Petition to Auckland Libraries

Eileen Joy has started a petition at asking the Auckland Public Library system to remove the newly aquired book, To Train Up A Child from their system.  The library claims that to remove it would be censorship, even though the book advocates for corporal punishment which is illegal in New Zealand.

Steph Got your help! Thank you!

UPDATE:  Because of  cash donations not included in the total, the goal has been met!  Thank you to everyone who participated in this labor of love.  <3

Steph is the author of Gentle Firmness. She needs a new wheelchair, this link explains why.  Please share the link, every little bit helps. Thank you so much!

Who Wants To Be Interviewed For A News Story?

A writer from The Verge is working on a story about the Pearls for publication on The Verge website. He would like to talk with anyone who has experience with the book or the Pearls firsthand. If you are interested in taking part in this, please send me ( your contact info and I’ll pass it on to him.

The BBC Interview Is Over

A reporter from the BBC is working on a story about the Pearls for publication on the BBC website. He is doing a lot of research and would like to talk with someone who was raised by the Pearls’ methods. If you are interested in taking part in this, please send me ( your contact info and I’ll pass it on to him.

Thank you for your help, everyone.  The interview is over.  If I hear of another opportunity, I will be sure to post.  🙂

Amazon Boycott

According to this tweet, Amazon has decided to not stop selling the controversial book, To Train Up A Child, by Michael and Debi Pearl.

Because of that, the petition drive has escalated into a boycott until Amazon removes To Train Up A Child in all formats.

More information can be found at the Facebook group Online retailers – we urge you to stop selling To Train Up A Child and the Twitter Account @BoycottAmazon1.

Meanwhile there is also a new petition to the UK Government, asking them to make it illegal to sell the book in the UK.  Of course, this petition may only be signed by British citizens and UK residents.  You can find more petitions at the bottom of this post.

Hana and Pearl Are All Over The Internet

There has been a lot of attention being given lately to the Pearls and the part their book, To Train Up A Child, played in the death of Hana Aleumu “Williams.” So much attention in fact, that my blog could not handle the traffic generated by Google searches and was taken offline from the 19th until today as explained here. So, here is a rundown of the posts and articles I missed posting during that time.

It started with this article on Nov 15: Another couple found guilty of murder for parenting by “To Train Up a Child” by Alicia Bayer of the Mankato Attachment Parenting Examiner. [Read more…]

To Train Up A Child Being Pulled?

It looks like Amazon has decided to keep selling the controversial book, To Train Up A Child, by Michael and Debi Pearl.  It is being offered as usual on both the USA site and the UK site.

However, Lulastic tells us that some other online retailers have decided to pull the book.  She also discusses her reasons for trying to get the book pulled and gives us some ideas for how to help.

I would like to remind people that this is not a campaign to ban a book.  The book will still be legal to sell.  Any book seller who wishes to is free to sell it.  The public is also free to boycott anyone who chooses to sell it and to put pressure on them to stop.  The book will always be available to buy directly from the publisher, No Greater Joy.  Because of this, I don’t see the point of equating asking Amazon to stop profiting from the sales of a dangerous parenting guide with book banning.

If you would like to sign the petition to, here it is.

Update: here is the latest from @ADadCalledSpen.

British Parliament Wants Amazon to Stop Selling TTUAC

Nadine Dorries, a member of the British Parliament, is insisting that stop selling Michael and Debi Pearl’s book, To Train Up A Child, according to an article by Jessica Elgot in the Huffington Post.

The story was then picked up by Parentdish who wrote quite a long article about the story as well as the book in question.

Also, there is a new petition on asking to stop selling To Train Up A Child.   This petition is only about To Train Up A Child, unlike the old petition which asked Amazon to “refuse to carry books which advocate the physical abuse of children,” including, Shepherding a Child’s Heart by Tedd Tripp; and Don’t Make Me Count to Three by Ginger Plowman.

On top of that, @ADadCalledSpen has An Open Letter to Jeff Bezos and All @Amazon About To Train Up A Child going around Twitter.

A Survivor Speaks

M. Dolon Hickmon shares about the abuse he endured while growing up and how being spanked “The Right Way” almost destroyed him in this (*triggering*) letter he wrote to Michael Pearl.  This post serves to introduce his Opus (a work of fiction)  which apparently needs backers. However, it does seem like it could be of interest to my audience, especially since works of fiction have been known to be the catalyst for social reform in many cases.  Some notable examples would be Uncle Tom’s Cabin, Ramona and The Grapes of Wrath.

Here is the author’s response to the question of why he doesn’t just get a publisher.

Update:  The book has been published and got a favorable Kirkus Review.

Calulu has a book review of M. Dolon Hickmon’s book 13:24.

**** Warning!  Book triggering for abuse survivors****

Advice Line: Can You Help These Readers?

I have had 2 solicitations for advice so I’m opening up the advice line.  Can anyone help these readers?

Marissa Stone asks:

Can you give me some advice on teaching honesty to kids?
Right now it it feels like I am trying to push a car uphill. Not totally impossible but hard. How can you teach honesty to kids when the lies of our elected officals steroid use of his favourite soccer player or the fraud of a local CEO are all glorified in the media? What if dishonesty has worked in the past? I have used the example of a doctor who cheated in med school as an example. That dosn’t work. I don’t what else to try. If anyone can give me pracical advice that would help.

Anonymous asks:

Hi, just an anonymous question to post…has anyone heard of “crying in arms” approach to help children deal with emotions, frustrations, growth spurts and such. I have a 5 month old and came across this, but I don’t like the idea of “sleep training” but do believe that their sleep patterns are different to ours and we have to guide them how to sleep successfully. Has anyone tried this/heard of it/views against it. Thanks.

Seeking Peace

Samuel Martin asks us all to join him in praying for “the peace of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ on all under His sun suffering from family violence.”

Speaking of peace, Carissa Robinson encourages us to run to The Father with our problems for He will give us peace in Paideia, Part 3.

CNN Story on Christian Talk Radio

Jeri, the Owner of Gentle Christian Mothers, just sent me an interesting link.  This is a Talk Radio Show about the CNN coverage of the Schatz Story from Aug 18, 2011.  The half hour show is called, Issues Etc. and the host is Told Wilken.  After playing the audio of the CNN show, he accepts calls and emails from his listeners to discuss the question, “Is Spanking Required in the Bible?”.  His conclusion seems to be that it is not mandated but neither it is prohibited.   The key to him is discipline.

And in the latest news about the Pearls, they just released a new book.  I see that Amazon is not at all concerned about the Petition.

Michael Pearl and Anderson Cooper

Michael will appear with Anderson Cooper on Friday Dec 2, 2011.  I assume that this will be the long awaited episode of which Elizabeth Esther spoke.

Meanwhile, Alexandra Ossola has made a petition asking the American Family Association to denounce the book To Train Up a Child as it advocates legitimized abuse.

MaryJanesFarm Magazine and Shoshanna Pearl

I received an email late last week saying:

I have come across your website about TTUAC, and while I don’t agree with everything you write about :-), I am glad you are taking a stand against TTUAC, and applaud you for that.

I also see that you have an online petition against the book at Amazon.

The reason I am writing is that one of my favorite magazines, Mary Janes Farm now has a full page ad for Shoshanna Pearls’ Making Babies.  I was frankly disgusted and very saddened to see that because I really, really love this magazine, but now I don’t think I can continue taking it.

I don’t know if you have a spot for this on your blog, or at any of the other sources you visit often, but I would like as many people as possible to write to the publisher/editor of this magazine to voice our objections to this advertisement.  The place to email is  Could you pass this on if you could?

About a year ago I posted about Mary Jane’s Farm Magazine running a full-page ad for the Bulk Herb Store  (Owned by Shoshanna Pearl) and suggested that someone might want to tell them about the Pearls and what they teach.  I did not give the above email address so maybe the correct person is still unaware.  Or maybe they just don’t care.

The Pearls’ Book NOT Banned in New Zealand (Working on Amazon)

New Zealand’s Censorship Compliance Unit has decided not to ban nor restrict Michael and Debi Pearl’s book, To Train Up A Child, according to this article in the Marlborough Press.  While I don’t believe in book banning, it seems to me that if a country has that policy, this book should fall into that category and I am a bit confused as to how they reached their decision.

I do believe in encouraging book sellers to stop selling offensive books and so does  Milli Hill at Peaceful Parenting who explains why Amazon should stop selling books which promote Child Abuse, especially To Train Up A Child. This piece includes a long quote from Debi Pearl in which she explains how one should use the switch on a child under one year old.

Note: The petition to which she links is the same one to which I link in my side bar. If you have not signed it, please sign it and share the link. Thank you.

Taking a Stand Against Child Abuse

The Wartburg Watch analyzes John Piper’s teachings about spanking a child to teach him to understand the wrath of God.  They then take a stand against dangerous and abusive teachings and tell you how you can help.  Bravo!

They look at John Piper again in An Ultrasound of Abuse.

Mary Jane’s Farm Magazine

It has come to  my attention that Mary Jane’s Farm Magazine is running a full-page ad for the Bulk Herb Store in their Dec/Jan ’10 issue. I wonder if they are aware that the Bulk Herb Store is owned by Shoshana Pearl, daughter of Michael and Debi. It’s possible that they have idea of what the Pearls teach. If anyone feels led to tell them, contact info is at the bottom of each page on their web site.

Kudos to SouleMama

I am impressed to see the owner of a small business drop a sponsor upon discovering that her sponsor does not share her values. I found out from a post on GCM that the sponsor she dropped was the Bulk Herb Store, owned by Shoshanna Pearl  who is the daughter of Michael and Debi.

I don’t believe I mentioned it here (although I did on my Facebook page), but stopped selling To Train Up A Child about 2 weeks ago after getting many emails explaining why the teachings therein are dangerous.

When you see someone selling or promoting the Pearls’ materials, speak up. Sometimes you can make a difference!

Preparing To Be A Help Meet

I find it odd that Yahoo News has a good review of Debi Pearl’s newest book, Preparing To Be A Help Meet.

You may comment on that article there as well as on the Topix site.

Yahoo did not allow me to submit my comment, probably because it was a link to this site.  My concerns about this new book are based on my concerns about the original book Created To Be His Help Meet.  I have links to many book reviews of that book which explain the dangerous teachings in that book.

Edited to add:  As of Dec 23, 2010 those link are no longer valid.  Just as well.  😉

I Am Personally Opposed But…

ThatMom challenges us to take a stand in in her post “i am personally opposed to beating a child with a piece of plumbing supply line, but…..”


The Pearls are asking their followers to go to iTunes and leave positive ratings and reviews for their shows.  We should probably go help balance that out.  If you have iTunes, you can rate the podcasts. ( I believe you have to be in iTunes to do this)   To the right of where it shows the stars in iTunes, there are five black stars. Click there to rate it. You’ll be prompted to sign into iTunes and then you can leave a review.

iTunes Links:
Bible Questions with Michael Pearl

Pearls of Wisdom

We Must Speak Out

This Adventure Life exhorts us that We Must Speak Out.

Awful Library Books

The Awful Library Books blog would like to see  To Train Up A Child removed from all libraries.  So far, nobody in the comments section has approved of the book, but some feel that it should be just removed from the Parenting section and put somewhere else where those who need it for research can access it.  I agree.  We cannot argue against something without having access to it and we do not want to purchase it.

Anyway, I suggest you check your own public library and direct them to this post.  Suggest that they remove this dangerous book from the parenting section to a research section or remove it from circulation.

Secular Homeschooling Magazine

The homeschooling movement is taking notice of the Pearls. Secular Homeschooling is a rather large magazine and they have written an exposé of the Pearls and their teachings. She looks at all aspects of the Pearls and gives some advice on how to respond when offered the book at a homeschool gathering.

To Train Up a Child: The Greater Problem by Deborah Markus


Mothersson from GCM says,

I have an idea. Will anyone join me in writing to Oprah and asking her to interview Michael Pearl / have Lisa Ling do an investigation on his teachings? Many people respect Oprah. I think that could make some head way to end the assault of children. As Oprah says, “when we know better we do better” Oprah actually asks viewers here to suggest show topics.

Here is a sample letter:

My name is ________, and I have a suggestion for your show. Recently there has been a lot of press over the tragic death of Lydia Schatz. Lydia was killed by her parents, Ken and Elizabeth Schatz. From the outside they looked like a normal healthy family, but obviously something went terribly wrong.

I believe the answer lies in a teacher who claims to teach “God’s way for raising children.” His name is Michael Pearl. His so called ministry is known as No Greater Joy, and his teaching is written in the most complete form in his book entitled “To Train Up A Child” In his written material, he promotes an extreme form of spanking that includes spanking a 3 month old child.

His writings not only tell parents that it is okay to abuse their children, but instructs them that this is God’s only way to raise Godly children. He warns that failure to follow his teachings completely will result in children who are disobedient, and menaces to society.

This is not the teaching of the entire American church. We would love to see a program exposing Michael Pearl, and his abusive teachings for what they are. It would be wonderful if there was a duel interview with a christian teacher who supports gentle discipline of children to contrast his dark, and abusive teachings.

Thank you for considering my request,

A loving gentle mama

Here is another sample letter:

Dear Oprah;

I am writing to request a show topic and person/s to interview. The facts of this practice have been virtually ignored by the major media even after the death of two known children of whose parents were followers.

Michael and Debbie Pearl run No Greater Joy Ministries, are coauthors of the Book To Train up a Child of which over 625,000 copies are currently in print and publish the magazine No Greater Joy.

In 2006 Sean Paddock died after being tightly wrapped in blankets by his mother who was a follower of the Pearls teachings. Though the Pearls never specially mentioned tight blanket wrapping, on p.46 the Pearls say that “if a child does obey being spanked, spank them anyway. And if you have to sit on him to spank him, do not hesitate. And hold him there until he has surrendered. Prove that you are bigger, tougher. Defeat him totally”.

This year, Lydia Schatz was beaten to death and 7 year old sister nearly died from being beaten with plastic tubing that the Pearls endorse. “The rod we speak of is a plumbing supply line that can be bought at any hardware store or large department store. It is slim, flexible, plastic tubing that supplies water to sinks, and toilets. Ask for 1/4 inch supply line.” []

Following Lydia Schatz death, Michael Pearl responded to accusations with humor. “My granddaughters laugh with joy after giving their baby dolls a spanking for “being naughty” because they know their dolls will grow up to be the best mamas and daddies in the world-just like them… Even my chickens are laughing . . . well, actually it is more like cackling, because they just laid another organic egg for my breakfast and they know that it was that same piece of ¼ inch plastic supply line that trained the dogs not to eat chicken”. []

You have spoken of teaching children about unsafe touches. The huge numbers of children being raised by Pearl like methodology don’t have a voice.  A show on the Pearls’ teachings could prevent stop many parents from using those methods by learning of the risks.


Slippery Slope

Yes, the Pearls’ teachings are wrong. Yes, the Pearls’ teachings are dangerous.  Yes, we must warn people to stay away from them.   But when we call for them to be stopped, exactly who would stop them? When we start calling for someone to stop someone’s right to free speech, we must proceed with caution because there is a slippery slope involved.

Slippery Slope by Executive Housewife

Home Depot

TheLizardLass has started a campaign to ask Home Depot to make Michale Pearl to stop using their name in his teachings.  She has given permission to copy and circulate, so I will include her proposal here:

Hey youtubers, please let Home Depot know what you think of them remaining silent while Michel Pearl tells people to buy building supplies and use them to beat their children.
If you don’t have time or motivation to write your own letter, you can copy the sample letter provided below (don’t forget to sign), and paste it into the Home Depot’s e-mail form which can be found here:
If you have a stamp, mail a printed copy to the Home Depot’s head office USA: Home Depot USA Corporate Office | Headquarters 1400 West Dundee Road Buffalo Grove, IL 60089 (847)577-3969 Canada: Home Depot Canada 900-1 Concorde Gate North York, ON M3C 4H9 (416) 609-0852

Or take a printed copy to your local Home Depot Addressed to the manager and asking them to forward it to the head office. Letter writing campaigns don’t always work, but doing nothing definitely doesn’t work. It only takes a minute, and you may help to save children from being beaten, or even killed. Thanking you in advance,

Sample Letter —

To The Home Depot: I am writing this letter because I am concerned about references to The Home Depot made by Michael Pearl in the article “In Defense of Biblical Chastisement, Part 2” which can be found at the following URL: In this article, as in his book “To Train Up a Child”, Michael Pearl advocates beating children with lengths of plastic plumber’s pipe, and specifically recommends buying these “switches” at The Home Depot, as you can see in the quotation below: “A swift swat with a light, flexible instrument will sting without bruising or causing internal damage. Many people are using a section of ¼ inch plumbers supply line as a spanking instrument. It will fit in your purse or hang around you neck. You can buy them for under $1.00 at Home Depot or any hardware store. They come cheaper by the dozen and can be widely distributed in every room and vehicle.” The child “training” techniques advocated by Michael Pearl, and practiced by the over 500,000 people who have purchased his book, “have resulted in the deaths of at least two children in as many years that have been reported to media” (see the article found at for more information.) It concerns me that The Home Depot has not demanded that references to your company be removed from the literature published by Michael Pearl. It concerns me that The Home Depot has not publically denounced these books and articles which advocate using lengths of plastic pipe to beat children as young as two years old. By failing to complain about Michael Pearl’s recommendation that people use The Home Depot as a source for obtaining the instruments to whip their children, and by failing to speak out against his teachings now that he has been using your company’s name for over nine years, The Home Depot appears to be, if not endorsing, then at least turning a blind eye to Pearl’s methods. Until The Home Depot publicly distances itself from Michael Pearl by requiring him to remove references to them from his books and articles, and by denouncing his methods, I will no longer be a Home Depot customer. Sincerely,

Get Involved

Boycott and Petitions:

Parenting in Jesus’ Footsteps petition

Time to padlock paddle peddlers!