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Society, Life, Crime, Police, Human, Hazard, Expectations, People
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Society operates on a certain set of expectations which help to sustain a civil and polite environment. When people do not meet those expectations, the civil society breaks down. Kitty Genovese’s society did not adhere to the civil actions that valued life and its inaction resulted in homicide.
Had I been in the situation, I definitely would have called the police. There is a basic human need for action when an incident like Kitty Genovese’s occurs. For individuals to ignore it or distance themselves from it is dangerous and cost that young woman her life. Each person who did not do anything that night was complicit in her murder.
I would not have gone outside to confront the assailant. It is not advised for people to go into the streets to confront either a killer or a dangerous situation, but it is unconscionable for people to witness the attacks and cries for help and not do anything. Had any of those neighbors been in Kitty Genovese’s place, they assuredly would want neighbors and witnesses to call the police for assistance.
My decision to notify the police hinges on a basic respect for human life. It is unbelievable that people could be so indifferent to a person being attacked and, eventually, murdered. Without respect for human life, horrendous acts could become more prevalent and result in a dangerous society.
As was the case with Kitty Genovese, innocent people are harmed when the basic societal expectations which value life are not adhered to by members of that society. The breakdown of societal respect harms everyone and destroys any semblance of order.
Gansberg, Martin. “Thirty-Eight Who Saw Murder Didn’t Call the Police.” New York Times.
New York Times, 27 March 1964. Web. 13 Feb. 2014.
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