Rebecca Traister: I was lucky not to get shot

While I was on the bike route yesterday morning, I heard what sounded like a gunshot. A block away, it was clear that at least two young men had been involved in a brawl…

Rebecca Traister: I was lucky not to get shot

While I was on the bike route yesterday morning, I heard what sounded like a gunshot. A block away, it was clear that at least two young men had been involved in a brawl that went on for several minutes. I followed the sounds of that argument, then turned and heard a closer volume of gunfire. From my vantage point, I could tell it was a stray bullet — kind of like one that hits an old man, perhaps, as he’s walking to the mailbox, and just misses.

When I reached the post, I asked a passerby if I could use his cellphone to record the scene. Then a young man with a towel over his face, all squinting and walking with his hands in his pocket, as if he’d been shot, got on the phone and also asked the same question.

When you’re running, the last thing you want to do is hang back and let people come in the back door. That’s a career-killer. That’s why I got my bike back. They were not looking for a journalist; they were not looking for a weapon. They just wanted some conflict. I was worried that I was going to get into a situation with somebody who would hurt me. I was very lucky. But as my taxi driver told me, it only takes one shot, and everything’s gone.

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