Exams are approaching. U.G.H

It’s probably due to all the work I’ve been doing
*you’re only just three weeks in ya idiot, you can’t even begin to fathom the work load in your second term, much less sophomore, pre-junior, junior and senior years. HA*
that I feel like I haven’t posted in here for ages. Nothing much to talk about. Exams are approaching (already!!!!), I have a few next week including french so I may as well start eating my textbooks for breakfast, lunch and dinner.

Is this going to be me? I HOPE NOT (but probably will)

But that all being said, I have more interesting things to talk about than some stupid impeding exams. I mean I could talk about that threat that someone made on the internet against students in Philadelphia universities. That’s right.

So basically on 4chan.org, an anonymous message board which is the same site that was used to warn people against the community college shooting in Oregon, some anonymous guy posted a threat which basically amounted to the information that on October 5th Monday, at 2.00 pm Eastern Time, some maniac would carry out a massacre in a classroom at a university in Philadelphia. Obviously, the authorities took the threat pretty seriously. Classes got cancelled, there was increased surveillance in colleges, increased police officers in the ares and even a news van in Drexel. The universities that got most attention due to the threat was UPenn, Drexel and Temple University which are all located a couple of blocks from each other in a tight concentrated area called University City.

Waking up on Monday felt weird. On one hand, I could go to my classes because I didn’t have any at 2.00 pm. On the other, I could stay in (which is what many people did both out of fear AND pure devil-may-care laziness) using the free pass that professors were handing out so students could skip class without getting marked ‘ABSENT’.

I should also say that my feeling towards the threat were confused. Back in Sri Lanka, during the latter part of the 30 year civil that ended in 2009, there were times that were infinitely scarier due to very real bomb threats. (Of course I was only alive for the latter part since I wasn’t born when it began). Nearing the end of it, around late 2008 and early 2009, there was a lot of public fear as the terrorists began carrying out last-ditch suicide bombings that targeted civilians in crowded places such as train stations, buses and bus stations. It got to the point that schools implemented mandatory security checks at the entrances and parents set up their own ‘Guard’ service to watch the school their child went. No one went out after dark, alone or otherwise. There was a heighted sense of awareness and fear, people started second guessing strangers, bags left alone in buses or public places were watched carefully in case they were carrying bombs. The fears weren’t unfounded.

Compared to that, the ‘fear’ on Monday was much, much less.

But I did feel somewhat afraid. For starters, America has the worst record for public shoots and massacres like the one the threat alluded to. What with the lawful gun toting here, anyone with a permit can wave around a fire arm. Also, this WAS the same message board on which the previous shooting had been forewarned about. Add onto that the fact that the government authorities were taking this seriously, there was certainly a sense of fear on Monday.

But 2.00pm came and went without event and everyone in Philadelphia (and possible the country, I don’t know, maybe that’s a stretch) breathed a sigh of relief as the threat proved to be nothing but a hoax.


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Rishav K Singh

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