australia - in other words, there is no refuge for kids.

Unfortunately, if nothing is done to correct this continuous mistake, the more calamities are knocking at our doors, and the new generation will be facing even more horrific situations.

The facts

Some times it is not easy to understand why anyone would beat children. But here, I can brainstormingly describe some reasons - even though normally there should be no reason at all - as follows:

a)      Misunderstanding

b)      Complex situations

c)      Shows of supremacy

d)     A culture of beating

e)      Culture, etc..

In this section, I try to avoid going so far in scientific analysis, for a better and easier understanding, and of course to let others get inspired about this issue. The similarity of the scientific results would not be far from this one as well.

If we take “misunderstanding” as one of the causes, it will be clear that in whatever research results are, the paradigm of misunderstanding will come in as one of the top lists of causes, especially if we take this issue as conflict based element. Then we can say that there is a misunderstanding with children who do not know exactly how to be what their parents want them to be. Then, as parents and adults, we should blame misunderstandings on their age instead of attacking ferociously. But wisely, it seems better to blame ourselves because we don’t use proper means and skills to give our little ones the needed knowledge and wisdom, so that they can be the ones we want to see, and so that they can be able to act the way we want them to do. This is a greater failure with parents or adults. In other words, if the children fail to do or be what we want them to be or to do, it is an indicator of parental failure.

If we try to go deeper as well, we can find that parents themselves misunderstand most of the time, because they don’t know what children need either. For example: I, as parent want to send my child to bed right now! But my poor child doesn’t really feel sleepy nor tired. And, at the same time, the child has some interesting things to play with or to enjoy in general instead.

Then I say, “Go to bed right now!"- A parent yelling with a heavy lion’s voice at a child.

The poor child with a little mind would try to defend his/her position (not to go to bed “no”). The resistance cannot help though, and the power of parties in this conflict is imbalanced, between the adult parent, who is strong, and small child, who is weak. Mostly, the child wouldn’t fight physically, but cry instead. Crying for the child in this context isn’t due to the defense, but the sorrow, and then likely will be annoying the parent.

Then the syndrome of misunderstanding on both side arises, and the stress leads to the tension, until the outbreak of the conflict between both, and the battle between a hummer like versus a mosquito like begins as a result of misunderstanding with parents - who do not know what the child wants - or how to handle a child, and on the other side, the child - who does not know what the parent wants.

Nevertheless, the parental child beating syndrome is a result of different reasons as mentioned above, but better I focus only on “misunderstanding” and I place it on high level of the conflict dynamic analysis (escalation) between parents and children, because unknown numbers of children have been killed  or handicapped psychologically and physically so far in this way (mainly accidentally child beating), sometimes without any related report about this issue due to the lack of information and other information related means.

Revenge as backups of child beating and its impact in future

A wise man once said: instruct the child  a best way to follow for life, and until the time he or she will be adult, never he or she will be mad…! So in another word, whatever we do to our children will follow them the rest of their lives. If we try the non-violent methods to solve conflict between us and them in our home places, they will change the world positively, but if we use violent methods in our home places to solve the so-called conflict between us and them, the result will be even worse. Because they will immortalize the violence and apply it upon their children as well, and their grand-grand-grandchildren will do the same to the  new generation and the evolution of human kind and modern crime will increase together with the unprecedented violence-because of us, and sometimes the backups can affect us as parents, especially when the children are grown. The examples can be seen left and right, neighbors, etc….Parents get killed by children, and many other similar cases.

Some steps to follow in avoiding confrontation and beatings children

a)Think of a child's mind

Before using force and violence against child as problem solving solution, better have in mind that a child is a vulnerable small human being, a “tomorrow base in process”, with a limited way of thinking, and full of confusion in mind, who does not know “exactly” what to chose between A or B. A human creature without any intention to harm anyone or hurting anything. Then, if someone feels angry because of child misbehaviors, try to calm down the level of anger, because anger could cause serious human-child injury or death, while “negatively” handling a child.

b) Child as my image

The second thing to do when someone responsible (or a parent of a misbehaving [confused] child) gets angry, better look at the child's face, and do that at least for 2 minutes. I am quite sure that the 2 minutes of a deeper fixing look at the child would transform anger to an admiring mood, because the same look would decrease brutality, then feel sorry for the poor angel who does not what to do or what to let.

The level of human poison-adrenalin would slowdown to normality, and then the innate human intellectual and non-violence would regain and replace violence and anger.

The fixing look of a parent will give enough time also to the child to realize that something has gone wrong, and an opportunity to correct possible mistakes immediately, even seek for apology.

Therefore, I am convinced that it is possible to avoid violence between child and parent, even though it is so complex with our daily stress and the impatience we inherit, and the child beating and pressure culture we have been under since our childhood up today.

The most important thing is to know what a child is (child mind, intellectual context, etc…)? What are the needs of child and when? But the best solution ever is to know how to make a child happy, and respond to the needs of a child with a smile and change the child’s mind by a promise. That means that in case the child becomes rebellious, it's better to never slap or beat with whatsoever or yell. Instead, just smile at the child and come up with a great idea of an appointment to a place that the child would like - mostly, favorite food, pay a visit to a best friend so that they can play together, promising a gift, asking what’s wrong, etc…!

Because any violence against a child, would lead to more and eternal violent behaviors and annoying cries and continuous misbehaving.

Together with this, you are able to convince a child and change his/ her mind, so that she or he can fall asleep with a smiling face, and have sweet dreams for tomorrow's sweetest generation, because it our responsibility to guide them peacefully, and it is their right to express what they want and share with us their emotions.

Child rights first!


“Every act of violence is a monument of human inadequacy” - Pr.Johan Galtung.