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This Interactive Map Shows Where You Might Be Jailed If You Spank Your Child

child safety devicesWhat do you do when your two year old son keeps squeezing too much toothpaste from the tube and smearing it all over the mirror despite you repeatedly telling him not to?

If you are like most parents, or if you are like your parents you will spank him so that he learns that acting out and not listening to you has painful and unpleasant consequences.

Most parenting experts would frown at your actions. The overwhelming consensus among researchers, academics, and child psychologists is that physical punishment does more harm than good.

As far as US law is concerned, all states and the District of Columbia permit parents to physically discipline their kids provided the punishment is within reasonable limits.

However, as this interactive infographic about child discipline laws by state in the US shows, every state treats the subject differently. Some state codes are very specific on what constitutes physical discipline and what crosses the line into child abuse, which entails jail time for the perpetrator.

When it comes to schools, only 19 states in the US allow teachers to dole out corporal punishment.

However, 52 countries around the world have banned corporal punishment altogether.

Surprisingly, these countries cover an entire spectrum in terms of socio-economic indicators, with impoverished countries in Africa sharing the list with highly developed Nordic countries like Sweden.

Check out this infographic for more details.

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