We've known for awhile that NPR was dangerous car territory. Unlike your average parent, who is probably light-years smarter than I seem to be, I keep tuning into 90.1 while I drive to drown out the sound of bickering from the back seat. For whatever reason, sometimes the fighting stops and all three children go silent (they're likely plotting when that happens - or torturing each other in the most whisperly of ways) at which point it is inevitable: NPR will discuss something I don't want the children to hear.
Of course it's not NPR's fault, it's mine, but when your 2 1/2 year old son says Somali pirates? from the backseat, you have to wonder exactly how much he's sussing out from the news snippets he hears. And now that they are 6 and 9, they hear and understand a lot.
And they ask questions.
Why would somebody shoot people at Batman?
Why would somebody shoot people at a church?
Why would somebody shoot people by a college?
They ask the same questions we do, I guess. Questions for which there don't seem to be - at this moment - answers.
I've been trying to write this post since the day after Batman's opening night - and each time I sit down to the computer prepared to write something - there has been another shooting. Yesterday's attack on the security guard at the Family Research Council actually happened when this post was half written. I'm at a loss for words with my children and at a loss for words on this blog. I guess now, I can only quote my friend Robin, who posted on Facebook yesterday: Words I shouldn't have to say, much less say this many times a week: STOP SHOOTING PEOPLE
I'll even be civil about it: Please stop shooting people.