Cars as Baby Ovens

13 Apr
Cars as Baby Ovens

Oh hai! You'll need me after reading that article. Click for more.

“Fatal Distraction” is probably the hardest article I’ve ever had to read. I don’t say that lightly. If you make it past the headline, through the stories, and all the way to the end – and if you’ve begun, then do read to the last line – and haven’t felt so much as a twinge, I don’t even know what to say to you.

I knew it was going to be terrible when they first published it and I heard what it was about, and I almost didn’t read it even now when I heard Gene Weingarten won the Pulitzer for it. But I’m glad I did.


Posted by on April 13, 2010 in Life, Newsmakers


14 responses to “Cars as Baby Ovens

  1. Shalini

    April 13, 2010 at 4:20 pm

    Ooh, someone else who knows and reads Gene Weingarten (do you read his monthly Tuesday chats on WPost site?). I knew there was a reason I liked you!:-)

    As for the article in question, I read it out-of order in multiple sittings stretched over a week, in hopes that it would lessen the agony. It didn’t.

  2. Ness

    April 13, 2010 at 4:28 pm

    that was harrowing. i can see why he won the prize though, amazing piece.

  3. Empowerment Engineer

    April 13, 2010 at 5:16 pm

    It was such a compassionately written piece, which is such a rarity these days.

    I wanted to just glance at it but could not stop reading. Was not the best decision at work. At the end of the article, I had my throat constricted for a few minutes and prayed that no one would come by to ask me a question at that time.

    I had not heard of this writer before but I will keep an eye out for his pieces now.

  4. Veena

    April 13, 2010 at 6:52 pm

    That was heart-wrenching…

  5. apu

    April 14, 2010 at 1:10 am

    Sad, sad, sad. I agree with the public servant who decided that the punishment these unfortunate people receive from themselves is far greater than what any court can give them. and admire the sensitivity with which the piece was written.

  6. apu

    April 14, 2010 at 2:03 am

    Also, Ams, this is your blog, so not to come across as preachy – but your article title made me cringe. Hope you don’t mind me saying that I would have preferred a gentler title.

  7. M

    April 14, 2010 at 11:37 am

    Living in TX, we see a few cases of this every summer – very very sad.

  8. Amrita

    April 14, 2010 at 3:48 pm

    Shalini – when I remember or if someone tells me there was something esp good about it. But he is one of my fave writers.

    Ness – The political section of that paper is a joke but this is the kind of thing that makes me hope print isnt dead.

    EE – I should have put a NSFW tag on it. This is the kind of thing that never occurs to me. Sorry.

    Veena – I’m still not over it. I can’t even imagine those people.

    Apu – yeah, misfire with the whole bun in the oven pun.

    M – 😦 Those poor people

  9. Never Mind

    April 15, 2010 at 12:21 pm

    I needed to see pictures of cute puppies after reading the post. I am one of those people who write comments like “They should’ve kept their legs closed instead of killing their babies”. But something in the article made me stop and think how likely it was that it could happen to me.

    And about the last sentence, I am expecting my first baby in less than six months (OMG!!) and the thought of giving my baby up for adoption to the Harrisons did cross my mind, although just for a micro-second.

  10. memsaab

    April 15, 2010 at 12:59 pm

    Seriously, this sort of thing is one reason I decided not to have children. I can completely imagine it happening to me. I saw a man on Oprah once who had left his son in his car, and he will never get over it. It was heart-wrenching. People do it to pets too, but on purpose—not forgetting, just leaving them there thoughtlessly.

  11. mila

    April 16, 2010 at 3:16 am

    The last paragraphs touched me the most.

  12. Amrita

    April 17, 2010 at 3:11 pm

    NM – First off: CONGRATULATIONS!!! I’m so happy for you! 😀 Secondly, awww! The one good thing about this story is that it seems to bring out the best in people which is something that I need to see, you know?

    Memsaab – yup, that’s where I’m at as well. The older I get, the more I worry about having them. If ever I have any, they’ll know that I REALLY wanted them.
    re: pets – yeah, what is that about? I see that all the time and it just makes me blazingly angry.

    Mila – me too. It needed that tiny ray of hope.

  13. ajnabi

    April 20, 2010 at 1:08 pm

    That article left me prostrate. I couldn’t stop crying for hours. Those poor parents. Those poor babies. The 911 call in particular made me want to cover my eyes and forget I ever read it.

    I was always forgetful in the other direction. I would be driving for an extremely rare solo outing, and all of a sudden feel a shaft of panic. I’d gasp and clutch at the top of the carseat behind me, feeling for a head because oh my God! Where is the baby?! Only to realize a second later that, of course the baby isn’t here, she’s at home with my husband.

    But I understand how it could happen. I so understand.

  14. Sherene

    May 2, 2010 at 6:21 pm

    I’d read this article last year when it was just published and I remember I couldn’t even get myself to link it on Twitter/FB or anything, it was just…paralyzing, to realise that this could truly happen to anyone and given my scatter-brained nature, how it could so possibly be me * shudder * A few years to go before I think about such situations, but even so…scary thought.

    Can’t get myself to read it again.

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