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Old February 1 2013, 01:16 AM   #76
thestrangequark
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Re: Question for the Parents on TrekBBS

Kenbushway wrote: View Post
thestrangequark wrote: View Post
^Anecdotal evidence is not evidence. It is worse than worthless as evidence of what is actually happening in the world. Can you provide unbiased, real evidence that what you think you are seeing is actually occurring?
Other than number difference. What is the difference between my 650 and the thousand used in the studies you provided?
That is an excellent question! As iguana said, you are confusing anecdote with evidence. Anecdote is not a valid form of evidence for a number of reasons, but first, let me demonstrate by providing an anecdote from my own experience. Bear in mind, I am not using this anecdote as actual evidence, but rather, to illustrate one of the many reasons anecdotes should not be considered evidence:

I was a teacher for several years. In my experience, the children who were spanked at home had far more behavioral problems in school than those who were not.

My evidence is in direct conflict with yours. So, is my anecdotal evidence better than yours? Should mine be considered more reliable because I have training and experience in education and psychology and you do not? The answer is no. Mine is equally worthless.

Anecdote is subjective experience, and therefore it is always biased. In this particular case, I suspect you are experiencing a huge amount of Confirmation Bias. You are not displaying any neuropsychological modesty, and that is absolutely necessary to get an accurate image of the world. You must recognize that our brains are not accurate recorders of our experience and environments, that our perceptions and memories are inherently flawed, and that our natural ways of thinking are neither logical nor correct. Anecdotal evidence is worse than worthless, because not only does it give us incomplete and inaccurate impressions of the world, it can actually lead us to wrong conclusions.

The evidence I provided, on the other hand, is scientific evidence. These studies have been controlled to eliminate the natural biases in human thinking, and to account for other possible variables, such as children who already had difficult temperaments, exposure to other forms of violence, socio-economic status, etc. These are very well controlled studies, in fact. You cannot compair your anecdote with real evidence, because they aren't even in the same league.
Sector 7 wrote: View Post
Contrary to their belief, not every person who spanks a child is doing it in anger.
Ahh...I missed this edit. Just wanted to say, I never said that all parents who spank do it out of anger. I don't know who "they" are, as I doubt that most people think that all parents spank out of anger. I think most people who are against spanking think that parents spank out of misinformed and misguided efforts to modify their children's behavior. In fact, I refer you to my first post in the thread:
thestrangequark wrote: View Post
However, I've used generally very consciously, as I think there are circumstances when spanking, while still maybe not the best choice, is justifiable -- or at the very least, understandable. And I don't think parents who occasionally spank their kids are bad parents or should necessarily be chastised. I don't think as a regular recourse it is particularly effective, but, as Miss Chicken pointed out, sometimes children do things that are dangerous and are too young to be reasoned with. My mom hit me when I ran out in the road at age 2. She hit me twice growing up, and when your mother hits you only twice in your whole childhood, those instances stand out.
Spanking to get attention, especially in situations of danger is, if not the best course of action, at least a very understandable and sometimes effective course of action. I do, however, spanking to "teach" anything is wrong and lazy parenting.
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Last edited by thestrangequark; February 1 2013 at 02:22 AM.
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