|Daily, millions of
American children are being kidnapped by Terrorists. They live
in fear and wait to escape. They build walls to protect
themselves from the kidnapper's pain, and retreat into shells to avoid
the kidnapper's wrath. Who are these kidnappers?
Complacent parents who don't have the time to love a child's insides,
who are too busy to know his or her fears, intimidations and
complacencies. This story asks the reader: "How can
I be a more Vigilant parent/person?" How can I break down the
walls of my own Fear, Intimidation and Complacency, and reach out to
others so I might know myself and them better?"
Zero Plus 370
CHILD KIDNAPPERS OF TERROR
Editor, New York City Combat Correspondent News
GROUND ZERO, New York
City, September 17--I did a double take this morning. I
thought of all the children who are being, or who have been, kidnapped.
I thought of the Terror they must endure.
Terror-- the combination of Fear,
Intimidation and Complacency--is all about helplessness, powerlessness.
It can be imposed by one's self mentally, by feeling "less than," or
"victimized by circumstances," or, it can be injected physically by some
outside force such as the Terrorist attack of September 11, or, through
the act of kidnapping.
Kim Jong Il
In Japan, the North Koreans have been
kidnapping Japanese citizens over the years, using them to train North
Korean spies to infiltrate Japan and assume either the identity of the
kidnap victim, or to learn the culture and nuances from the prisoner.
In a rare act of disclosure, North Korean leader
Kim Jong Il confirmed today that North Korean spies kidnapped Japanese
citizens decades ago and that at least four were still alive.
One victim was Megumi Yokota who disappeared at
age 13. According to North Korean officials she was reported as
dead, but a child she bore was alive and living in Pyongyang..
The North Korean disclosure and apologies for the
kidnappings are viewed as a "peace offering" of sorts, to
bring Japan and North Korea closer together. Some analysis's
suggest North Korea is moving away from the cloak of communism and toward
normalization, and that the kidnapping admission is a first step in that direction.
But kidnapping the innocent is not just limited
to cloak-and-dagger motives. In another story this morning by
Gretchen Peters of the Christian Science Monitor, she reports on
how kidnapping has
become a "quick cash" business in Mexico.
Gangs of organized kidnappers take victims in
unlicensed cabs to an ATM and force them to withdraw money.
Taxi-grab targets in Mexico
Authorities call this, "express
kidnapping." The Mexican government reports about 10 of
these a day officially, but estimates of non-reported kidnaps
range up to five times that amount.
But the "big money" in Mexican kidnapping targets
rests with wealthy
families. An estimated four kidnappings a day are carried out
in the country where few victims contact the government or law enforcement
officials, fearful they might become part of the kidnapping ring, or, "botch"
the recovery. When Hector Velazquez, a federal
congressman, was kidnapped his family didn't notify the press or
authorities. Mr. Velazquez was held for over a month before an
undisclosed amount of money was paid for his release.
Walter Farrer, chief of security in Mexico
for Pinkerton and Burns International, a security firm, says the average
asking price for a wealthy kidnap victim is $280,000 and the finally
payment usually negotiated is $19,000.
To combat Kidnap Terrorism, Volkswagen
introduced an armored version of its Passat sedan to the Mexican market.
The vehicle is bullet- and flame-proof. Kidnapping is so
common Volkswagen airs commercials of the car on television, showing a
mock attempted abduction and how the Passat's "fortress on wheels"
Mexico is the second highest nation in
abductions. Columbia is first.
Terrorism is all about kidnapping.
It kidnaps our "security," and holds hostage our "power,"
and enslaves our "freedom.".
I thought of the 13-year-old in Japan,
kidnapped by North Koreans to learn her language, culture, and to threaten her
into surrendering her "identity" over to those who wished ill upon her
country, her community, her family.
It made me think about how we, here in America, can
"kidnap" a child's security, his or her sense of "power," through neglect,
complacency and disrespect for the child's need to know he or she is loved.
In many homes, we hold children prisoners. Their
chains and shackles are invisible.
They must "do as we say or
else," and, depending on how this edict is delivered, it can strike as
much fear in a child as a stranger might who abducted a child off the
street and held him or her for ransom.
A simple example of
"home kidnap Terrorism" is a child who
doesn't want to go home, for home means Terror. Going home
means the child will face conflict in the household, either shouting
between parents, or emptiness--a lack of communion between parent and
child. When a child shudders as his or her
hand reaches for the doorknob to enter his "home-prison," little
differences exist between being kidnapped by a stranger and being
kidnapped in one's own home.
Abusive parents aren't always the ones who
strike their children and leave physical marks. Abuse can come
in much more subtle ways. A child's soul can be bruised, marring a child's fragile feelings if the child feels neglected, unloved, uncared for because his or
her parents are "too busy" to spend time, or too involved in themselves to
learn the secrets of their child's soul.
Rich or poor, such Fear knows no boundaries.
The same feeling of Fear, Intimidation and Complacency that a stranger might
evoke in a kidnap scenario can course through a child's veins with equal intensity as he or she
sits quietly in his or her own home, afraid to speak, afraid to tell his or her parents about the
emptiness within, about the the hunger to "be loved," and to feel "love."
I was one of those "kidnapped children of
Terror". I slept deep under my covers at night, curled up at the bottom of my bed to hide from
the angry Voices of my parents fighting outside in the living room--trying to not hear the viciousness of
their arguments or to feel, as most children in like situations, that in some bizarre way
I was responsible for creating their problems.
Like any lost child,
I felt I was locked in a dark scary room. My kidnappers stood
outside, figuring out ways to make me feel less than, making me feel fearful,
causing me to be intimidated.
The definition of "kidnap" sums up the
impact of a child living in parental fear.
"The act of taking somebody away by force and holding him/her prisoner,
usually for ransom."
A child is forced to obey his or her
parents. If a child lives in Fear, Intimidation, or
Complacency of his or her home environment, he or she is a virtual prisoner.
The ransom usually asked of a child is "obedience." That
translates into hiding within one's self, not "rocking the boat."
It is an expensive price. It cost the child his or her soul.
Emotional obedience may also mean that a child doesn't
question the love of the parent(s), at least, not openly. Many parents don't show love and
affection because none was shown to them by their parents.
Hiding one's feelings becomes a legacy passed down from one generation to
another. It creates cold indifference versus warmth and consideration.
It sparks the Beast of Terror within a child.
As a result of Emotional Walls, the
Vigilant rift between child and
parent widens. It's like opening the gates to the Beast of
Terror, allowing it to "have its way" with the child. The idea of the child being a "prisoner"
cleaves communications. The heart and soul of a child's true feelings
are kept under lock and key: the parents hold the key.
The words "I love you," aren't spoken, and if they are, they are used in a
salutary manner, similar to "Let's have lunch one day."
Anyone who has grown up in
a household where no one shared their feelings knows what a kidnap victim
must feel--alienated, alone, abandoned--Terrorized.
Even though a child isn't put in
handcuffs, or tied and blindfolded, the same feeling of powerless and
restraint swells in the child.
Many children can't wait to "escape" home, for there is nothing there for
them to want to keep except memories of emptiness, fear, intimidation and
Child Kidnapping Terrorism
comes in all various degrees, from simple negligence to brutal physical
parents defend the fact they loved their children and "did
everything for them," but when pinned down and asked: "What are you
child's greatest fears? Your child's greatest intimidations?
Your child's greatest complacencies?," that same boasting parent might splutter and
stutter, trying to reach an answer.
Vigilance(Love) is about unlocking the
Terrors in a child. It is about the freedom a child feels to
share his or her innermost Fears, Intimidations and Complacencies with a
parent or guardian or loved one. It isn't about just having a
roof over one's head, or food on the table, or clothes to wear, or money
in one's pocket.
These are mere accessories of Life and Love.
True Love for a child is knowing the child's heartbeat is heard by his or
her parents, that someone loves the inside of them perhaps more than the
Love is understanding
the reason tears that fall from a child's eyes. It is being the repository of the
child's fears, the safe haven to which the child can sail when the storms
of life threaten him or her. It is being the child's closest friend,
That's why becoming a Parent of Vigilance,
a Citizen of Vigilance, a Loved One of Vigilance, is so vital to the
constitution of a child's well being. And, so challenging.
Emotional child abuse is the result of
Complacency. In our madding rush to try and juggle all the
responsibilities of adulthood and parenthood, we forget to know our children's Fears, soothe
their Intimidations, and assuage their Complacency. We don't
build bridges of communication with the child's inner secrets, instead we
fortress the walls between us through neglect.
We become Kidnappers of Terror.
While this may seem as a harsh
indictment, it is. When a child screams: "You don't care
about me!" we might as well be strangers holding the child as hostage.
Not all children Voice their feelings.
Many swallow them. Many hold them inside and never speak or cry out.
They stuff their pain.
The child tries to please us, to win
our love by doing "what we want." We never ask the child
what she or he wants from us. We make the horrible mistake of
assuming what they want.
Presumptuously, we try to shape the child
into an image we have of the child, glossing over what image the child may
have for himself or herself. We force the child into being
what we envision, and, in the process, strip the child of his or her identity, creating in the child a sense
of dependency on others for self identification, for self-love.
I often think about how easy it is
for us to divert our thinking from the most important world issue--the
security of children--to the most mundane--when are going to war with
Iraq? Will I get a promotion? Do we have enough money?
Am I too fat? Too skinny? What will people think of me?
Our first thoughts aren't about
teaching our children how to combat Fear with Courage, or neutralize
Intimidation with Conviction, or how to take the Right Actions to overcome
Complacency. If those were our first thoughts, the world's
issues would fall into proper perspective. We would see
everything in relation to the safety--Emotional and Physical--of our
That's not our habit.
When pressed against the wall, we
think of ourselves. It's a natural reaction.
Self comes first on our primal hierarchy of needs. Selflessness comes
last. That's why the Pledge of Vigilance is so vital.
By taking it, posting it in an
obvious place, and practicing its principles, we reinforcing our
primary duty--to be more selfless than selfish with our children, or loved
Love gets kidnapped
by selfishness. It always has. It always will.
But Kidnapped Love
can be set free.
The key that unlocks
the door is Vigilance.
Once we set Love
free, we learn drive around in a Volkswagen Passat with armored
steel and bullet-proof windows, warding off Terrorism's constant
attacks on us to return to our selfish, self-centered ways..
I think everyone
should own a VW from Mexico.
It will protect us
from kidnapping our own children, and holding them prisoner.
Go To September
16--Walking In The Shadow Of Einstein
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