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So I had a chance to see The Purge last week. Without giving away too many spoilers (the trailer pretty much does that already), the movie takes places in a not-so-distant future 10 years from now. Both the unemployment and crime rates are down by record numbers. America, it appears, has never been more perfect. The catalyst for this seemingly utopian society is The Purge – an annual 12-hour period where all activities, including murder, are legal. This night is supposed to operate as a period of catharsis, allowing people to unleash all of their pent up anger and frustration; officially “purging” them of their desire to commit crime during the rest of the year.

I won’t give away too much more of the story. But I will say the movie – while having limitless potential on how good it could have been – was a bit of a failure for me. Revealing plotholes, cliched characters, a somewhat predictable ending, etc took away from an otherwise brilliant concept of a movie. I’ll let you watch the movie and decide for yourself what you think. The main point of this post is to present a “what if” scenario. What if  The Purge was real? What if the government sanctioned a period of time where no activities were off-limits? Could you see yourself committing an illegal activity? Robbery? Vandalism? Murder?

I was being a little tongue-in-cheek when I tweeted a list of my Purge “victims.” Now, before you call the cops on me, please know I was joking. Sheesh. Stop being so sensitive. But truth be told, the movie did do a good job of forcing me to think about what I would do if I was presented with a no-holds-barred situation like this. I’m quite confident I wouldn’t kill anybody. But I’m not sure I’d be the complete purist either. In the movie, some people opted not to participate and kept themselves locked up in their homes during the night. That might work for a while. But I suspect that over time, most of us would be seduced by the urge to participate in one way or another.

So, holler at me: do you think you’d do anything during The Purge? Relax folks. I’m pretty sure (not 100%, but close. Like, I dunno, 27% sure) that none of you responses will incriminate you. While it’s true that the feds are probably watching us right at this moment, it’s not like you’re actually doing it. No jury would convict you.

What say you?

– ACL

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