Found in translation

Father and son’s discussion about Paris attacks will melt your heart

A young boy and his father talk to a news reporter about the Paris attacks. (YouTube)

A candid exchange between a young boy and his father as a reporter stood by and a news camera rolled has gone viral. The poignant exchange occurred just outside of the Bataclan concert hall in Paris where 89 people were killed during a terror attack on Friday night. The conversation begins when a reporter from Le Petit Journal asks the young boy, who can’t be much more than 3 years old, a series of questions beginning with: “Do you understand what happened? Do you understand why those people did that?” The boy’s answers and his father’s responses to those answers are, as Jerome Isaac Rousseau put it, “precious.” The exchange might’ve been lost on the English-speaking world had Rousseau not translated the conversation and put subtitles over the video. He then shared it on his Facebook page, where it’s been viewed more than 12 million times and on his YouTube page where it has about 150,000 views of this writing. When you watch the exchange, you’ll understand why it’s gone viral. Here’s a rough transcript of the exchange beginning with the little boy’s answer to the reporter:

“Yes, because they’re really, really mean. Bad guys are not very nice. And … we really have to be careful because we have to change homes.”

The boy’s dad jumps in and consoles him, saying, “Oh, no, don’t worry, we don’t need to move out. France is our home.”

“But there’s bad guys, daddy!” the boy says.

“Yes, but there are bad guys everywhere,” his dad reminds him.

“They have guns, they can shoot us because they’re really, really mean,” the boy continues.

“It’s OK, they might have guns, but we have flowers,” his dad says.

“But flowers don’t do anything,” the boy argues. “They’re for, they’re for …”

“See all the flowers?” his dad asks, gesturing off screen. “It’s to fight against the guns.”

“It’s to protect?” the boy asks.

“Exactly,” his dad says.

“And the candles too?” the boy wonders.

“There you go,” his dad says. “It’s to not forget those who are gone yesterday.”

“The flowers and the candles are there to protect us,” the boy concludes.

At this point, the reporter jumps back into the conversation and asks the boy, “Do you feel better now?”

“Yes,” the little boy responds. “I’m feeling better.”

Watch the full video with subtitles at Jerome Isaac Rousseau’s Facebook page.


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