Wednesday, 1 April 2015

Wednesday, April 01, 2015 -

A Change of Regime

the return of corporal punishment
by Susan Thomas
Published: Feb 08, 2015
Words: 23,850
Category: fantasy, judicial
Orientation: M/F
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1. Punishment

I voted for our government and supported without reservation all the changes they wanted to bring in: lightening the rules about spanking at home; partial restoration of corporal punishment in schools; return of corporal punishment for certain offences within the criminal law. Well, like many others, I was worried about the deteriorating behaviour of young people; not all obviously, but I felt that some authority had to be returned to the world of adults. But that was for other people's children of course! I never dreamt my own daughter might get caught up in it all, yet here I was pulling up at the Ministry of Justice's coyly named 'Therapy Centre'; my daughter, my lovely eighteen year old daughter, next to me.

We walked past a large sign which read, "Protecting the public, stopping re-offending" and up to reception. Amy handed over the pink form and the bored receptionist checked her details.

"You are Amy Rivington, date of birth 17th August 2007?"


"So you were eighteen last month?"


"And this is the correct address?"


"Do you have your doctor's certificate to say you are fit for therapy?"

Amy handed it over.

"Now you have chosen to receive this therapy rather than one of the other sentences open to the magistrates, is that correct?"


"Sign here and put this security badge on; take a seat over there."

I too was checked in as Amy's father and chosen escort, given a badge and we both sat down, but I appeared the more nervous and wondered how much justice there was in this. Amy hadn't really done anything wrong. She had simply been present when a group of youngsters at the sixth form college got stopped by a random police patrol. Two of the lads had fairly large quantities of what I call 'pot' in their pockets, so under the Collective Responsibility Act of 2024 all the others were found guilty of "inappropriate association".

The magistrates were brisk. "Miss Rivington, you are hereby fined the sum of £60 and to undertake 50 hours of community service. The Clerk will inform you about alternative options."

The alternatives were a good idea I thought. A youngster found guilty of even a minor offence had a criminal record, but for certain offences there was an alternative "therapy" (read corporal punishment). If the therapy was taken and there was no re-offending within a certain time frame, then all record of the offence was expunged. It was an option increasingly taken by youngsters, more of whom were being caught up in the relentless crack down on behaviour. Amy had chosen the therapy option and here we were.

A girl of about sixteen, maybe younger, came out with a woman obviously her mother. The girl was crying and holding her bottom but her mother was unsympathetic. "Well I warned you again and again. I hope you've got the message this time..."