Recent events brought back childhood memories of how we used to run and jump off the roof of an old shed and hurl ourselves toward grabbing a tree branch to complete a safe landing on the ground. And another time of how I was running through the back field where wires were strung across the field for our neighbor’s berries. Both were events that as kids we had been told not to do. No one ever got hurt jumping from the roof, but one time I forgot about the wires and hit one at a flat out run. It launched me backwards and I fell to the ground in pain.
At the time I could not appreciate how fragile life is; however, even as an 8-year-old kid, I was mindful that had that wire been two inches lower, it would have crushed my throat. Accidents are much like a bird hitting a window; some of us survive to fly away, while others don’t.
We were a neighborhood that was raised around guns. I have no idea why some kids pay attention to some warnings, while others don’t. We did both. None of us ever touched the guns without an adult being present, but that roof and tree was our carnival ride. The thing is, kids make decisions too. Just like adults, sometimes they make bad decisions. I’m sure the politically correct people would demand that the tree be cut down before someone got hurt. Further, that our parents be charged with something if an accident did occur.
Several years ago I lost a friend to a gunshot wound to the head. The word “no” has never left my heart. In my mind it was an accident. The word accident means it is an unplanned and unscheduled event. People quickly line up to offer their would’ve, could’ve and should’ve comments involving accidents. That includes people that create laws. Personally, I think people prone to judge should get down on one knee and thank their higher power that this horrible event that took place in Stanwood did not happen to you.
My condolence to the Carlile family, and also to the young couple in Tacoma. Stay strong.