It is irreconcilable when schools that apply belligerent disciplinary strategies brag about how much ‘discipline’ they instil in children and yet they increasingly allocate a lot of time and resources daily to meting out punishment to students who disobey school rules and regulations. In such an environment, people’s consciences have become so deadened that it would make no meaning if a child devotes a whole week of learning to serve series of punishment as long as children are punished thoroughly for every little offence.
Anyone who has taken time to follow up on parents who emphasise punishment and violence in child training would discover really how illusory achieving discipline can be. It is still the same frustrating story of applying punishment in increasing measures without success. Some of such parents have ignorantly released their teenage children to be maltreated and some have been put in school prisons and raped in the process.
The fact is that the level of discipline manifested by most adults in a community is an indication of the success of the collective parenting efforts of that society over a period of time. A society or country in which unhealthy parenting approach is prevalent would likely raise adults who respond to the demand to obey rules and regulations only when war drums are beaten or the armed forces are deployed. No wonder the penal code in such countries have only functioned to get the prisons increasingly congested! The reports of jail breaks among prison inmates in such environments are also pointers to the rebellious mindset of the prisoners.
Countries such as Sweden and Netherlands who banned the use of corporal punishment on children are shutting down some of their prisons due to lack of prisoners, while countries like Nigeria are bedevilled with prison congestion. This is a confirmation that enduring discipline is not achieved through the whip, cane or other forms of corporal punishment.
A healthy parenting relationship is the key to raising godly and disciplined children. Such children grow up to become adults who will likely not end up in the prisons because they would conduct their affairs within the confines of the law. Countries who are burdened with prison congestion should therefore make efforts to establishing the right approaches to child upbringing in schools, communities and homes.
-Uchenna N. Nduka