Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Turn off the tv

"Turn off the TV, or at least limit your child’s exposure." This is advice from The Mister Rogers Parenting Book, which we quoted here back last December after the horror of a schoolyard shooting in Newtown, Connecticut. Yesterday there was another New England horror; this time at the Boston Marathon.

The late children's host Fred Rogers got it so right when he said "turn off the tv." This advice is good not only for the children he meant it for, but for adults as well. Last night I saw more and more of a growing trend where reporters tried to attach blame long before the facts were in. Yes, it was terrible - the deaths and massive amounts of injury were bad enough but the fear that came with it all even worse. Instead of calming our fears and urging restraint, too many broadcasters were racing to judgement, and what does that accomplish?

Fred Rogers got it so terribly right when he said “When I was a boy and I would see scary things in the news, my mother would say to me, 'Look for the helpers. You will always find people who are helping.' To this day especially in times of disaster, I remember my mothers’ words and I am always comforted by realizing that there are still so many helpers – so many caring people in this world.”

As I write this, news from Boston is still coming in and we don't have all the details.  We know this was tragic.  We know this was terrible and that those responsibile should indeed be brought to justice.  The speculation and ignorant words from so called journalists is not help though in the least.  Last night I really had to remember Mister Rogers and simply turn off the tv.  One thing we did see from the media - the firefighters and police and other first responders coming to aid the victims. That was comforting indeed.  Comforting too was it to hear the calm and reassuring voice of our President. Not calming though are the broadcasters who try to incite additional problems.

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