Mother Allegedly Beats Child for Refusing to Attend Church

by Ayvaunn Penn, Your Black World

For years, the church has been a pillar in the black community, and corporal punishment is prevalent amongst our people as well.  Both are widely accepted and often without question, but one Georgia mother is making some wonder if it is indeed possible to take those cultural beliefs too far. Lolita Smith was arrested on July 16th for allegedly beating her son because he refused to attend church.

The Grio reports, “Police were called to a Georgia home on Saturday morning by a seventeen year old boy whose mother would not stop beating him with a belt. Supposedly the boy’s mother…was hitting her son because he wouldn’t go to church.” According to reports from 11 Alive, the boy ran to his room to escape being beaten by his mother. That did not stop Smith, however. She went to the extent of tearing down her son’s bedroom door to continue her tirade. The Grio reports that “when the police arrived on the scene Smith was cursing and acting belligerently, saying that the way she disciplined her son was her business. Her sons arm had visible welts.”

A Georgia policeman made a point of stating that corporal punishment is not against the law, but there is a place to draw the line. Police reports show that this is the fourth time that they have been called to the Smith home for domestic violence. Ironically, this mother works with children regularly in Cherokee County Schools as a speech pathologist. Smith was charged with criminal trespass and simple battery. She was released on bond on July 17th.

Ayvaunn Penn is a spoken word artist and an award winning writer completing her degree in English and philosophy. For more of her witty-word works click here. To have your original poetry featured by Ms. Penn on Your Black Poets, click here.


21 responses to “Mother Allegedly Beats Child for Refusing to Attend Church

  1. I believe Mom may have been right to take up the rod, but I think she might have wielded it improperly. You cant rightly beat kids in anger, or out of emotion. The story says mom beat down the door, that is a little frightening,

  2. As a unitarian, I don’t think parents should force religion on their children. Instead, children should be exposed to a variety of religions and be allowed to make their own choice when they become an adult.

  3. Another out of control black woman.The word for the day is moderation,this woman needs to learn it.

  4. I stopped taking beatings from my mother when I was 13. She tried; but I took the switch or belt away and informed her that I would not be taking any more whoopings.

    I strongly suspect that since there was no mention of a father that none was present. The mother is probably mad at the absent father and is taking it out on her son. i watched my mother beat my older brother for striking out in a baseball game. Even at that young age I knew she was really mad at my daddy.

    As for the church being a pillar in the black community; we will tackle that sickness another day.

    • I was an abused child up to the age of 18. I left home right after my father left however, the last straw to me leaving home was when my mother hit me in my face with her high heel shoe because I did not cook her chicken right. I still to this day do not understand why my mother abused me so much (e.g., beating me with broom handles, vaccuum pole, etc.). Her lame excuse to me and to family members was that I was a bad child. I was never a bad child but a child who was scared of her; a child who was shy and quiet. I never got into any trouble nor did I talk back to my parents. I could not undersand why she did not love me, provide me with nurture or even give me hugs. She would put my brother on a pedastel and tell every one that her son did not do that, or give my brother anything he wanted. So, for this woman to beat her child because he did not want to go to church is absurb. Yes, there is a hidden agenda with this mother — she is angry at the father.

  5. It is absolutely amazing to me that this woman, and other women and men, have abused people and misused religion to mask their anger with the other parent and the challenging world. If you have not convinced your 17 year old that church, Christianity or religion is wanted in his life, you will not be successful in beating it into him now! Imagine needing to beat your 17 year old to make him accept something “so good” as religion!

    I am a man and I stopped beating (spanking) my Children when they were very little. That is the point in which you set the stage that prepares you to find it unnecessary to spank them after a while. This woman found it “necessary to attempt beating her 17 year old because the young man’s Father was apparently absent from the home! However, when more of us Fathers retain our rightful, responsible place in the home, it would not be necessary for our women to be struggling to make our Children go anywhere, including church!.

  6. we do not know the whole story here so we should not judge, but i know that when i was living in my parent’s home when i was 17, what they said went and if my dad felt like he had to pull out the belt that is what he did. my daughter lives with me right now and there are rules and regulations that she must follow, no i am not going to take out the belt because she is 23 but she knows when i mean what i say. and this woman could not have been doing such a bad job because if this boy was any other boy, he might have taken the belt from her and hit her with it. now see if that was me who called the cops on my dad, he would probably be still beating me, back in the day we knew not to call the cops. a lot of these parents should take their children to church and other educational things instead of letting them play video games and run wild. and how is this woman being charged with crimminal trespass and this is her house/apartment, she pays the rent/morgage, that is crazy.smh


  7. The bible tells us to “Train a child in the ways they should go so that when they are older they will not depart”, it also instructs us that “if we spare the rod we will spoil the child”, but it warns parents also “not to provoke your child”, the key word in all those scriptures is “Child” you have to start training them about the ways of Christ early, my parents raised me by example, at the age of 8 my parent taught me how to love Jesus Christ and live according to his teachings, at an early age it was a pleasure to go to church cause I was learning with others the word of God, by the time I became a teenager church was fun and became apart of my lifestyle. Unfortunately this mother could not have been living a good christian lifestyle before her son and lastly wanted to force religion down her sons throat not relationship with God but religionl (cursing and anger not good examples) God desires relationship not religion. A good mother would have started earlier or just prayed for her son , that son would have been moved quicker to go to church if he had seen and heard his mother praying for him, and changes would have peacefully accord in the house because prayer works. AMERICA PLEASE DO NOT LABEL ALL CHRISTIANS BY HER POOR ACTIONS, we are not the same. MOST REAL CHRISTIANS ARE RAISING BALANCED AND PEACEFUL HOMES FOR OUR CHILDREN, my prayers go out to this family

  8. Beat that ass. He should do what ever his mom say.even if he don’t want to.She is his mother not his friend.

  9. I agree with the mother. It is sad to even think that a parent can be arrested for disciplining a child! If I had been the police, I would have suggested that the child apologize to his mother for not doing as he should and then have him to promise to attend church when he is supposed to.

  10. Wow, there is so much that could be said here. I pray that the right things will happen here at that the truth will prevail. I pray there is reconciliation and peace in this mother son relationship and that the blood of Jesus will cover them both. We all have sinned and fallen but Jesus is the way, truth, and life. I pray those underlying factors will be brought forward true forgiveness and a closer relationship with Christ and with each other will result. Thank you Jesus for your provision right now In Jesus name. Amen

  11. You waited to late sweetie to aplly this method.However using profanity didnt help your case, i pray they will overlook the aggressiveness.

  12. I’m sure that the mother felt she was doing the right thing and I’m sure she didn’t have ill will, however she has to ask herself is she showing her son that the GOD of compassion and forgivenes is not the GOD she is serving? And should he committ a actual sin, is there any forgiveness for him? This young man is seventeen and it is not at all unreasonable for kids of this age to begin to question and rebel, she has to find other ways to communicate now at this age, because she doesn’t want him to completely shut down from her, I get the rule in my house abide by my rules but we honestly don’t know how long this young man has endured his mothers behavior and to what extent? I personally would have proven the point by only providing his creature comforts I do mean the bare minimum, food and shelter ie: rice and beans,peanut and jelly, spam, the extras that these young kid feel they may be entitle to ie: playstation, X-box, cell phones, cable television, internet. You don’t want to go to church, I don’t want to pay for these things that are not necessities anywho I hope this family mends from this and if her faith is strong and long but they will endure this, maybe GOD is giving her a learning moment?

  13. Some of these comments scare me.

    Beatings don’t work. You have to be taught to want to do things without someone waving a stick at you. You shouldn’t have to use fear and threats to convince some one to do something. What happens when she is not around or the fear and the threats are no longer there? Beatings only make you act good if people are watch or you think you will get caught. It doesn’t teach you that some things are wrong even if you can get away with doing them.
    It also teaches kids that to really get someone to do what you want them to do you can hit them. And we all no that you can’t function this way in society. I can’t beat my boss or my coworkers to get them to do what I want done.
    It would be more understanding if this child was maybe 10, 11, or even 12. But he’s 17. A year from now he’ll be able to go out onto the world and do what he wants. What types of decisions will he make then, when there aren’t any threats hanging over his head?
    Also if he was refusing to do some thing like go to school, I could understand (but not condone) her behavior. But church? At 17 you can’t make your kids believe what you believe. You can only show and explain to them what you believe and let them make their own decisions.

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