Former NBA basketball star Charles Barkley came to the defense of Minnesota Vikings football player Adrian Peterson, saying that spanking is something that black parents do in the south, but sociologist Jessica Carbino tells Newsmax TV that spanking is really a "class issue."
Peterson is accused of child abuse for injuring his son while disciplining him and "using a switch to spank his son," the star running back's attorney Rusty Hardin said.
"People certainly have traditions for how they would like to rear their children relative to how their parents reared them, but Mr. Barkley is conflating race and class," Carbino told Ed Berliner on "MidPoint" on Newsmax TV Tuesday.
"If you examine how parents discipline their children traditionally, how they raise them, there are two real schools of thought," she said.
"There's this concerted cultivation approach, where parents discipline their children through providing them with reason and try to teach their children what they're doing is right and wrong by explaining things to them and then punishing them accordingly," she said.
This is in comparison to "a policy of more natural growth where parents are disciplining their children using methods like spanking and aren't really explaining to their children the value of what they're doing that's right or wrong," she added.
However, Carbino believes that that method "tends to happen among less educated people and I don't believe that it's necessarily a race issue as much as a class issue."
"Every black parent in the south is going to be in jail under those circumstances," Barkley said while discussing the Peterson controversy Sunday with Jim Rome on The NFL Today on CBS.
"We spank kids in the south," he said, adding that he too was spanked "with switches" as a kid.
Family law attorney Jacqueline Newman told Newsmax TV that courts "don't like any kind of physical abuse," including spanking.
"The courts will pay attention to it and they will take it very, very seriously, if you're dealing with any kind of custody arrangement or any kind of custody fight," Newman explained.
"The fact that he's a public figure probably plays some role into it," she added.