Sunday, April 22, 2018
I get that a lot of people believe smacking children is bad in the same way that they say babies should only be breastfed, but there is a world of difference between saying what “should” be done and using imperatives to say what “must” be done, and then flat-out making things up to buttress those imperatives.
For the benefit of any parent who is wondering: corporal punishment, or smacking as it’s commonly known, is perfectly legal as long as it is “reasonable”. It follows that it only becomes illegal when the smack is unreasonable.
The only jurisdiction in Australia that offers any guidance as to what is “unreasonable” is New South Wales; any force that is applied to the head or neck, or which otherwise results in bruising or marks that remain for longer than a short period – as per Section 61AA of the Crimes Act.
So there you go.