I’ve always been a bit different. From the time I was a young child, I’d move towards a person in pain, not away. I wanted to find a way to help, whatever it was.
In college, I started volunteering with a local rescue squad. As a first responder, you learn to ignore your fear cues and move towards dangerous situations. Learning how to respond reduces your own fears and allows you to override your brain’s desire to run away. Since that time I’ve always been the person who calls 911 if I see something off. If I think there’s a problem, I don’t sit back. I do something.
Sure that means I get into other peoples business. The thing is, if their business is loud enough for me to hear, if it’s in a place where I can see it, then it’s become my business. I’ve heard over the years, “why do you do that? Someone will call 911. Why get involved?”
Guess what gang, I am someone. I am the someone who is seeing the situation and deciding it needs some additional help. While you are walking away because you don’t want to get involved, there’s a person hurt and bleeding who needs help.
You are the link to that help.
In March of this year, a young woman was murdered by a co-worker at a Lululemon store in Bethesda, Md. While she was being stabbed, employees at the Apple store next door were listening through the wall, trying to decide on a course of action. They chose not to get involved.
A young woman died.
Earlier this week, former Penn State defensive coordinator Jerry Sandusky was arrested on multiple counts of sexual assault on a child. As of now, it looks like Penn State employees knew about the abuse and did not report it to police. (Note- very graphic description of the charges.) Penn State head coach Joe Paterno and others have said they did what was legally required of them. That was the bare minimum. By not digging further, by not stepping up and being somone, an untold number of children have been hurt.
It is a pain to get involved. You risk your health, your job, and potentially your life. Ask yourself this: if it’s you needing help, what would you want done?
You’d want someone to step up and help. You are that someone.