Indifference of Good Men

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In the article “38 Who Saw Murder Didn’t Call the Police”, Martin Gansberg explains what happened the night Kitty Genovese was murdered. 38 people heard her cries for help from their domiciles, and none acted. One man called after the killer’s third attack, but not in time to save Kitty’s life. 30 minutes elapsed before anyone called the police. Yet, during these 30 minutes, the residents heard everything that was happening to Miss Genovese.

This is not the first time I have heard of this article. Last year in AP Psych we studied this case, and it is talked about in the first scene of the movie The Boondock Saints. Each time this case is mentioned, I feel sick. It is human kind’s duty to aid fellow men no matter what the cost. It is understandable people don’t want to risk their own lives or the lives of their loved ones, but in simple cases of calling the police, what is the harm? This lurid act of murder was able to follow through because people were unwilling to get involved. As any knowledgeable citizen would understand, the police force meticulously protects witnesses. Isn’t a few questions worth saving a life?

Throughout history, humans show a lax in morals and the willingness to help other people because they don’t feel like it. This can be seen in wars, dictatorships, and people who wish to become wealthy at any cost. The case of Kitty Genovese is a perfect example of mans’ fallibility. Humans have not realized to obviate rash acts of murder and crime, it is necessary to take action and call the police. If more crimes were reported and more criminals charged, less people would commit a crime in fear of being caught. This case is repeated over and over because it is one of man’s greatest mistakes.

We cannot deny man has some strong points. Around the world, people travel to other countries to fight the war on AIDS, find the cure for cancer, and stop suffering altogether. If millions of people fight for other people, how hard was it for one of the 38 people to pick up the phone? Fighting AIDS is one thing, but to pick up a phone is apparently a complicated thing to accomplish.

It is man’s civil duty to help with a crime scene. To give the police information is to save a life. If someone sees a murder and says nothing, that is one more murderer running free on the streets. This would bother me. I would fear for the lives of my family and neighbors. I would call the police. Most intelligent and life-loving humans would. We must show vengeance for those who have been senselessly murdered like Kitty Genovese. Call the police. Save a life.





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