Late last night in Barack Obama’s hometown of Chicago, a gentleman was innocently minding his own business on a train platform, simply trying to get home to his hearth and home, when he noticed that six fellow passengers were simultaneously talking on their cellular telephones.
The gentleman in question was so provoked by this thoughtless and careless display of electronics that he was compelled to reach into a bag he was carrying, produce a sawed-off shotgun, and then proceed to collect these six cellphones at gunpoint. He is still on the loose. The presence of the shotgun in this story is a bit mystifying, admittedly, since the state of Illinois remains one of the few places in the country where concealed carry is completely illegal, and Chicago is one of if not the most anti-gun municipalities in the country. But I digress.
I learned all of this from this story and video from ABC news.
The moral of this story, according to Chicago’s media, authorities, and apparently even its citizens themselves is that it is important to not use one’s cell phones in public and to keep all of one’s electronics hidden if you don’t want to be the cause of a crime. One passenger in the story goes so far as to confess that she is personally guilty of sometimes using her cell phone in public. “You’ve got to stay aware,” the news anchor helpfully adds at the end of segment.
Presumably it was the sight of these telephones that caused the crime to occur, as well as people not being “sufficiently aware” of their surroundings, and that passengers who were not talking on the phone at that moment weren’t ordered to reach under their jackets or into their bags to produce them.
In other parts of America, of course, anyone trying to hold a group of strangers at bay after being provoked to by the sight of their telephones might not be terribly comfortable with them reaching under their jackets, purses, briefcases, and bags. But I simply assume it didn’t happen in this case because (as the Chicago media and authorities have explained to us) telephones out in the open is the real problem here.