Spanking by other primates

I got into a discussion the other day with a born-again. (Not sure why I bother actually though it is fun to rattle their cages at times.) Went down a not uncommon road about “spare the rod spoil the child” I told her that was not a quote from the Bible, but then I got hit with a line I’d not heard bfore and didn’t have an immediate refute for.

She claimed that God obviously made a child’s buttocks for spanking because such could be painful but have no lasting damage and it was the obvious reason only humans have prominent buttocks. I said I was sure it had to do with humans walking upright. Perhaps a balance issue or perhaps simply a design issue for the hips.

In any case, I’d like to refute it by saying that humans are not teh only animals to spank their children. So do chimps (or any other animals) actually do something that is obviously spanking. I don’t mean a cuff with a paw to the head or anything like that, but obvious to the casual observer as a spanking.

I can’t answer the spanking question (I expect they don’t though) but I’d point out that you can inflict “harmless” corporal punishment without buttocks (animals do it to their young all the time) but normal walking and a constant upright stance without buttocks would be impossible for us.

We probably have butts because we walk upright, although there’s a bit of a chicken-and-egg question here. Do we walk upright because of our oversized gluteus maximus, or do we have an oversized gluteus maximus because we walk upright? Anyone watching a toddler’s development will put their money on the later - babies have widdle biddy butts (masked by diaper wearing) and their butts round out after they do a lot of upright walking and the gluteus maximus rounds out with exercise. A toddler’s butt is much closer to a chimp butt than an adult human’s butt is.

For a more scientific look at things, there’s this short article from Discover.

Whichever, it’s pretty safe to say that A) God didn’t design* butts for spanking, but for walking. Just watch a dog walk on its hind legs. It mostly hops, and can only stay upright for a minute, tops. And B) lots of animals use some sort of “corporal punishment” on their young. Do any of them swat the gluteal region with a forepaw? I’ve seen chimps do it at the zoo, but it always seemed to be more of an absent-minded thing than a punishment.

*Yeah, I know. But is that really an argument you want to get into with this woman? Using her terminology, she’s still wrong.

Does it follow that because we have bony skulls that they are meant for beating our heads against the wall, too? Her logic is flawed (to say the least).

Thanks for al the input. I agree pretty much with all that’s been said. My problem was/is. It’s much easier to say look chimps spank their babies so God clearly didn’t design human buttocks specifically for spanking, than it is to give a scientific argument. It was her point that only humans spank so I wished for direct counter evidence. But if I don’t have it, I don’t have it.

If it were true that chimps spank it would hardly make a difference to her. People who make those kind of arguments in the first place have no problem saying “God works in mysterious ways” whenever confronted with something they cannot explain. Only humans laugh, clearly god wants us to tell more jokes.

“Only humans have prominent buttocks?” Jesus, has this woman never been to a zoo? Watched Animal Planet?


No, there aren’t any other primates that spank their babies bottoms. But the idea that God made our butts for spanking is ludicrous. Besides, you don’t lose your butt as you get older, so is one to assume that adults should be spanked as well? Is there any other kinky sex that God likes?

As others have said, though, there is no use arguing with that person as he/she is going to believe whatever he/she wants to believe.

I don’t know about spanking, but I DO know that Dolphins correct their young. I saw a video of a mama and baby dolphin and the baby dolphin kept swimming away from his mom repeatedly.

So, mom swam right up to the baby and was using her Bottle nose to push him down to the bottom of the ocean floor and rubbing his nose in the sand. She kept doing this over and over. If he veered from her again, she ran him down to the bottom again until he stayed next to her.

I thought that was amazing how she was correcting him.

Upon reflection, I’m not sure what her point even is, frankly. Only humans spank…and so that means God wants us to? Huh? Maybe god wants us to swat like queens, or nip like bitches, or push like…whatever mother dolphins are called. Or is it that we each have our own way of disciplining our young, and God makes that obvious by our physical design? If so, I’d think that our bizarrely disproportionate brains and our use of representational language are what most obviously set us apart from the rest of the animal kingdom. So, obviously, God meant us to speak aloud and use words as discipline tools. In other words, guilt and shame. Q.E.D.


This is a joke, right?? You could make an even more valid argument that breasts are really made for spanking because they are indeed more prominent than they need to be for their biological purpose, whereas the buttocks mostly reflect the size of the associated muscle group.

Tell your friend that. And if you want to see her faint, tell her it was common for parents to smack girls titties around in your family.

Or maybe God wants us to spank the monkey.

In only 12 posts - not bad people, keep up the good work!

Apparently so.

And the bigger the butt, the more God intended it to be spanked!!

I hope that web site is a joke (like the “Marry my Daughter” one)…

No, I don’t think it is… I’ve seen it before.

Beating your head against the wall is probably more productive than the argument that inspired this thread.