Thursday, September 9, 2010

baking up some hostility

After I picked Pic up today, we were driving home and listening to NPR. As the ninth anniversary of the September 11th terrorist attacks approaches, the news media has given plenty of time to the story about Reverend Terry Jones's plan to burn copies of the Quran on Saturday, September 11. I was giving Pic a very broad summary of what happened nine years ago and of what is going on with Jones. She decided that Jones's plan "isn't very nice." A few minutes after we were discussing this ("Wait, can you tell me what the Quran is again?" she asked), we heard that Jones had called off his plan, which she decided was a "nice" thing. (Now, of course, there's more to the story even.)

Much later this evening, after we got home from our family park time and walk, Pic told Cardo, "Papi, on the radio today, we heard a story about a man who was going to bake some books, but he's not going to now."


Just trying to condense the stories for her was difficult for me. There are times I want to shelter her from everything ugly in the world, but I know that's not possible. First off, I'm not perfect. There're times when I act like a jerk and get snappy and have to apologize to Pic or Cardo or others. Second, I want her to be informed and to have opinions on what is going on in the world. I do a lot of presenting stories to her and asking her what she thinks. I'd like to say that I present everything in a completely unbiased way, but I honestly think that's not possible. (I've given this a lot of thought over the years and I really don't believe that there's such thing as being completely objective in writing or speech. We bring an entire set of experiences with us to every situation.) I do try to present more than one viewpoint to her, but sometimes I'm not even good at that. Ah, well. Third, I listen to NPR often. I do a lot of reading, but I mainly read news to myself (I do a lot of reading aloud, just not news stories so much). Pic is with me often, which means that she often is at least exposed to what I'm listening to. I'm not sure how much she listens to what I listen to, but she's there.

For now, I appreciate how simply she sees the world. People are either nice or they should be nice. She believes that everyone is good, even if only deep down, and she loves everyone. I know these are signs she lives a good life and wants for nothing. For this, I am grateful. I'll figure out the rest as it comes.