When Does Caution Become Paranoia?

When Does Caution Become Paranoia?

The above is a direct link to the article im about to post below.

A Massachusetts high school student faces felony charges for allegedly posting on social media rap lyrics that police say amount to terrorist threats, the Valley Patriot reports.

“He posted a threat in the form of rap where he mentioned the White House, the Boston Marathon bombing, and said ‘everybody you will see what I am going to do, kill people,” said Joe Solomon, who is police chief of Methuen, a city in north Massachusetts.

According to a press release from the Methuen Police Department, 18-year-old Cameron D’Ambrosio posted the alleged threatening rap on Facebook. Police investigated the teenager after one of D’Ambrosio’s classmates reported to Methuen High School authorities the “disturbing verbiage” on his Facebook page. The press release notes that the alleged threats “were in general and not directed towards another person or the school.” 

According to the Eagle Tribune, D’Ambrosio was charged with communicating a terrorist threat and faces up to 20 years in jail. He is being held on $1 million bail. All this, for writing some scary rap lyrics on Facebook.

In addition to arresting D’Amrbosio, police searched the teenager’s home and confiscated a computer and Xbox. They searched the Facebook page for additional clues to the amateur rapper’s activities. The Valley Patriot has their findigs:

D’Ambrosio also had disturbing photos and posts on his Facebook page including  “Fuck politics, Fuck Obama and Fuck the government!!”

He also had a “disturbing satanic photo posted as well as a photo of himself on a “Wanted Poster” that reads “Wanted Dead or Alive” a quick perusal of his Facebook page shows D’Ambrosio’s unusual interest in gangs, violence and a criminal lifestyle.

The 18-year-old alleged “terrorist,” whose only crime in this case appears to be posting rap lyrics on Facebook, will be arraigned Thursday. 

I can understand that people are on edge these days, and the Boston marathon attack is still fresh on the minds of many. Not to mention the threat of potential violence in schools, also being right at the for front of all our minds.

But I wonder where the line is between justified cautious action, and and downright paranoia?

I admit I have not seen the rap video, nor have I seen the facebook page, so I can not draw any conclusions about the incident from either (and neither should anyone else, though I know many will). And I admit, very bad timing on the part of releasing this online (mention of Boston was bound to ruffle a few feathers).

Possibly even in poor taste. But I can not be a good judge of that since im not a rap fan. And as for the lyrics, one can not judge “taste” now either, since the emotional weight of the words may have faded in say, a year (can you imagine if someone released a song reffrencing Bush in a bad way, in the weeks after 9/11?).

But either way, my first thought is that, this is about as good of proof as your going to get when it comes to how much “freedom of speech” you REALLY have in America. But my 2ed thought is, im thinking that what he said and thought, may not be a whole lot different then what we ALL at times say and/or feel.

For one, unless your living under a rock or on mars, its hard to escape the politics of the US gov’t these days. And almost everyone on BOTH sides, does not have good things to say either, Im sure this kid is not the first to openly say  “Fuck Obama” or reference the Whitehouse in a negative way.

And we all, at different times, feel negativity towards the people around us, though we may not always voice our irritation.

When it comes to the sing lyrics, I fail to see them as threatening. Because of what they are, SONG LYRICS. If someone writes a fictional story about, say, an assassination, that does not mean they intend to do it in real life. Its FICTION. And in terms of hip hop, a genre that thrives on being over the top, and a genre with a history of violence, its not really all that surprising.

Did anyone even consider this kid a “threat”, before he dropped a few key words that applied to recent events?

There is almost always more to the story.

One thought on “When Does Caution Become Paranoia?

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