Moral Value and Reason

The Monist 66 (1):146-159 (1983)
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Abstract

John Alexander entered the Powell Street branch of the San Francisco Savings Bank shortly after 2:00 p.m. yesterday. He took his place in line and quietly waited his turn. But when he reached the window of teller Jane East, he quickly took a pistol from his pocket and began to order her to give him all the money in her cash drawer. Just as Alexander started to make his demand, Barney Gleason, a bank customer, rushed up to East’s window, shoved Alexander to the side, and simultaneously knocked Alexander’s pistol to the floor. Bob Mann, the guard on duty, saw the gun, quickly scooped it up, and turned the tables on Alexander, who was soon handcuffed and taken off by the police. James Metzger, the bank manager, warmly thanked Gleason and said he would recommend him for a “San Francisco Certificate of Merit.” These certificates are awarded monthly to citizens who risk their lives for their fellow San Franciscans.

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