Wednesday, October 22, 2008

"Those To Whom Evil Is Done Do Evil In Return"

Photo by John Hoff, Bedlam Theater

Word comes of a disturbing incident at a towing company lot. A man who was not allowed to retrieve his medicine and was told to leave came back. He came back with an AK-47...

The story is told here, click at this link, and note how the facts related about what the man was told about getting his property shifts. Truth is a slippery thing in the best of times, but these are clearly not the best of times as the smoke clears and blood pools on pavement.

One of version of the story says the guy was told he had to leave the property, and he should go, and police were called about an "unwanted guest." Yeah, an "unwanted guest." More like a guy desperate to retrieve his meds from his vehicle, very likely the medicine which helps to shut off the voices in his head telling him to do bad stuff. Another version of the story--and you can compare the two, side by side at this link--says the man was told he had to return with "proof of ownership."

Yeah, well...a lot of people carry that stuff IN THEIR CAR, don't they?

I do not approve of this kind of violence. I don't even approve of the cartoon antics of Angle Grinder Man, click here. But a few nights ago I was watching "Body of Lies" and the movie started with a quote by the poet W.H. Auden, who said, "I and the public know/ What all schoolchildren learn/Those to whom evil is done/ Do evil in return."

What Do These Two Stories Have In Common?

In for a dime, in for a dollar. Click here for a story about a 20-year-old woman who tried to torch a tow truck making off with her vehicle. What do these two stories have in common? Other than a common theme of violence in the face of predatory towing?

In both cases, individuals in the comment sections of the stories took a similar stance. 1.) Condemning the violence, 2.) Stating basic variations on the words of W.H. Auden. People don't go over the edge all by themselves. Somebody pushes them there.

A Third Version Of Events

I came upon yet another article, click here, with yet ANOTHER version of events about what happened in regard to the guy fetching the medicine. In that version of events, he said the medicine belonged to his daughter, and she needed it or she'd die in three hours.

The towing company turned him away. And that's when he came back shooting.

So there are three possibilities, here:

1.) It was true. 2.) It wasn't true, but he believed it was. 3.) He didn't think it was true, and it wasn't true, but he said it anyway...perhaps because he was just really, incredibly desperate to get what was in the vehicle.

No matter what was the truth...there was no reason to turn the guy away. And, yeah, he was a psycho. All the more reason to treat him with kindness and respect. This state should consider something like the "Let People Get Their Stuff Back Law."

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