Upon hitting "preview" I saw the length of this and thought... well... yeah, this is a little much, but I put so much effort time in I hate to delete it. Writing too many papers lately makes me feel compelled to provide examples and scenarios for everything. Heck, I almost added in citations. The next paragraph relates directly to the quoted text. Feel free to skip the assessment, policy appraisal, examples, review, really anything beyond the next paragraph. Here is the summation for what follows: Stay out of the way of whatever authority is currently acting in your AO unless you have actionable intel, but only if you won't become a casualty in your attempt to deliver said intel. The rest of it is just me proving that I need to shut up and go back to lurking!
SeerSavant wrote: I do however wonder, that within a large group, one person could die of a drug overdose, yeah I know it happens, its just phenomenally sad and disheartening. You would think that somebody would have noticed in a large community.
But the way any large group will try and distance themselves from a tragic death.... Simply beggars understanding.
Then again, there have been cases where murders will go on in plain sight of multiple witnesses, and no one does a damn thing. Each one of those is one too many.
(I used orange so people read it first... though I am not sure where the color key is, so if orange means that it is directed at your mother... well... she started it!)
The scenario in the quoted text is what psycholigists refer to as diffusion of responsibility. It means pretty much what it sounds like. It is the condition where a large number of people are not only aware of something happening, but are also aware that others are aware, and so choose no to act in regards to that something. People, while social creatures, are also cautious by nature. When they are witness to something that could bring them unwanted amounts of attention (such as that which they might receive from an attacker were they to intervene) they will seek to find a way to avoid that attention, and the quickest way to accomplish that is to assume that someone else will do something about it. It is similar to the fight in the high school cafeteria. People don't just cluster because they want to see a fight, but because they are compelled to do something about it, but would not rather get dragged into an unknown conflict which may result in them becoming the next target. They assume that a teacher will be along to take responsibility for stopping things. This can be a dangerous mentality and as stated by Seer, it has lead to deaths that could have been prevented.
How does this apply to our efforts as preppers? Well, when one looks at low income areas, or ghetto's, you begin to see that this is the prevailing mentality when it comes to things like drug dealing and gang violence. My personal experience in North Omaha (before you go on about podunk Omaha, realize that it is the 42 largest city by population in the US according to the 2010 census, larger than Oakland) has shown that despite large numbers of witnesses , no one will give any information. Our witnesses buddy could be laying on a gurney in the back of an ambulance, but suddenly the shooter, whom other witnesses say he was talking to and being buddy buddy with before the shots started, is a faceless stranger that can be described only as a black male with black shirt and black pants (North Omaha is predominantly African-American, this is not meant to be racist, but is a recounting of statistical facts for the area). No one sees anything, no one knows anything. They don't want to be seen as a "snitch", and will literally let murderers walk free to avoid that label.
The reason I bring this up is to encourage people to report what they know. The police have to work in a reactionary manner because if we didn't, we would be trampling on peoples rights. Now I am not saying that you wouldn't report something under normal circumstances! We are all law abiding citizens on this forum, I know and appreciate that! However, I noticed a strong sentiment in a thread regarding the civil unrest in post-Katrina NOLA that stated to stay away from all forms of authority, specifically NG and LEO's. While to some extent, I appreciate this sentiment since I imagine that there would be enough going on that they might not have time to take care of your neighborly dispute regarding lawn mowing patterns, or possibly even some small brawls amongst locals, there is a point at which information needs to be passed on. If there is something happening that could greatly impact the situation, please report it.
One incident in particular springs to mind as a prime example of what this can do. I am sure many of you remember the recent party eviction that was accompanied with reports of weapons being stockpiled. While it mostly involved rocks and knives, the fact is that had that information not been brought to light, things may have ended differently. People can become emboldened when they feel that they have the element of suprise and/or anonymity. This is not meant to be a jab at the occupiers. It is already known that there are groups within their ranks who might not hold the same ideals that the majority do. But if one of their resident meth-heads had decided that since the police weren't expecting any resistance he might be able to get away with attacking an officer that was not watching for possible weapons (I know, I know, constant vigilence and all that, but when you tell some guys "non-violent protest", they suddenly assume that it can't escalate) . Had no one said anything, the result could have been the same, but I am not sure that I would take that risk. Imagine how the orderly clearing would have changed if an officer was suddenly stabbed out of nowhere. Do you think everyone would then freeze and wait until crime lab could come out and take pictures of the scene and let the investigators come in to start questioning people? No. The cops would then, for their own safety, would need to assume that they were in the midst of an hostile and possibly armed crowd and take defensive measures as necessary.
I know that this is all hypothetical, but I am just trying to show how, if you see something, reporting it could be the difference between a clean and quiet wrap up and a serious incident. Avoid being where bad things are happening, and if bad things happen, get out of there ASAP, but if you see something happening that shouldn't be, tell someone that can do something about it. Then the onus is on them and you can be absolved of any guilt in the matter if something happens.
I guess I just want everyone to make sure that they aren't so concerned about getting themselves out that they compromise the safety of others to do it. That is, of course, if you can do so without putting yourself in significantly more danger. Even if you could possibly prevent something of some significance with little effort, but you have to put your self at much greater risk, feel free to cut and run! No need to be a victim, or a hero for that matter! Just be aware of your surroundings and your limitations, and lend a hand when possible.
P.S. First off, if you read this, I am sorry! If you did and take issue with something, or want clarification, etc, please be patient with me since I work nights. I don't keep up with the regular discussion hours which seem to be evening and daytime, and may not even get back to this for a day or two. Thanks
Cease your flatulent winds and listen to my mind numbing expulsions of wicked noise! GRRRR!! Cheese!! - Happy Noodle Boy