Tiffany D. Payne
Nevada State College
Bystander Apathy – It’s None of My Business
The bystander effect refers to the phenomenon in which the more people present at a scene of emergency, the less likely they would help the person in the emergency. When this occurs observers are more likely to take action if there are few or no other witnesses. The author’s main points are that most people want to believe they are leaders and individuals, but really they follow by groups under the bystander apathy. The author believes that people stand around and watch the situation, without helping because no one else is helping. He also believes everyone has fell under the bystander apathy effect. The author also states while researching people that fall under the bystander effect, they wanted to understand and not just condemn people who were nearby, who saw some of the attack, or heard the cries for help. But who did nothing to help during the 35 minutes it took for a young woman to be raped and murdered on their doorstep. Like the Kitty Genovese case that made headlines about people in nearby apartments watch out their window as she was murder. Their hypothesis was that people's decision not to act was dictated more by the social context than by the moral standards of the witnesses.
The author has evidence to support his research on how people react to dangerous situations. He discusses the very famous case of Kitty Genovese On Friday 13 March in 1964, 28-year-old Catherine “Kitty” Genovese was arriving home in her built up neighborhood from a late night shift as a bar manager in Queens, New York. She was suddenly attacked with a knife by a man named Winston Moseley. She screamed aloud “Oh my God, I've been stabbed! Please help me!” We know what she screamed because people heard her. People in the apartments did not lift a finger to help Kitty. People who did not want to get involved, so they did not call the cops. Moseley saw lights come on in the apartments nearby. He knew people were watching. He ran off, leaving Catherine to drag herself into a doorway where she lay bleeding - she could possibly have survived at this point. But her attacker decided to return to finish off what he had started because, as he later said in court: “It didn't seem like anyone was going to stop me!” Although badly weakened by now, she again screamed for help. Of 38 witnesses who heard or saw some part of the