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As a Filipino magician providing family entertainment and magic shows in Metro Manila, I make it a point to read often about the art of child rearing. The knowledge I gain from reading gives me the right tools to handle an audience of children.

Not long ago, I ran into an article on the psychology of disciplining children. If memory serves me right, it was about a mother who failed to reprimand his preschooler after he hit her with a fist in the leg.

I thought that, for failing to even acknowledge the child’s disrespect, the mother must be an advocate of a newfangled parenting principle. It proposes something like this: Fuss over the child’s good deed but ignore his bad behavior. Over the long run, the child, through some mystical means, will become a well-adjusted, God-fearing, law-abiding citizen.

A child psychologist with an unhappy childhood must have invented this child-rearing principle. It’s so alien to me it makes me feel like wanting to dance the fandango each time I hear parents bandy it about.

According to my maven-level child-rearing knowledge, preschoolers who grow in no-discipline homes will one day form a party list. They will field their own candidates. When they win a seat in Congress, they will file a bill outlawing parental reprimands. Once the bill takes effect, Mommies caught telling Junior, “Don’t talk while your mouth is full!” will be hauled to jail. Not a pretty sight but immensely delightful to psychologists with oven-fresh child-rearing theories.

I don’t know if similar laws have been passed in other countries. If they have, I can’t imagine the havoc the law has wreaked on the social fabric of those countries. My mind is too boggled from reading the news of children bringing guns to school and shooting their classmates and teachers by the dozens. They usually do it during class hours.

In the magic entertainment scene, we may find more often a family entertainer losing his control over real or imagined unruliness of children. An ugly scene similar to the incident on this video may break out:

Yes, children magicians, beware of the day….

Stay magical,