Earlier this year and now again twice in the past two weeks children have been victims of shootings, one was shot and saw the murder of his father whose crime against his community was to speak up against evil and two little girls, one unwrapping a candy bar and one sitting in the home of a family member, are dead and in a moment many, many lives are changed forever.
So I have what may seem like harsh words for parents who are responsible for the lives they brought into this world or lives they have assumed responsibility for: be careful what you drag home. Don't let a buddy or relative stay in the house with your pre-teen daughter or son and then chide your child when they express fear of that person. Open your ears and find a child-free place for them to stay, because your child is important. Don't "just be holding a package for a friend" so if you are hit by a careless driver your children suddenly wind up in foster care. Don't be worried about how your 'friend' will react if you work with the police to solve a crime against children and old people in your neighborhood.
In 1624 English poet John Donne wrote: “No man is an island, entire of itself...any man's death diminishes me, because I am involved in mankind, and therefore never send to know for whom the bells tolls; it tolls for thee.”
Live life in an aware and honorable manner, my friends, lest you look back at some point and with stark insight gasp, "What have I done (or failed to do) that we might have avoided this horror!"