“ISS or ASS?” The Best Documented Case
Truths would you teach, or save a sinking land?
All fear, none aid you, and few understand.
As with so many other paddling issues that affect female victims more so than males, sexual abuse and harassment are overwhelmingly obvious here. This was also an extremely brutal, torturous, and injurious paddling. Nevertheless the jury took only minutes, under the extremely child hostile paddling laws of North Carolina, and the equally child hostile laws of the present day United States, to find that “nothing wrong was done.”
--Alexander Pope, “An Essay on Man”
Although the “sexual equality lip service” had not yet evolved to today’s level, the motivations of paddlers are otherwise as obvious now as then. Many male paddlers today are even more blatant with double standards and sexual comments than this guy was. This male paddler admitted that he gave boys the option to rake leaves in place of ISS or the paddle, but that he only gave females “ISS or the paddle.”
So for those who don’t like the fact that our interviewees are anonymous, and who have to see documented cases, here we go. This case goes beyond well documented, not only in its description, but because it includes statements from the paddler and the victim’s mother. With a few changes for the times, this was the typical dynamics of “ISS or ASS” in action that we still see today in paddling schools.
Because it is so well documented with court records, news articles, and US Senate hearing records, this is one case that gets partially referred too all the time. Bits of it are posted on many spanking and paddling related web pages, whether they are for news, information, or pornography. Many, as with Nu-West’s “Discipline Review” spanking pornography magazine of the mid 1980s, like to make this case "titillating," or give it a pro-paddling slant, by just publishing the first portion of the hearing where one of the female victims describes her paddling, or else a synopsis of just that portion. It gets less “sexy” when the harms are examined, however. Sexually oriented spanking and paddling sites and magazines tend to end this transcript just at the point where medical and psychological problems are described. Seeing the harm to the victim kind of “takes the fun out of it.”
The reader can note that even though every one of their guidelines had been violated, the school board nonetheless “fully approved” of everything that happened after the fact. They did nothing, as they always do. We can’t blame them really. In our child abusive legal system the deck is stacked so school boards are rewarded if they back any kind of child abuse, since they are then not liable, but they are ironically punished if they take the side of an abused child, since in doing so they admit that abuse occurred. It is thus never in the school board’s interest to admit abuse occurred, even if it is blatant and occurred by their own definitions many times over. This points out yet another common fallacy — that the school board’s “oversight’ prevents child abuse. Paddling school boards actually protect child abuse, and have no interest whatsoever, after abuse, in admitting that it occurred.
I thought this hearing would have opened people’s eyes to the problems with paddling, and it without a doubt did with some, but in high paddling areas this case instead seems to have served as a “model” for sexual harassment and abuse. Harassing principals loved the way ISS was such a draconian choice that the students “had to choose” to be paddled, and they’ve now made it three times as coercive as this principal used, with three times as many days in ISS per swat than he used now typical.
The following is a transcript of the 1984 US Senate Testimony. The names of the victim, her mother, and the paddling principal have been changed.
Testimony of Sharon Anderson to the U.S. Senate Subcommittee on Juvenile Justice, October 17, 1984. Miss Anderson describes her (disciplinary) beating and injury by an assistant school principal at Dunn High School, Dunn, North Carolina.