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Don't Just Talk to Kids About Violence, Help Them Take Action

Hiding what happened in Connecticut from kids isn't the answer. Help them take action.


This afternoon when I go pick my two sons up from school, I'm going to hug them extra tight. I know in the wake of the tragedy at Sandy Hook Elementary in Newtown, Connecticut, every parent across America is doing the same. And then I'm going to have to tell my boys how someone went into that school and shot and killed seven educators and 20 children.

This won't be the first time I'll need to have a conversation with them about gun violence or a mass shooting. As black boys they also worry that, like Florida teens Jordan Davis and Trayvon Martin, they could be shot by someone who thinks their music is up too loud or that they look suspicious. Given the gun violence in Chicago, they're nervous about going to visit relatives there. And, after the mall shooting in Oregon earlier this week they're anxious about going holiday shopping.

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