There have been a lot of stories in the news lately that (1) break my heart, (2) remind me that there are a lot of sick, sick people in the world, and (3) make me want to tell parents and anyone who will listen to err on the side of caution.
Here in New Jersey, police continue to search for 3-month-old Zara Malini-Lin Abdur-Raheem, who has been missing since February 16th. After abducting the girl, her father, Shamsid-Din Abdur-Raheem, told police he threw her off the Driscoll Bridge and into the Raritan River. New statewide Amber Alert guidelines now under consideration would lift some of the current restrictions on issuing an alert when a parent abducts a child. I'm sure the ACLU and their ilk will have some reason to disagree, but please tell me what we would have to lose as a society by issuing an Amber alert immediately and asking questions later.
In nearby Delaware, pediatrician Earl Bradley, 56, has been indicted on 471 counts of sexual crimes against 103 children at his practice, and authorities are urging former patients and parents with any information to come forward. All but one of the alleged victims were girls and some were as young as 3 months old, prosecutors said. Charges against Bradley include first-degree and second-degree rape, first-degree unlawful sexual contact, first-degree reckless endangerment, second-degree assault, sexual exploitation of a child and continuing sexual abuse of a child. "These were crimes committed against the most vulnerable among us -- those without voices," Attorney General Beau Biden said. The crimes were "committed by someone with whom an entire community and parents had placed their trust." Parents, no reputable pediatrician will ever ask you to leave your child's side for any kind of a medical examination. Ever. No exceptions. Never let your child out of your sight when they need you most.