Some Facebook hoaxes are spun up by people trying to get money, web traffic, etc. from users. Those we understand. They fall more under the heading of “scams”. But, there are some that purport to be kind-hearted warnings or warm-hearted stories. Usually there is no clear winner from their being spread. The one about “Racism” from earlier this week was one of those. Totally false, even old.
So is this one. The hoax sounds something like this:
“ANYONE WHO DISAGREE’S WITH ANY KIND OF RAPE COPY ‘N’ PASTE THIS
MESSAGE + GET YOUR FRIEND’S TO DO THE SAME
ATTENTION ALL GIRLS AND LADIES: if you walk from home, school, office or anywhere and you are alone and you come across a little boy crying holding a piece of paper with an address on it, DO NOT TAKE HIM THERE! Take him straight to the police station for this is the new ‘gang’ way of rape. The incident is getting worse. Warn your families and friends. Repost this so this message can get across…”
Some versions of this start with lines like “Sheriff’s Department Warning!” or “Published by CNN and FOX News“.
However, there is no evidence anywhere that this is actually happening. It has been refuted by Snopes and other sites as far back as 2005.
These things get a life of their own. Maybe they are well-meaning messages put out by someone who misheard a conversation around the water cooler that was really about last night’s episode of “Criminal Minds”. Who knows? They lie dormant for a long time and then resurface.
When I was a kid, teachers used to have copies of warnings about cartoon-character blotter acid taped to their filing cabinets. Never happened.
From time to time – usually in churches – I still see Xeroxed copies of warnings about the atheist “conversion” efforts of Madalyn Murray O’Hair. O’Hair was murdered in 1995.