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Is Spanking An Appropriate Form Of Punishment For Children?

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Earlier this morning, the Minnesota Vikings announced that they have banned NFL star Adrian Peterson from all team activities until his legal issues have been resolved.

The allegations accusing Peterson of child abuse are re-igniting a long held debate among parents: Is spanking an appropriate form of punishment for children?

The results of a University of Chicago survey are in and they show that  spanking has become less popular among parents over time. The university has been tracking opinion on the topic of corporal punishment for the last 28 years. The survey finds that approval of that form of punishment has dropped from 84-percent in 1986 to 70 in 2012.

Elizabeth Gershoff, an associate professor at the University of Texas has studied the topic. She says  opinions on striking children as a form of punishment could depend on generational and regional factors. Her research suggests spanking is more popular among parents in the south. That may be because spanking is more common in families that have a conservative background. The research also shows if you were spanked as a kid, you will likely spank your kids. It’s what experts call “inter-generational transmission,” in other words, our parents are one of our main examples of how to be a parent.

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