There Is An Old Man In The Children’s Section, Someone Call Swat
Posted by Jimi on June 7, 2012
While the title of this post refers to Omar Amin and the events which occurred at the Barnes & Noble store he was at, this is also a continuation post to something I earlier discussed in Paranoid At Big Brother/Big Sisters. It is important for me to state here I am not one of those militant males who are seeking to regain male rights, those people make me giggle. Instead, I am someone who fights for equality for everyone regardless of gender, color or sexuality. This incident at Barnes & Noble, as well as others like it, is deplorable and shows just how far into the realm of paranoia our society has gone. This hit me on a personal level as I am a kid at heart myself, as well as having five children of my own who I do not always being to WalMart with me, and typically the first place I go when I am at Walmart is to the toy section to check out if there are any new Nerf guns we might enjoy for our battles.
We fight so hard to ensure equal treatment for women and LGBT; however, there are other battles occurring which seem to get overlooked as not being all that important. The case of Omar Amin is a clear example of this, here we have a man who was looking for books for his young grand-daughter, another customer was uncomfortable with him being in the children’s section, reported it to the store manager and the manager told him it was against company policy for him to be in the children’s section alone–a blatant lie! Now, of course the company is going wild trying to make up for this incident, however, the simple truth is, it never should have occurred in the first place.
There are many times when people are assumed to be doing something wrong just because of their appearance (Trayvon Martin), or they are the wrong gender for the activity they are currently participating in–for example a father taking his child to the playground is typically assumed to be up to no good and is shunned by the mothers who are there with their children.
When I was growing up, people reacted to my appearance, I wore my hair long and my favorite style was blue jeans and a denim jacket with a grey hoodie underneath, by locking their car doors as I walked by or crossing the street when they saw me coming. Society does in part create angry people in the way they treat them. Of course we should be careful in our interactions, and aware of our own safety, however, there comes a time, and we are there, when you cross the line and just assume everyone is up to no good.
Unfounded fear is a disease on society, it can, and will, destroy a society from the inside out and while it is easy to diagnosis, once it has its roots, it is impossible to cure. It is imperative for each person to understand, and observe, how they interact with the world around them, how they think about people they encounter, and then take the time to evaluate their responses to those situations and determine whether or not they have acted in a proper manner. Judging someone based on their appearance is one of the most evil things you can do, in my opinion, and it drives me completely batty every time I encounter people who are that judgmental.
To close this with a personal tale–in one of my attempts at Intro. To Lit. we read the book The Curious Incident of Dog in Nighttime, this is a great book by the way and I recommend it to anyone to read, however I digress. There is a character in that story, an old woman who keeps watch over the street, even to the point of peering into open windows to see what people are doing. While we discussed this character in class every student was of the opinion she was just an old busybody widow with nothing better to do, I argued against this stating I felt she was rather creepy and of course my opinion was shot down until I asked a question: “What would your reaction to this character be if it was male?” I am sure you can figure out on your own what the responses were.
- Man booted from Barnes & Noble kids’ section (wnd.com)
- Doctor accepts bookstore’s apology after he was kicked from children’s section (foxnews.com)
- Not So Noble: Bookstore Chain Apologizes For Kicking Out Elderly Man From Children’s Book Section As Suspected Pedophile (jonathanturley.org)
- Scottsdale man gets apology after being kicked out of bookstore (azfamily.com)
- Prominent Dr. Kicked Out Off Bookstore For Being In Children’s Section Alone (revolutioninmedia.com)
- B&N for S&M? Barnes and Noble Gets Dirty in the Kids Section (kluckit.wordpress.com)