IF YOU HAVEN'T FINISHED THE SERIES: SPOILER ALERT.
Definition: A secondary character who dies to give a story pathos.
Anyway, the definition was inspired by this older (AND EVEN MORE SPOILERY) post.
I don't have an issue with the definition—or the Fred vs. Ron argument, actually—but I don't buy this:
This isn’t a value judgment, but an observation about what adult literature does that children’s literature doesn’t do; it not only brings the worst-case scenario into play, sometimes, just sometimes, it actually happens.
Because, you know. That's the danger of making sweeping generalizations. "Sometimes, just sometimes, it actually happens" in children's lit, too. For instance: Charlotte's Web, Anne of Green Gables, Erin Hunter's Warriors books, Animorphs, The Golden Compass (I consider it YA, but I've seen it shelved in more than on children's collection), Mockingjay (technically YA, but I'm including it because of the massive readership), almost every award-winning book about a dog...