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. KoKo

    BLACKMAIL!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I WOULD CUT HER OFF 2 FOR DROPPING OUT OF SCHOOL!!!!!!!!!!!

    November 5, 2011 at 10:38 am | Report abuse |
    • Lisa

      Are you joking?

      November 5, 2011 at 11:50 am | Report abuse |
    • Blue

      Who cares why? Does it bother you at all that she couldn't have released the video at all had he not done all of it/

      November 6, 2011 at 3:35 am | Report abuse |
  2. leeintulsa

    If he hadn't have been doing what he was doing, there would be nothing to blackmail him with..

    November 5, 2011 at 10:41 am | Report abuse |
    • rootoo11

      LUV you keep turnin' up the heat

      November 11, 2011 at 6:14 pm | Report abuse |
  3. Berta

    “Seen this Video on German News Platfrom. (excuse my englisch writing) I must say I'm absolutely shocked. This is sickening, unbelievab­le and devastatin­g. How can a judge commit a crime like this and not be punished by law?? Is this how the USA call themselves a civilized nation? I'm truly speechless­! But what can you expect from a Country that still has there deathrows.­..but wanting to tell other countrys how to do "right".. and yes she mite have been a spoiled brat, but that still doesn´t allow to do what the Parents did. And the Mother is not a bit better! In Germany this is called "Beihilfe"­(helping to commit a crime)....­.amnesty Internatio­nal should take action...E­veryone should stand up and take action against childabuse­! Because that´s what it is!” Even now hours later from me seeing this video I'm still in shock! The Public Attorney's Office must do something!

    November 5, 2011 at 10:48 am | Report abuse |
  4. Courtney

    I found her interview to be captivating, candid, honest, and very well spoken. Controlling parents consistently "hold" things over their child's head.... including cars, financial support / college, and a variety of other things that they deem appropriate. I also thought the way she verbalized her father's desire to see a mirror image of himself to be spot on. This man is deeply troubled and probably very insecure. Perhaps he was treated with the same amount of violent discipline by his own parents. There in point, is why I do not believe this is an effective form of discipline. Often times, it just becomes generational child abuse disguised as discipline. I wish her well..... and I truly hope that she knows that this is not her fault, as her father even verbally accuses her of in the horrific video. When a violent abuser says, "See what you make me do...." it illustrates his inability to control rage and suggests they are not to be held responsible for their actions. How sad he is a judge – he needs to be removed immediately..

    November 5, 2011 at 10:58 am | Report abuse |
  5. Courtney

    One last thing – I posted this from Minneapolis, Minnesota. Maybe the South does things differently. Also, what probably happened was exactly what she stated.... she snapped. He probably was still trying to control her / manipulate her with a car and other actions, and she had finally had enough of his bullying and control freak behaviors.

    November 5, 2011 at 11:00 am | Report abuse |
  6. DiaaKris

    Hope she will get her head on straight about college and her future. Sounds like a very talented budding pianist. To say the least, she's not currently blessed with parents who appreciate or even recognize her sensitivity as a musician. HOW DARE HER FATHER beat her for quitting school! What a ditz.

    Look around. The world is filled with people who will support you, appreciate you and encourage your talents.

    Hope the next video you post is your performance of a piece you love. Looking forward to it!

    November 5, 2011 at 1:29 pm | Report abuse |
  7. kim

    Not only should he have beat his own child but what kind of judgment did he give other families that might of been to strict after seeing that video I wonder if he was as violent oor fair.

    November 5, 2011 at 2:22 pm | Report abuse |
  8. Damning evidence

    I was sick when I watched this and am sitting here in tears writing this comment. That viscous beating brought back so many horrible, terrifying memories of my childhood and young adult life. We do not deliver this type of punishment to criminals why on earth do we think this is okay to do to a child for some minor wrongdoing. I hope this bright young woman can overcome this trauma and achieve her full potential. She is very brave indeed to have exposed her father, whatever the motive. He should not be in the position he is in and with this kind of damning evidence should be punished and removed from the bench. Let this be a lesson to all viscous parents out there... the technology is here, the world is watching.

    November 5, 2011 at 3:53 pm | Report abuse |
  9. Retarded Child

    There are people in this world who have come to be made into Satans image. They hade never had a real chance to let Jesus' teachings of who God is and how to reflect our fathers qualities in us. In other words, some have come to reflect Satan rather than God.

    November 5, 2011 at 4:06 pm | Report abuse |
  10. Memikcik

    Spare the rod, spoil the child....back in the day the rod was for guiding sheep, not beating them. A wrongful interpretation of the Biblical rod for sure. Guide your children!! Don't beat them.

    November 5, 2011 at 5:23 pm | Report abuse |
    • Blue

      You aren't kidding! It's a little more work but so worth it!

      November 6, 2011 at 3:37 am | Report abuse |
  11. Attillio Zarrella

    How sad that we have a society that sees this type of BEATING as a form of acceptable DISCIPLINE. We arrest people for beating animals. No wonder children are now taking shotguns to their parents. When you treat a person like an animal don't blame them if they start acting like one. I'd love to see this man and wife beaten like that IN PUBLIC.

    November 5, 2011 at 5:29 pm | Report abuse |
  12. Kevin Bearden

    If what this father did is defined as "chile abuse", then virtually every person in the USA that's 40 years old or older has been the victim of child abuse...Wendy Walsh is an idealistic idiot...

    November 5, 2011 at 5:30 pm | Report abuse |
  13. What_a_Nation

    I'm so glad people can't beat me everytime they get upset at me! I wish children could say the same, but we as society call it discipline

    November 5, 2011 at 5:42 pm | Report abuse |
  14. banasy©

    @gung hoe:
    Noemi is a troll; read some of her other posts aroubg these threads.
    She means to inflame, and she did.

    November 5, 2011 at 5:57 pm | Report abuse |
  15. Iamrightyouarewrong

    I'm so glad he was a professional that's important. Had he been a poor man his butt be in jail right. He should have video taped it himself as a warning this is what happens to spoiled brats. And gosh if she had stolen food for her needy family what would have happened if she got caught a beating and jail. Who cares anyhow Kim K just got divorced come on people. The sick world we live in has more important things to discuss.

    November 5, 2011 at 6:32 pm | Report abuse |
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