CORPORAL PUNISHMENT IN U.S. SCHOOLS
WHEREAS, over 340,000 students in grades K through 12 in the public schools of 22 states are paddled annually, of which an estimated 75,000 are females; and
WHEREAS, women in high school may be subject to school paddlings even having attained the age of legal adulthood; and
WHEREAS, the great majority of school corporal punishment is designated and administered by male administrators and teachers; and
WHEREAS, school paddling has an ample history of inflicting severe bruising, intense and/or lasting pain, and in some cases debilitating injury; and
WHEREAS, the availability of civil action over injurious school corporal punishment is increasingly impeded by states' passage of specialized "teacher protection" immunity laws; and
WHEREAS, the modern day prospect of unwanted, widespread prurient attention to victims via corporal punishment-themed adult websites may inhibit parents from seeking redress for their injured child for fear of the publicity such complaints could generate; and
WHEREAS, corporal punishment legitimizes violence and aggression as a method of problem solving by precisely those adults the student is expected to emulate, thus encouraging his/her own use of or submission to violence and aggression; and
WHEREAS, in the overwhelming majority of cases, battering husbands and battered wives were routinely exposed to corporal punishment when they were children, either receiving it, witnessing it or both; and
WHEREAS, the legitimacy of male principals spanking female students is at odds with prevailing sexual harassment codes, which bar male employers from spanking female employees; and
WHEREAS, school paddling violates Title IX insofar as girls and boys are impacted differently because, unlike boys, girls would have to reveal intimate personal information in order to avoid the chance of this punishment being unfairly compounded by menstrual discomfort; and
WHEREAS, corporal punishment carries unique psychological hazards because it makes the body a direct transmitter of condemnation; and
WHEREAS, the physical assault of persons incapable of protecting themselves is antithetical to feminist and democratic values;
THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED, that the National Organization for Women (NOW) oppose the use of corporal punishment in U.S. schools and all other institutions, public and private, where children are cared for and educated.
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