Kinder and Gentler, adj. Crueler and harsher.
It is obviously evil to beat or molest a child. What is less obvious,
an ever so sweetly disguides sadism, consists in a manner of parenting
that is always pleasant and rosy.
The basis for parenting is love, and a child is not a punching bag to
scream at or hit after a bad day. It is wrong to strike a child in
anger, and a spanking can only be right if it is more painful to the
parent than the child.
That being true, a parent who is loving and wise must chastise and
administer painful discipline as a tool of correction. He who fails to
do this raises a child who is spoiled.
This child will not understand consequence on anything more than an
immediate physical level; he will not burn himself by placing his hand
on a hot stove only because his parents lack the power to make the
action painless. In all other areas -- conduct towards other people,
thievery, promiscuity -- he will do whatever seems most attractive at
the moment. The belief that some things are worth a wait, or the idea
of action bearing consequence, especially a delayed consequence that
does not come by physical mechanism, is a foreign concept. And so,
when the child could be entering into life, he is instead trapped in
the abyss of self.
This present lexicographer wonders how long it will be until those
under the 'kinder and gentler' mindset will be told to go to Hell --
not by man, but by God.
- -- Hayward's Unabridged Dictionary