NPR, the L.A. Times and others, I'm sure, all reported on the theft of a two-ton cannon from the campus of Cal Tech in Pasadena, California. Only they didn't refer to it as theft: It was a "prank."
These future leaders of American industry, along with their snickering sycophants in the mainstream media, think they have pulled off a really cute stunt. In fact, all they have done is steal something that didn't belong to them. Perhaps they thought spending hundreds of dollars on a rental truck and forklift (or did they steal those too?) was a better way to spend money than donating it to charity. Spending days (or weeks?) in planning and executing the crime was time better spent than volunteering at a food bank?
These punks deserve to spend a little time in jail and a lot of money desperately trying to avoid it. If terrorists want to blow up a university campus, they now know it will be easy to drive a U-Haul filled with a fertilizer bomb to the center of campus using forged "work orders." Stealing my car for a "joy ride" is a crime -- even if you leave the car unscratched after you are through "borrowing" it.
A "prank" is painting a mustache on a passed-out-from-jello-shots frat boy. Stealing a valuable heirloom is theft.
It will be interesting to see what sort of punishment MIT's administration dishes out to these students.
NOTE: I know, I know. It's been done before. I don't care. Taking something that belongs to someone else without their permission is stealing. Next question.