Posts Tagged ‘American Academy of Pediatrics’

The rain has started, now the beach is just a memory.

All last week, I sounded like a stereotypical old person: “We didn’t have sunscreen when we were young;” or “We only had black and white TV, no Internet!” I could have told the Grands that I had to walk 10 miles uphill to school, but that would be a lie. I did have to get dressed up in a snowsuit, hat and gloves to wait for the school bus…with other kids … because parents hadn’t heard about random kidnappings yet. Before Climate Change.

No helicopter parents back in the day, I would just stand outside in my playpen watching the activity on our street in Victory Gardens, while Nell did her daily cleaning inside. Once I started school, I’d be shooed out the door after tearing off my Sacred Heart uniform, and hanging it up, to ride my bike renegade around the neighborhood. School was a dull, dreary day full of sitting at my desk with my hands crossed into a ball, gazing at the brick building across the street through the window.

Today Metro Nashville schools have decided to reopen in the Fall. But in true Trumpian fashion, they are passing the buck to the parents in this Time of Coronavirus. It’s up to each and every family, you have a choice – 1) send your child to school, or 2) continue learning online with a remote curriculum. The American Academy of Pediatrics has weighed in – they want every child to get back to school!

“…the AAP argues that based on the nation’s experience this spring, remote learning is likely to result in severe learning loss and increased social isolation. Social isolation, in turn, can breed serious social, emotional and health issues: “child and adolescent physical or sexual abuse, substance use, depression, and suicidal ideation.” Furthermore, these impacts will be visited more severely on Black and brown children, as well as low-income children and those with learning disabilities.”  https://www.npr.org/sections/coronavirus-live-updates/2020/06/29/884638999/u-s-pediatricians-call-for-in-person-school-this-fall

Would you send your child to school if he had an auto-immune disease? Would you send your child to school if she had a grandparent living at home? Will the poor go back to school, while the wealthy buy their kids iPads and tutors?

We’ve all been socially isolated these last few months – 16 weeks to be exact. Bars and beaches are starting to close, again, because our infection rate is going up. For anyone paying attention this is not a surprise given our glorious lack of leadership. The rate of infection and hospital admissions and ultimately deaths are directly related to the rate of noncompliance with SOCIAL DISTANCING, MASKS and HAND WASHING.

Yesterday, the Bride went back to the ER, the Groom returned to his ICU, and we had our last day of unlimited hugs with the Grands. We brought yellow, Rainier cherries over to Great Grandma Ada and Hudson. The Love Bug put her hand on Ada’s through the glass – Hudson showed the L’il Pumpkin he had the same Star Wars pattern on the inside of his mask! We all made heart signs through the vestibule window. Our eyes were tearing up as we left.

We are back in the Land of Breaking News – grieving our collective losses, reigning in our emotions after hearing Mr T did nothing, absolutely nothing when he learned our soldiers had a Russian bounty on their heads. If SCOTUS allows us to see Mr T’s taxes, his adoration of Putin will become obvious. SCOTUS is on a roll!

We desperately need something to look forward to, baseball or ballet? Today at least will be a good day. T’ai Chi Tuesday has become Pilates Zoom Tuesday and I have a loaf of Bob’s sourdough sitting on the counter! And at least the rain is dampening the Saharan dust cloud.


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A twelve year old boy was killed on Saturday in our neighboring county. He liked playing roller hockey, video games and being outside in the woods in the fort he and his friends had built, His father was working, and his son was supposed to have been with a relative. Instead he was in the fort with a friend and a gun. http://www.dailyprogress.com/news/local/year-old-boy-dies-in-apparent-accidental-shooting-in-madison/article_f1e95c7c-3f63-11e3-aaf6-0019bb30f31a.html

The American Academy of Pediatrics writes in its policy statement on guns, “The safest home for a child or adolescent is one without firearms.”  I think this bears repeating:

“The safest home for a child or adolescent is one without firearms.” 

In a country where at least six states have put forward legislation that would actually prevent a doctor from asking his/her patient, or the patient’s parents, if there are guns in the home, this is the kind of local news that flies under our national media radar.

We childproof our homes when a baby is born. We buy gates, and locks for drawers and electrical outlet covers. We strap them into padded car seats. And yet, what the gun lobby does not want us to know, is that nearly 800 children under 14 were killed in gun “accidents” from 1999 to 2010 – and any research on recent gun violence, thanks to lobbying efforts by the NRA, is almost impossible to find.

We hear about mass shootings in schools, and we mourn as a nation. But what we don’t always hear about are the incremental, single, child by inquisitive child deaths that are happening every day in this country. Millions of children live in homes with guns, yet half of their parents or guardians do not keep them locked and unloaded.

According to the CDC, the rate of firearm deaths among children under age 15 is almost 12 times higher in the United States than in 25 other industrialized countries combined. American children are 16 times more likely to be murdered with a gun, 11 times more likely to commit suicide with a gun, and nine times more likely to die in a firearm accident than children in these other countries.

Of, course these statistics include suicides, homicides, and “accidental” deaths. But it turns out that children living in the South, in rural areas have a much higher incidence of unintentional gun injuries. And surprise surprise, boys are more likely to be the victim. Proponents of guns would like us to believe that gun safety is the panacea, that if they teach their children to respect guns, nothing will happen.

Bob said the latest study on gun violence shows “..that if there is a gun in the home, the chances of that gun killing or injuring a member of the household is 25 times the likelihood that it will protect a household member.”   

My heart goes out to that family in Madison County. And to the young boy who accidentally shot his friend, and his family, I cannot imagine their pain. Grief counselors have been on duty at their middle school.  Children will be children, and they are not bulletproof.

Wetsel school pic




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