AUDIENCE ANALYSIS: SURVEYS
My topic, disciplining a child, got several different responses among all the surveys. At first I figured that I wouldnt have to do a lot of persuading to get my audience to agree with my side. I truly believe that hitting a child is wrong. The surveys I got back from the audience proved otherwise. It is now evident that I have my work cut out for me after all. My first question asked if my audience was ever disciplined as a child and 99% of the audience said yes. The most common responses towards how they were disciplined proved to be grounding and some form of hitting. When asked what child abuse meant to them, I was surprised to see that some 25% said that it involved mental abuse and physically harming a child. One distinct survey stuck out. It said, ” abuse which physically harms the child enough to bruise, or cause lasting pain, or physical punishment that is misdirected anger.” That is very close to the right answer. Of course a lot more people chose to say “very abusive hitting” which is the response I figured I would get. However, that is the wrong defintion. I then asked if the audience if they would ever “slap their children around” meaning a little more than just a friendly pat, and a surprising 45% said yes. Nonetheless, all of the surveys expressed their interest in learning new ways to discipline a child.
In interpreting the audiences responses, I was amazed to see that much of the audience believed in hitting their own children. In a sense I guess I was expecting to not have to persuade much of my audience that hitting a child can have lasting effect, but then again this speech is all about persuading.For some, if being hit as a child worked on them, then I suppose most feel it will work for their kids. It is scary to see ahead of time that most of my audience does plan to use this form of discipline. Perhaps they they dont know exactly how far to go with their hitting, but rather they just plan to do what they know. On the other hand, like me, a good part of the audience realizes that there are ways to avoid hitting or mentally abusing a child. Even if some of my audience still feels as though a good spanking is good for a child, possibly after my speech they will also use or convert to using alternate forms of discipline that I will explain. All of the audience was open to know new forms of discipline, and all but one claimed they were disciplined as children. When asked to rate forms of disciplines listed, I was saddened to see that most didnt rate spanking as a 1 or 2. (5 being the best, 1 being the worst) It was mostly rated between 3-5. Grounding was really prominent and the rest of the types of disciplines varied between people. For the most part, I feel as though either the audience learned this form of discipline (hitting) from their parents and its just getting passed on from generation to generation, or they truly believe that hitting makes a child better. I want to prove, that if anything, a light hitting ( on the butt as a child) or other forms of discipline could work much better. Overall, I was happy by a good percentage of the class definition of child abuse.
It seems that as impressive as some of the “child abuse” definitions were, it didnt seem to matter to some that hitting is the worst discipline for a child. It is possible that most of the audience is misinterpreting the question, or they simply think that it is okay to do anything to a child as long as it doesnt cause huge black and blue marks. Regardless, even that is wrong and I want to persuade the audience that anything, other than gently hitting a child, causes emotional scars and can mentally damage a child in the end. In proving this, (with parts of my case helping it along) I intend to supply other forms of disciplines to back up my conclusions. I plan to provide for my audience a definition of child abuse and explain to them how each form of discipline can work for or against a child.
THE OUTLINE: DISCIPLINING THE CHILD
My purpose is to persuade the audience that punishing a child by hitting them leaves more emotional scars on them than physical scars. Some young adults today have been the victims of being hit and mentally abused in their family and will come to use this form of discipline on their own children. I want the audiences views to change in the sense that they believe that there are alternate forms of discipline to be used instead of the obvious.
As views on child disciplining are slowly evolving, physical violence is being incorporated as a way to better the younger generation, while in reality it is only hurting the children. There are other adequate ways of disciplining without hitting or mentally abusing.
I want the introduction to be something like this; Imagine a girl sitting off in a corner of her living room crying her eyes out. Imagine her nursing a broken heart and painful red marks on her arms and butt. Then imagine her dad gloating in the kitchen, proud that he had showed her who was boss. What did this little girl do to get her in this position you may wonder. She did nothing other than be a child and being a child means acting michievious at times. That was me and could easily be on of your children or one of you. How a child is discilpined can be crucial to their future behavior and parents in the 90’s are at a loss for different ways to punish their children besides hitting them. The family is supposed to be a structure for a child where there is security, love, emotion, an opportunity to grow, and a place to run to when everything else comes crashing down. Most families are able to satisfy this idea of nuturance, though these days some parents cannot. Hence, it is not surprising to find violence continuing to occur in several homes. What was once thought of as simply punishing a child, is slowly becoming what society would call child abuse.
OUTLINE OF MAIN POINTS AND SUPPORTING POINTS:
I. What a families role is to a child.
A. A structure in which there is an opportunity to grow.
B. A place to run to when everything else comes crashing down.
C. A place of security, warmth, and trust.
II. Defintions of child abuse.
A. When children are slapped, hit, kicked, shoved or have objects thrown at them.
B. Beating, neglect, or other mistreatment of a child by a parent or guardian.
C. Any form of mental abuse directed towards a child. (i.e. calling them names)
III. Why some families choose to use this form of violence.
A. They want to prove to the child that they are the one in charge.
B. The parent or guardian has a bad day and takes outside influences out on the child.
C. They want to teach their child right from wrong.
D. They are just passing it down to the next generation. The parent was also hit as a child.
IV. How a child feels after they have sustained this abuse.
A. They have a feeling of inferiority, insecurity, and helplessness.
B. The child will have a lot of disrespect towards the person who hit them later in life.
C. They sometimes will have a lack of trust towards the person that hit them. They are often left scared of that person.
V. What violence towards a child can lead to.
A. Emotional scarring often occurs where the child separated themselves from the hitter.
B. Many children will come to sustain long- or short-term emotional or psychological trauma. They have a sense of failure and a low self-esteem.
C. They can grow up to become violent themselves, turning on their friends and parents, even starting fights at school.
VI. Environmental factors act as a role to parents and children.
A. The children are learning at school that hitting is child abuse and they can report it to the police.
B.Some violent cases in the home are due to poverty, drug use, unemployement, andother stresses that the parents endure as outside influences.
C. T.V. is is an environmental factor that plays a role for both the child and parent. Most shows on the tube these days are of violent content and acting almost as a role model to conformity.
VII. Alternate forms of discipline that dont always work as well.
A. Time outs are something that can work up until the child is around 4, but after that itloses its touch.
B. Standing a child in the corner can work until about 10 years old when it becomes a joke.
C. Grounding a child can work for awhile in their teen years, but after awhile the parentwill end up giving in more often and allow the child to run free.
VIII. Alternate forms of disciplines that work efficiently.
A. In the younger years telling them they cant go out to play with their friends can work well. As can retracting their dinner from them.
B. Sending a child to their room or very light slapping can also work. They will know who is boss, and wont be as scared of their parent in the end.
C. The best alternate form is to take away a priveledge from the child. Finding something the child really likes to do and taking it away work best because they will try to act good until they get that priveledge or object back.
D. Trust is a really good form of discipline that not every family can have, but hopefullyeach family can learn to grow into. It serves as the best discipline of all because when a family trusts, it loves.
In conclusion, hitting is a barbaric action and parents should think twice these days before laying a hand on their children. I believe that with the newer generation and their headstrong personalities coming in, hitting no longer benefits but can worsen a childs view of the world. Tradition is no longer tradition but the old way of doing things. We are no longer in the past, but the present where new and more cautious methods of discipline are available. A parent merely starts the mold of the child and introduces them into society. ” To the infant its nursery is the world. The first idea of the human race are its particular conceptions of its nurse and mother; and the origin and history of all its notions may be traced to its animal wants, to the light that breaks in from its window, and to the few objects in the immediate neighborhood of the cradle and hearth” (Upham 3).
REFERENCE OF FOUR PUBLISHED SOURCES AND ANNOTATED BIBLIOGRAPHY:
1.Helfer, Ray E, et al. Child Abuse and Neglect: The Family and the Community
Massachusetts: Ballinger Publishing Co.
– This book contained information on the family and how it’s supposed to interact in a formal fashion. It also talks about the outside environment of a child and how a child develops an understanding of the outside world.
2.Erikson, Edsel L, et al. Child Abuse and Neglect: A Guidebook for Educators andCommunity Leaders.
Florida: Learning Publications Inc.
– This reference book defined the characteristics of what child abuse is and what it stands for. It went into how other people can take notice of a child who is unhappy in their home. It tells of the signs and symptoms of an abused child and what to do about it.
3.Bourne, Richard and Newberger, Eli H. Critical Perspectives on Child Abuse
Massachusetts: D.C. Health and Co.
– This book shows more of the alternative methods of disiplining a child. It shows various
perspectives from different phychologists and sociologists on what this type of disipline does to a
child. The book tells of different cases of child neglect and abuse.
4.Gerbner, George, et al. Child Abuse: An Agenda for Action.
New York: Oxford University Press
– This book tells more about violence in the home and how it is carried from one generation to the next. It goes into even more alternative forms of disipline and shows how disiplining a child by hitting them can later in life cause a hateful environment in the home.