Some young people should know better

Wife works with a woman of Italian heritage with a rather infamous last name and has the misfortune of sharing certain facial features with the infamous person so Wife is pretty sure the shared name is no coincidence. Anyway, her friend is a complete mooncalf about such things and God bless her for it; her parents have apparently sheltered her from the family business and Dad is probably not in it himself. I’ve known families like that, where Mom makes sure Dad keeps his nose clean and his no-good family isn’t allowed in the house. But this woman is naive to a fault, happy that her aunt and uncle are doing real in retirement though her aunt never worked and her uncle, whom we shall call Vito because it’s such a cliche, had only been a truck driver. Wife smiles and nods and doesn’t roll her eyes until she leaves the room.

Anyway, a while back Uncle Vito and Aunt Maria were driving along, minding their own business, when some young punk takes offence at Vito’s driving and gives him the finger. At the next light Uncle Vito climbs out of his car and goes up to the punk and asks him to do it again, which he does. Aunt Maria could hear the snap of the broken phalange from her seat in the car; it appears Vito has had some practice.

The punk’s mad so when a cop comes along he wants the cop to arrest Uncle Vito. Well, this is all happening in Melrose Park so though the cop is young, too, he’s not stupid and when he hears Uncle Vito’s name he tells the punk he’s lucky to not get arrested for hassling a nice old man.

This is a demonstration of the collapse of the American family. If the punk had a grandfather in his life to say, “Pull my finger,” he’d know better than to fall for any suggestion some old guy makes. If he had a father or a grandfather to teach him how things work he’d know better than to give anybody the finger, especially in Melrose Park, Stone Park, Cicero, or any of the other Chicago suburbs where most folks are smarter than that. And he’d know that there are old men who are tougher than them.

There’s an old guy like that in every town. There is a reason he lived so long, he was tougher than the other guys. “Young Turks” coming up should keep that in mind. There were two brothers in New York who thought they were tough, the Gallo brothers. The “old guy” was a lot tougher. When it was over, the two brothers were just “no more”.

If you ask me, it’s more a demonstration of a corrupt or weak police department. The young punk might have been a dickhead, but mob guys shouldn’t be allowed to run around breaking fingers with impunity. Yeah, yeah, it’s complicated, whatever. Doesn’t make it right.

Some young people should know better? If the details of your story are accurate, the thread title should be “Some law enforcement officials should do their fucking jobs!” And I pray this culture’s romanticizing of “da mob” ends in my lifetime.

Let me back up a bit. I never said these people should be admired or romanticised, just avoided. “Know better” in this case means some sort of self preservation instinct should kick in, if you know the old guy is a gangster. Nobody should want to piss off a psycho (which is what they are).

Um, the kid gave him the finger? Who gives a shit, it’s just a finger.

Why should we just give in and appease the mobsters? After all, they are the ones in the wrong, not the rest of us.

I don’t see the problem here at all.

Punk flips someone the finger. He thinks he’s tough or funny or whatever, but really, he’s a dumbass. Then he does it again.

Old guy breaks his finger.

Perfect. ABSOLUTELY fucking perfect. This is the way things SHOULD work.

Punk kid has it in his head that it’s OK to give the finger to someone, and that there is little or no consequence to his actions. So, he’s got a flawed view of the world, and how he fits into it. Collapse of the American family? Whatever. In this case, the village was helping raise the child. The kid shoulda known better, even if Daddy isn’t around.

Punk kid flips off a tough guy that shows him that there ARE consequences to his disrespectful and rude actions. He breaks the punk’s finger.

Cop comes, sees that the social order is working, and tells the punk he should feel lucky. The cop did the right thing - there are more important things for the cop to worry about.

This was a feel-good story that helped me start my day off right!

I give a shit when some punk gives me the finger. Especially if I’m an older guy and I’m with my wife minding my own business. It’s fuckin’ rude, and if you don’t get that, then just keep flipping people off and see what eventually happens.

This whole “appease the mobsters” thing is a red herring. It doesn’t matter if the old guy was a mobster.

I started seeing this shitheaded behavior about 10-12 years ago, when the whole Gen-X thing started shitting itself in front of me and the rest of us. Slack-jawed fucks would flip me off, or yell obscenities at me, and then when I called them on it to their face, I’d get that “Hey doood! Chill out, man! Relax!”.

They wanted to be hip and rude, but they didn’t want to be held accountable for it. And this has become a common theme ever since.

They make wine in New York?

Did I say the guy was a mobster? Or did I just imply it? I don’t know for sure, but there are clues that might tend to make one suspect that. And the lesson is that if the kid was smart he wouldn’t go flipping off strangers.

I don’t romanticize mobsters. I “respect” them, in the same way I respect rabid dogs. However, they are a part of the environment around here and care must be taken not to cross them. And though I told the story the way it was told to me I suspect the truth is that Vito hasn’t done anything more illegal than forgetting to use his turn signal in many years, though the skills and attitudes developed growing up in a tough neighborhood are never completely lost. And I have a strong suspicion that the cop didn’t know Vito from Adam’s off ox and that booka was right, that he saw that the balance of the universe was restored and anything he did was superfluous.

I do know people whose respect for mobsters is differant from mine. My inlaws were from the South Side and lived in the western burbs for many years. The western suburbs have also been where mobsters moved since the days when Capone ran Cicero. When they heard that Wife had attended a party at Tony “Big Tuna” Accardo’s home and had even fixed him a couple drinks* their reaction was that she had finally “gotten smart.” They saw the “right” connections as being important for getting ahead.** That attitude is less common these days.

    • “He liked the way I make highballs.” “But you make a highball by mixing whatever liquor you find with whatever pop you find.” “He liked that. When he was brought to the hospital to die nobody would go near him because nobody wanted to hear his last words. They just left him on a gurney in the corner of the ER so nothing slowed his trip to Hell.”

** - On the other hand, their idea of “getting ahead” did not include letting Wife leave high school a year early to take advantage of a full ride at Northwestern in Math. “You’ll miss your Senior Prom and will regret all the memories you missed.” She got ALL of the brains in that family. It’s a wonder her parents could dress themselves.

Great. Now my middle finger feels funny.

So what are the consequences for the old man’s violation of the law? From the OP, zero. Social chaos still reigns.

Well, obviously the kid is an obnoxious little shit. No problem here.

However, you’re pathetic if you think that’s something worth getting upset over. Oh, someone gave me THE FINGER!!! OH MY GOD!!! I COULD JUST DIE!!!


Some people are rude. But it’s just some dumb punk kid. Who CARES? Just drive on. He’s just trying to get a rise out of people. Oh, so shocking.

BTW, I don’t believe there is a law against giving people the finger. But there IS a law against assault. Especially of an adult to a minor. Not saying I feel too sorry for the kid, just that I think the adult was a dick too.

My grandfather’s name is Vito. He’s gone by Victor for most of his life, though, and has threatened to seriously haunt us if we put “Vito” in his obituary or on his tombstone.

I like Booka’s take on this. And to Ravenman, civil disobedience is not social chaos. Sometimes, the law really IS an ass.

So, if I take offense at what you just wrote, you wouldn’t have a problem with me committing a little civil disobedience on your fingers that typed your last message?

But in any case, it’s nice to know that road rage is now protected free speech in the minds of some.

It’s not okay to give someone the finger, which doesn’t hurt anyone, and in some cases might be a rather benign way to express displeasure at someone’s assine driving (let’s say, Uncle Vito’s).

It is okay to escalate a situation into violence, break someone’s finger, be a mobster, and have the police in your back pocket.

Did I miss a memo? My parents apparently raised me wrong. :rolleyes:

Dissenting expression: Wrong
Assault: Right


OK, booka and Lib, answer these:

What if the punk was Vito’s son or other relative? Would breaking fingers be ok then?

What if Vito was the one flipping the other guy off and getting his finger broken?

What if the punk was a girl?

What if the punk didn’t flip off Vito, but shouted “fuck you man” instead?

What if the punk just had a bumper sticker that Vito thought was offensive?

What if Vito was driving aggressively/careless and deserved to be chewed out?

I respect elders because I was was Raised Right. However, I don’t respect elders who disrespect me. If Vito did something to endanger my life on the road, I’d be mighty pissed. I might even be pissed enough to give him the finger. Toughness for the sake of toughness does not warm my heart at all.

Cicero, even now?