You might have read about the Hot Sauce Mom, who got into trouble last year for her unusual punishment of making her son hold hot sauce in his mouth for lying to her. It was kind of a modern “I’ll wash your mouth out with soap” kind of thing. But although the soap-in-the-mouth threat (and sometimes follow-through) was tolerated by many back in the day, this new hot sauce punishment trend is not feeling the love, so to speak. In the midst of all the controversy, there is now an elementary school teacher trying to get into the act.
Lillian Gomez—a teacher at Sunrise Elementary School in Kissimmee, Florida— is accused of putting hot sauce on crayons as a way to punish her autistic students. Apparently, this was her attempt to stop the students from putting the crayons in their mouths. Per news reports, the superintendent of the school district wants Gomez to be terminated, however, she is currently suspended while a formal hearing into the matter is pending.
Aside from the obvious cruelty of forcing hot sauce on special needs children, this whole thing is just unclean. My wife and I get uptight if our daughter’s preschool doesn’t sanitize all their toys fast enough (which they always do). Ms. Gomez was putting a food product on crayons, and probably leaving it there for who knows how long. One wonders if the crayons got moldy over time. The sticky mess this must have made could have caused unintended consequences as well. The whole point was to get the kids to stop putting the crayons in their mouths. But what if the kids put the crayons down, then put their now sticky hands in their mouths? There is so much wrong here it makes the mind reel just trying to sort it all out.
Dealing with children, either at home or in the classroom, can be trying at times. To be fair, no one has all the answers. Discipline is something that we all struggle with from time to time. Regardless, I think it’s safe to say that the “hot sauce punishment” is out of bounds. To paraphrase Frankie Goes To Holllywood—when you want an easy discipline fix, and you want to reach for the hot sauce: RELAX, DON’T DO IT.
What do you think? With discipline—is it anything goes, or is using a condiment a crime?
Source: The Huffington Post