Spanking, Sex and Solomon

Little Rock, Arkansas, September 2000

Project: Tom Johnson           Photo: Randy Cox

Brian's letter to Project NoSpank
September 26, 2000

Good Morning.

I was driving to work this morning and saw a bench on the side of the road where people sit to wait for the city buses. On this particular bench was one of your advertisements for your website with the word "Spanking Can Be Sexual Abuse."

Although, unfortunately this is true, that spanking "can" be some form of abuse to a child, I do not feel it to be sexual abuse.

And, not all spanking is bad. The Bible states that to spare the rod is to spoil the child. Children should learn discipline, with compassion and love, from an early age. That is the way I was brought up and am a better man today for it.

It is not abuse for a parent to discipline their own child by spanking them on the buttocks, if it is done with sincere love for their child in correcting them.

Sure, "Time Out" may be ok sometimes, but the Bible is clear on the role of the parent and the child.

I thank you for reading my view. As you can sum up from my writing to you, I am not in total opposition to your beliefs, but I think you should also consider the Biblical side as well.

Thank you for your time. Have a great day.

God Bless.


Riak's reply to Brian
September 26, 2000

Thank you for your letter, Brian.

You say that you were raised with spanking and that you are a better person for it. Are you sure your declaration isn't tainted by just a little bit of wishful thinking? I don't think any of us can know for sure where we'd be today if we were raised differently.

You say the Bible tells us that to spare the rod is to spoil the child. I don't doubt you are referring to certain passages in Solomon's Proverbs, though you haven't quoted them accurately. Now, there is something you should know about Solomon (10th century B.C.) before you start taking his advice on family matters. In addition to being a slave driver and child beater, he was an idolater and a polygamist of monumental proportions--700 wives, give or take, and about half as many concubines. Surely, if you're searching the Bible for a guide or a model, you could find better than Solomon.

There are a number of other scriptural mandates that I think you also could safely ignore. For instance, you shouldn't burn prostitutes to death (Leviticus 21:9). That's blatantly un-Christian. Furthermore, it could get you into a lot of trouble with the secular authorities. You shouldn't stone witches to death (Leviticus 20:27), and you shouldn't stone to death girls who aren't virgins when they marry (Deuteronomy 22:21). You needn't worry about wearing clothes made of blended fibers. Everybody does it, including fundamentalists, though it's forbidden in the Bible (Deuteronomy 22:11). And you shouldn't discourage women from publicly voicing their opinions or debating with men, though the Bible forbids them to do that (I. Timothy, 2:11, 12).

With regard to your rejection of the idea that spanking can be sexual abuse, I would like to suggest a little test that you can do in a few minutes on the Web. Open any one of the major search engines and type "spanking" in the search box. Hit Enter and see what comes up. Note the number of sites on the list that deal with child-parent issues and compare it to the number of sites that are clearly pornographic. Repeat the process a few times with other search engines. While you're digesting the results of your experiment, consider this from Slaughter of the Innocents by David Bakan:

"The buttocks as the locus for the induction of pain [is considered] a safe locus. However, the anal region is also precisely the major erotic zone at the time a child is likely to be beaten there. Thus it is aptly chosen to achieve deranged sexuality in adulthood."

Then go to Tom Johnson's excellent essay, "The Sexual Dangers of Spanking Children" at

Jordan Riak

Ron's comments
September 29, 2000


You should give Brian the exact figure: Solomon had 300 legitimate wives and 700 concubines. In addition to this he also worshipped at the temple of Baal, where a lot of fornication went on. Perhaps he also found sexual pleasure in beating children. He only became a moralist when, due to his old age, all these women became useless to him -- only then did he start preaching morality, since HE could no longer have orgies. He must have been one of those guys who hate any pleasure that is not their own pleasure. It is interesting to note that the greatest moralists on chastity are those men and women who were wild in their youth.


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