Stranger Danger for Children

It is so heart wrenching to continuously see stories in the news about children being abducted, molested and even murdered. Children are much too precious, innocent and defenseless to ever have to experience such horrific abuse.

Unfortunately, it doesn’t appear to be doing a lot of good just telling our children not to talk to strangers. We are still losing too many of our precious children to these sick individuals. The first reason being, what does a stranger “look like”? Strangers do not look like the boogie man. We all know that they can be as normal looking as anyone walking along the street.

The second reason being, children ARE too innocent and trusting. They are taught to
respect their elders, so even a stranger becomes their elder. And this elder can even be someone living in your own neighborhood, someone you know. In many cases,
these people live ordinary, productive lives, but can have a dark, deceptive side
that even you would never have guessed.

Very recently, there was a case where a young child in Quebec disappeared. Witnesses
said that they noticed a young girl trying to help a man look for his lost puppy. As adults, we’ve heard of potential abductors using this very ploy, the lost puppy story, in order to attract and lure young children into their clutches. I’m sure many a parent even warned their child of such a tactic and not to go along with it, to just run the other way. But because these predators do not look like the boogie man, they can so easily lure a child with a smile and kind word, or worse, a sad
look of desperation at the loss of a sweet little puppy. Children love puppies, and
they are so trusting and giving, so it’s such a simple lure.

A lot of children these days carry cel phones. That can be a very good way of detecting a child who might have become prey to a predator. Even if the phone is
dropped or thrown away, there are still the pings that can help police determine
that child’s last whereabouts at a certain time. It at least gives the police an
indication of a possible proximity to where the child might be.

We can NEVER take for granted that our neighborhoods and playgrounds are safe. No
place is safe from a predator. They have vehicles and can travel from one end of a
city to another in no time flat. I’m sure they know where all the schools and
playgrounds are. It’s all part of their demented business to find out.

Since we can’t totally be rid of predators and molestors, we do have to keep diligent in our efforts to educate our children on a continous basis. Some tips
might be:

1. Make sure that your child is never outside playing alone. This might not stop a predator from taking one of the children, but at least the others can run for help when time is of the essense. Besides, a predator is less likely to take the chance of abducting a child in a crowd.

2. Teach your children about the lost puppy story. Let them know that if any adult has lost a puppy, whether as a ruse or in truth, adults are smart enough to search for their own puppy themselves and shouldn’dt need help. Adults can check into all the animal shelters or leave up posters or place ads. They do NOT need the assistance of a child to find their puppy, or any other lost item.

3. Teach your children to scream, holler and kick. This hopefully will attract the attention of anyone nearby who can either assist the child, call for help or in the least, be a good witness to the police. In many cases, the predator might even abort his attempt at the child who’s making too much noise. They do not want to attract attention to their deed.

4. Schools need to have regular meetings with the student body, making the children aware of safety measures. Most schools do a great job with this, but it’s possible that they need to do it more often.

Since we most likely will never be able to alleviate this problem entirely, and since
the courts allow these people out onto the streets all too quickly and without proper rehabilitation and supervision, we will always have to stay diligent in protecting our children. Maybe we should all be doing more to make sure the laws are changed TO protect our children better. There definitely needs to be harsher penalities for child abduction.

As a last resort, we might even have to start implanting tracking devices into our
children. One would hope it wouldn’t come to that, but it’s so imperative that should
a child be abducted, that he/she is found as soon as possible. It could be the difference between life and death. Even knowing that a child might have a tracking device, might deter a predator from even attempting such an act. I would even consider such a drastic measure for my children myself as there are just too many predators out there….and our children are far too precious.