Jonathan Chait

It Seems Like National Gang Week Starts Earlier Every Year

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I've now heard two anecdotal instances of people receiving this chain email:

Subject: FW: Driver beware

National Gang Week is starting: This is their new target method while driving on any roads, If you see a baby car seat sitting on the side of the road DO NOT STOP!!!! These are gangs targeting people, especially women, to stop their vehicle to help a baby. They make this baby look as if it has blood on itself or on its clothes, when you get out of your vehicle in attempt to help, the gangs jump out from cornfields or tall bushes. They have beaten women to near death, and then continue to rape them with baseball bats and other torture methods. This is not just a forward of information, it is within our area. If you do happen to see a car seat DO NOT STOP CALL THE POLICE IMMEDIATELY!! Please send this onto everyone you know.

Benjamin F. Bean
State Of Tennessee
Department Of Correction

Obviously the entire thing is made up. (Can we create some program whereby any person over the age of 65 who sets up an internet account automatically gets snopes.com as the default home page?)

My favorite part of this hoax is the assumption that gangs have their own national holiday. And they call it "National Gang Week"! I bet they have this printed up on their own gang calendars. They look forward to this week all year long.

"Can we pull the fake baby rape scam today?," ask the junior members.

"Not until National Gang Week," reply the leaders.

Anyway, everybody knows that the proper ritual to celebrate National Gang Week is not to set up fake babies by the side of the road, but to release noble, doomed bipartisan fiscal plans.

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