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Tue Apr 6, 2021, 02:42 PM

Why do bystanders fail to intervene when they see others in pain?



Tweet text:
Legal Defense Fund
@NAACP_LDF
“I have seen similar scenes from history of bystanders who turned away. It is a sign of danger for our society … We need to understand, what did these security guards think they were securing in that moment?” - @Sifill_LDF
People attend an Asian American anti-violence press conference outside the building were a 65-year-old Asian woman was attacked in New York on March 30, 2021. - New York police were searching Tuesday for a man who violently attacked an Asian-American woman as bystanders seemingly looked on without intervening, the latest incident of anti-Asian violence in the United States. The attack, which took place on a sidewalk...

Op-Ed: Why do bystanders fail to intervene when they see others in pain?
Social identities can cause us to extend care to people within our boundaries but withhold our concern from people we think are on the outside.
latimes.com
8:30 AM · Apr 6, 2021


https://www.latimes.com/opinion/story/2021-04-04/bystander-intervene-derek-chauvin-asian-attacks

In the last week, we saw another horrific anti-Asian assault on video. A 65-year-old woman was walking to church in New York City when she was brutally attacked by a man on a street near Times Square. The assailant said, “You don’t belong here,” as he kicked her in the chest and stomped on her while she was on the ground.

The footage from an apartment building captured the vicious attack, allowing authorities to identify and arrest a suspect. The video also caught the behavior of security guards who witnessed the assault from inside the building. Stunningly, rather than intervening to help, one of the guards slowly walked toward the woman. Then he closed the door, leaving her alone on the sidewalk a few feet away.

Reacting on Twitter, Sherrilyn Ifill, president of the NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund, wrote, “I have seen similar scenes from history of bystanders who turned away. It is a sign of danger for our society… We need to understand, what did these security guards think they were securing in that moment?”

This is exactly the right question. We think part of the answer is about identity.

Since the 1960s, social psychologists have been studying why bystanders fail to intervene when strangers need help. Among other factors, people are significantly more likely to assist victims if they believe that they share an identity — a common group membership — with them.

*snip*



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Response to Nevilledog (Original post)

Tue Apr 6, 2021, 02:50 PM

1. Most common answer, fear and shock

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Response to Nevilledog (Original post)

Tue Apr 6, 2021, 02:51 PM

2. See Philip Zimbardo's Ted Talk

The psychology of evil

(Good ideas at the end for combatting it).

https://www.ted.com/talks/philip_zimbardo_the_psychology_of_evil/transcript?language=en

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Response to Nevilledog (Original post)

Tue Apr 6, 2021, 02:53 PM

3. I'm not one of those........ have never been, but sadly at 74 I have to step back...


it's frustrating!!!!!!!!!!!

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Response to Nevilledog (Original post)

Tue Apr 6, 2021, 02:54 PM

4. IMHO, perhaps THE most fundamental difference between us Liberals and the Cons ...

Is that for us, this:

"if they believe that they share an identity — a common group membership — with them"

Is a condition which we pretty much instinctively assess as 'true' for the population of most living creatures on earth, esp. humans and other mammals.

Whereas for the Cons, there is an instinctive calculation along the lines of 'is this being like, or of, myself' when assessing their needs, and deciding whether they should address them.

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Response to Nevilledog (Original post)

Tue Apr 6, 2021, 02:57 PM

5. "What did these security guards think they were securing in that moment?"

Security in the U.S. is focused in many ways on private property, rather than the well-being of people, and that's certainly what those guards were trying to protect.

Identity is also certainly part of it. Also, people tend to intervene less when there's a crowd, which makes it easy for each person watching to assume someone else will help. People are also generally pretty bad at recognizing a situation that needs intervention -- we're really good at making up stories in are heads to explain what we're watching, rather than acting on it, especially if no one else is reacting.

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Response to Nevilledog (Original post)

Tue Apr 6, 2021, 03:01 PM

6. We've been conditioned to trust authority/police's judgement and training. n/t

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Response to Nevilledog (Original post)

Tue Apr 6, 2021, 03:04 PM

7. The attack was over in two seconds.

If you saw the video it was just bang bang and over. There wasn’t even any time to react to it, let alone intervene. This is just cold logic here but what obligation were they under to do anything about it? It didn’t happen in their place of work. They’re not cops, it’s not their job to arrest anyone or stop anyone. That dude was obviously a psycho, who knows if he had a gun or another weapon? Everyone likes to think they’d be this big hero but suppose that dude turned around and beat the shit out of them too or killed one of them? That was not a small dude and he was in quite a rage apparently. In my wild youth I might have jumped on the guy but I’m too old for that kind of bullshit now. I’m not getting my head beat in for anyone who isn’t my family.

I think it’s easy to say that they should have stopped the guy but most people want nothing to do with violence that doesn’t involve them personally. Get it on video and call the cops.

I don’t know what anyone was expected to do.

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Response to BlueTsunami2018 (Reply #7)

Tue Apr 6, 2021, 03:06 PM

9. Maybe not just shut the door?

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Response to Nevilledog (Original post)

Tue Apr 6, 2021, 03:04 PM

8. Security guards and surveillance cameras protect property and sometimes rich people.

They aren't there to protect people, bystanders, or even customers.
A security guard that gets involved will be fired.

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Response to FSogol (Reply #8)

Tue Apr 6, 2021, 03:07 PM

10. They would have been exonerated by public support

Maybe yelling “Hey! I’m calling the cops!”

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Response to Nevilledog (Original post)

Tue Apr 6, 2021, 03:17 PM

11. Unfortunately, it's nothing new. Reference: Kitty Genovese, 1964.

At approximately 2:30 a.m. on March 13, 1964, Genovese left the bar where she worked and began driving home in her red Fiat. While waiting for a traffic light to change on Hoover Avenue, she was spotted by Winston Moseley, who was sitting in his parked car. Genovese arrived home around 3:15 a.m. and parked her car in the Kew Gardens Long Island Rail Road station parking lot, about 100 feet (30 m) from her apartment's door, in an alleyway at the rear of the building. As she walked toward the apartment complex, Moseley, who had followed her home, exited his vehicle, which he had parked at a corner bus stop on Austin Street. Armed with a hunting knife, he approached Genovese.

Genovese ran toward the front of the building, and Moseley ran after her, overtook her, and stabbed her twice in the back. Genovese screamed, "Oh my God, he stabbed me! Help me!" Several neighbors heard her cry, but only a few of them recognized the sound as a cry for help. When Robert Mozer, one of the neighbors, shouted at the attacker, "Let that girl alone!" Moseley ran away and Genovese slowly made her way toward the rear entrance of the building, seriously injured and out of view of any witnesses.

Witnesses saw Moseley enter his car, drive away, and return ten minutes later. Shadowing his face with a wide-brimmed hat, he systematically searched the parking lot, the train station, and an apartment complex, eventually finding Genovese, who was barely conscious and lying in a hallway at the back of the building, where a locked door had prevented her from going inside. Out of view of the street and of those who may have heard or seen any sign of the initial attack, Moseley stabbed Genovese several more times before raping her, stealing $49 from her, and running away again. The attacks spanned approximately half an hour, and knife wounds in Genovese's hands suggested that she attempted to defend herself from him. A neighbor and close friend, Sophia Farrar, found her shortly after the second attack and held her in her arms until an ambulance arrived.

Records of the earliest calls to police are unclear and were not given a high priority; the incident occurred four years before New York City implemented the 911 emergency call system. One witness said his father called the police after the initial attack and reported that a woman was "beat up, but got up and was staggering around". A few minutes after the final attack, another witness, Karl Ross, called two friends for advice on what to do, the second of whom called a third friend who then called the police, who arrived at the scene within minutes of this call. Genovese was picked up by an ambulance at 4:15 a.m., and died en route to the hospital. She was buried on March 16, 1964, in Lakeview Cemetery in New Canaan, Connecticut.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Murder_of_Kitty_Genovese

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Response to Buns_of_Fire (Reply #11)

Tue Apr 6, 2021, 04:12 PM

13. I'll never forget that incident...

It was when I was young and alone and not overly streetwise at that time. It sure woke up this single female on her own.

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Response to Nevilledog (Original post)

Tue Apr 6, 2021, 03:40 PM

12. My wife and I are both the sort who jump in...

... and have scars and injuries to show for it.

Usually if a single bystander breaks the ice, others will follow.

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Response to Nevilledog (Original post)

Tue Apr 6, 2021, 05:24 PM

14. I couldn't imagine just standing by. I couldn't live with myself if I didn't try to help someone

in any dire situation be it an attack or a health emergency or something else that required immediate action by someone.

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