Hey all you Green Dot readers!
The first week of summer has come and gone faster than you can say Jack Robinson. The teachers at Blountstown High and us here at the Green Dot program had a pretty uneventful week hanging around the school and getting things in order for the rest of the summer.
Over the weekend I was reading some articles on the Bystander Effect. For those of you unaware of it’s existence, the Bystander Effect is a social phenomenon where people are less likely to help a victim when there is a large crowd observing the situation. This is a huge obstacle to be aware of if we’re going to be doing Green Dots all over our school and community. It’s so important that we stick to our values and do the right thing even if we begin to feel less socially responsible the more people crowd around us. The Chicago Tribune expertly documents one of these cases occurring at a 7-Eleven convenience store:
Marques Gaines was mugged outside a 7-Eleven and was left unconscious in street to be run over by a cab ending his life. Video footage later revealed that many bystanders saw what was happening outside the store that night, but many people did not respond to the actions being taken against Marques in any way. Even after the event onlookers failed to move his unconscious body away from the road and onto the sidewalk. This tragedy, unfortunately, is but one of many incidents that was allowed to take place because of the Bystander Effect.
The next time you witness a high risk situation in which many other people are not taking action, remember that other people probably aren’t getting involved for the same reasons as you. If a potentially violent situation is making you uncomfortable, keep in mind that everyone else most likely feels exactly like you. Be the first to speak up and watch as others are sure to follow!