“The Cops Never Showed Up”: A Story For Anyone Who’s Anti-Gun

Before I share what I just read, know that I’m Canadian and have NEVER been a fan of American gun laws– I’ve always opposed the idea that the average citizen should be able to carry a gun. That being said, I just read something that made me question my thinking.

The following comment was posting on a Reddit Thread about people who’ve killed in self-defense. The author of this particular comment was not writing about killing someone, but instead about why he carries a gun. The author goes by the username of thndrchld, and his story is both terrifying and compelling:

!!TRIGGER WARNING!!

I was raised in a very anti-gun house. My mother absolutely abhors them, so I never had any experience with them, and didn’t really see why we didn’t just pass a constitutional amendment to ban them. Then something happened.

Two years ago, I was standing next to my car, filling up my gas tank at a gas station in a neighborhood that wasn’t great, but wasn’t bad by any means. The friend that was with me was inside the store, buying a snack or something, and taking his sweet-ass time.

I saw a pretty girl walking along the road across the street. I watched her for a few seconds because, hey, hot girl. A car pulled up next to her and followed along slowly, like they were talking to her.

Suddenly three big guys jump out and grab her. They shove her screaming into the back seat, and pull around to the side of the building they were in front of. Another car that was following behind them pulled in and blocked the driveway. This was just before twilight, and the shop was closed.

From where I was, I could still see everything. I was close enough that I could hear her.

They took turns raping her right there in the car. Those not actively involved watched from outside the car, laughing and mocking her struggles.

The instant I realized what has going on, I called 911. I gave them plate numbers, physical descriptions, locations, and a play by play of what was happening, meanwhile, she’s in the back seat trying to fight them off and screaming for help. Two years later, and those screams are still burned into my memory.

Eventually, everybody loaded back up in the cars, and took off down the road at about 80, the poor girl still screaming in the back seat.

I stayed on the phone with 911 the whole time they were raping her. It was about 10 minutes. After they left, we stayed at the gas station waiting for the police.

They never showed.

Let me say that again: I called the police about a violent gang rape and kidnapping in progress, with an active witness giving plate numbers and an exact location, and the goddamn cops never showed up. The police station was only a few minutes away, and we were about four miles from a college campus. You’re telling me nobody was available to stop a fucking gang rape?

That’s when I realized that we’re on our own. Nobody’s coming to rescue us. The police, at their best, are only able to respond to a crime. They can’t prevent it. When it comes down to it, we’re responsible for our own protection.

This poor girl, and I, learned that the hard way.

I now have a carry permit and carry a loaded 9mm with me everywhere I go. I will NEVER stand by and watch someone get hurt like that again. I don’t care if it puts me at risk. It’s easy to say “just call the cops, it’s not your fight” until you’re in that position and have to hear the screams and watch her fight for her life. It’s easy until you see the demented, mocking grins on the faces of the subhuman scum that are brutalizing a helpless girl.

Those screams haunted my dreams for months.

I don’t want to be a hero. I don’t ever want to see and/or hear something like that again. I don’t want to have to get involved. I don’t want to have to draw my weapon. I don’t want to have to fire. I don’t want to have to deal with the police, the court case, and the possibility of going to prison because some jackass district attorney is “tough on gun crime.” But I will. I will do all that because it’s the right thing to do, and because I wouldn’t be able to live with myself if I stood by helplessly while another innocent life was destroyed.

That’s why I carry.

There you have it. Easily the most compelling case I’ve read in support of American gun laws. Kind of makes you think, doesn’t it? Comment with your thoughts.

Thoughts on Bill Nye vs Ken Ham Creation Debate

If you missed tonight’s debate between Bill Nye and Creation Museum founder, Ken Ham, I highly encourage you to view it on YouTube HERE. I watched it live and also took some time to flip through the ocean of #CreationDebate, #KenHam, and #BillNye tweets that flooded the Twittersphere during, and immediately following the debate. Here’s what I’ve walked away with:

Summation: you cannot, and will not, change the views of a devotedly religious person by showing them facts. Ken Ham made that pretty clear. However, this debate garnered a HUGE audience, and if Nye succeeded in making just one skeptical youth question the religious indoctrination of their parents, then it was a success.

Amidst all the heated debating, I was however, happy to see there was one thing everyone agreed on…

Ribbet collage

Bill Nye vs Creationism: LIVE TONIGHT!

As someone who grew up watching, and loving, Bill Nye the Science Guy (“BILL! BILL! BILL! BILL!”), I get pretty excited every time his name pops up in the media. This was especially true of the following image that appeared in my Facebook Newsfeed this afternoon:

splash-live

THAT’S RIGHT! Tonight at 7:00pm EST (aka 4pm for us Pacific-ers), Bill Nye will be doing a live debate with Petersburg Creation Museum founder, Ken Ham. The debate will take place at the Creation Museum, and will be live streamed HERE.

In case you’re unfamiliar, the backstory behind this is that a few months ago, Bill Nye posted a YouTube video that went viral, stating that Creationism shouldn’t be allowed in schools, and isn’t appropriate for children. Ken Ham made a response video, which also went viral. Now, the two will publicly meet to defend their cases!

I’m really excited about this, and have no idea how it will end. Perhaps it will just reach it’s time limit and be forced to close. Either way, it will surely be worth watching!

Why You Don’t Deserve A Tip

I’ve seen a number of blogs and posts lately about the various types of customers that servers hate. There’s even a Facebook Page dedicated to the pet peeves of bar and restaurant staff. Having worked front-of-house in bars or restaurants from the ages 14 until 22, I get it. I’ve seen every type of shitty customer mentioned in those “Why Servers Hate You” posts, and yes, I hated each and every one of them.  I highly recommend that every person work a service industry job for a while, if only long enough for them to learn how not to be an asshole when they’re back on the consumer side of the counter.

However, just because you work in an industry where tipping is often customary, that does not make you entitled to receive a tip. You must actually do your job, and you must do it well. I worked very hard as a server, and I earned all the tips I got. I expect you to do the same. If you can’t handle the stress, and you can’t manipulate a bad situation to work in your benefit, then perhaps serving isn’t for you. It’s certainly not for everyone. So, from a former server, to the tip-entitled generation, here’s Why You Don’t Deserve A Tip: 

  • YOU LOOK LIKE YOU HATE YOUR JOB

You’re not an Ethiopian child in a commercial with a Sarah McLaughlin soundtrack. There is a great deal of acting involved in serving, and if you can’t leave your problems at the door and muster a smile, then you shouldn’t be here. If it’s a tragedy, tell your boss you can’t maintain composure enough to work. If he won’t accept that, he’s not the kind of manager you want to work for. If it’s not a tragedy, you need to suck it up.

  • YOU DON’T KNOW YOUR MENU

Don’t just read me what the menu says, I can do that myself. You should have tried most of the items on the menu and be able to say what they taste like, how spicy/sweet/etc. they are, and what alterations or accompaniments you recommend (a great chance to upsell!). A really great server knows everything about the restaurant– all the ingredients and cooking methods, the rarely-used bar stock, and even things about the company history, building and local attractions. Most servers will have to outsource to the kitchen staff or management for information like this, and that’s okay. However, if you have to go to the back to confirm what type of salad dressing you have, then you need to reconsider your employment.

  • YOU TAKE TOO LONG TO GREET YOUR TABLES

Within 5 minutes or less (and that’s generous), you need to greet your new tables. Longer than that, and they get fidgety. But hey, sometimes shit hits that fan and your section gets really slammed. It sucks, but sometimes it happens. Say it with me servers: “Hey guys, I’ll be right with you!” It only takes a second to swing by, put a hand on the table, smile, make eye-contact, and say that phrase.  It’s actually best done while you’ve got your hands full. That way they know you’re aware of them, and they can see that you’re busy, not texting your friends from the break-room. Typically, this phrase will get you a response of “Oh, no worries!” and will actually grant you a little extra time. When you return, apologize, and start your usual welcome spiel.

  • YOU DON’T LOOK LIKE YOU’RE WORKING

This is especially true if my glass is empty, or I have some sort of request. If you have nothing to do, do not stand around and chit-chat unless you have already swung by every table and checked to see if they need anything. You’re still working. Do your job before you socialize. When you walk, walk briskly. Look like you’re awake, perhaps even energetic! And hey, if your section is calm and another is busy, would it kill you to clear some plates for your coworkers? Maybe fill a water or two?

  • YOU’RE OBLIVIOUS TO YOUR SURROUNDINGS

Don’t walk around with your head in the sand! Always be scanning your section, in case someone is trying to get your attention. If a guests’ eyes are wandering around the room instead of looking at their companions, there’s a good chance they’re looking for you. If you’re busy, just catch their eye, smile, and nod. Then at least they know you’re aware that they need something, and will be with them as soon as you can.

  • YOU DON’T KNOW HOW TO HANDLE COMPLAINTS

When something goes wrong, you will inevitably be the messenger that gets shot over it. Accept that ignorant customers blaming you for things that are out of your control is just part of the package. Learn to apologize gracefully and sincerely, regardless of fault. Don’t try to point fingers at the kitchen or the hostess, even when they’re to blame. You just look immature. If you can’t handle customer complaints gracefully, maybe you should be in the kitchen. 

 If you avoid all the above things, you’ll probably do well as a server. As a customer, I’ll usually give 20% or higher for great service (or if my table was a hassle), 15% for average-good service, 10% for sub-par, and it goes down from there. You don’t get tips just for putting on the name tag– you get tips for doing a good job. If you’re a server who gets shitty tips as often as you complain about getting shitty tips, perhaps it’s a sign that you’re a shitty server…