Dear Krim Family

My heart aches for you. I know your lives have been thrown into the darkest tunnel. You are constantly in my thoughts and prayers. Words fail.

There is an Old Testament story that keeps coming to my mind. A woman whose family was executed to stop a war sits over the bodies of her loved ones warding of the birds.

It is one of the bleakest images of grief–all that remains is her lonely figure on a hilltop. I wish I could ward off the birds of memory seething around you and your beautiful, heartbroken family.

May my words be like hands
Warding off the birds

Jessica Ridgeway, Child Abuse, and Abortion

If you were able to go back to the language of the original abortion debate circa 1973, you might be surprised at the language people used. One key term stands out–child. Another is baby. Baby and child were the terms used in the 1960s and 70s to describe the victims of abortion. They were not called fetuses (which is a Latin word for “little one”)

They were, to people on both sides of the argument–human babies.

Now, 30 years later, the dismal, dehumanizing effects of abortion have begun to be evident in the crimes against children our society sees now.

I say sees now, but I mean looks the other way.

I know this because it has happened to my children as well as precious children like Toryn Buckman or Jessica Ridgeway. When children are the victims of crime people do not want to read, see, or feel the agony that comes with abuse. As a child advocate I have been told by pediatricians and social workers to shut up.. Talking about this makes people uncomfortable.
The fundamental issue in abortion is only wanted children have value
That means the unwanted ones….(still have value, we just refuse to acknowledge it). A baby conceived by rape is still a valuable human being. Same with girls in general. Same with Down’s babies. All of us have the same priceless measure in the eyes of God.

But for 30 years we have been convincing ourselves that millions of beautiful children aren’t valuable.

Not true.

It has created a deadly lapse in our collective thinking. We would rather blame the parents of crime victims for what has been done to them. We would rather believe it could not happen to us. They made a fatal mistake we will avoid– we will make more money, live in the right place, our kids will be smarter than theirs.

None of this is logical nor does it keep our children safe.

If we are ever to make our country safe again for our children we must see all children as precious– more precious than our jobs, cellphones, free time. And most of all–more precious than our lethal complacency.

Romney and Obama

So I don’t plan to vote. I have voted in every election since 1988, but this year I doubt I will. What is the point?

In the last election Matt Damon disparaged Sarah Palin’s faith. I am not her biggest fan, but I thought–wow, Matt is speaking his mind about beliefs that have been widely shared by billions for 2000 years.

This election cycle I keep wishing Matt would mouth off about Romney. Heck, I wish Ryan would mouth off about him.

Joseph Smith?! Polygamy? Child brides? A core belief system that has nothing in common with Christian theology. Yet everyone is quiet. Eerily so.

Please, somebody else tell me they are worried about the POTUS-candidate who believes if he plays his metaphysical cards right he will be god of his own world?

And yet I give him credit for driving hard toward the presidency with his wacky beliefs intact. I have watched the smooth and regal president for 5 years now. And I can’t say I know if he has faith in any Being higher than himself.

Ooh!! Old dogs and new tricks

So I have the world’s best wakeboard instructor. I say this for two reasons–both will be posted on my blog’s blog

The process of learning to wakeboard mirrors another learning curve. I practiced gliding on water today.

I also practiced editing my story. Practiced leaving out the ugly details…

To be polite…
To spare my listener…
To give strangers the option to not know the whole story…

I am not congratulating myself for any of this.

I am simply learning to not say everything people do not want to hear.

Shaken Baby Prevention

You had a cousin who died in foster care. His foster mother went to jail on a plea bargain. She probably did it, although she claimed she did not know how he had received the brain injuries that killed him. Her family insinuated it was a babysitter.

I saw her once with him. She looked like she really loved him. She looked thrilled to have him. He died in her care.

His story haunts me because it should not have ended in murder. Infanticide. Based on my experience with some of his cousins I bet he was challenging but that is no excuse for hurting a baby. Thousands of children die every year because people who are supposed to protect them hurt them instead.

His siblings were returned to their father who had been accused of molesting them.

Broken. Really broken.

I think anyone who takes care of a baby needs to know that sometimes babies cry…
A lot.

They cry because of hunger and thirst
They cry to be held or changed
They cry because they are sick
They cry because they are tired
They cry because they are teething
They cry when you are tired, frustrated, lonely
They cry in inconvenient places

It sometimes feels like they are crying to cry
out of spite?
but they are not

They just need love and patience and time.
All crying stops.

So think before you lose it.
Call for help.
Take a break and think

Call me…
But never, never, never
Hurt the baby

when mothers hurt…

Surviving Abuse

It has been 3 years now since I found out that my adopted son had abused children–my children.

Child abuse should never happen, but when it does the survivors need to know that it is not their fault.

For years I lived a full life unaware of the abuse. Terrible legacy. But for the past 3 years my children have lived in safety and have begun to heal.

I shudder to think about the past, but more than that I shudder to think what would have happened without our concerted efforts to bring out the truth.

The truth is Charles will NEVER be safe with children. We should not give predators access to any children.

It is not worth the risk
Not worth the heartbreak

The Servant King

Isaiah 42:1-4 (NIV)
“Here is my servant, whom I uphold,
my chosen one in whom I delight; I will put my Spirit on him, and he will bring justice to the nations. [2] He will not shout or cry out, or raise his voice in the streets. [3] A bruised reed he will not break, and a smoldering wick he will not snuff out. In faithfulness he will bring forth justice; [4] he will not falter or be discouraged till he establishes justice on earth. In his teaching the islands will put their hope.”

9-11 and Jessica Ridgeway

Imagine for a second planning a plane trip on September 1st 20001. Think about the beverages and nail clippers you would have blithely stowed in your carry-on luggage.

You would not have had to remove your shoes! You also would have had no fears of homicidal acts of terror. The world changes, we have to face its incipient danger.

I mention 9-11 because we all acknowledge that a balance has to be struck between personal freedom and public safety. None of us wants a world constricted by fear.

That being said, it is time to acknowledge that we are failing our children and ourselves. When our children cannot walk to school in safety we have failed our children. When our children are being lured and snatched in front of schools, hospitals, and libraries in daylight we have failed our children. When one child is lost in one of these cases it should be a cause of universal mourning and rapprochement. It is time for a change.

Parents need to face that law enforcement and “living in a safe place” will not keep our children from harm. We need to look at what predators do and how they think. None of us want to, but we must.


Live everywhere and if they don’t live close to you, they have cars
Watch children
Monitor patterns of movement
May record and photograph children
Maintain contact with other predators, gaining support and information from others
Have no conscience
Will resort to violence to get what they want
Will lie about everything
Monitor/keep track of what children believe and respond to
Disguise themselves well
Volunteer or work at jobs that give them contact with children
Fool people around them
And are fueled as much by anger as by sexual impulses

Not a fun list, but we must face it. And we have to face the fact that most predators do not get caught or reported. They are “us” and pride themselves on the deception.

They benefit when we ignore them. So let’s not.

And we have to keep our children safe. Many of us remember great freedom when we were young. That freedom is no longer safe. Adults need to stay with children outside all the time. We cannot assume a short walk to school or a park is safe. It is not.

We need to face the hard stories of loss and learn from them. Elizabeth Smart was forcibly abducted by a day laborer. Jaycee Dugard was snatched by a married couple who had tracked her and planned her kidnapping with great detail. Jessica Ridgeway was taken on a short walk to school.

if you are a parent you have to face these stories to keep your child safe.

And we have to teach our children:

If a grown up offers you candy from a vehicle
scream and run for help
No adult needs your help finding a puppy
scream and run
never go anywhere with an adult you don’t know/strong>

We need to give our children permission to defend themselves. We need to teach them self defense and also strategies for escape if the worst happens. And we have to talk about the unthinkable. Our children are irreplaceable. We have to keep them safe. Knowledge is power.

in the words of a predator