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Against corporal punishment essay - …
Corporal — physical — punishment of students has a long history, and 20 states still permit its use. What are the arguments for and against corporal punishment? Should administrators and teachers be allowed to discipline students physically? Why or why not?
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Either way, the vexing question is whether corporal punishment involves an unacceptable lowering of somebody's standing. it is noteworthy that there are other forms of punishment that lower people's standing even more than corporal punishment, and yet are not subject to similar condemnation. Consider, for example, various indignities attendant upon imprisonment, including severe invasions of privacy (such as strip-searches and ablution facilities that require relieving oneself in full view of others) as well as imposed subservience to prison wardens, guards, and even to more powerful fellow inmates. My intuitions suggest that this lowering of people's standing surpasses that implicit in corporal punishment per se, even though it is obviously the case that corporal punishment could be meted out in a manner in which it were aggravated. If corporal punishment is wrong because it involves violating the intimate zone of a person's body, then surely the extreme invasions of prison inmates' privacy, which seem worse, would also be wrong. It is true that corporal punishment involves the application of direct and intense power to the body, but I do not see how that constitutes a more severe lowering of somebody's standing than employing indirect and mild power in the course of a strip-search, for example. It is true too that the prison invasions of privacy to which I have referred would be inflicted on adults whereas corporal punishment would be imposed on children, but again I fail to see how that difference makes physical punishment of children worse. In the case of young children especially, it seems that the element of shame would be less than that of adults given that the capacities for shame increase between the time one is a toddler and the time one becomes an adult. , if we think that current practices in prison life are not wrong on grounds of degradation, then we cannot consistently say that all corporal punishment is wrong on these grounds.