From the comment section at Shannon's Blog, we have a defense of the indefensible.
Deep breath, calmly: a refutation of a couple of choice points:
"As parents, we have to diligently teach and train our children to obey."
No, I don't. I teach my kids to think: to test their theories against the available data, to see if their theory contains explanatory force, to see if it is internally consistent and logical, to see if it is consistent with other good theories, to see if the theory actually works, to throw any other pertinent criticisms at it that they can think of, and above all to hold their theories tentatively. They may be wrong! Better theories may exist.
Teaching my children to think rationally seems to me to be the best way of helping them not to do stupid things just because someone who is more powerful than them tells them to. Home Education, of all educational methods with it's potential for free thought, could be about that.
"Children are not capable of thinking 'rationally' about a situation, but they can associate pain with bad behavior".
To the writer of the above I would say: just think about that sentence for a little bit. Take it seriously for a minute or two. Is it internally consistent? And just in case you don't get it - no it isn't, which all rather suggests that it is not the children who are being irrational in this instance.
(I am seriously worried that you may still not get it. Just in case this is so: if children are incapable of thinking rationally about a situation, how is it that they can associate pain with bad behaviour, since this is clearly quite rational under the circumstances you defend?)
"That point is that the small pain they feel now will prevent them from feeling great pain by the act they are committing, which could cause them loss of their lives in some cases. For instance, if a child tries to run across the street, using 'natural' and 'logical' consequences could cause the child be run over by a car and killed."
But my unsmacked children haven't been killed in a car accident, despite walking on unpavemented roads practically every day of their lives, since they could first walk. Miraculous? No. I just helped them enact their preference not to die. Rational choice all round, facilitated with explanations and without smacks.
Please think again. Violence in this context is utterly unnecessary. My guess is that you aren't in favour of murdering apostates, despite this being called for in certain sections of the Bible. So think again about this other issue concerning violence that has been implicated in the death of a child.