Paddling has no place in modern education
Letter from Rev. Thomas E. Sagendorf to the Dallas Observer, August 19, 2003
Letters to the Editor
Dallas Observer

Dear Editor:

Last week leaders of the Dallas Independent District had an historic opportunity to end the scourge of child abuse that exists in the District. Unfortunately, they they took the easy way, failing to do what was both wise and morally sound. Now, corporal punishment will be practiced only with parental permission. This means that those kids who are beaten at home will also be beaten at school. What a disgrace!

Paddling has no place in modern education. The practice simply provides a safe haven for teachers and principals who are incompetent, violent, and, in some instances, emotionally disturbed. Paddling has long been abondoned by thousands of enlightened school systems that don't want to model violence as a way of solving human problems.

Texas' rough-and-ready reputation is celebrated by its residents as a mark of distinction. To many of us outside your borders, however, Texas appears to be a social anomoly living in an ethical and cultural vacuum. The Independent School District's recent decision allowing the continued beating of school children only serves to reinforce this judgment.

Yours truly,

The Rev. Thomas E. Sagendorf
Hamilton, Indiana

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