November 4th, 2011
12:31 PM ET

Overheard on CNN.com: Family court judge should not be beating child

Comments of the Morning:

"Gotta run. Time to beat the kid and kick the dog." - sickciety

"Attention Lawyers – Never, never, never spank your disabled 16-year-old child. Have you no decency?" - babyBoomers0

DA: Statute of limitations prevents charges in judge's beating of daughter

Now 23 years old, Hillary Adams has released a videotape of her father, William Adams - a family court judge - strapping her when she was 16. Thousands of CNN.com readers responded to the story, many sharing stories of similar beatings. While some questioned the daughter's motives, others said there was no excuse for her father's behavior, as a family man and a professional.

SDN said, "I think it safe to say that if you were videoed doing this to anyone else, you'd be arrested and charged with assault. The video/audio would go a long way in convicting you, and sending you to prison. I condemn this man for beating his child. Simple."

fredwolf said, "I hate to admit it: beatings do set some people straight. I had a cop stepdad who beat me often, once because I got a 'A' in science and he thought it made him look stupid. He beat my mom too and she wanted to leave him. He threatened to put our neighbors in jail if they reported it. Few years later when I returned on leave and he was retired, we went for a beer, and I beat the living ##&* out of him, partly with his own gun, in an alley. We threw his stuff in the street. The beating worked! He never returned. I never beat my kids, all it does make 'em figure out ways to get away with it next time."

dontgiveadam said, "I was beaten frequently with a belt for just about anything from not shutting the bedroom light promptly at 9 pm to not cutting the grass the right way. I lived in fear of my father. And, turned to drugs and alcohol in my early teens as an escape from the pain. I'm now sober, but, it took me 20-years to come to grips with my past to finally become clean and sober. I forgave my dad, but will never forget the pain and agony of living in constant fear growing up."

FFelonie said, "I'm glad someone finally got something like this on cam. My dad did this and worse to me: full-blown punches in the face, whipped on the legs with a belt, and no compassion. I wish I could bring him up on charges now. ..."

sisNorth said, "It's astounding to see the number of comments here that chastise this young woman for coming forward and are suspicious of her motives. Her motives are totally beside the point ... this man was brutally assaulting his daughter, a child, repeatedly. Her mother was complicit, she did not protect her child. None of you know what was going on there or if she is 'spoiled' or 'bad' or a 'brat'. You ASSUME because of the beating she got. He beat her because that's what he does ... he's a grown man beating on someone who can't defend herself, someone he is supposed to love and protect from harm."

GenCouncil said, "There isn't anything inherently wrong with corporal punishment as long as it is practiced with temperance. Sometimes the human ability to understand that it has done wrong is limited by its pride."

iEvolved said, "If you have to beat a 16 year old with a belt to get your point across, then you're a terrible father. How many cases of child abuse has this judge presided over during his appointment over the years? Pathetic."

SheliaYudelo said, "First of all - no doubt the girl is messed up: she was routinely beaten and verbally abused by both of her parents. Duh. More importantly, it does not matter what her motives were for posting the video - what matters is that (i) this man is a public figure; and, (ii) he determines the fates of children; and, (iii) he beat, humiliated, and terrified his daughter; and, (iv) who viciously assaults and tries to destroy someone for downloading music?"

flonzy said, "Yeah the beatings have nothing to do with the person she is today."

Do your views align with these commenters' thoughts? Post a comment below or sound off on video.

Compiled by the CNN.com moderation staff. Some comments edited for length or clarity.

soundoff (94 Responses)
  1. Joel

    Understatement. The guy should be in prison. What a worthless excuse for a human being.

    November 4, 2011 at 12:53 pm | Report abuse |
    • Adonnis

      Perhaps there would be less people in prison, if they had been punished for being bad when they were children.

      November 4, 2011 at 1:45 pm | Report abuse |
    • Not a good idea

      Or there would be less people in prison if they had decent Fathers that were either around or didn't beat them mercilessly.

      November 4, 2011 at 4:42 pm | Report abuse |
  2. Okay I'm a Pig

    But she's actually cute. When I heard she had some kind of cerebral thing, I thought she'd be a wart hog, but she's actually good looking. So, I'm on her side. If she was ugly, I'd say wail away on her.

    November 4, 2011 at 12:58 pm | Report abuse |
    • bobcat2u

      I wondered just when you mindless Tea Partiers were going to get around to making a joke out of this too. I want to reiterate here that child abuse is no laughing matter.

      November 4, 2011 at 1:19 pm | Report abuse |
    • Not a good idea

      I'm a republican, and I agree with the Tea Party on many things. So don't make yourself look stupid by getting political.

      If I ever met this guy I'd break his nose with no regret. No parent should ever beat their child with a belt. Ever. It's not about discipline, it's about power.

      November 4, 2011 at 1:48 pm | Report abuse |
    • Bayousara

      You sound like my ex-husband......reason I left that scenario.

      November 4, 2011 at 4:30 pm | Report abuse |
    • Not a good idea

      Who sounds like your ex husband?

      November 4, 2011 at 4:43 pm | Report abuse |
  3. Godhelpusa

    Can u imagine this judge telling another parent in court that they are bad parents and therefore would lose their kid... What a shame..

    November 4, 2011 at 1:11 pm | Report abuse |
    • Not a good idea

      I imagine that constantly. I see it constantly. Can you imagine being a defenseless girl who's whipped repeatedly and no one does anything because the book of Proverbs says "if you spare the rod you spoil the child"?

      Let someone whip your back and legs with a belt and see how you like it.

      November 4, 2011 at 4:45 pm | Report abuse |
  4. saywhat

    @ Okay I'm a Pig. Sure, no need convincing us.

    Domestic violence, wife & child abuse. We are right there on top, statistics say.
    Anyone surprised?

    November 4, 2011 at 1:12 pm | Report abuse |
    • bobcat2u

      No saywhat, least of all me. After all, we are living in a violent society and especially these conservative fanatics here do find child abuse quite acceptable.

      November 4, 2011 at 1:23 pm | Report abuse |
    • Not a good idea

      yeah because there's no child abuse in blue states. Look at who's in foster care. Mainly poor, mainly black, in every state. If she was black this wouldn't be a story. Not being racist, but a white girl getting beaten by a man of power gets press. A black girl would just be considered hood violence.

      Hate has no boundary, white, black, rich or poor.

      November 4, 2011 at 1:54 pm | Report abuse |
  5. Mark L.

    The problem with this nation is we're raising a generation of worthless, good-for-nothing youth. Now, what the heck is wrong with disciplining your child, teaching them right from wrong?? Please tell me, I want to know !! When I was a child growing up in Brooklyn, NY back in the 1960's, if I ever got out of line with my parents, the belt came out and boy did I get a beating !! Oh sure, I didn't like my parents for doing that to me at that time, but today, I constantly, CONSTANTLY HUG & KISS my parents for their method of discipline in helping me become who I am today, a most-respectable, professional adult man !! If we let our kids today get away with everything, we are going to raise a generation of monsters !!

    November 4, 2011 at 1:22 pm | Report abuse |
    • Rob L.

      Let me ask you something Mark. At what point does a beating child become child abuse? After 25 lashings with a belt? 50 lashings? Until she bleeds? Enlighten me?

      November 4, 2011 at 5:02 pm | Report abuse |
  6. banasy©

    Child abuse knows no party lines, fake bobat2u.
    Can it.

    November 4, 2011 at 1:25 pm | Report abuse |
  7. bobcat2u

    You do know georgie that you're wasting your finger time. I'm sure you could find something else to do with it.

    Morning banasy.

    November 4, 2011 at 1:41 pm | Report abuse |
  8. renee

    I agree that kids should be disciplined, but the parents really got out of hand. The father acted as if he hated her or something because he would not stop hitting her. Even when the mother tried to stop the madness he went and got another belt. She was already disabled and he beat her. Was what she did so severe to get hit every where on her body. I really hate that I watched this video and he's a judge and makes decisions for kids that might be at risk of the same events.This was a sad case to watch they should be embarrassed.

    November 4, 2011 at 1:42 pm | Report abuse |
  9. bobcat2u

    @Not a good idea

    I just want to assure you that is not me posting that you are answered to. That is troll.
    So in the future, when see statements targeting teapartiers, you need to address you rebuttal comments to the bobcat troll.

    Thank You.

    November 4, 2011 at 2:10 pm | Report abuse |
    • Not a good idea

      I respond to ideas, not people. I can put Hermain Cain as my name but no one would believe it or care. Whoever it is obviously grew up in suburbia with no concerns for anything.

      November 4, 2011 at 4:49 pm | Report abuse |
  10. cnwhite61

    I have been following this case closely trying to better understand the bigger picture and why she is coming forward now. Child abuse is and always will be every where. And yes this father abused her more mentally then physically with just his words and I am sure he did that more then he did the belt. The county has already stated that because of statue of limitation in the law, time has run out and he will not be prosecuted. SO lets now go to his JOB. Because as I read what Hillary stated in her Subject line of the video "Judge William Adams is not fit to be anywhere near the law system if he can't even exercise fit judgement as a parent himself. Do not allow this man to ever be re-elected again. His "judgement" is a giant farce" ALSO in her tags she listed the word "DRUGS" WHY? What I want to voice my opinion on and why I think the bigger picture for me is...AND I only want to speak my OPINION.....and we all know how that can go in a court of LAW...its all opinion till there is a ruling! This man is a Judge and what now needs to be looked into is the cases this man has presided over. Was he doing drugs the day he went into court to rule on a case where a juvenile or that of a "Parent" was doing drugs and he terminated their rights because of drugs and put a juvie in jail instead of rehab. When he himself COULD have been under the influence? Just a thought and OPINION with what I see and read. Could there have been a bad day at home and fight with the wife and children and this Judge decided to take it out on the next case he took in the court room? Family Law is a very difficult to challenge in a court of "LAW" because in Family court these type judges make their rules up as they go along. They base their decisions on emotions and how the family may react in and out of the court room. So as I see in my OPINION this is about getting a Judge to step down and back away from making in further mistakes he MAY have very well made in cases because he had a "BAD DAY" and "it really wasn't as bad as it looks" or "it was years ago" (his words not mine). IN MY OPINION the cases of Judge William Adams needs to be investigated not his personal life. The damage has already been done......look deeper into the decision making of this man's cases those lives may have been shattered, based on a bad day..................That's my OPINION.

    November 4, 2011 at 2:52 pm | Report abuse |
  11. leeintulsa

    You named it? I'm again reminded of I, Borg.

    November 4, 2011 at 2:54 pm | Report abuse |
  12. leeintulsa

    Recently, in good ole t-town, a few cops were found guilty of a slew of charges related to setting people up, slingin dope, on and on. All their old cases got reviewed and pretty much dismissed. About 40-50 people were released so far.

    Definitly, everyone he affected should get another day in court..

    November 4, 2011 at 3:05 pm | Report abuse |
  13. gung hoe

    I had read that first comment from bobcat and didnt think it sounded like him Isnt that rite georgie

    November 4, 2011 at 3:17 pm | Report abuse |
  14. fernace

    As a society we get the words dici.pline & pun.ish.ment mixed up, so since I'm a retired childcare professional with 30+ years experience, I'd like to explain the difference! Dici.pline is something you teach your child everyday, how to be dici.plined in various areas of life such as having integrity, good personal hygi.ene & taking personal responsibility! This is also the area parents get frustated with because it's like a constant mantra, a "brainwashing" of sorts, to teach our youngsters how to be civilized people! Pun.ish.ment on the other hand is a temporary & more extreme tool to teach dici.pline & curb undesirable behavior! It comes in many forms, such as a swat on the butt, time out, "bootcamp", taking away privileges, etc.! It should, however, Never include beatings with tools! That is bar.baric behavior on the part of the parent & teaches a child to be afraid of them! Whatever "lesson" a parent tries to teach with this method gets lost in the fear! Spa.nking is the lazy way out!!

    November 4, 2011 at 4:03 pm | Report abuse |
  15. MMead

    We occasionally hear from those who fight to uphold this practice for those under the age of 18 (even to the blaming of the social maladies of the day on a supposed "lack" of it), but we rarely, if ever, find advocates for the return of corporal punishment to the general adult community, college campuses, inmate population, or military. Why is that?

    Visit Unlimited Justice/Parents and Teachers Against Violence in Education on the web and on Facebook to speak out.

    November 4, 2011 at 4:56 pm | Report abuse |
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