By Jon Keller

BOSTON (CBS) – I was standing on the sidewalk next to the marathon finish line last Tuesday, helping out with WBZ-TV’s coverage of the tribute ceremonies, when I saw him, a scruffy-looking guy leaning against a wall wearing a large, overstuffed backpack.

I looked more closely. He was a 30-year-old guy with a press credential, and when he took out his camera he was obviously no threat.

Listen to Jon’s commentary:

But he was also obviously mature enough and plugged-in enough to know that last Tuesday was a good day to either leave the backpack at home or leave it open to reassure those around him.

And so is today.

The official police statement is that spectators today are “encouraged to leave large items such as backpacks and strollers at home.”

Strollers, I get it, but for whatever reason, they are not banning backpacks.

Perhaps the authorities fear that enough people will bring backpacks anyway to create tension among others at the sight of a banned object. They are warning you that carrying one makes you “subject to search.”

And if you’re carrying a backpack right now on your way to the race course or getting ready to leave home soon with one, I have a question – why?

This past year has been all about the community rallying together to overcome what the terrorists did to us. That has manifested itself in many ways – generous moral and financial support of those damaged, and, at times, an extraordinary level of cooperation with police, such as last year’s shelter-in-place.

They’re asking for one more day of that by suggesting – not ordering – that you not bring a backpack today.

Helping keep anxiety to a minimum today is not only the right thing to do – it’s the least you can do.

You can listen to Keller At Large on WBZ News Radio every weekday at 7:55 a.m. You can also watch Jon on WBZ-TV News.



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