Sunday, March 20, 2011

Bad Guy Genes

Lucy told me recently that bad people have red eyes. Wouldn't that be nice? If only it were that easy to identify evil doers. I had to explain to her that usually bad people look just like everyone else and we can't tell just by looking at someone if they are good or bad. On the plus side, since I'm fairly certain she has never met anyone with red eyes, I suppose that means I can assume she thinks everyone she knows is a good guy.

I keep saying "good" and "bad" as if categorizing people is that clear cut. How about the mostly good but sometimes bad? Or the 97.6% bad but 2.4% good? No one is 100% one or the other, right? There are always shades of gray...sometimes very murky shades of gray.

However, the fact is, someday my little girl is going to get smacked in the face with the real life knowledge that bad people don't just exist as conniving villains, empowered with magical abilities (or not), trying to take over the kingdom in a princess tale. If she meets one for real (am I naive to hope she won't?), he or she won't have red eyes, nor probably even a sinister smile, or a bone chilling cackling laugh.

She'll watch the news, or read the newspaper, or click on a link...and she'll see the horrible things people do in real life. People who are moms and dads and teachers and doctors and priests. Regular people, sometimes sick, sometimes crazy, sometimes deranged, sometimes seemingly possessed, sometimes enraged. Maybe good people who make a mistake they can't take back. Or maybe manipulative people who really are mean and horrible to the core but want you to believe they're just misunderstood.

There's a big world out there. Sending my kids out into it is scary. Fortunately, I happen to believe that the majority of folks are mostly good, and I think I do a pretty good job of surrounding my kids with wonderful and loving people. Unfortunately, I can't always control who they are with, and they're going to have to learn to be wary and cautious to a certain extent. That is, until the bad guys start being genetically mutated into red eyed beastly creatures who are easily and non-mistakenly recognizable. 

** United States Residents Only: Don't forget to go to my Nutella post and enter to win a Nutella price pack! Just "like" Michigal" on Facebook, and leave a comment about Nutella in the comments section of the Nutella post (don't forget to include your email address) by March 31!**

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