I grew up in a street where most parents smacked their kids (open hand to backside). My friends parents had permission to smack me and vice versa. We all used to feel sorry for the kids in one family who got grounded instead of being smacked. None of us grew up to be violent. We all finished 7th form, completed tertiary study and found work etc.
When I went to school (decile 2 school in Rotorua) I didn't even know how to throw a punch. I learned pretty fast however, because there were plenty of highly violent kids at my school. These kids weren't smacked at home. They were beaten hard enoguh to leave bruises (usually with fists/implements).
I think that is a key difference: Smacking vs Beating.
I understand that is what Bradford et al were trying to address with the so called 'anti-smacking' legislation. Adults were beating kids and juries were interpreting that as smacking and acquitting them. By outlawing smacking there was no safe haven for child beaters. I get that.
The legislation is in force and the extreme end of physical abuse of children persists. I wouldn't be surprised if beatings still happen behind closed doors.
If you need to hit a child to discipline it, something is already wrong with your parenting skills. The only thing this teaches the child is that using brute force on someone weaker than you is a good way of getting what you want.
I would disagree with your view on this. A smack isn't about brute force its about consequenses for actions in a simple to understand form.
Yes - very simple to understand and get the message across:
The way to deal with behaviour you don't like is to initiate violence
Always do what you're told - or use of violence against you is justified