Myth 28: Children Get Poisoned On Halloween

HalloweenThe story that children far and wide are being poisoned by unwrapped Halloween candy and home-baked Halloween cookies, that there was ever a razor blade in the apple is the very definition of an urban legend. It is a myth to the extent that NO American child is on record as EVER being seriously hurt by a contaminated Trick-or-Treat bon bon. Continue reading

Myth 11: You should tell your kids about Stranger Danger.

Penn & Teller busted this myth in their Showtime show “Bullshit“, the episode about Stranger Danger. Watch a clip from this episode… click here>>

They interviewed Erin Runnion, founder of The Joyful Child Foundation, and mother to Samantha who was abducted, raped and murdered just before her 6th birthday. Erin believes that parents should take a very proactive role in protecting their children. Even though her child was tragically abducted to the worst possible effect, she still understands that the primary child predators are not strangers, but people that the family knows and trusts. More surprisingly, she advocates against teaching children about “stranger danger”. She feels that it is the parent’s role to be concerned for a child’s safety, it is not the child’s responsibility to worry about that. She feels that it is a child’s right to grow up feeling that the world is a safe and loving place. It is the parent’s responsibility to protect in appropriate ways.

The episode will rerun on Showtime:

08/09/08 11:45 PM ET/PT
08/09/08 01:15 AM ET/PT
08/10/08 11:00 PM ET/PT
08/10/08 12:00 AM ET/PT
08/11/08 12:15 AM ET/PT
08/14/08 10:30 PM ET/PT
09/02/08 11:00 PM ET/PT
09/16/08 11:30 PM ET/PT
09/25/08 09:30 PM ET/PT

Myth 2: Kidnappers are usually strangers.

ImageThe Department of Justice reports that there are only 115 stereotypical kidnappings per year, in which a stranger or acquaintance abducts a child to hold for ransom or abuse and kill him or her. Who are all those other missing kids? Some are kids who have been taken by non-custodial parents or relatives. Most are teenagers running away with friends or lovers. Who are all of these “sexually abused missing kids”? Teenages who are too young to have consentual sex, but old enough to like it. How long does it typically take to get the missing kids back home? Less than 24 hours. Do we need to have high blood pressure over the possibility of little Timmy being abducted in the supermarket? Not likely.

I’m not making this up. The facts just don’t support the fear and hype we have all come to believe and I, for one, am greatly relieved.

Read the Department of Justice report…

Download the PDF of the report directly from this link…

Read the Department of Justice Q&A Fact Sheet about the report…