<<Meet the new police chief
So this happened, click here for article. A woman left her son in the car and ran into a store. A few minutes later she came out.
From the article:
“I took a deep breath. I looked at the clock. For the next four or five seconds, I did what it sometimes seems I’ve been doing every minute of every day since having children, a constant, never-ending risk-benefit analysis. I noted that it was a mild, overcast, 50-degree day. I noted how close the parking spot was to the front door, and that there were a few other cars nearby. I visualized how quickly, unencumbered by a tantrumming 4-year-old, I would be, running into the store, grabbing a pair of child headphones. And then I did something I’d never done before. I left him. I told him I’d be right back. I cracked the windows and child-locked the doors and double-clicked my keys so that the car alarm was set. And then I left him in the car for about five minutes.
He didn’t die. He wasn’t kidnapped or assaulted or forgotten or dragged across state lines by a carjacker. When I returned to the car, he was still playing his game, smiling, or more likely smirking at having gotten what he wanted from his spineless mama. I tossed the headphones onto the passenger seat and put the keys in the ignition.”
The woman goes on to explain that she needed the headphones for a trip she was taking with her family and upon getting said headphones she went on her trip. Upon returning home from her trip she was met with police. It seemed a bystander witnessed her leaving her child in the car and taped the entire incident and then called the cops on her. The woman was in an out of the store so fast that the police didn’t even have time to arrive to assess the situation. They used her license plate number that the bystander had recorded and tracked her down.
Subsequent to this she was charged and there was a warrant out for her arrest for “contributing to the delinquency of a minor,” which makes zero sense but sounds like they needed to charge her with something so that was the closest thing they could find. End result was that the charge was dropped and she had to complete 100 hours of community service and attend parenting classes.
Why am I talking about this? Because we’re in a different world now, people. A world where busy bodies have power. Where people who view themselves as do-gooders who are too scared to confront a situation head on will happily tape it on their smart phone and send it to the proper authorities.
Should she have left her kid in the car on a 50 degree overcast day and run into a store for 5 minutes?
Not my question to answer. Because I’m not writing about what she should have or shouldn't have done. What I’m writing about is the bystander's new power. Our new video surveillance world where EVERYONE is a private detective and they run around detecting crimes based on their own thoughts of morality and rules without ever seeing the big picture.
All that to say – Cussers, trust me when I tell you this and be sure to tell your friends and family. From this day forward when you are in public, any place where there are people be it a party, a pool, a grocery store, a library, a coffee shop, Bed Bath and Beyond, driving a car, eating lunch, you name it – if there is at least one other person there you need to consider yourself being watched and taped.
From now on, you must always act in public as if you are being taped by someone. Do not spank your child. Do not pull too hard on your hyper dog’s leash. Do not get your mail and not notice that some of the junk mail fell out as you walked to the door. Do not kiss your husband or wife passionately. Do not leave your child in the car on a 50 degree day for 5 minutes. Do not let your school-aged children ride their bikes without you. Do not have a screaming toddler. Do not get angry at your husband. Do not say stupid things. Do not do stupid things. Do not trip. Do not get mad in an elevator.
DO NOT DO ANYTHING.
Because someone is just around the corner marveling at the injustice of the fact you left your trash can out for too many days and is ready to post a video or send it around for the world to see, judge and condemn and punish.
Look, let it be known that I acknowledge that some taping has helped the world. Surveillance of parking lots and stores has and will continue to help us catch criminals. Taping on police cars has helped catch rotten cops and also rotten civilians. Cameras in dark stairways, parking garages, bus stops – great idea. Because bad guys like those places.
But do we really need video vigilantes secretly taping us as we go about our imperfect daily lives? Is that the best use of our time?
Doesn’t matter. Because it’s happening anyway and we cannot stop it. Everyone meet the new “the man.” You know the phrase, right? From Urban Dictionary: “The Man is the head of "the establishment" put in place to "bring us down." Time to introduce him to you because he’s not going away.
Who’s the new “the man,”?