Before I even get started, I must warn you that the video included with this post is disturbing. In it, you'll see Anthony Sanchez beating his 10-year-old stepson Zach with a belt while they're playing a game of catch in their backyard. You'll also hear the person who got the whipping on camera, Oscar Lopez, who happens to be the neighbor from the house in the back.

After yelling for Sanchez to stop the beating, Lopez uploaded the video to YouTube. Sanchez, a California elected official, was eventually arrested on suspicion of felony child abuse and released from jail after posting $100,000 bond on Friday. He promptly resigned his position as water agency director.

Spanking is not against the law in California, even if you use something other than your hand to do it. So the question is, did Sanchez go too far?

Read more in ¿Qué más?: Should schools NOT be allowed to spank our children?

Honestly, I don't know. Before you go thinking I'm a child abuser myself, I must clarify that this incident brings up a lot of questions besides the actual spanking. The main one, at least for me, is whether Lopez had the right to be chismoseando what his neighbors were up to. Not to mention his decision to actually upload the video to YouTube for everyone to see.

I'm in no way condoning what Sanchez was doing to his stepson, but I am saying that how we decide to discipline our children is a very private matter. While I'll admit to spanking my children on more than one occasion, I've never ever used anything other than my hand and it's always been more for the shock value than to inflict any kind of pain. However, the way I discipline them is really nobody's business.

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Having said that, I will never stand for any type of child abuse. And yet, I can't imagine Lopez being privy to all that went on in his neighbor's backyard just by watching the spanking from the window of his house. While I wasn't there, I find it hard to believe that it was prompted by the boy dropping the ball during their game of catch.

Would you get involved if you saw a dad beating his son with a belt? 

Image via NBC

About the author

Roxana A. Soto is a Staff Writer for MamásLatinas. She's a bilingual and bicultural journalist born in Peru and raised in Mexico, Argentina, South Africa and Miami. She's also mom to a first-grader and a preschooler. She loves languages, traveling and good food – especially if it's cooked by someone else.

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libel...

why I don't understand is why the neighbor is video recording BEFORE the incident..  maybe he knew what would it happened and wanted to have any "evidence".. or is just his job just spying on his neighbors?

while I'm not condoning any abuse myself, I find Lopez very CHISMOSO.

theha...

Ok.  Second attempt.  My Ipad keeps taking me out of the page.   I have yet to find the whole video and I am searching for it.  With that said, I have to wonder why the stepfather was hitting.  That part is missing from the video.  I certainly doubt that he is merely spanking the boy for pure pleasure.   I have to wonder if the spanking, plus the activity in the back of the house was a result of something bigger.  

theha...

I am not proud of what happened, and I tried to send them to their room so that I could scream and get my anger out by myself, but they saw how out of frustration I basically destroyed every single plate that was in the sink.  They stayed quiet the rest of the day.  This woman has singlehandedly caused a lot of stress for nosing into something she didn't even know what was about.  The fact that she dared to judge me and called me a bad mother had scarred me for life.  I am not proud of spanking my child, but after that spank he NEVER ran into traffic again.  However, that woman did ruin my belief of myself  as a mother for the rest of my life.

This neighbor has done a lot more damage than he thinks.  This man has lost his reputation and all kind  of respect after this man posted this online.  Just as that woman this man is seeing just one side of the story and portraying it the way he want.  I am not advocating that spanking is right, but I do know that unfortunately the video is not the only side of the story, but because we live in the cyber era this man will be juged forever because of this video.

SEA0701

I don't know what to really think about this, I guess I have mix feeling. First of all i don't think its right for the dad to be hitting the lil boy just cause he cant catch the ball, that should be something fun for both dad and son. And as a mom idk if I would let a step-parent touch my kids. And then on the other hand who gave the right for this person to record and on top of that put up the video on line. They could have just called 911 if they really wanted to help or just show the video to the Mom of the boy so she could handle it.

sweet...

I think that EVEN if the child did someting wrong and deserve a spanking he went too far. Hitting him lots of time with the belt. I am happy and proud that Lopez was a chismoso because Anthony is NO victim. The VICTIM is that child the he is abusing. I spank and I am all for spanking but there's a line between spanking and abusing. Here is the full video http://youtu.be/8lLfyEqgIEw You could clearly see that the child it is in pain and he hits him MORE than one time.

nonmember avatar
THIS NOT A PUNISHMENT, YOU TRYING TO MAKING A LESS AGRAVATED ACT, WHEN THIS IS A PERVERT ACT!, COMMITED WHIT ALL THREACHERY, ADVANTAGE, PERVERSITY, EVIL, FORCE, BAD INTENTIONS, FOR THE ONLY REASON TO CAUSE SEVERE DAMAGE, TORTURE, HORROR, DISPAIR: PHYSICALLY, MENTALLY, MORAL, EMOTIONAL, SPIRITUAL TO THIS INNOCENT, FRAGILE, LITTLE CHILD. ANTHONY SANCHEZ IS A SON OF THE DEVIL, HE DESERVES NO MERCY, AND HOPE HE NEVER RECOVERS FROM GOING DOWN IN SOCIETY, AND THAT GOD BLESS AND PROTECT THIS CHILD
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