Bystanders Have a Responsibility
February 18, 2020
There is a lot of grey area when it comes to what a bystander should do and shouldn’t do in specific situations. In my opinion, when given the chance, it’s a person’s responsibility to help others when they can. Violent actions can hurt multiple people which in most cases can simply be avoided if people would say or do something.
An example that is used the most when talking about bystanders is bullying. There are multiple ways to stop bullying without even getting directly involved. If a person is making fun of someone else, either in person or on the internet, it takes little to no time to report the bully.
It doesn’t even have to be something serious like bullying. If someone simply just drops their things, you should help them if you can. There is little to no sacrifice in everyday good deeds.
Being a bystander doesn’t just mean you’re letting a person get hurt, it also means you’re allowing something to happen that shouldn’t be.
There are so many terrible things that happen to people every day, that could easily be solved if a bystander had stepped in. If two students are fighting in the hallway and a bystander decides to record a video instead of getting an adult, they are just as responsible for the outcomes of that fight. This is seen so often throughout high school hallways, and there is so much that could have just been prevented. It would just take a bystander less than a minute to find an adult an stop the fight, but instead we see too often people getting hurt.
Just like mentioned before, there is some grey area, like deciding if a bystander should step into a situation or not. For example, if a parent yelling at their kid, discipling them, a bystander does not have a responsibility to stop that parent.
It is a very situational decision, where a person must decide whether its morally right for them to act. The morally right time to act is when you see a situation where someone needs help or is causing harm to themselves or others. A parent yelling at their kid is simply disciplining, but if a parent starts to severely hurt that kid you should stand up and say something.
Some people will argue that it isn’t a person’s business what others are involved in. In response to that, by becoming a witness to a violent event and doing nothing, you become just as responsible for the outcomes of that event. People should look after each other, not turn the other way.