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Teacake
I think of this in terms of three separate issues.

1) Human rights
If we believe that humans have a right not to be assaulted, then why on earth would we think it's alright for children to not have that right? They should have at least as much legal protection as adults, given how much more vulnerable they are to other people's will.

2) Physical discipline is ineffective
Yes, children need discipline - boundaries and consequences. There's plenty of research evidence that indicates what's effective in terms of behaviour management, and physical discipline is just more likely to cause resentment and avoidance of repercussions (eg by learning about lying).

3) Physical discipline teaches children that violence is acceptable
Children learn by what's modelled to them, and if their responsible adults are hitters they learn hitting is a valid response.

I don't think anyone had the right to hit anyone else, and I'd like to see that reflected in the law.

Yes, children can be annoying. If you find them too annoying, just don't have any. There are plenty of people who like them well enough to cope without resorting to lashing out and spreading the disease. People who try to justify hitting children by saying it's 'done with love' totally creep me out. Hitting done with love, IMO, is reserved for consenting adults with specific interests.