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Pregnant Woman Beaten by School Principal; Should This be Legal?

Under current laws, a pregnant student can be legally beaten by a school official. That kind of violence can damage an unborn child. Should Congress enact a law that prohibits beating pregnant students?
Human Rights Watch and the American Civil Liberties Union recently published a report titled "A Violent Education: Corporal Punishment of Children in US Public Schools" ( http://hrw.org/reports/2008/us0808/). That report included a quote from a Mississippi teacher who witnessed a visibly pregnant student being beaten by a high school principal. The teacher said, "I had a pregnant girl get paddled once for being tardy. She was five months pregnant. She was 16. The principal paddled her ... she was showing and it was known that she was pregnant. She was part of a group that was tardy to class. And she yelled something along the lines of 'you shouldn't paddle me, I'm pregnant.'"

That girl was right. The principal should not have beaten her.

A pediatrician named Kajsa Monemi recently reported that women who are violently assaulted during pregnancy are more likely to give birth to children who have low birth weights. Dr. Monemi also reported that those children are more likely to become sick and that they are more likely to die before the age of 5. See Violence Against Women Impairs Children's Health ( http://www.biologynews.net /archives/2008/09/11/violence_against_women_impairs_childrens_health.html).

I believe that the United States of America should not allow school officials to violently assault pregnant students and to thereby sentence their unborn children to lifetimes of illness and then early death. Congress could prohibit such assaults by enacting a "Student Protection Act" that reads, "Section 1(a) It is the sense of Congress that pregnant students and their unborn children should not be violently assaulted. (b) A student who is pregnant shall not be subjected to corporal punishment."

Do you support the enactment of a national law that prohibits beating pregnant students? Please click "add comment to discussion" to post a reply to this question.