More on To Train Up A Child – Updated 11/11/2013


Putting the obvious moron joke aside for one second, and lest you not be convinced that the author of this book advocates violence toward children,  please watch Michael Pearl, the author of the above book in action.

Hideous. So, I guess this puts all his talk in the media last week about how a switch is just a quick spank and not a beating into perspective. And shows him to be a liar.

It would appear that Amazon have removed the paperback edition from their site. This is a start. But I feel the item should be removed in all formats. And I hope, based on the above video evidence, we’re all clear here – Michael Pearl DOES advocate violence towards children, and looks like he’s revelling in the attention.

Nadine Dorries MP asked House of Commons leader Andrew Lansley to bring the issue of a book that “advocates the beating of children” to Parliament, and hope to persuade Amazon to remove it from their website.

But Pearl is clearly revelling in this. This quote for example…

“I was delighted to hear that Parliament might ban my book, if they do, I will immediately advertise it as ‘the book banned in the UK’ and…we will end up selling another 100,000 books directly to the UK.”

…is plainly delusional. How, can a book sell more if it’s banned from sale? How can you sell something that can’t be sold? That would be illegal and it makes NO sense. Besides, Parliament is NOT banning anything. People, and lots of them, are asking retailers to withdraw this book from sale. This is not banning. I think the video shows Michael Pearl to be a dangerous, arrogant, posturing bully and not someone who’s parenting skills I would ever look to for guidance, or someone who’s views on parenting should be sold by some of the biggest companies in the world.

Banning this book is not the issue and never has been, despite how the media reported this last week. I was interviewed by two radio stations and both wanted to talk about banning the book and both wanted to turn this into a debate on smacking children. I reminded them the issue was about persuading responsible retailers to withdraw from stock an irresponsible book. It was not about banning a book. And I will continue to do this because while Amazon are no longer selling the paperback edition they ARE still selling the Kindle edition, so their measures are half-hearted as the content is the same. Why withdraw one and not the other? Riddle me that.

Train Up

So Amazon, and Apple, and other online retailers, I urge you remove this item from sale, fully, and then Michael Pearl and his abhorrent views advocating violence towards children will hopefully disappear, with no oxygen to fan the flames of his despicable rhetoric. I hope the media who are giving him a mouthpiece, and Amazon and Apple and other retailers who are selling this book and reaping the profits, remember that this is about the protection and safeguarding of children, and nothing else. Any book that advocates violence towards babies, encourages hitting 4 month old children with sticks, under whichever form of theological camouflage, is immoral and offensive.

Over 24,000 people on these petitions (1, and 2) agree with this. So if you do, please add your name, and share with people who you think might also agree. And thank you all for signing them.

I’m looking to email people within Amazon directly this week, and hope to get a response explaining their veiwpoint. So watch this space. And if you know someone in Amazon or Apple who I can contact directly, please email me at

I’m including some links to things I’ve seen in the press about this and my original posts to Amazon and Apple. If you’ve seen anything else then please let me know in the comments section.

ITV News – 8/11/2013

NSPCC – 7/11/2013

UTV – 7/11/2013

Huffington Post – 7/11/2013

My letter to Amazon about To Train Up A Child

My letter to Apple about To Train Up A Child

Thanks for all your help with this issue. Getting it withdrawn from sale in one form is a start and we ALL did this. And if you wish to help continue with this campaign then please copy and paste the following into your tweet box and tweet and RT the heck out of it.

Dear @amazon & @jeffblackburn please REMOVE from sale in ALL FORMATS ‘To Train Up A Child.’
Please RT if you agree.

Many thanks for your help and if you do have any further links to media pieces, or any advice as to how we can continue with this, then please let me know.


14 responses to “More on To Train Up A Child – Updated 11/11/2013

  1. god, it makes me feel sick.

    This man is a bully. His sidekick/wife/thing whatever it is, looks like she’s too scared to say what she really thinks.

    After all the deaths of children in this country in recent years, surely any kind of crap from bullying twits like this has got to be removed? I just can’t bear to think of any child living in such a home, where thrashing them with a stick or anything else is ‘normal’. It is not. And it breaks my heart.
    I’m so proud of you for shouting out about this.

  2. Pingback: Mr. Pearl Responds To British Parliament’s Efforts to Stop Sales Of TTUAC | Why Not Train A Child?·

  3. Well done Spencer, your passionate letter to Amazon galvanised a whole load of people on this. Brilliant. Now for it all to be removed eh?
    Another online retailer, a Christian one, Wesley Owen, have also pulled it.
    They are vile people, truly awful.

  4. Pingback: Hana’s Story in Slate Magazine | Why Not Train A Child?·

  5. I’ve been talking to many who have actually read the book (A few found that it helped them become nicer and more gentle parents, and most of the people didn’t like it and dismissed it, but everyone said that the stuff printed about what was in the book is just plain lies.) I’ve also watched a bit of what these people have to say on You Tube (without the creative editing) While I’m not a follower of theirs, I think I really should stand up for the truth here. your video above is very creepy, and much of what is said is quite archaic. It’s as though they are living in some form of the old testament. However, your portrayal is very strange and disjointed and you made use of visuals by juxtaposing and repeating them to created a specific perception. We are living in 2013, and perhaps you are not aware that most (young) people can spot editing and repeating and contrived editing – in fact, my teenagers watched this and said it was a bad job and a load of bullshit anyway. It’s also really really old footage, and I would imagine that the Pearls have possibly grown and matured a bit since then – but perhaps I’m hoping for too much? I get that you are fighting something insidious and evil and I’m right there with you, but this little piece, even if its remotely true and does portray what they are really about, has lost credibility through your not so expert manipulation of visual and audio technology. I don’t like the way the Pearls think, I don’t like their arrogant and authoritative manner, and I’m really not interested in their books or advice.
    That these people have a base of ‘followers’ that use their writings inappropriately is not in question, but to blame another point of view for the crimes of people they have never met seems quite like the Nazi era we are all trying desperately not to relive. Writings exist on how to do all sorts of heinous things, and people practice this without any attention from the law or other parties. I think what is pissing you all off here, is that the Pearls are making money from their peculiar brand of teachings. Mr pearl is of a mindset that breeds cults and suppressed women and Children. Our South African constitution does the same thing in the Hands of our present government. Rather help those who want and need your help to become emancipated – The Pearls are not forcing anyone to buy their books, and they do not advocate 99% of the stuff the media has actually printed! I cannot take any of those newspaper reporters seriously now and I’m puzzled about the court proceedings in your country…. but I’m sure there is still a lot I don’t know. Please can someone do a more fair and unbiased presentation of the facts here.

    • Just to be clear I didn’t edit this video. I was pointed in the direction of it and thought it key to show just how the Pearl’s defence of a quick switch is actually a bit more than that.
      Also. In UK news, the author stated how he would advertise his book as ‘banned in the UK’ to gain more sales so he is keen to sell more books, and encourage this approach.
      Again, to be clear, I do not believe it will be banned or could be banned, nor do I want it to be banned as that’s against my outlook entirely. I’m just asking Amazon and Apple to stop selling it and profiting from something which has been linked to the death of three children.
      Thank you for taking the time to comment. I’m not about trying to manipulate anyone’s views on this. I have read the book, via a copy online, and I find it’s approach abhorrent.
      New parents sometimes struggle with being new parents, and many go to parenting books for guidance. The fact that retailers are selling this in their parenting category is shameful because, in my view, it has no place on sale.

  6. Pingback: To Train Up A Child. Yep, I’m still banging on about it. | @adadcalledspen·

  7. This just makes me sick. I can’t imagine swatting a little baby. I have an 8 month old and the thought of smacking her chubby little thigh literally makes me dry heave. Parenting is a lot more fun when you have to be creative and come up with ways to remind your kids how to behave or make life a little more difficult should they choose not to…

  8. I am sure Michael Pearl is grateful for the publicity you are giving him. I heard about this book, but could not remember the name and the author, but you gave it to me through this blog, so I was able to order it. I placed my order at Amazon and should be getting it soon. Thank you for your help.

    I am curious about what he really says in his book. You don’t really expect me to take YOUR word for it, do you? Where is your credibility? People who want to stifle free speech usually have an agenda they cannot support rationally.

    • Michael Pearl’s book is being sold and promoted by Amazon. His name and the name of the book is mentioned when this book is named in connection with the death of a child after parents have followed its training methods, as in the cases of Lydia, Hanna and Sean.

      I’ve read the book. It’s freely available online.

      Asking a retailer to stop selling it is my right, and the right of other Amazon customers who find the content offensive. And over 400 have done so. Other retailers have found the content inappropriate and have stopped selling it.

      The posts I have written contain words from the book. I think my credibility is intact and I’m sure Michael Pearl is now grateful for your money.

      I am with the NSPCC who have asked for this book to be removed from sale and have been doing so for quite some time.

      • I am sorry if I sounded harsh. I have been frustrated lately by some who seem to think ANY kind of spanking, no matter how mild or wisely administered, is child abuse, and I think I let my frustrations affect the tone of my comment.

        One of the points I wanted to make is that your strategy may be counter-productive to your purpose. I assume that one of your purposes is to reduce sales and distribution of this book, but asking people to contact Amazon and request the book be pulled from distribution can just give the book more publicity – and more sales.

        After I read the book, I may agree with you that it is bad and advocates child abuse, but I am curious about what level of corporal punishment provokes such a reaction – that is why I bought the book. I am glad that Amazon has not yielded to pressure, because if such pressure tactics can stop this book, such tactics could stop ANY book, even good books that some groups may not agree with.

        By the way, I bought a used book, so the author should not get any royalty from my purchase.

Please leave a comment. Thank you.

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s