Was this video startling to you? These children were told not to talk to strangers. I'm sure they were told not to go anywhere with a stranger. My question for you, who is their stranger?
This world we live in does not help, I'll admit. We teach our children to speak to people they don't know all the time. "Be polite." "Answer back. "Shake his hand." We don't ask how the child is feeling, we simply push them to do the proper thing. Yet, we also say don't talk to strangers. What does this mixed message create? I think it creates a false sense of who a stranger is.
A child thinks a stranger isn't someone nice or helpful. A stranger isn't someone who likes puppies or kittens. A stranger isn't the man helping your child swing higher or the woman helping to find a book at the library. A stranger is someone scary and ugly. A stranger is someone who looks bad. A stranger is someone who scares us.
The bad people out in the world count on our proper society to take advantage of us. We need to teach our children not to talk to ANYONE without our permission. And then we need to give our children permission to listen to their inner voice and not talk to someone if they don't feel comfortable.
I am your stranger. In 2014 I helped a lost little boy, but what if someone else had gotten to him first? What if I wasn't someone who was good? What if I had been bad?
I'm not telling you to create a world of fear for your child to live in. I think that's the worst thing ever. Just stop using the word stranger. Tell them not to talk to or go anywhere with anyone unless they have your permission. And start teaching them to listen to their instincts. God created us with a warning system, and children are capable of listening to it.