If you live around the Albany area, you probably know the story, but for the rest of you: former National Football League player Brian Holloway’s home in Stephentown, rural Rensselaer County, was broken into by about 300 kids and used as a party house on August 31, 2013. Holloway was in Florida at the time and these kids trashed the place, with graffiti on the walls and the like.
Holloway started some organization and website called Help Me Save 300, where he explained what happened, and most notably, posted the tweets and photos that the teens themselves posted AT THE TIME of their activity. He said he wanted to reach out to the young people and show them “there are better ways to spend their time than drinking, drugs, and vandalism.”
This has led some of the parents of the kids who left “urine-stained carpets, broken windows, damaged walls” to threaten to sue Holloway because he posted their pictures on his website, which, of course, has received appropriate local pushback.
What exactly is Holloway raising money for? (There’s no corporation in the state of New York called Help Me Save 300; I checked.)
It is an icky story. And I can’t help wonder if 30 black and/or Hispanic kids had broken into someone’s house if there would be as much “kids will be kids” reaction among some.
Naturally, there’s usually a silly side to these tales: CNN’s Anderson Cooper mocked, “First of all, how lame is it that someone tweeted the 518?” 518 is the local area code. First I recall someone touting their area code in that fashion was Ruben Studdard on the second season of American Idol, giving a shoutout to the 205. So Anderson is gratuitously making fun of upstate New York; guess one must find the levity where one can.