Wednesday, March 29, 2006


For good reason, the news has been dominated by the shooting rampage by Kyle Huff in the Capital Hill neighborhood. It was a tragedy of violence without provocation on children and those barely into adulthood.

It does not bespeak the evils of the rave culture or of guns or drugs; as some would like imply, but it does bring to light the tragedy of the human condition, the desperate lonely rage of certain individual coupled with the fragility and mortality of the human body. I hope we have answers soon about why this happened, but I am not holding my breath that we will ever truly know.

The conversation around the office, however, isn't about the shooter, or the rave culture, or anything much other than the age of the victims and the central question about why were so many people of such a young age out so late. Some have shrugged of this notion, that curfews and guidelines about when and where your children should are arbitrary, backed up by nothing but fear, and would have done nothing to avert this tragedy. Danger, death, can happen at anytime, even when children are safely tucked in bed. More important, some say, is that the children learn good judgments, to know which crowd to hang out with and when to leave when the situation gets odd.

While that may true, that judgment is more important than curfew, and that a child is just as likely to be shot up in the mall by some nut as they are at an after hours party by some nut, rules still play an important part in teaching and rearing our children. Freedom can only be known with duty, responsibility can only be had with choice, and it seems that these parent are good and deepening freedom and choice, but clueless on the duty and responsibility part.

Perhaps this can serve as a wakeup call for parent who teenage is out in the middle of the night, do you know where you're children are?

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