Friday, September 10, 2010

Explaining insanity to a child

We were driving to school and a Beatles song was playing on the radio. My 7-yr-old son asked me about the 2 members of the Beatles who died. He knew one of them died of cancer (George Harrison) and one was shot (John Lennon).

Then he asked, "Why did somebody shoot him?" I explained that some people are insane - their bodies may work fine, but that their brain processes stuff all wrong. John Lennon's killer thought HE was John Lennon, so the insane guy thought that the real John Lennon must be removed (ie killed) and once the real John Lennon was out of the way, then Chapman thought it would make HIM John Lennon.

"But, that doesn't make any sense.", my son said. "I know it doesn't make sense," I replied, "That's because your brain is working right, but that guys brain wasn't. There is medicine and doctors who can help people who have those problems."

Not really something I expected to come up during a short drive.

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