In 2008, he was on his way home on the Green Line from his part-time job at Kennedy-King College as a City Colleges student when he was jumped by a gang of thugs out to relieve him of his Zune, his cell phone and the lonely and solitary singles hanging out in his slim wallet.
After failing to beat Kyle down, the pack of muggers jumped off at the next L stop, vanishing into the rush hour crowd waiting to board the train. Their quick and vicious attack was witnessed, but neither interrupted nor protested, by the packed car of transit riders. It was only after the thugs had scurried away that one compassionate passenger provided Kyle with a handkerchief to wipe away the blood flowing from his open wounds.
Unfortunately, that's life in the big city. Citizens don't want to get involved in all-too-common outbreaks of violence for fear that they may themselves become unwitting victims. I think that kind of conduct is cowardice but I also understand it.
I don't understand, however, what went down late last month in Seattle, Washington. Four teenagers--a girl and three boys--attacked a 15-year-old girl in a Macy's department store. Seattle police reportedly witnessed the row and then ordered the teens to take it outside.
The targeted girl retreated to bus tunnel at Westlake Station, purposefully standing by security guards, thinking she would be safe.
The guards stood idly by and watched as she was allegedly (and I use this as an innocent until proven guilty phrase) badly beaten by the teenagers who had followed her out of the nearby department store.
It's one pathetic thing for citizens to watch and do nothing while an innocent victim is being beaten and mugged but it's something else altogether for hired hands to keep theirs in their pockets as they whistle while they work.
In Kyle's case, he fought off his offenders. They ended up hightailing it empty handed. The 15-year-old Seattle girl was not so fortunate. Her attackers stole her phone, her purse and her IPod, leaving her temporarily unconscious from a kick to the head.
I know the right-wingers aren't about to agree with me on this, but I'm hoping the trial lawyers help the teenage girl victim and her parents get as much as a Wall Street CEO's annual bonus in lawsuit judgments against the Seattle police department and the security company that failed to step up when regular citizens were afraid to do so.