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Spanking May Make Children More Defiant and Aggressive, New Study Reveals

Experts found that children—and adults who were spanked as children–are more likely to demonstrate anti-social behaviors and suffer from mental health problems.

Ann Moises





Some parents spank their children whenever they behave badly. In some countries, spanking is considered acceptable, especially if the mother or the father wants to discipline a kid who is being stubborn or disobedient.

Parents and child experts around the globe may still argue about the appropriateness of the technique. But a new meta-analysis of five decades of research on spanking (i.e. open-handed hit on the buttocks or the limbs) reveals that the more children are spanked, the more likely they are to defy their parents. Researchers say that these kids also experience mental health problems, cognitive difficulties, increased anti-social behavior and aggression. The study was published in the Journal of Family Psychology.


Experts said that so far, their study provides a complete analysis of the consequences associated with spanking. Previous papers have included other forms of physical punishment in their analyses. Theirs, however, is more specific to the effects of spanking in children alone.

Elizabeth Gershoff, associate professor of human development and family sciences at The University of Texas at Austin, and her co-author, Andrew Grogan-Kaylor, associate professor at the University Of Michigan School Of Social Work, reviewed the results of 50 years of research involving more than 160,000 children.

“Our analysis focuses on what most Americans would recognize as spanking and not on potentially abusive behaviors,” Gershoff said.

They concluded that there was a correlation between spanking and the 13 of the 17 adverse effects they examined.


“We found that spanking was associated with unintended detrimental outcomes and was not associated with more immediate or long-term compliance, which are parents’ intended outcomes when they discipline their children,” Gershoff said.

The experts also tested the long-term effects on adults who were spanked as children. They said children who were frequently spanked were more predisposed to anti-social behavior and mental health problems. These adults were more likely to support physical punishment for their children as well.

According to a 2014 UNICEF report, approximately 80% of parents worldwide spank their children. Gershoff notes that parents have been spanking their kids despite the fact that there is no clear evidence of its positive effects, nor sufficient evidence that it may be detrimental to a child’s behavior and development.

The experts also compared spanking with physical abuse.

Child Abuse with abusive parent father

“We as a society think of spanking and physical abuse as distinct behaviors,” Gershoff said. “Yet our research shows that spanking is linked with the same negative child outcomes as abuse, just to a slightly lesser degree.”

This comparison, however, always elicits a backlash, although psychologists argue that they are actually quite similar.

Gershoff also noted that the study results and the report released recently by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) are coherent. The CDC called for “public engagement and education campaigns and legislative approaches to reducing corporal punishment,” including spanking, as a means of reducing physical child abuse.

This staged picture taken to illustrate a story shows a child being spanked by her mother on March 1, 2015 in Paris.      AFP PHOTO / LOIC VENANCE        (Photo credit should read LOIC VENANCE/AFP/Getty Images)

“We hope that our study can help educate parents about the potential harms of spanking and prompt them to try positive and non-punitive forms of discipline,” she said.

Spanking was banned in Sweden in 1979. Recently, the Canadian government proposed to repeal their so-called “spanking law.” Some parents supported the officials’ proposal while others opposed.

In a non-binding referendum, the people voted against “making spanking children illegal” in New Zealand. Those who opposed claimed that “no decent research shows smack by a loving parent breeds violence.”

H/T: EurekAlert, IFLScience, UPI, CBC News

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7 Bizzare Incidents of Mass Hysteria in History

From the ‘meowing nuns’ to the ‘laughter outbreak,’ these examples are absolutely the weirdest!

Mark Andrew



Also known as collective hysteria or group hysteria, mass hysteria is a term used in sociology and psychology which, according to Wikipedia, “transmits collective delusions of threats, whether real or imaginary, through a population in society as a result of rumors and fear.”

Throughout history, there have been numerous examples of mass hysteria, most of which are just plain weird.

For this post, we’ll share with you 7 cases where a society was consumed by strange delusions.

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Hero Dog Dies From Exhaustion After Saving Seven People

A four-year old Labrador works itself to exhaustion to rescue seven people from the earthquake rubble in Ecuador and dies.

Kat Lozada



Dayko is a 4-year old white Labrador that works as a rescue dog at the Ibara Fire Station in Ecuador. She is every dog owner’s dream because he is loving, loyal and hard working. Dayko died last Friday after he rescued seven people from the aftermath of the tragic Ecuador earthquake last week. Poor Dayko died from severe exhaustion.

Dayko was a rescue dog for Ibara Fire Station for three and a half years.

Dayko was a rescue dog for Ibara Fire Station for three and a half years.

He spent the past several days at Ground zero, searching and rescuing survivors, through the rubble that was caused by the 7.8-magnitude earthquake. Dayko died while on duty as a rescue dog for Ibara Fire Service. According to the fire station’s Facebook post, the cause of the labrador’s death was "massive coronary myocardial infarction and acute respiratory failure." Dayko has been a rescue dog for Ibara for three and a half years.

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Lost Ancient Fortress Of Acra Unearthed In Jerusalem After a Century of Searching

Unearthed lost fort of Acra symbolizes historical Jewish revolt.

Jessa Ventures



Archaeologists unraveled a mystery about the ancient Greek citadel from more than 2000 years ago. Considered as one of Jerusalem's greatest archaeological mysteries, the stronghold was unearthed at the City of David National Park as told by researchers who found it.

Dating back to 215-164 B.C, the almost 65-foot tall fortress called Acra was built by the Greek ruler Antiochus IV Epiphanes to control Jerusalem. Hellenic rule banned Jewish traditional rites and rededicated Temple Mount which was known to be a holy site for the Jews.

"We now have massive evidence that this is part of the fortress called the Acra," Doron Ben-Ami, an archaeologist with the Israeli Antiquities Authority said.

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