It’s a sad day when the choice is between being unsuspecting and being suspicious.

Is it possible to not be naive about the dangers in the world, but not be fearful or super-defensive either?

Emergency room nurses are famous for wanting to ban trampolines, motorcycles and four-wheelers. We must not let these injuries happen! I went ahead and let my kids have a trampoline. One fell off backwards and landed on his head, thankfully without getting a broken neck. I also remember the laughter and exercise. I’m thinking about letting my daughter get a moped.

Police officers and other first responders and insurance companies are adamant that we wear seat-belts. I remember delightedly surfing on the hump on the floor the back of the car as a child. First responders and ER nurses see relatively rare things all the time, so they’re a little more jaded.

Everyone is grateful for the Polio and small pox vaccines. I remember being horribly traumatized and hysterical getting my shots before kindergarten. I also like the movie based on the Somerset Maugham book, The Painted Veil, where a doctor risks his life to help villagers plagued by a Cholera epidemic. Now there’s no risk, so no story.

Am I being inconsistent with these next ones?

I am more afraid of a body search at an airport than I am of the tiny percent chance that a terrorist will bring down my plane. (No because I would have flown more without the hyper defensive body searches.)

I am more afraid of sex ed by peers and teachers in school than of my kids being socially isolated. I am more afraid of pervasive bad language and bullies than of the tiny percent chance that a mentally unstable person will shoot up the school. (The last point is not inconsistent, the first probably is. I am very defensive about sexual immorality. I can defend it by how important virginity was to the Saints.)

I am more afraid of compromising or codependent friendships than of being alone.

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