Es ist besser, das Kind weine, denn der Vater

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Es ist besser, das Kind weine, denn der Vater is a German proverb that means "Better the child should cry than the father".

The proverb justifies the punishment of children for wrongdoing (which makes the child cry) because if a child is not corrected, it was believed they will in due course become worse and worse, and eventually end up in such great trouble (e.g. at the gallows) that ultimately the father will cry (but then it is too late).