Answer: I say that this is a mistaken view; Allaah (subhanhu wa ta’ala) ordered His worshippers to treat their parents well,
“Say not to them a word of disrespect (uff), nor shout at or harass them.”
Harshness through words is a kind of harassment and shouting or even worse, and if the harshness occurs through actions it can even lead to hitting.
Whoever thinks that he can forbid his parents from doing evil by being harsh to them has imagined wrongly because Allaah (subhanahu wa ta’ala) said,
“But if they strive to make you join in worship with Me others of which you have no knowledge, then obey them not; but behave kindly towards them in this worldly life.”
Here Allaah didn’t command a person to be harsh to his parents. Also, harshness is not a way of stopping all people from doing evil.
People have different dispositions, and some are only spurred on further by harsh treatment.
It therefore becomes clear that harshness does not bring about any good; the Prophet (sallallahu ‘alayhi wa sallam) said,
“Gentleness does not touch anything except that it beautifies it, and harshness does not touch anything except that it spoils it.”
This person should then fear Allaah and address his parents gently, kindly and mercifully.
Doing so, he would be deemed obedient to Allaah, kind to his parents and disallowing evil to the best of his ability, and Allaah did not burden people except with what is in their ability.
I think that this type of person (who tries to disallow his parents’ evils by being harsh to them) is like none other than those who want to reject evil by revolting against the Muslim ruler and shedding blood.
This person’s attitude is wrong, because his harshness against his parents is a greater evil than the one he wants to criticize.
And Allaah is the One who grants success.
[Fat-h Al-Rabb Al-Wadud fi Al-Fatawa wa Al-Rasa`il wa Al-Rudud #612]
[Translated by Abu Abdillah (Abu Zaynab) Owais Al-Hashimi]