Had a good teachable moment with my son this morning...
We were listening to the radio on the way to school and they were talking about Rep. Gabrielle Giffords among other topics. When he left the car, he said, "Who even invented guns, anyway? All they do is hurt people and spread terror." And he closed the door.
So I rolled down the passenger window and he leaned on the door, standing in the school drop-off zone at 23 degrees below zero. That was my teachable moment where I was able to explain to him that guns are tools, the same as a knife or a car.
You wouldn't call a car "evil" but some drivers do not drive very well. You wouldn't call a knife "evil." What is a knife used for? For cutting things, just like we cut our meat before lunch yesterday or we cut our sandwiches or we cut string when we need a certain amount. That's not evil, but some people use knives for evil purposes.
In the same way, you couldn't call guns "evil" either. In themselves, they are a very powerful, dangerous tool; nonetheless, they are benign. It is the one who wields the gun who is good or evil, not the weapon itself.
My son seemed to understand. I'm sure we'll have to talk about that again sometime. What a wild and crazy world we live in where we have to explain such things to our children!!
I think this father did a wonderful job, during a very difficult teachable moment. Maybe this will help you explain recent events to your children as well.