CNN investigates Mike & Debi Pearl, “To Train Up a Child,” the spanking death of Lydia Schatz (part 2)

Note the following: 1. Mike & Debi Pearl’s complete lack of compassion for Lydia’s brutal death; 2. Mike stating that he’s never a met a well-adjusted child that WASN’T spanked. You can read more of my thoughts on the cognitive dissonance of “Biblical” child-training here. And here is the original post I wrote right after Lydia Schatz’s murder: “How many more children must die before the Pearls are held accountable?

  • KatR

    Those two are batshit insane. Sorry, none of my faux swear words are going to cut it after watching that.

  • Jessica

    Not to add fuel to the fire or maybe to light it up :) and you probably know this but

    It’s now in Polish. I just think “Dear Lord.” I preached a sermon on the whole “spare the rod, spoil the child” and looked at what the rod was actually used for and there is no way you can jump from that to what the Pearls do. Even in my house growing up where there was an occasional spanking or swat no one would have made the leap they made. It’s sad b/c many people don’t know the whole story of the Bible or get that the way it’s written (story format) should shape how we read and understand it.

    I’m now interested to see how many other proverbs we speak/say but don’t literally so why this one ….

  • Sisterlisa

    Pearl’s response is nauseating…

    “Even my chickens are laughing . . . well, actually it more like cackling, because they just laid another organic egg for my breakfast and they know that it was that same piece of ¼ inch plastic supply line that trained the dogs not to eat chicken….” from his blog.

  • Jack

    My mother (who I eventually realized had her own severe problems) beat me with a studded belt that left bruises similar to what was on that poor child, until finally when I was 14. She raised the belt to strike me, and I simply grabbed it and would not let her hit me any more. She went from there to forms of psychological and emotional manipulation, such as threatening to walk down the railroad tracks and let herself get hit by a train, until I saw through that trick, too.

    On a Christian blog, I saw posting asking about beating 11 and 12 year old children on their bare buttocks. I said that was a wonderful technique to turn them into a set of perverts. Don’t they realize that inflicting pain on such a sensitive and private area on the cusp of puberty would do just that?

  • Ali

    Thank you for speaking out against child abuse.

    I lived in Sweden as a child in the 1970′s and even then hitting a child was against the law. The country of Sweden is a nation of clever, creative, compassionate, gentle, law-abiding citizens for the absolute greatest part – so if we need an example of how not hitting can work beautifully, we have a 30 year example there! There is also so much research that shows children who are hit become children who hit. A book telling parents they must “spank” and it must hurt is insane and immoral. (And yet, you live in a country where Freedom of Speech is a right, so it would be difficult for the government to halt the publishing, although personally, were I a publishing house, would never ever publish such misleading, damaging writing.)

    Elizabeth Esther, I have been watching what you write and I love the direction you are heading – including your recent writing on that terrible clash of seeing desperate poverty… then coming home to all the things we own. You are a wonderful work in progress. I don’t always agree with what you write, which is healthy and oh so normal – but you always make me think, long after I have finished reading your latest post. You challenge me. What power your words have!!

    Thank you,
    Ali (Geneva, Switzerland)

  • M.

    What creeped me out most of all was how his wife was sitting there with that glazed look on her face, just smiling blankly. I wouldn’t like to get on the wrong side of him.

  • Sue

    I had NO idea that the Pearls were a couple of inbred hillbillies!! Have any of their children talked about their childhood? Or are they still hiding in the barn when reporters show up?

    Sorry..had to get that out before I exploded. I had heard of the Pearls but had never actually seen them. I thought they would be a slick power couple like the Dobsons.

  • Rachel

    I sadly know someone personally who was arrested on charges of torture against her two adopted children. She was a very big fan of the Pearls. I’d seen some of the Pearl’s literature but had never given it much thought I just chalked it up to being “extreme.” If I hadn’t read the police report myself, I never would have thought the woman I knew would have been able to abuse children to such an extent. Please note, this is not some backwoods couple. They were well connected in a very slickly managed metropolitan mega church and close friends with the leading teachers of the “Biblical Child Training” class. It’s one thing to see something like this on the news. It’s entirely different when it lands in your own backyard. I hope something is able to be done to stop these people. Thank you Elizabeth for helping to sound the alarm!

  • Mary Lyons-Carmona

    I just emailed Anderson Cooper 360′s blog to do another story on the Pearls with yet another death of an adoptive child from Ethiopia in Mt. Vernon, WA who was left outside to starve and die of hypothermia. How many more children will die as a result of the Pearl’s book To Train Up a Child — how can these people not be held either criminally or civilly liable?  Mary Lyons-Carmona, PhD Omah, NE