It’s nearly impossible to stay positive all day especially if I’m tuned into the news. Have people always been so mean and sometimes downright horrible? Does karma really get them in the end?

When my kids were young the worry over their safety could be contained since I was in control of where they were or what they were doing and, more times than not, I was the chaperone. It seems as though the worries were different then, as I felt comfortable letting them play outside without me. Either the bad stuff of today was happening back then, and I was oblivious to it, or people have lost their minds and we’re living in some really troubling times.

Being in the news industry for the majority of my life, I'm fully aware bad things happen to good people every minute of every day, but it makes it even harder to comprehend when it happens to the young and innocent. Kids are being shot while sleeping in their beds because of a drive-by act of violence and are being murdered simply because they happen to be in the wrong place, at the wrong time. If we’re going to become this kind of a society, let’s at least keep it to ourselves and not involve the children.

Unfortunately, since we hear about these atrocities so often, we’ve become desensitized to the violence, as it’s become commonplace in our society.

My daughters, now grown adults, with their own children, received my soapbox lectures hundreds of times. Ever since they could walk, I’d preach the same sermon I'm sure they’re now sharing with my grandchildren.

Watch your surroundings, be careful, lock your doors and don't talk to strangers.

How do we prepare children for the unexpected? How do we protect them from a disturbed individual who will attack an innocent child, during daylight, in a place they believed to be safe, such as school, in the movies or at a theme park?

How do people get so disturbed they want to purposely hurt or kill someone?

So what are our options as parents, grandparents, aunts and uncles? Do we scare our young ones with constant warnings, horror stories and paranoia so much we crush their search for independence and self-confidence and instead make them insecure and scared?

We’re making great strides ensuring the schools are safe for our kiddos, but as an added benefit, could we also throw in a little morning prayer, bring back the pledge of allegiance and allow the principals to reinstate the paddle? It’s just a thought, but for those of us who are over the hill, we can attest, it worked for us.

Revenge is an ugly word and can consume a person's life, but it’s very difficult not to want justice brought to the people who commit such awful crimes. I realize their judgment will not happen in this lifetime, but I do believe they will be held accountable in the hereafter.

Don't become desensitized - become determined. Don't become detached, become the deterrent. But whatever you do, don’t stop praying.


-- Sandy Turner lives in Independence. Email her at