Parents are outraged at this disturbing video of a principal paddling a 5-year-old boy
School is supposed to be a place where kids feel safe and happy, but for one Georgia family, school became a nightmare after a sadistic principal insisted on paddling a terrified five-year-old as punishment for a minor behavioral issue.
Mom Shana Marie Perez posted a disturbing video on Facebook this week that shows her son, Thomas, crying and pleading with Jasper Primary School’s principal not to hit him. The boy apparently spit on another student, and administrators deemed that act offensive enough to merit hitting a child with a paddle that’s almost as big as he is. Fair warning: this video will make you want to cry, throw things, and start rage fires.
In case you can’t bring yourself to watch, I’ll break it down: the video shows the principal and another woman lining Thomas up for his paddling as he screams and cries. He continually tries to hide his backside from them, and at one point even yells, “Mommy, help me!” The principal, being the total nut job that she is, promises she’ll only hit him “one time” while her sidekick chimes in with “unless you wiggle around.” Needless to say, it’s fucking horrific and something no kid should ever have to go through.
Making it more disturbing is the fact that Thomas’ mom is there, but felt powerless to stop the abuse. According to NBC News, Perez was arrested two weeks ago for truancy after Thomas missed 18 days of school for doctor’s appointments. She was released, but says the principal threatened her with more jail time if she didn’t allow her son to be hit. “They told me if he could not get a paddling he would have to be suspended and if he got suspended for even one day I WILL go to jail for truancy,” she explains on Facebook. “I could not go to jail or my kids would have nothing … I can’t take care of my kids in jail.”
A Jasper County Sherriff who spoke with NBC said the principal’s threat was essentially a load of bull. “Ms. Perez would NOT have been re-arrested for the suspension in question,” explained Sheriff Donnie Pope. “The sheriff’s office would not have pursued criminal charges based on the fact that an out of school suspension would not have shown negligence on the part of Ms. Perez.” Unfortunately, Perez didn’t know that, so she did as she was told and then pretended to text on her phone so she could at least get a video of the horrifying incident.
Since her video went up, it’s been shared more than 35,000 times and prompted an investigation by Jasper County Schools. In an official statement, they clarified that corporal punishment is allowed, but only with parental consent. If you’re wondering how that’s even possible in 2016, then you’ll be shocked to learn that 19 states still have laws on the books allowing kids to be hit in school. In fact, according to a 2009 report by Human Rights Watch and the American Civil Liberties Union, as many as 223,190 students were victims of corporal punishment that year.
Regardless of your opinion on spanking at home, there’s no excuse for what happened to this little boy. There’s no excuse for playing on a parent’s fears and vulnerabilities, for gleefully lining up a crying and petrified little kid to be hit with a huge wooden paddle, for the trauma this poor little boy endured, or for using abuse as a discipline tactic. These teachers took advantage of a scared parent and a terrified child to enact a punishment that in no way fit the supposed “crime.” It’s outrageous and vile, and we should be collectively ashamed that garbage like this is still allowed to take place in any school in the country.