Blind Paranoia

This morning, I was struck by how paranoid some blinks are about being robbed. Maybe I’ve just been extremely lucky or something, but I don’t understand this intense fear.

I’m on a listserve for people who want to talk about the Talks program, the thing that makes my cellphone talk. I forget how this whole thing started, but it quickly degenerated. Someone said that they find that if they have the voice up a bit on their phone, people notice and then ask questions about talking cellphones, and it becomes a bit of an education. Immediately, some snapped back, “Or, they realize you’re blind and can’t see them coming and come and steal your phone! The voice will draw them like moths to a flame! Keep the phone out of sight and plug in headphones, for god’s sake! Having the phone out in plain sight is like saying ‘rob me rob me rob me!'”

Hmmm. I think they’ll notice I’m blind far before I whip out a talking mobile phone. I will have walked to where I am with the aid of a dog. Some of us will have white canes. We’re obvious. Someone who wants to rob us doesn’t need to hear speech to figure it out.

And, won’t having earphone chords extending down from our heads intrigue would-be robbers just as much? now, instead of knowing it’s a cellphone, they’ll wonder what it is. They’ll wonder if it’s an mp3 player! Maybe it’s something even cooler than that.

Plus, we’re really obvious in big groups of people. If someone decides to rob us, people are going to see it. I know we’re more vulnerable to being taken advantage of in other ways, but I don’t hear a lot of blind people getting mugged in crowds of folks.

I’m just amazed at how much of a lively discussion has been sparked on whether or not you should hold out your phone while doing stuff on it. Of course, it’s good to have common sense and not flash money around or walk around jabbering on a cellphone in areas where cellphones get stolen a lot, but this seems like far more than common sense safety. this seems like a lot of us are living in fear! How sad. I know the world sucks, but I have never found that it sucked that much.

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