The Tide Pod Challenge was the most recent example of Internet fads going too far in an attempt at easy fame and shock value. However, that is not the worst of recent crazes, with a much more dangerous one called the “No Lackin Challenge” involving guns, which resulted in an adolescent being accidentally shot.
The unbelievably reckless No Lackin Challenge involves teens and young adults pointing a loaded gun at a friend, to which the friend quickly points one back. The prank is often recorded and posted online.
The stupidity of this challenge need not be dwelled on, as it literately goes against all the basic rules of firearm safety, specifically rule two about not pointing a firearm at anything not willing to destroy.
It would only be a matter of time before the challenge went wrong, which unfortunately happened in Tennessee.
Around 5 A.M. on Thursday morning, at a downtown Memphis diner called E’s, three young men were joking around, pointing a gun at one another, which apparently did not raise concern.
However, the prank went bad almost immediately when Sherman Lackland, 21, accidentally pulled the trigger on his seventeen-year-old friend, shooting him in the head with a .40 caliber handgun.
A witness, Thomas Fitzpatrick, reported that after Lackland realized what he had done, he embraced his friend and told him to get up; then he began throwing things around the café in rage. Lackland admitted to police that they were participating in the No Lackin Challenge.
The teenager thankfully survived the shooting but was in critical condition for several days. He is still recovering in the hospital. The third teen who was sitting with the victim and Lackland at the time is Terrencio Bell, the victim’s cousin.
He reported that the victim is “in and out of consciousness” and is suffering from brain bleeding and swelling. However, Bell denied that the boys were doing the challenge and insisted that Lackland “plays with his gun all the time.”
Bell tried to diffuse the situation and say that the gun accidentally fired when Lackland removed it from his back pocket.
Memphis Police Department spokesperson Louis Brownlee, however, verified that the young men were doing the No Lackin Challenge. He recalls seeing YouTube videos of the challenge last fall and thinking how careless it was then. Brownlee adds that while the incident at E’s was tragic, it is the first, and hopefully last injury from such behavior.
Lackland is facing charges of “aggravated assault, reckless endangerment, and unlawful possession of a firearm,” as Tennessee requires a carry permit, which Lackland did not have. He will appear in court on Friday and has a bond of $25,000.
The name of the challenge comes from a Chicago slang term “lackin,” which means to be unarmed. To prove to friends that they were not “lackin,” people began pointing their guns at one another.
This unfortunate occurrence is going to be yet another example that liberals give for imposing stricter gun laws that threaten second amendment rights, though it is not an accurate representation of law-abiding gun owners, rather juvenile behavior coupled with lack of firearm safety, such as never pointing guns at people.
It does, however, bring up some important concerns, such as where the participating individuals are acquiring the weapons being used, and why no one has seen social media videos of the stunt and tried to stop it.
At the diner, the manager, Ron Eanes did not appear to intervene in the recklessness but simply observed. He reported about the incident saying that the “young kids…were sitting there talking, and they started showing each other a gun and it accidentally went off.”
‘Showing’ or pointing it at one another? While it should not have been brandished in any form, especially considering it was being illegally possessed, the manager should have immediately demanded the adolescents put the weapon away upon seeing it.
The individuals who have opted to partake in such a challenge are gambling with one another’s lives “trying to get Internet-famous,” as Brownlee called it. The risks outweigh any perceived reward, as was demonstrated in Memphis.
Unfortunately, it sometimes takes someone getting hurt or killed before others realize how irresponsible a new trend is. This happened recently when poisonous detergent was being ingested, with some people just now beginning to heed obvious warnings.
The victim remains in serious condition and will hopefully make a full recovery. We can only hope that this trend ceases immediately, or there will absolutely be casualties. Guns do not kill people on their own, however, people pointing them at each other for fun will ensure that it happens.