Most people have seen the Child’s Play movies, featuring a murderous serial-killer reincarnated in the body of an animated Chucky doll. It’s a fictional movie of course, but sometimes science fiction seeps into real life. See if you can guess which of the following scenarios came to life:
A) Boy murders little brother, says his Chucky doll made him do it.
B) Teen busted for building animatronics Chucky doll to kill his parents.
C) State department issues Amber alert saying Chucky the Child’s Play doll is wanted for kidnapping a child.
While you’re mulling over the correct answer, consider this very real safety fact:
All of us are concerned about the possibility of a child being kidnapped. A parent’s worst nightmare is having their child vanish from right underneath their nose, only to meet a most horrible end at the hands of a devious individual. Parents should certainly take steps to address stranger danger and abduction prevention, and we have all types of resources to help you do just that.
Yet these are rare and unlikely events, and parents often dwell on them to the exclusion of much more prevalent risks. Ordinary items are more likely to kill your child than strangers are. For example, whereas fewer than 50 small children are abducted by non-family each year, several hundred die because of the gun their parents keep in the house “for protection.” And although parents may fear shady characters lurking in the park, the playground itself – along with any soccer field goal posts sitting nearby – are each separately more likely to kill your kid than any of the registered sex offenders living in your area.
The correct answer: C) State department issues Amber Alert for Chucky doll.
In one of those “only in Texas” moments, in 2021 the Texas Department of Public Safety issued an Amber Alert saying that Chucky, the doll from the Child’s Play movies, had kidnapped a 5-year-old boy named Glen. The alert described the suspect as 28-years-old, weighing in at 16 pounds, with a height of 3 foot 1 inches, last seen wearing “blue denim overalls” and “wielding a huge kitchen knife” at a home in Henderson, Texas.
Officials blamed the alert on a “test malfunction.” Which I suppose I can see. Though I don’t think an Amber alert is needed in such situations. If I see ANY doll, Chucky or not, walking down the street on its own free volition with a child, I’m calling the authorities.
The Week, Feb. 26, 2021, p. 12