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Absolutely PRICELESS or NOT?

December 4, 2014

This morning when I checked my email I found the following from a friend. It was titled, “Absolutely PRICELESS!”

Please read before destroying 
Subject: Fw: Craig’s List
—- Craig’s list ad–Read it closely folks… a good one…..should happen more often ……….
AN ACTUAL CRAIG’S LIST PERSONALS AD
To the Guy Who Tried to Mug Me in Downtown Savannah night before last. Date: 2011-11-27, 1:43 am. E.S.T.
I was the guy wearing the black Burberry jacket that you demanded that I hand over, shortly after you pulledthe knife on me and my girlfriend, threatening our lives.  You also asked for my girlfriend’s purse and  earrings.  I can only hope that you somehow come across this rather important message.
First, I’d like to apologize for your embarrassment; I didn’t expect you to actually crap in your pants when I drew my pistol after you took my jacket.. The evening was not that cold, and I was wearing the jacket for a reason.. my girlfriend was happy that I just returned safely from my 2nd tour as a Combat Marine in Afghanistan .. She had just bought me that Kimber Custom Model 1911 .45 ACP pistol for my birthday, and we had picked up a shoulder holster for it that very evening. Obviously you agree that it is a very intimidating weapon when pointed at your head … isn’t it?!
I know it probably wasn’t fun walking back to wherever you’d come from with crap in your pants. I’m sure it was even worse walking bare-footed since I made you leave your shoes, cell phone, and wallet with me. (That prevented you from calling or running to your buddies to come help mug us again). After I called your mother or “Momma” as you had her listed in your cell, I explained the entire episode of what you’d done. Then I went and filled up my gas tank as well as those of four other people in the gas station, — on your credit card. The guy with the big motor home took 153 gallons and was extremely grateful! I gave your shoes to a homeless guy outside Vinnie Van Go Go’s, along with all the cash in your wallet. [That made his day!] I then threw your wallet into the big pink “pimp mobile” that was parked at the curb ….. after I broke the windshield and side window and keyed the entire driver’s side of the car.
Earlier, I managed to get in two threatening phone calls to the DA’s office and one to the FBI, while mentioning President Obama as my possible target. The FBI guy seemed really intense and we had a nice long chat (I guess while he traced your number etc.).In a way, perhaps I should apologize for not killing you … but I feel this type of retribution is a far more appropriate punishment for your threatened crime. I wish you well as you try to sort through some of these rather immediate pressing issues, and can only hope that you have the opportunity to reflect upon, and perhaps reconsider, the career path you’ve chosen to pursue in life.. Remember, next time you might not be so lucky. Have a good day!
Thoughtfully yours,
Semper fi, (First to Fight)
Alex
Probably don’t have to ask you to forward this one,
it is priceless.
MY RESPONSE:
I read the ad, but for some reason I couldn’t share the glee that was intended.  I realized that it might sound like a joke to most and give them a reason to laugh, but instead I felt uneasy. Why didn’t I just laugh? It’s funny, right? The would-be criminal craps on himself and is totally humiliated and the would-be victim serves his own brand of justice without firing a shot. The cowardly criminal wields a knife and the tables are turned in the presence of a Kimber Model 1911 .45 ACP pistol. This ad ended with, ‘I’m sure you will forward this!”  While I was clear that I did not want to forward it, still I had so much uneasiness that I still had to respond. Something just didn’t feel right.  Instead of getting a good laugh, I found the carefully coded embedded innuendoes and the covert advertising for guns to be potentially quite dangerous, especially in today’s heated racial climate. I am concerned for the following reasons; It might go viral; It might make people more fearful; It fuels racism and the racial divide; It does nothing to create a dialog about the cause of violence; It will cause people to buy more guns and more innocents (especially innocent children) will die; And, IT IS SIMPLY NOT TRUE!!!!

  1. MY BIGGEST CONCERN IS THAT IT WILL GO VIRAL AS IS! I’m sure it will probably most certainly go viral again, because it has gone viral multiple times since 2009.  I’m more concerned that very few will check the validity of this story before sharing, personalizing and commenting.  I know, I too am quick to forward some conjured and sensationalized post. But, I don’t think we need to be entertained this way. And, I for one am slowly realizing the power of social media. We are responsible for what we post!
  2. Obama-End-Gun-ViolenceI think ads like this Craigs List one will provide the justification for more people to go out and buy a gun.  Most of those with their newfound fire power won’t be as creative as this quick thinking (recently returned marine veteran) and will just shoot whenever they feel fear or annoyance, perhaps on a boy walking home with skittles, or a 19-year old young girl who gets into an accident and banged on their door for help and is killed, or maybe an angry man at convenience store who will just fire his “legal weapon” into a vehicle because the music is too loud. The problem is this irrational fear of the color of an innocent suspect has caused the cops and too many “good innocent” citizens to shoot first and ask questions later.
  3. This picture perfect story (and it is a story) has no other intent but to instill more fear into the average person (who might just want to walk downtown Savannah trying to have a good time), that they too may be held up at knife point. Fear causes people to do more “justifiable killings” instead of using our judicial system to do its job. I fear we will have more of what is happening in the media to black and brown people. Now you might ask, why did I assume that the criminal was “black or brown?” Be honest, what did you think? The carefully coded words that were used to describe this attack are usually attributed to the ghetto or inner city which is usually habituated by people of color. Additionally the words, “Momma”, “homeless guy”,  “Vinnie Van Go Go’s”, and “Big Pink Pimp Mobile” do not bring up images of white suburbs. You don’t have to make it any more explicit, your subconscious programming will make that leap for you because of all of our previous programming and negative media portrayals.  Consider the following:

    a. “I called your mother or “Momma” as you had her listed in your cell,”
    b.  
    I gave your shoes to a homeless guy outside Vinnie Van Go Go’s, 
    c. I then threw your wallet into the big pink “pimp mobile” that was parked at the curb ….. after I broke the windshield and side window and keyed the entire driver’s side of the car.

  4. It potentially causes more racism and racial divide. Who do you think the people are in this ad? It paints the picture of a perfect scenario for why “guns” are a must for everyone of the “burberry jacket wearing folks” who want to venture out into the city because they might just run into this scenario. Let me ask you this, “Who do you picture wearing a bilberry jacket costing between $350- $2100?” Who do you think the criminal is?
  5. This alleged mugging takes place in Savannah Georgia, in the good ole South, home to the “good ole boys.” The population of Savannah is a little over 136,000 people.  The chances of becoming a victim according to the neighborhood Scout site is 1 in 26.  The National median when looking at crimes per square mile is 39.3, in Savannah it is 53!  Perhaps if I lived in Savannah, I’d consider getting a gun too! But, everyone doesn’t live in Savannah. Here are few more facts about Savannah, “White flight” came first after school desegregation. Middle- and upper-income white families left the city, moving onto the islands and west Chatham and later out into Effingham and Bryan counties for better schools. The next exodus is called “bright flight”and was triggered when upper- and middle-class African-American residents left for the same reasons: Fear of crime and the desire for better schools and newer homes.” 
  6. My first thought was that this little “vengeance is mine” story was actually concocted by the NRA or the gun sellers. And, that may be plausible, according to Snopes. The real author says, “I’m starting to see people alter the hell out of it for political and other reasons, and quite frankly, it irritates the shit out of me.” The carefully crafted wording in this so called ad turns would be victims into victors all through the power of a gun. In fact, the victor, “crows about having turned the table on his antagonist. The author here is not a passive target who ends up stripped of his valuables by a mugger; he is an intended victim who confronts his assailant with superior firepower.” [Source Snopes: see below]

    “This piece began its life as a 6 January 2009 post to Craigslist, a forum for local classified ads and discussions in more than 550 cities. It was quickly removed by that entity, lasting no more than a day or two on that site, but nevertheless was picked up and sent around in e-mail by those it resonated with.

    “There was no mugging: the whole tale was a work of fiction meant to help its author work off some steam from having had his home broken into. Of its creation, he says, “I mean, all it took was a couple of beers, some aggravation towards the local criminal population, and five to ten minutes at the keyboard.” He has since seen his fanciful tale reworked to further various agendas.  Over time, several different cities came to be named as the location of the felonious interaction…”

  7. Gun-Vigil-San-Francisco-22 And, unfortunately these guns get into the hands of children, who mimicking the games they play on the computer or see glorified in videos and television, too often accidentally kill members of their own families. Having a gun in this fictitious story gave the potential victim power. Without the gun, they would have lost their jacket and jewelry. But, are all the accidental deaths worth some jewelry and a burberry jacket? The ad glorifies the gun and makes a hero out of the gun toter. But, tragically, children 100 boys and girls aged 14 and under are accidentally killed each year because of guns getting into the wrong hands. Here a a few recent examples:
    1. On May 2, 2013, two years after this first went viral, a five year old kills his 2 year old sister.
    2. On May 2014, a three year old boy shoots and kills his one year old brother.
    3. On June 2014, in Virginia, a three year old shoots his twin brother. 
    4. On October 2014, a two year old boy was accidentally shot by his older brother.
    5. On November 3, 2014, in Ohio, a four year old shoots his three year old sister in the head.
    6. On November 2014, in Orlando Florida area,  a nine year old girl accidentally shoots her eight year old brother.
    7. Another young boy accidentally killed his brother just the other day.
  8.  Guns do not get at the root cause of this violence:  inferior education, lack of jobs, racism, mental illness, etc. While employing an “eye for an eye or a tooth for a tooth ” strategy might make some feel good and even be justified in a few rare cases, it will create in the biblical sense, a nation of “blind and toothless citizens.” Especially, if anyone who reads this article is emboldened to buy a gun for their protection in the rare occasion of a potential future mugging.
  9. One version of the Snope article ends with, “PS. An armed society is a safe society.”  Note; “Eighty-four percent of accidental deaths of children occurred in the home or car of the victim’s family, or in the home of a friend or relative. The United States has the highest rate of gun related deaths per capita among developed countries,[3]:29 though it also has the highest rate of gun ownership and the highest rate of officers. Over 1000 people are killed daily from guns in America.”
  10. And, finally it suggests that the person doing the mugging had money and was not just desperate, but a heartless degenerate career criminal looking to take advantage of innocent people. DO WE REALLY NEED TO MAKE UP THIS KIND OF STORY AND FOR WHAT PURPOSE DID THOSE WHO DID DO IT? (Please be clear that if this were true that I am excusing the criminal’s behavior.) However desperate people do desperate things.  How many real people in this situation wouldn’t have just shot first? The veteran states, he gave the would-be robber’s cash to a homeless man, and that the mugger had enough available credit on his credit card to fill up the gas tanks for multiple people including 153 gallons for one motor home. He goes on in this fictitious story to say, “I should have killed you!”  And, I’m afraid that some reading that email or ad were probably agreeing with him, picturing themselves in the same situation, and thinking, “I need a gun to protect those I love!”  More guns are not the solution to America’s many ills.  Priceless??????? I don’t think so, too many are paying the price with their lives!
Just my thoughts. What are your thoughts?
Barbara
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