I think this is one of my primary complaints. Some people paint it as a black and white situation: either you spank your kids, or they'll be animals running wild in the streets. There is a middle path. I don't like the term "punishment" as much as I like the idea of natural/logical consequences. That's how learning takes place, IMHO. I think spanking "teaches" them the wrong lessons. JMHO I've never had a situation, in 18 years of parenting, when spanking seemed necessary. I will admit that there were times I wanted to, but if I am brutally honest that was about my anger, not about some noble intention to "teach them something". And just for the record, our 18 year old has a 4.2 GPA and is off to college this fall. The 10 year old is a straight A student, a black belt in Tae Kwon Do, and just the sweetest, kindest little boy you've ever met.