[Food for Thought] Getting Away With Crime?
Posted by Versatile
8-21-09: Initial release.
OJ Simpson. He was one of history’s greatest football players, only to hit his downfall with the 1995 trial where it was speculated he had murdered wife Nicole Simpson and her friend Ronald Goldman. Now I don’t want to get into the details of this trial, but the bottom line of the story is that OJ Simpson was acquitted or murder, meaning that he was pronounced innocent. The problem is so many people (and probably himself) know he was guilty, but thanks to a damn good lawyer he got way with what many believed to be murder.
In late 2006, OJ Simpson released a book titled “If I Did It”. The book which is supposed to be a first-person fictional account of the murder had he actually committed it was withdrawn by the publisher before it release, only to be released later by the Goldman family. I got a chance to read this book months ago, and I can say it was gripping.
Sure, it was marketed as “fiction”, but c’mon, we all know it is OJ Simpson’s own way of dealing with himself and the crime he probably did commit.
Where am I going with this?
Thanks for a fellow Underground reader, he had suggested I work on a story like this, and I said I would because I think all of us one way or another had done something that may not have been right, and gotten away with it without being caught? Starting to sound familiar?
I’m sure as kids, we all did something stupid or foolish and gotten away with it. Maybe it was the time you had shaved the neighbor’s cat and you lied about it. Maybe you were the one who stole a few dollars from the church basket when no one was watching. Or better yet, you copied someone’s homework word for word and was proud you got 100% without getting busted.
What is it that empowers us to act like this? To cheat, steal, lie, and perhaps be dishonest? Is it because of the sick gratification that we know there is a good chance we can do something bad and get away with it without getting caught or punished? Is it because we wanted to see if we can get away from it? If you are good at it, are you going to do it again and again?
A prime example is pedophiles. They do their “thing” with a child, and don’t get caught. So they continue to do so over and over and then they are considered a sexual predator. One day they do get caught, and its on TV. You think you are getting into a house to have some cookies with the girl, and then oops, here comes the TV camera. Sure, you talk about how you were coming over just to chat and nothing else, but then the IM chat logs are read and you just feel sick inside. You say “Oh, I changed my ways. I will never do this again!” Sadly, we know you will and that is why you are handcuffed by the police when you leave the house.
However, there are people out there who are so good at what they do that they will never get caught. You know that on “America’s Most Wanted”, there is a top 10 list? Some of those guys have been on that list for years! Heck, even the FBI can’t even track them and they are still committing crimes. This is how good these guys are, and I bet they are just laughing right now rolling around in their bed of weapons or whatever else they got going on.
So does Versatile have a story to share?
Oh wait, are you implying that I had my own fair share of bad deeds? I suppose you are right. When I was a young boy, around 8 years old, there is a supermarket near my house. One day when I was there with my family, I went to the toys section to see all the new toy cars because boys love to play with cars, right? As I stood there looking at this toy truck, I had noticed a pack of Wrigley gum. It was the Juicy Fruit kind, with the yellow wrapper. Oh man, did it look good! It was the 24 pack version, and I”m sure it costs about a $1 back then.
Sure, $1 is chump change but to an 8 year old kid it was a lot of money! Now I couldn’t believe I was contemplating this decision, but I wanted to take it and dare I say steal it? I already checked the ceiling and I was in a position where no camera in the black glass semi sphere could see me.
Let me state that as a kid I knew this was wrong. I go to church, and I had morals, but I don’t know what came over me when I took that stick of gum and put it into my pocket. My heart was pounding. Is the rectangular piece of gum in my pocket noticeable? Can I walk casually as if it never existed? Why are my hands starting to sweat? FOCUS!
So I found my family and they were in the check out line paying for the groceries. Although the exit was about 50 feet from the cash register, it felt like eternity to walk there! I was feeling very bad inside, as if there was a pit deep in my stomach that I could not get rid of. Sure, I put on a fake smile and pretended to be happy, but only because it made the guilt feel slightly better. As I was pushing the grocery cart towards the door, I had realized something. This particular grocery store has the “metal detector” like stands so that when you walk through it it would alarm for items that were stolen?
Did the gum in my pocket have the security strip that would turn on the alarm? Now I really had butterflies in my stomach. What happened if the alarm went on? What would I say? How would I justify the thing in my pocket? Would I cry and say I’m sorry?! Now remember, I was only 8 years old so I would not be calm if I was caught.
I was afraid that my dad would get pissed, and that in the back of my mind God would condemn me to hell. So what did I do? I just took a deep breath, and walked through that alarm system…
AND NOTHING HAPPENED! HALLELUJAH!
The moment I was outside, I felt as if a heavy weight was lifted off my chest. My hands stopped sweating, and did I notice a spring in my steps? >_>
Of course, I dared not to eat that gum until I was home and out of sight of my parents or siblings. I wanted to enjoy that gum because it was mine, and I didn’t need any further questions asked of me as to where it came from. If someone did question me, I would just flat out lie and said my friend down the street gave it to me.
Since that day, I never did a foolish act like that again. Just thinking about this whole story today as I write it makes me sick to my stomach, reliving this memory. Even to this day, I have not stolen anything. I’m not going to go into details, because that is another grey area matter which I don’t want to discuss at this moment, but let’s say that I know wrong when I see it and I would never partake in that matter.
Have you ever done something wrong and you know you really really screwed up? Like you can’t even focus and you know that if someone found out, you wished you could just dig a hole in the ground and bury yourself there and wish everything would go away? Yes, I have been there too, and it is those moments that I do not want to experience ever again. I’m sure you wouldn’t want to ever.
The best days of my life literally is where I can take a deep breath and just breathe calmly without having a fear in the world. In these days, I am purely happy because I have my health, family, friends, and the best part of it all, nothing eating away at my conscience!
So now its your turn. Have a short story to tell us about where you gotten away with something and never got caught? We want to hear it! How did it make you feel? Of if you did get busted, what happened and how did it feel too? Stories like these are interesting because it invokes universal human emotion, and everyone can relate. I can’t wait to hear about yours too!