If someone were to come up to me and make the following offer – pay me and I’ll protect you from harm, or don’t pay me and I’ll harm you - how am I supposed to react? Mafiosi and other organized criminals are all made of the same stuff. The stuff that makes someone reach into your wallet and take your money while you aren’t looking. Or how about what happened to my cousin in Italy? She had her car stolen and then had the thieves called her to say they would give it back if she paid them. What starts as a protection scam morphs into drug trafficking, prostitution, construction corruption, you name it. The common denominator is that they are stealing from people in every way they can.
Organized crime has taken on a certain aura of ‘coolness’ by depicting members as ‘followers of a code of honour.’ They flaunt their cars and wads of cash making it is easy for the population to be enamoured by their lifestyles. But in the end they got there by taking advantage of others. Pretty despicable if you ask me. It’s easy for them to be giving and kind to their friends and family members. They are often described as generous and loving. But who cares? Even the most evil people immaginable can be nice when it suits them. Hitler, Stalin, and Pol Pot all had people who loved them. But the measure of a man is not in how he treats his allies. It is in how he treats the people he doesn’t know.
Earn your money through hard work or ingenuity or both and I’ll respect you. Earn it through thievery and intimidation and you can go screw yourself. My father, an Italian immigrant, earned his money mopping floors. It wasn’t much but people were willing to pay as a fair exchange for his services. They were never MADE to pay in order for him not to hurt someone. He won’t have a dozen cars laden with flowers when it comes time for his funeral but he will have everyone’s true respect.
Posted in Random thoughts.Posted on 31 Dec 2013