John Key has got it right. Here is the jist of his speech (18 April)
"National Party Leader John Key says backers of the anti-smacking bill need to accept that the way the bill is currently drafted will make it illegal to use light smacking for the purposes of correction.
"I will not support a bill that leaves otherwise good parents at the mercy of the police and the judiciary.
"The Greens and Labour now have an opportunity to get closer to the public they serve, by agreeing they've got a major problem with the current wording."
I had a chat with a friend of my mum's this afternoon. Her major objection to the repeal of Section 59 was that Bradford/Clark are saying that parents who lightly smack their children will not be criminalised. She said - how can a mother smack her child when the child knows that his mummy is breaking the law? It is not fair on the parents, or the children. The mother knows that she is breaking the law. The fact that she is *unlikely* to be prosecuted is irrelevant. The child is confused, because he was told at school in "Health" that mummy and daddy are not allowed to smack you. Ring CYFS if they do now, won't you.
As our Prime Minister said in late 2005;
I do not support a ban on smacking. I am opposed to that because I think it defies human nature. No one wants to see stressed and harassed parents who in exasperation lightly smacks a child dragged before the court.
Anyone who can read - anyone who can put two words together can read Bradford's bill and see that it does in fact criminalise parents who smack their children.
Good on you John Key.
Come on Katherine Rich and Paula Bennet, what are you up to?