A School District is Bringing Back Spanking, and Parents Love It

This is about as old-school as it gets.

Ira Robinson
Age of Empathy
Published in
4 min readSep 20, 2022

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Painting by author (Ira Robinson)

Growing up in the 70s and 80s, there was one thing we students feared most.

“Old Yeller.”

Nah, I don’t mean the book or movie, though that damn story devastated me the first time I read it in school.

What I’m referring to is the large paddle that hung in the principal’s office. Resting against the wall in all of its horrific glory, Old Yeller was a yellow-painted hunk of wood that he’d use to discipline any students he felt went “out of line.”

The thing had holes drilled into it, just so it could swing through the air faster with less resistance, and that man made prodigious use of it.

Getting out of line, by the way, could be as little as not paying enough attention in class, or asking to use the bathroom outside of hallway moments. Yes, that’s right. If you had to go, and you were one who went “too frequently,” you’d have to face down Old Yeller as a deterrent.

I was torn up with that thing on more than one occasion, making my time at school just as terrorizing for me as being at home with my whiskey-drunk of a father who took his belt and fists to me.

Eventually, Old Yeller was retired, and in-school corporal punishment was phased out, for the most part. All of our butts celebrated.

Now, a school district in Cassville, Missouri is bringing back an Old Yeller of their own, and parents are enthusiastic about the thought their children will once more face corporal discipline for their wrongs.

Under a new policy, parents are allowed to opt-in to the program, giving permission for administrators to do whatever the hell they’d like to the students. While the district claims it’ll be a “last resort” and only used when other methods of discipline won’t do, I can say, from personal experience with this kind of thinking, I have zero doubt they’re going to make prodigious use of it.

After all, once you open that kind of door, it’s so easy to use it as your first fallback solution to any problem that arises.

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Ira Robinson
Age of Empathy

Published author of over a dozen books and dozens of short stories, Digital painter, and streamer, and blind. Contact me at ira@originalworlds.com