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I’ve seen him many times before, he is homeless and mentally ill. I always perceived him as a potential threat. That is particularly the case because one day he tried to grab me, and then took a swing at me. I easily evaded his assault, and from the confusion in his eyes, I concluded that I need not retaliate. Evasion was enough, he appeared confused and disoriented, then walked away.
However, since that day, I watch him whenever he’s near me or my family. Today was the first time I heard him speak. I realized that the level of mental illness he suffers from is much greater than I perceived. I felt sad, and somewhat ashamed of myself because I deemed him a threat.
Now, this isn’t to say that he cannot be dangerous. After all, he did try to grab me, and threw a punch at my head once. If that were my wife, he might have hurt her. So I understand that he is a danger, yet the level of malice is what I may have perceived wrong.
I don’t believe a mind with his capabilities is able to form the type of malice I may have perceived. That is why I felt bad, and ashamed of myself. But, since he threw a punch at my head, can you blame me for judging him this way?
Back in the days while I was still in the Air Force reserves, NYC used to allow us to ride the train for free. I don’t know the exact...