Wednesday, August 6, 2014

Ethical Question

I recently discovered that I was in possession of forged money.

I tried using a $20 bill at a convenience store and was surprised when my buddy behind the coutner did a double-take when he saw the bill. He suggested that it was a fake, and then used that handy marker thingy to confirm his suspicion.



I'm pretty sure that's a first for me.

I was with a friend at the time who said I "could try passing it off" to someone else.

I called a friend who knows more about these things than I do, and he told me that a bank wouldn't honor it (I suppose I shouldn't be surprised, but for some reason I was...a little bit.)

He then suggested what my friend did: pass it off to some unsuspecting fella and let them deal with it.

So, what would you do?

Option 1: Pass it on.
Reasoning: Who knows how many more hands it would pass through before it finally made its way to a bank. Maybe at that point it would be in poor enough condition that it would make its way through. Or, maybe it'll somehow get destroyed before it'll ever make its way to a bank.

Option 2: Give it to a bank.
Reasoning: Pray that the bank you go to has a policy of "we'll give you the money because we're going to pass it on to the FBI, who will then catch the people involved, who will then give us millions as a cash reward."

Option 3: Destroy it.
Reasoning: It isn't destroying money, because it isn't money. No one else should have to lose $20. I got stuck with it, let that be the end of it.

Option 4: Deliver it to the FBI.
Reasoning. See Option 2. I'LL get the millions cash reward.

Option 5: Cry.
Reasoning. I lost $20!

Option 6: Give it to a younger sibling/relative as a prank.
Reasoning: Do I need a reason?

Pretty sure the options have gotten exponentially worse, so we'll stop there. I do have more, but you'll have to ask for more to get more (what a horrible way to encourage comments!).

What would you do? One of my options or something else?

Let me know, in the comments below (accidental rhyme woohoo!).


  1. I just read an article on this:

    Scroll down; it's the second question.

    I vote for solid citizen. After all, the last post was about loshon hara. You're on a roll!

    1. Wait, which option was "solid citizen"? ;-)

      I'm amused at the idea of being called a "criminal" for passing on a bill that made its way into my possession. Of course, technically, I broke the law (assuming I did it knowingly), but "criminal" sounds so harsh, no?

      I was curious to know if it was a felon, so I looked it up. In NC, it takes possession of at least 5 bills to be considered a felon. I'm no lawyer, and "legalese" is ridiculous in its esotericism and vagueness, but if I understand it correctly, it's 'only' a misdemeanor in NY, which, while nothing to laugh at, isn't so scary when it's all but impossible to prove "intent" considering I only have one forged bill amongst other non-forged bill.

      But you're right, I should, and will, give it to a bank (an of course ask them about the cash rewards of millions I expect to receive).