CHARLESTON, SC (WCSC) - The debate over corporal punishment has been renewed in the wake of the charges against pro football star Adrian Peterson.
Peterson is accused of using a branch to punish his four year old son.
It is legal to punish your child in South Carolina as long as excessive force isn't used. Family attorney Natalie Bluestein says South Carolina law allows corporal punishment or physical discipline if it is done to correct a child and doesn't do permanent damage.
"In South Carolina parents are allowed to discipline their children. They're just not allowed to abuse their children," Bluestein said. "You're allowed to spank your kid. You're not allowed to leave welts or bruises or draw blood or anything like that. That's excessive and that equates to child abuse."
We asked people in Charleston if parents should be allowed to spank their children.
Yes, I think there's a difference between spanking and beating," Courtney Glick said.
"That's actually a violent rule so it's really bad to spank your kids at all," Jonathan Viray said.
In Adrian Peterson's case authorities say his four-year-old son was left with cuts and bruises all over his body.
"People don't realize the physical damage they're inflicting until after it's over and then they say, 'Oh my gosh, I didn't mean to do that,' but the damage has been done," Bluestein said.
"I think that discipline is an important thing with parents and I think there's a fine line between spanking and discipline," Charleston resident Phyllis Katzen said.