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Culture

Man arrested for wearing Star Wars Stormtrooper costume outside school

Technically Incorrect: In Massachusetts, Stormtroopers are seen as a threat. At least by one school principal.

Technically Incorrect offers a slightly twisted take on the tech that's taken over our lives.


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A threat to children's safety? 7NewsBoston/YouTube screenshot by Chris Matyszczyk/CNET

Some believe America is paranoid.

Others would add that though this is true, it doesn't mean that there isn't a threat on every corner.

Perhaps that was the guiding principle behind the thinking of a school principal in Lynn, Mass.

Outside the Brickett Elementary School on Wednesday afternoon was a Stormtrooper. Yes, a man in a "Star Wars" costume brandishing a toy gun. But could anyone be clear it was a toy laser gun?

Lt. Rick Donnelly told the Salem News that the principal thought it was probably plastic but didn't want to take any chances. The school was placed on lockdown.

He added of the Stormtrooper: "The way things are today, you can't have that." So police arrested 40-year-old George Cross on charges of disturbing a school and loitering within 1,000 yards of a school.

Cross protested to 7News Boston: "Like I'm some kind of weirdo or something?" Some would surely think this might be the case.

Still, Cross explained: "I bought a costume. I was walking through the neighborhood showing friends."

Donnelly's view to Salem News was that Cross didn't pose a threat. However: "He did cause a disturbance and we can't tolerate that."

Tolerance is in very short supply these days. Fear, however, is abundant. Didn't it used to be the other way around?