Service of Speaking Up

December 27th, 2016

Categories: Participation, Safety, Speak Up, Terrorism

Speak up

I pass a row of Citibikes on my daily walk to work and last week noticed a cloth tote bag left beside one of the parked bicycles. My first thought was, “Oh, gosh, someone juggling packages left behind one of their bags.”

As I continued up the street lugging my own trove of gifts it suddenly occurred to me that this stand—and the tote–are next to one of the Trump-named buildings on First Avenue and across the street from the UN.

citibikeI soon passed a building on Second Avenue that I’d noticed was well-guarded since the Berlin terrorist attack at the Christmas market, so I mentioned the tote to one of the policemen. He said that someone had already reported it to the 17th Precinct. (He was with a terrorist troup.)

I was delighted that word had gotten around!

I most recently wrote about the “If you see something, say something,” concept well over three years ago in the post “Service of Passivity.” Nobody had mentioned to authorities the two large suitcases parked outside Grand Central Station with no human owner in evidence, until I did–and they had been there for a while.

We’ve improved!

Have you heard of other examples of the public’s pitching in to help safeguard your town or city?

safety first


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2 Responses to “Service of Speaking Up”

  1. Lucrezia Said:

    This reporting of the unusual is a two edged sword. On one hand, it may save lives. On the other, we risk becoming a tattling society where people are in trouble for no reason, due to overly zealous activity. Stalinist Russia’s boogiemen come to mind, along with tales of people being dragged away in the middle of the night for no better reason than story telling by a vindictive neighbor with an axe to grind. Is this what we want to become?

    On the other hand, it would be tough sleeping well at night after one gave the wrong person slack and dozens of innocent people were blown to Kingdom Come as a result.

    It’s a tough call.

  2. jmbyington Said:

    Noone would have gotten into trouble. If a person left behind the bag they would get it back. I wasn’t going to risk my life to see if there was a wallet or some other form of ID so I could get in touch with this person. Not a smart move these days. That’s the shame–not that we are all on the alert to divert possible danger caused by deranged individuals out to harm innocent people.

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