Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Child Killers

The news headlines are:

"An 11-year-old Pennsylvania boy blew away his father's eight-months-pregnant fiancée - then calmly got on the bus and went to school."

"Arizona 9-year-old pleads guilty in shooting death."

How do we understand children as killers?

Reports of kids and guns are all to frequent. The incidents are isolated, but the story is always the same. A kid, a child, gets a gun and shoots someone and we all say to ourselves, how could that happen?

Somehow, in our society, we need to find a way to discourage kids from violence and to encourage our children to use different weapons in life.

Knowledge is a weapon more deadly that any gun for it slays the ignorance of seeing oneself as a victim or of being offended by the actions of another or jealous of a situation like the eleven year old.

We need to teach our children that there is power in courtesy and that tolerance shows strength, not weakness and compassion is mightier than conflict and giving in to rage or hurt feelings is a useless gratification that brings devastating consequences.

Let us teach our children to be offended by the real things that can hurt them: drugs, bigotry, prejudice and indifference.

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