I agree that the parents shouldn't have had anything like this around their child. I'm not disputing that. I just think people are really quick to say "bad parent!" when it's a rough business. Taking care of a young child is exhausting and I'm fairly sure that many parents make mistakes here and there. Thankfully this one didn't turn out to be fatal.
Yeah. I fell asleep once when my daughter was that age and she ransacked the house. She pulled all of the Popsicles out of the fridge, drew on the wall, painted her face and arms with nail polish, poured baby powder all over the bathroom floor, etc. Calling your wife at work at 3 a.m. to find out where the nail polish remover is (and if it can safely be used on skin) is no fun at all.
Thankfully, she didn't get hurt in any way.
Another time she was out in the garage with me while I was putting some boxes on the shelf and she disappeared
while I was struggling with a box that ruptured. I found her in the neighbor's backyard trying to get onto their trampoline. That one nearly gave me a heart attack.
And on yet another
occasion, I realized that the kiddie shampoo bottle was empty while she was in the tub, so I went into the other room to find the new bottle. While I was gone, she somehow poured enough water out of the tub (using the little bucket we used to wash her hair) that it soaked through the floor and started dripping downstairs.
She was the kind of kid you couldn't turn your back on for a second or she would be chewing on the walls, climbing onto a table or scaling a baby-gate!
When she was still crawling, she managed to climb into a chair, onto the table, and seated herself in her high-chair while I was opening the baby-food and putting it in her bowl! I just turned around and she was sitting there waiting for me! She couldn't even WALK yet! She was some kind of ninja-baby! And I learned very early to never EVER leave a chair sitting next to the kitchen counter.
It's really easy to criticize the parents when something like this happens. That little girl had probably been eyeing those magnets for a week, waiting for the parents to slip up so she could make a bee-line for them. It doesn't matter how careful or vigilant you are. Kids know exactly what they are not supposed to do and will wait for the moment
when you let your guard down. If it's amazing that we survive childhood, it's even more amazing that we survive parenthood!