La Chancla

CN: corporal punishment, mention of suicide, abuse against children, domestic violence

Let’s get a little serious. This quick drawing which has been in the back of my mind for months finally came through today! (The creative process can be quite arduous at times, huh?)

It was spurred by a post on a Puerto Rican pride page. A meme describing how as children they were beaten and how but they turned out fine. And “kids these days want to kill themselves over being scolded”. To top it all off, the meme ended by calling these “delicate snowflakes”, maricas. A homophobic slur. Lovely.

The “I turned out fine” argument is bullshit. If you think it is OK to hit children then you DID NOT turn out fine.

The abuse I suffured as a child is the reason I ended up in an abusive relationship. Being hit and called names was normilaized to me. I deserved it. “This hurts me more than it hurts you”, “look what you made me do”, “this is for your own good” where all said by my abusive boyfriend and my grandma.

Now I love my grandma dearly. I do not think she beat me because she hated me but because she didn’t respect me. Respect towards children is something people rarely talk about. Children “should be seen and not heard”. Children aren’t seen as people.

If you are of the mind that hitting children is OK, do you think it is OK for your boss to hit you for not doing something the way they wanted?

I was mad at my ex once. We had a fight and I wasn’t talking to him. I sneezed and he said “bless you”. I didn’t respond. I sneezed again and his father blessed me. I said thank you. My ex came up to me and smacked me on the mouth. A literal tapa boca as we say in Puerto Rico. Why? Because I was “rude”.

How is that any different than the countless times I got tapa bocas from grandma for being rude or “malcri’a“.

Malcri’a or mal criada literally means badly raised. So how and why the fuck are you blaming me for your own failure to parent me?

I swore that if I ever became a parent I would be the adult I wish I had had around as a child. I admit I’ve made mistakes. I haven’t always been that adult I wanted to be. But I apologize. I asked my child for their opinion on things. I show them that responsible adults make mistakes and do better. Safe adults own up to their mistakes, we say sorry. And I certainly don’t hit them with la correa, or la chancla.

Hitting my child would make me no better than my abusive ex.

Excerpt from a previous post:

The day when child abuse and bigotry is no longer something celebrated in my culture cannot come fast enough. Yo soy Boricua, pa’ que tú lo sepa. But I’m also a social justice warrior and I will have my culture with justicia y concienca.

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La Chancla
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