Karyl Chastain Beal's Letter to Mike Barnicle Karyl Chastain Beal's Letter to Mike Barnicle
re: "Time to Spare the Ron," Mike Barnicle, Nov. 16
November 19, 2004

Dear Mr. Barnicle,

I have read the article you wrote mocking Ron Goldman because he's championing the rights of children to live a life free of violence in your community. I honestly cannot see why someone who has peace and compassion for children would be vilified this way.

If there were more Ron Goldmans, maybe there would not be an estimated 3 million instances of child abuse in the US each year.

Ron Goldman may not have children, but so what? Priests who've never been married impose their views about marriage on couples. Our president and vice president who have never fought in a war are advising the military on what they should do in Iraq. I could fill up this message with a list of 'experts' who have never walked in the shoes of those they are trying to control, but I won't bore you. I hope you get my point.

I truly do not know whether it's effective for any town to make an un-enforceable resolution on spanking, however, if such a resolution would cause the local parents to re-evaluate the way they relate to their children, what does it hurt?

And is it possible that some good could come out of it? Like maybe a few children will overhear their parents talking about it, and know that even if their own parents won't stop hitting them, that there are people who care about their welfare.

As far as I know, there is no other town in the whole US that has a resolution against spanking. Think what this resolution could do for the reputation of Boston! Think how this would set an example for the rest of the country as being a community that cares about the welfare of its youngest, smallest weakest citizens.

Is anything wrong with this, Mr. Barnicle? I would be so honored to live in community that honored children in this positive way.

I don't know what you have against Mr. Goldman, other than his enthusiasm for this resolution, but I ask you to re-evaluate your own role as a journalist. Do you want to promote respect for all people, including children, or are you more at peace attacking (with the intent of humiliating) those who simply march to the beat of a different drummer than the drum you hear?

(And FYI, not that it matters, but I have 2 children (grown now), and I have taught school in south Georgia for 30 years. I also spanked my own children (regretfully, as I was repeating what I learned from my parents). I also spent 5 years as an advocate for victims of domestic violence, so I know much more about the harm of physical abuse than you will ever know, Mr. Goldman.)


Karyl Chastain Beal
Pavo, GA

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