Monday, September 15, 2014

Adrienne Peterson

This morning, a caller on one of the morning show attempted to defend Adrienne Peterson using language and arguments I found eerily familiar. He argued that Peterson beat his kid without malice, and that such beatings were culturally acceptable in the African American community. "My own great grandmother beat me the same way," he said, "and I loved her dearly. It taught me discipline and respect." 

I have friends who were slapped around by their grade-school teachers and many of them describe the abuse they endured in the same way. In fact I have in my possession a private letter in which the writer, a well known figure in the Orthodox community, describes his own abuser as follows "When I was a young boy, in XXXXX, my beloved rebbe would occasionally XXXXX for infractions. I never considered it abuse, and frankly even now don't consider it to have been abuse, and have no ill feelings, only wonderful ones, toward the rebbe" [Redactons made to protect the writer's identity]

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