It’s not often we can cross-reference a personal anecdote from a reader with Google News archives reaching back 40 years. John Poirier’s first experience with guns—the theme of our new reader thread—was noted in the newspaper of his hometown of Lewiston, Maine, following his interview with the Boston Globe. Here’s John’s story in his own words:
I was 23 years old, a newly minted pharmacist living in the South End of Boston, which was beginning the process of gentrification in 1976. I was an idealistic young white gay man, who having witnessed the racially charged effects of forced busing, believed that it was better to integrate the neighborhoods instead of the schools. So I had just moved into a refurbished old brick building on Pembroke Street.
One dreary winter afternoon 40 years ago this January, I returned to my apartment to find the door jimmied open by a crowbar. Not thinking that the burglar might still be inside, I entered and went to the phone to call 911. Within a few seconds of picking up the receiver an armed black man appeared behind me and demanded all my money.