Intermountain Jewish News

Nov 27th
Home Columns View from Central Park Fatal distraction

Fatal distraction

E-mail Print PDF

In the last 10 days or so, two stories have been reported on one of the worst tragedies imaginable, recalling “The Scream,” the painting from Edward Munch. A parent forgot his own child locked in a carseat on a sweltering hot day. The child died.

A modern day tragedy summed up in this one word: hypothermia.

Apparently it is on the rise since the 1990S when carseat safety protocol was changed. Because of the danger of airbags it is no longer legal to place car seats in the front passenger seat. They are now placed in the back of a vehicle. As an added measure of safety, the carseat is locked in backward, so the face of the baby or toddler faces the back, not the front. The baby essentially becomes invisible.

There has been a storm of reaction to these stories. To my shock, much of it is painfully harsh, even nasty, demonizing the parents. Some go as far as to call for their prosecution on grounds of parental negligence.

I am not a parent, but when I barely got through the article reporting these tragedies, I was shaking with terror, feeling, “G-d, this could happen to me.”

As vigilant or even neurotic as I may be when caring for children, there is always that anxiety of what can go wrong.

We all sometimes experience those exhausting or overwhelming days when we revert to auto pilot, and if we achieve something, be it a small accomplishment like getting to work in time or something that carries more weight, we are not quite sure how we did it or made it.

There are slip ups, close calls, near tragedies and mistakes we all make. But by the grace of G-d they don’t end up in a tragedy. Obliviously we continue on, sweetly living our lives.

The rest of this article is available in the IJN's print edition only. Contact Carol to order your copy at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it or subscribe to our new online e-Edition.

Last Updated ( Thursday, 18 July 2013 00:23 )  

IJN e-Edition

This is only a taste! Get full access to the IJN via our e-Edition, only $14.04 for IJN Print subscribers.

E-Edition subscribers get access to a complete digital replica of the IJN, which includes all special sections.

Get the IJN's free newsletter!

Shabbat Times

JTA News

Hasidic Jews tackle drunk man outside Australian synagogue

Ben Harris Online video shows the man screaming at a group hasidic Jews, who pinned him to the ground after a scuffle. ... [Link]

Egypt uncovers iron-lined tunnel from Gaza

Ben Harris The 650-foot tunnel had 16-inch walls and was said to be the most advanced yet discovered. ... [Link]

IDF chief meets top U.S. military commander in Brussels

Ben Harris Gadi Eisenkot traveled to the Belgian capital Monday in the midst of a multi-day security lockdown over threats of an imminent terrorist attack. ... [Link]

Report: Israel to open diplomatic mission in Abu Dhabi

Ben Harris Haaretz reported Friday that the mission would be accredited not to the UAE government, but to the International Renewable Energy Association, an international organization headquartered there. ... [Link]

7 Israeli soldiers wounded in 2 car attacks in West Bank

Ben Harris Drivers plowed their cars into Israeli soldiers near Maale Adumim and the Beit Ummar refugee camp. ... [Link]

CNN posts Middle East map that doesn’t show Israel

Marcy Oster CNN briefly posted a map on its website that replaced Israel with “Palestina” before removing it. ... [Link]

NYC to fund security guards for non-public schools, including Jewish ones

Marcy Oster The bill would make $19.8 million available to fund security at New York City’s private schools, the first time religious and non-public schools in the city will receive taxpayer-funded security... [Link]

Young woman whose father, brother killed in terror attack gets married

Marcy Oster Sarah Techiya Litman married Ariel Beigle on Thursday night; thousands were expected to celebrate with them, including some from the Diaspora, in answer to the couple’s call inviting the public ... [Link]

Intermountain Jewish News • 1177 Grant Street • Denver, CO 80203 • 303 861 2234 • FAX 303 832 6942 • •