Tag Archives: Metro-Link

A SHORT STORY OF SADNESS AND KINDNESS THAT BECAME BEAUTIFUL


 

In a time where we hear mostly of violence, evil and just bad news, and good news seems scarce, I witnessed something yesterday that needs to be shared.

I drive from St. Charles to the N. Hanley Metro-Link (Hanley is not all that far from Ferguson, for those unfamiliar with St. Louis)  just past the St. Louis Lambert Airport during the work week.   I catch the train that takes me to the Convention Center, downtown St. Louis.   In the evening I get back on the Metro at Convention Center and head back home.

Yesterday, when the red line pulled up, I boarded the train, like I do everyday, immediately noticed a young white lady (about 21 yrs of age I am guessing), she was crying, sobbing loudly.  My first thought, she had a fight with a boy friend, or someone badly hurt her feelings.  I took a seat a couple of rolls directly behind her, and contemplated, do I approach her?   Then I realized the reason for my hesitation; just a step or two behind me entered a black lady (about 55-60 yrs of age) that set just in front and on the other side of the aisle from the girl.   This woman did not hesitate, and I was watching, as if I knew she was going to speak to the girl.   I backed off (with my thoughts of approaching and just watched).   The woman asked “Are you okay?”  The girl, surprisingly, opened up, shook her head no, and said “My car has been stolen, my cell phone is gone, my purse, everything I own is gone.   I have no family, I don’t know where to go or what to do, I have no job.”  She spoke while she was sobbing.   The girl didn’t ask for anything, wasn’t pandering……she was lost and scared.

The older lady, motioned the girl over to her, gave her a hug, and I believe said a short prayer while embracing her.  “The Lady” then instructed the girl to get off at the next stop,  pointed and told her where to go, that she would get help there.   She ask, “What kind of work experience do you have?”   I didn’t hear the girls response, but I heard “The Lady” say, “I want you to come down to the Arch tomorrow morning, I will be there at 6:00 AM, I will give you an application; that is all the experience you need, they WILL hire you. ” The girl shook her head yes, still shaking, still in tears, but with more comfort, reached out to “The Lady” to shake hands but got another embrace, and said good-bye.

This “Lady” did not look around to see anyone’s reaction, it didn’t matter to her, she was there to help someone who was desperate. That was all that mattered.

In times where you only hear bad news, stories of kindness and love are not shared enough.   There are good people out there, doing wonderful things.   I mentioned the race of each of the these ladies only because of the racial hatred we seem to only hear of these days.  We don’t hear of the kindness and love that is more often expressed.   I believe something held me back from intervening because this “Lady” had more to offer the girl than I did.   I was glad it worked the way it did, the “Lady” may not have jumped in had I first.  God is alive and is working, when we ask, he will answer.   He sent this kind, loving “Lady” to assist this girl.  I really believe!

WAS THERE HATE CRIME ON THE ST. LOUIS METRO?


Metrolink screengrab

A man was beaten on March 23 on the St. Louis Metro Link train.

“What do you think of the cop killing Michael Brown situation?”    The St. Louis (where else) Metro Link rider didn’t give the politically correct answer, then got beat-up.  With that question or statement, depending on how you look at it, and that the victim was white and the two attackers were black, wasn’t enough to be determined a hate crime.  So just what does it take to be considered a hate crime?

The 43-year-old male was seated on the Metro, three young black males were standing nearby.   The 15-year-old ask the man if he could use his cell phone; he was told no.   Then the kid ask the man what he thought of the police killing Michael Brown and the investigation situation.  The seated man said something to the effect “I haven’t given it much thought”.   The kid suddenly turned into a 15-year-old punk……he proceeded to slug a seated man in somewhat of a defenseless position.   A 21-year-old companion also punched and kicked at the passenger.   A third companion of the two attackers stood by and just watched.  When the train came to its next stop, the three ran off, like the cowards they are.

Was it a hate crime?  I don’t know in the context that hate crimes are meant.   I mean hate crime, isn’t that really the same as racial or religious and ethnic hate (bias motivated crime)?    If this man was beaten because of his view or non-view of the Michael Brown stage, race is definitely involved.   Much of what occurred in Ferguson last Summer was about race, right Al Sharpton, right Holder and yes Obama?   Hate crime charges will not be filed.   The 21-year-old has been charged, with assault, the 15-year-old was turned over to juvenile authorities.

Did the 15-year-old bait his victim, test him?   Asking to use his cell phone, was it to see if the man would stand-up to him by saying no, or just give it up.   Was it a test to see how friendly the man was?  I don’t think in this case it was.   To followup with the question of Michael Brown, the kid wanted an answer to instigate trouble,   possibly to see if the man had nerve to say what he really thought.   His answer was middle ground to avoid a confrontation.   The passenger thought he was playing it safe.   The kid found someone passive he could pound on and beat.   That was obvious, the man didn’t fight back, only slightly raised his arm as a shield to protect his head.   He was in a seated position and he was out numbered.   No one, not one individual gave him any assistance.

Hate crime is a separate charge all of its own and can be complicated.   The definition of hate crime can vary from state to state.     The act of beating someone can be a hateful act, and does not need to be motivated by bias.  The phrase “hate crime” is a poorly selected title.   Like I said earlier, it is meant to be a bias motivated crime; but it doesn’t have to be.    Some hateful people hate everyone, no bias there, they hate everyone.   A man can kill his father-in-law out of pure hate.   They don’t charge him with hate crime, they charge him with murder.

Hate crime, one of those poorly selected phrases to get it politically correct.    Assault is assault, rape is rape, arson is arson.  I have no problem with additional charges brought against someone for killing a man because he was black or white or Jewish……whatever.   Why not call it a “Biasly Motivated Crime”.    Hate crime can get complicated, and with legality issues someone could get off, escape the charge.   Bias motivated, more to the point.   Hate and bias have a lot in common, but there can be differences.

One more point I would like to make, the 43-year-old turned the other cheek.   Maybe he’s a better man than me, but he could use a lesson in self-defense.   I know he shielded himself, but I can’t see myself in that same situation remaining seated.   It would have been a war.   That is what cowards do though, prey on a weak and sometimes a person in a defenseless position.