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Discipline is important, but some take it too far - Jaya Franklin

By Jaya Franklin

jfranklin@henryherald.com

I am a true believer in discipline. I think it's a necessity. People should include it in their everyday lives.

But some people just take it too far. Thirty-three-year-old Calvin Anthony Abram went beyond the call of duty when, Gwinnett police say, he was trying to discipline his 14-year-old daughter.

According to a newspaper article, Abram left his daughter on their second-floor balcony at Valencia Park Apartments in Norcross for a majority of the weekend, as a punishment for her bad behavior.

Abram was arrested on Sunday when he returned to his apartment. He has been charged with first-degree cruelty to children and reckless conduct.

I think children should be disciplined, even punished. And sometimes, simply taking away privileges doesn't work. But leaving your child stranded, with no food and water, on a balcony is more than a little extreme.

I understand that all parents have different ways of disciplining their children, but there has to be a point at which the line is drawn. On the other hand, I can say that, in my experience, I've noticed that children who are disciplined -- by getting things taking away, by spanking or being put on punishments or restrictions -- seem to be well-mannered children.

Some parents, however, don't realize that being too strict on a child doesn't always help the situation. It can actually make the situation worse.

I've known some kids to misbehave more, when their parents tried to tighten the rules. A lot of it has to do with maturity.

When I was younger, I never liked to get into trouble. I know this may sound weird, but I hated to get in trouble -- it took up too much of my time. I mean, I had to think about what I was going to do to get into trouble, and then, I had to think about what the consequences could be.

If they were too severe, I would usually pass and try something else, or forget the whole thing altogether.

This thinking process usually kept me out of trouble. I think that's the problem with many kids today. They don't think about their actions before executing them.

Unfortunately, this is also true of some parents.

Jaya Franklin covers government for the Henry Daily Herald. She can be reached at (770) 957-9161 or via e-mail at jfranklin@henryherald.com.