1. “Culture War” Propaganda that Supports Domestic Violence and Sexual Abuse
·What is school “Paddling?”
·Spanking and Paddling as “Culture War Conspiracy” Fodder
·School Paddling: "Unsafe at any speed?"
2. School Beatings in the News “Parental “Support” (as long as they remain ignorant)
3. Paddling: “Out of Control” Pseudo Science
4. Paddling Brutality and Injuries
5. Reasons for Paddling
6. Can We Justify Child and Adolescent abuse?
7. Does Paddling Do Any Good?
8. The Phallic Paddle
9. Padding in the Digital Age: “Bringing Back the ‘Good Old Days?’”
10. “Did Jesus Teach "School Paddling?”
11. Other Religious Views
12. Lifetime Sexual and Psychological Damage for Victims and Witnesses
13. Sadism: a Job Hazard for Paddlers
14. School Paddling as Sexual Harassment
America is a land of contrasts: wealthy yet impoverished, idealistic yet cynical, enlightened in some ways and backwards in others. It is a land of great good and great evil—a big player in the world that is nonetheless a mixed bag at home.
Americans love to revel in our good points and we tend to get mad at “outside” people who complain about our country. “Love it or leave it,” we say. Yet, at the same time even the most patriotic of us love to look for “hidden forces” that are “corrupting our country.” We have a sense that our country is great in some ways but is full of deep flaws in others. There is no agreement, however, as to what is great and what is flawed. It is a favorite American pastime of nearly all Americans, regardless of religious or political leanings, to “find the boogiemen” who are dragging us down from the lofty soaring heights that we would attain if we were “set free” somehow. The most strident, flag waving, “right winger” might imagine that the youth—the very essence of our country and the product of the older generation that was supposedly better—are a disaster. The most “liberal” person might see great evils being perpetrated by powerful industries and special interests. The “in between” folks may harbor these as well as many other thoughts, fears, and criticisms. Nearly every American, if you look long enough, has some of them. Far from being a rare phenomenon it is a widespread American pastime to find fault, if not with America as a whole, at least with some “evil elements” within it.
For the next couple of paragraphs I ask indulgence to make some sweeping generalities in order to see the larger pattern of conspiracy theories and “dark secret” candidates that are trumpeted about. I realize that not every person in any given group would share these theories—especially as we look at “cross-over” groups that connect on some points but not others. It would, however, be too unwieldy to try to perfectly describe every subgroup’s position. Such an effort would require several books larger than this one. We are not, in any case, really interested in the individual groups so much as the theories that get bandied about by at least a few people within them.
I also don’t make any claim here as to whether any part of the theories that various people believe are true. We are simply going to look at some conspiracy theories and be aware that they exist. Most of them are fairly commonly known. I’m not going to try to document them here in these few paragraphs that are peripheral to the book. I expect a reader who is aware of American undercurrents will have heard of many of them and will not need to have their existence proved. There is no need, however, to be familiar with them to understand this section. I will offer my opinion on some of them—but it is only that—my opinion mixed in with the rest. Hey—why not? I’m an American too!
Many African Americans—even some very prominent ones, believe that some branch of the US government has created and released the virus that causes AIDS upon the world. They believe it is specifically engineered to attack Africans, African Americans, homosexual men, promiscuous heterosexuals, and drug users. The syphilis experimentation that the US finally admitted to doing on African Americans in the 1950s, and the stories of scarlet fever blankets that were given to Native Americans as an early form of “germ warfare,” provide plenty of fuel for the biological weapon conspiracy folks. Maybe they are right. There have been some very real acts committed by our country that indicate that some in our government do occasionally set racist germ policies into action. Perhaps some secret branch of our American Government would indeed have done such things in the 50s--if they had the technological know-how. These beliefs, along with many others concerning the very real and suspected racism of the US majority, resonate religiously as well with some groups of Black Muslims and Christians.
There is likewise a loose confederation of predominantly white groups who also have a measure of contempt for the Federal government—but with opposing theories. To white supremacists the government is the opposite of the ones the black conspiracy folks see. This American government loves black people and seems to hate the whites. They basically believe that the constitution was originally handed down to colonial white males in America by God and that every amendment or court decision since then has been an attack on “God’s US Constitution” by “Satanic forces.” Emancipating slaves was the first mistake, and perhaps allowing women to vote the second—and now the devils are some combination of gun control, abortion, affirmative action, the teaching of evolution in school, women’s lib, or minimum wage laws. For many of them the former “big devil” was communism, but when that ceased to seem an immediate threat they moved the boogieman target to other nebulous world forces outside of themselves--the United Nations, the Trilateral commission, or perhaps to “liberals” within the US. Perhaps the UN and communism are both ok now since the World Trade Centers were destroyed by terrorism. Maybe the Islamic world is “the new devil” to some. Perhaps in decades to come the Islamic world will be "all right" and some other devil will take its place. The “devils” seem to come and go with the times.
Certainly some fanatical and violent Muslims did some real damage in a real attack on America on September 11, 2001—and they certainly had a lot of support from much wider and more mainstream groups around the world. The question is one of assigning how far the blame goes—to the people who did it, to those that support them, or to the wider religious and political groups that seem happy about the attack but who claim no responsibility? We demand that every country that harbors terrorists or supports them in the least way, even money laundered through a legitimate seeming charity, and even if it is only "one toe in the water," should root them out and eliminate them or else be as completely guilty of the crimes as the suicidal killers were.
Chapter 1: “Culture War” Propaganda that Supports Domestic Violence and Sexual Abuse