Daily Hampshire Gazette - Established 1786
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Measures to protect children crucial, but elusive

To the editor:

“No human beings can tolerate to see their children killed,” states Vijay Prashad in his Dec. 18 column “Deaths of children that don’t make news.” He cites the sad and too often unacknowledged ways in which children can die in our country and our world. Yes, it is easier to empathize with those who are more like you. It’s more shocking when a massacre of angelic-looking white children happens in a place where “it’s not supposed to.” But if such a horror can spur some real “common sense” actions like banning guns for mowing people down, then it will be the better for us all.

Yet, here is another terrible truth: In our country too many of our children suffer and, yes, die, at the hands of those who are supposed to be their nurturers and primary protectors — their own families. The incidence of child abuse has been dropping in the past five years (though some think that is debatable), but the mortality from child abuse has been increasing.

I am glad we are talking about mental health issues, recognizing and treating depression, about guns and violence in our culture and their role in creating havoc in our society. We have to wrestle with tough ideas and solutions, both personal and political.

But let’s not fool ourselves. A totally safe, risk-free life is impossible, and perhaps even untenable.

Kit Sang Boos

Northampton

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