I think it’s a scandal when a man who last year raked in 1.8 million from Christian parents sincerely seeking to improve their parenting skills is revealed to be a man of pride, arrogance, and contempt for others.
Michael Pearl himself escalated this into a scandal by his reaction to criticism, which revealed his true heart.
Come, Weary Moms! – Child Discipline or Child Abuse?
Much of this is the result of very misguided or overwhelmed parents trying to implement “Biblical” discipline in their homes. THIS IS NOT BIBLICAL DISCIPLINE AND IT MUST STOP! As compassionate Christians and as a home schooling community, we must have ZERO tolerance for abusive parenting. If we seriously want to preserve the abundant liberties we enjoy as home schooling families, we’re going to have to make sure that our movement is not characterized by such aberrant behavior.
Michael Pearl’s ideas have consequences. He told his readers that he recommended that children be disciplined with a piece of 1/4″ plumbing supply line and that the Bible says it is to be used on the back, which he defines as “anywhere from the shoulders down to the feet”, even telling parents that “the small of the back down to the thighs is the most effective.” Lydia Shatz received just such a beating before her death; her sister received kidney damage as a result of the same method of “child training.”
Don’t tell me Michael Pearl bears no responsibility.
Often we can know more about someone from what they do not do. In this case, I have read no statement from the Pearl’s about the tragic loss of Lydia Shatz and the injuries sustained by her sister. By failing to do so weeks after the child’s death, they display a callousness and lack of love that is repulsive to me.
I hope that the Christian homeschooling community will continue to speak out against this outrageous teaching and its founders so that no more child suffer as Michael and Debi Pearl’s twisted heresy.
Contending with the Culture – Tragedy in a homeschooling family
The parents must answer for what they have done. And those who taught them that this was an acceptable manner of discipline must answer for what they have taught.