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For Once, It IS About the Children: Hug Your Kid, But For Once Don't Just Stop There, Dammit

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There was a tragedy in Newton today. Early reports have a score or more people, most of them children, dead at a gunman's hand.

Today and every day, around twenty-one thousand children died.

Today and every day, over two thousand children went missing.

Today and every day, thirty two children died in the United States from accidents.

Today and every day, five children died in the United States from abuse or neglect.

For those families directly affected by today's tragedy, my compassion and sympathy go out to you.

For all the rest of us, the ones who normally feel secure and confident that our child is safe, we need to remember two things today and in the days to come:

  • Your safety is illusory.  Your child could disappear at a moment's notice.
  • That fear and uncertainty you feel today is every day for millions of parents.

Hug your child.  Spend time with them.  And then come back and follow the links above (or here, to MissingKids.com, www.childhelp.org, www.childrensdefense.org, and www.unicef.org) and do what you can to make sure other parents will have the same opportunity.

Oh yeah, and it is the right day to talk about gun control. And this essay "Why the NRA Should Support Gun Control", published earlier this week, pretty well illustrates why.  If you're thinking about saying something about arming children and/or teachers, please do yourself a favor and shut up now.

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