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Coporael punishment never produces any good effects. Solomon's axiom "Spare the rod and spoil the child," if meant to be taken literally, (as is questionable) is a false, sanguinary principle, that ought to be scouted by every man of sense.1


1. This was not the first time Whitman had written on the misguidedness of corporal punishment. His first known published short story, "Death in the School-Room. A Fact" tells the story of a teacher prone to beating his students as a form of punishment. It ends when the teacher beats a boy he thinks is sleeping, only to discover that the boy was actually dead and the teacher "had been flogging A CORPSE." The tale was first published in the United States Magazine and Democratic Review in August 1841. [back]

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