On March 28, 2008, National Public Radio produced a story on a robbery. However, this isn’t your normal robbery story. I’ve read a lot of stories on crime and no story on crime can ever touch this one.
Julio Diaz takes the subway home every day, from work. One stop away from the Bronx, New York, Julio stops at his favourite diner. Unfortunately, one evening in February, Julio Diaz’s trip to his favourite diner was interrupted by a teenager with a knife. The teenager wanted Julio’s money.
Like most of us are taught, Diaz complied and gave his money to the teenager. Just as the teenager walked away, Diaz told him, “You forgot something. If you’re going to be robbing people for the rest of the night, you might as well take my coat to keep you warm.”
With the teenager responding with a puzzled look, Diaz said, “if you’re willing to risk your freedom for a few dollars, then I guess you must really need the money. I mean, all I wanted to do was get dinner and if you really want to join me … hey, you’re more than welcome.”
So, Diaz and the teenager took a seat in the diner and Diaz gave the teen a lesson on being kind. Diaz greeted the manager, servers, and the dishwashers. The teen was surprised at Diaz’s actions and asked why he was so nice to everyone. Diaz asked the teen if he was ever taught to be nice. The teen responded, “yea, but I didn’t think people actually behaved that way”.
The bill arrived and Diaz said, “look, I guess you’re going to have to pay for this bill ’cause you have my money and I can’t pay for this. So if you give me my wallet back, I’ll gladly treat you.” The teen gave Diaz his wallet back and Diaz gave the teen $20. In return, Diaz asked for the teen’s knife. The teen complied and handed over the knife.
Diaz leaves us with these words: “I figure, you know, if you treat people right, you can only hope that they treat you right. It’s as simple as it gets in this complicated world.”
To read the full story by Michael Garofalo, visit the NPR site.