Why can’t a playground be just a playground?

I’ve been a busy person but I always make sure to keep up with the news. In fact lately, I’ve made it a point to keep up with the rain. We are in a crisis after all, um, a very grave water crisis. No sign of a downpour, not even heavy rain. Er, we had some droplets last week but since then, it’s been lovely, warm and golden.

By we, I mean greater California.

I’ve also kept up with the plane, the missing jumbo. The one I thought had finally left enough debris/ evidence, I was almost sure they found it. I think of the families who suffer on a daily basis.  No closure, no news. The debris was just tiny bits of fishing equipment. Although they have now discovered a ping. Not one, but two.

And then,

I noticed hardly any attention was paid to the mudslide in Washington -so many casualties, such devastation – the images were horrific and sad.

So between all the bad news, I wanted some good news. I wanted to smile, I wanted to laugh, I wanted to celebrate. Apart from the queen’s visit with the Pope – erm, she looked pretty in lavender – and bonny prince George on his first overseas visit to my second home – Australia, the news has not been great. Today, there was a stabbing in Philadelphia – A horrific incident where a 16-year-old high school boy stabbed his mates with two knives leaving them critical. All I want is some good news.

This has me perplexed.

There is a crime spree on the playground. Yes, the playground. Silent bandits are gluing razor blades to play ground equipment. From swings, to slides, from wooden jungle gyms to monkey bars, no equipment is spared it seems. Police and concerned parents have found a total of 12 razor blades in East Molin Park, Philadelphia after one little boy received a nasty cut on his finger as he played on a jungle gym. The toddler is okay, the little guy was lucky. The crime is not limited to Philadelphia. There was an incident in Illinois too.

It’s Spring. Everyone begins that lovely family ritual of taking the children out doors on bike rides, to play in the park, on hikes etc. I can’t imagine not taking my children to the playground. It is the one thing they love no matter where we are in the world. I take them every chance I get.

So I ask, what does this mean for parents? Do we sweep the park, do we don uniforms and form an alliance, do we call ourselves Parents Against Razor Blades? what do we need to do to make a simple playground safe? It is bad enough when we have to keep our children safe from strangers who have no business being at a park, or those who race cars through the neighborhood when a sign clearly states – Children at Play. Now, we have to check  play ground equipment. We have to make sure our children are safe every time they get on a slide or swing on the monkey bars. When will it end?

images

Why can’t a playground be just a playground? there’s enough going on in the world without a plague of blades adding to our woes.

What do you think dear readers? Shouldn’t our playgrounds be safe for our children?

Photo courtesy: http://www.wbtv.com

 

 

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10 thoughts on “Why can’t a playground be just a playground?

  1. Goodness, you are right, it HAS been a back week, or even month, for news. I heard about the stabbings in Westmorland County, which is where my grandmother had a summer home for decades. So sad. I had not heard about the playground, however. Like you, I don’t get it. I have no idea where to put this news. It seems I don’t have the internal scaffolding on which to hang this one. Sometimes I miss some US news, but I try to keep up, as well. Thanks for the update. May we all be well. May our children find peace amidst such unrest! Great to have a post from you, my friend!

    Hugs from Ecuador,
    Kathy

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    • Hello my friend, hope you are well.
      Some days I wish I lived in a corner of the world where life was simple, and children were safe. A playground seems like such an innocent place doesn’t it? well, we’re losing it. Our children aren’t safe from people nor are they safe on the monkey bars. We’ve really gone and done it.How much worse can it get?
      I watched the young student who stabbed his fellow students, he looked so innocent, defeated, his shoulders slumped; I wondered what was it that made him lose his way?
      As much as I keep up with the news, I now want to escape it. There is too much bad news out there.
      I miss writing, I was happy to be able to sit down for a few precious hours and write – Thank you so much for reading. Looking forward to catching up with yours.
      Many hugs
      Shamitri

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  2. There are some terribly sick minded individuals in this world. Yes, the playground should be safe for children as all areas should be, however there are those that get some perverted kick from hurting or maiming. I think the only thing that can be done is to scan the playground before your child plays. I know I would rather walk around for 10 minutes investigating than have something happen. From the photos, they don’t look as if they are wanting to conceal them very well, so easy to find. They must have left fingerprints on them perhaps? Oh lovely I can hear you letting out a large sigh after writing this. I hope you get some scent rain, we have had it for 2 days now 😦 So much going on in the world isn’t there 😦 Hugs and love xoxox

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    • Hello lovely,
      I don’t know how this world is going to get any better for our children. I try to keep up with the news and then not watch it at the same time because it makes me so sad. I know there are some parts of the world where it is still (somewhat) safe for children – in Kypseli, Greece.. we watched kids play soccer outdoors, surrounded by restaurants and people, but all of them knew the kids, kept an eye on them and the parents went about their day – how I long for that.

      What is with that sadistic sense of hurting people, then getting a kick out of it? when did life get so sad and complicated that hurting a child or a human being became okay?
      Ooooh never heard of scent rain – we badly need some. You know how bad the Aussie droughts are, we’re heading there this Summer.
      I will e-mail you the rest of the details of my sooky mood and crazy days 😦
      hugs and love
      xxxx

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      • Look forward to your email darling. How nice would lives be to have no fear or cruelty or hatred, alas this is the world we have and we have to try and change the cruelty in what way we know how. We have had rain and more fain ..un scented 😉 but today the sun is shining, which I need. Love and hugs gorgeous xxx

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  3. Oh MM, great, heartfelt post.
    I feel terrible about all this. Every time something cruel and nonsensical happens, like the stabbings and like the razor blades in play grouinds, which has even been on the news here, we lose another piece of our innocence. Bit by bit, it falls away, forcing our children to grow up soon, to realize the bad there is in the world long before they should have to. Makes me so very sad. The mudslide was tragic. They covered it for a few days and left. It was huge! The media dropped it long before all the bodies were found. Disappeared because of the missing plane. CNN has become 24/7 about the missing plane. Since we don’t know what happened, there’s only so much you can say, so many theories you can have. And yet, CNN covers it from every single angle. Even angles you never knew existed. I hope they find it soon.

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    • Monica, Don Lemon was co-hosting on the view today and they asked him why CNN was so focused on the missing plane. He said, people want to know. They even joked that CNN might actually find the plane the way they’re examining every angle. Ratings are a huge factor of course but Malaysia has a closed media policy, so CNN seems to be asking the questions families need answers to and the topic is of such interest, they keep showing it.
      I become so sad, then furious, then sad again that our children have so much less than we did in this world filled with violent and hurtful beings.

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  4. Sad.
    I am utterly sad about our pathentic state of affairs.
    Not only should playgrounds & schools be safe, but our ENTIRE world should be SAFE.
    It’s not.
    And I’m damn damn damn mad about that.
    xx

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    • Kim, if it isn’t one thing, it is something else. You’re right, our world is just not safe. I don’t understand why life can’t be simple, why children can’t be children and enjoy being outdoors without having to worry about strangers or this nightmare playground issue – it makes me furious too!

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