Top Scoops

Book Reviews | Gordon Campbell | Scoop News | Wellington Scoop | Community Scoop | Search

 

Lyndon Hood: Police Trial Vindicates s59 Amendment

Anti-Smacking Amendment Vindicated By Police Trial!

Satire by Lyndon Hood

The debate over changes to section 59 of the Crimes Act was marked by concern that ordinary parents, going about their everyday business of hitting their children, would be criminalised.

The more pointy-headed supporters of the amendment had a response. The "loving smack" championed by the bill's supporters - perhaps we imagine it as a slightly grumpy sort of caress - would be so minor and forgivable a technical assault (as if I were to slap your wrist for trying to navigate away from this column) that no judge or jury in the land would convict. And hence, it isn't properly illegal.

This position has been spectacularly vindicated by a recent court case. If it's not assault to repeatedly baton and pepper spray a man who was offering no harm to himself or others - just imagine what you can do to your child!

I'm sure the nation will be as reassured as I am by this verdict.

Parents can relax. If they judge appropriate parental disciplining of some misbehaviour requires physical violence, or the deployment of low-level weaponry, they should do what seems best at the time. Parents do, of course, make on-the-spot calls like this every day.

And, though parents have special obligations which the court will no doubt recognise (and, under the current section 59, special protection), that applies to all of us. Meeting not going well? Hit somebody! It seemed like the best solution at the time! Then, if they don't like it, hit them again!

I'm sure the nation will breathe a sigh of relief as the burden of nanny-state state interference is lifted from their acts of interpersonal violence.

Not so anxious about that referendum now, are we?

In closing, I would also note the Falwasser case adds a new argument in favour of smacking your children.

In a world where it's so hard to imagine what a police officer could do in the course of their duties that would qualify as assault, being belted by a rogue parent is the least of their worries.

It'll be good practise for them.

********

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
Top Scoops Headlines

 

Gordon Campbell: On Betraying The Kurds

The Americans have now callously thrown the Kurds under the bus and created the ideal conditions for Islamic State to mount a comeback – all done so that Donald Trump can brag on the 2020 campaign trail that he brought the US troops home. How is the current fighting likely to proceed? More>>

ALSO:

Expert Comment: Online Voting Won’t Mean More Engagement

“Overseas experience is that online voting tends to be popular with those who are already likely to vote and who have high levels of digital literacy. It does little to help add new people to the voter pool, and this holds even for young voters.”More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On The Saudis (Not) Getting Away With Murder

On October 2nd last year, the dissident journalist Jamal Khashoggi was murdered inside the Saudi Embassy in Istanbul, by a hit squad of assassins acting on the orders of the Saudi Crown Prince, Mohammad bin Salman. More>>

Ellen Rykers on The Dig: Community Conservation – The Solution To The Biodiversity Crisis?

It’s increasingly clear that a government agency alone cannot combat the biodiversity crisis successfully. These grass-roots initiatives are a growing resource in the conservation toolbox. More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On The Saudi Oil Refinery Crisis

So the US and the Saudis claim to have credible evidence that those Weapons of Oil Destruction came from Iran, their current bogey now that Saddam Hussein is no longer available. Evidently, the world has learned nothing from the invasion of Iraq in 2003 when dodgy US intel was wheeled out to justify the invasion of Iraq, thereby giving birth to ISIS and causing the deaths of hundreds of thousands of people. More>>

ALSO: