I think what should’ve governed David Cash’s actions was Sherice Iverson’s well-being. Throughout his whole interview and judging by his actions, it shows that Cash only cared about his friend Jeremy and himself. Cash says things like, “it was completely out of character” and “ I understand that but he’s also my best friend, you know we’re taking AP English together”. Also, Cash talks about how he tapped his friend on the head, gave disapproving looks, and left because that’s something he didn’t want to see. Even after Strohmeyer confessed to murdering Iverson, Cash said he couldn’t fathom his friend being a murderer. Not one time did Cash show worry for Iverson. The whole time he was only looking out for his friend, instead of thinking about how a 7-year-old girl was being harmed. Not only did he only care about how it was going to affect Strohmeyer, but he also left when he decided it wasn’t good for him to stick around and see. If he just had verbally told Strohmeyer to stop or told somebody and got help, there would’ve been nothing to see. Cash had so many chances to stop Strohmeyer, yet not once did think about Iverson. I think if Cash just had stopped being selfish and had been concerned for Iverson, he would’ve stopped Strohmeyer. Even after his friend confessed to a murder, he didn’t stop to think about Iverson dead in a bathroom, Cash and Strohmeyer just kept going and having fun at a different casino. Also, in the interview Cash showed no remorse for Iverson, saying how his life shouldn’t stop and how he didn’t know “this little girl”. Just the way he doesn’t even acknowledge Iverson, the girl his best friend murdered and assaulted, just shows he had no interest in her well-being.
When people witness something wrong they have to take action. Although I know it may be scary, there are many ways to stand up for what is right. For example, in Cash’s situation, he could’ve tried much harder to stop Strohmeyer’s actions. To start, when he saw Strohmeyer walked into the women’s restroom following Iverson, a little girl, that should’ve automatically been a red flag, and he should’ve reported it then. Then, when he was tapping Stromeyer’s head and giving “disapproving looks”, he should’ve verbally said stop or pulled Strohmeyer away. If he had the effort to balance on a toilet seat and look over a stall door, he could’ve tried harder to stop it. Next, when he left the bathroom, he could’ve told security, his father, or any worker at the casino about what was happening, if he truly wanted to help and Strohmeyer to stop. The last chance he had to take action was after Strohmeyer confessed, he again could’ve told any adult or workers to get help, and even after a 4-hour trip home, he could’ve called the police once he got home away from Strohmeyer. With all these changes to take action against Strohmeyer’s wrongdoings, it really a moral problem for Cash. We always have an obligation to act against wrongdoings, if your morals are in the right place, wrongdoings should urge you to take action. Sometimes people may think, “I don’t want to step in and risk my safety or anything to help”, but in most cases there are many opportunities to help and then don’t always have to be extreme. There are many ways to take action without being directly involved in situations. For example, telling an adult or someone trusted to help stop wrongdoing, is a great way to take action but at the same time not be directly the person stopping it. Our actions can sometimes be life or death, even if it makes the smallest difference, it still helps. After witnessing something wrong, and realizing it is wrong, having to urge and genuine desire to go against what you saw should sprout, leaving you to act.
Being a bystander never does any good. When seeing events unfold in front of your eyes, sometimes it’s easy to stare and react from a far, but helping and taking action will make the biggest difference for the victims of the situation. After reading, “The Bystander Effect in the Cellphone Age” by Judy Harris, I learned that people’s natural reactions is to document the sometimes horrific and terrifying events in front of them instead of getting help. I think that this article connects with the story of the “Bad Samaritan” because all the people recording on their phones had no regards for the people inside the burning house, and had no urgency to call 911 or alert the people inside. This is similar to the way Cash reacted, having no regard for Iverson and doing nothing to help the people being affected. Another way they are connected is how after seeing the burning building, the two baseball team continued playing as if nothing happened and Cash continued life as if he didn’t report a murder he could’ve prevented. Bystander behavior comes with the sad fact that the bystander does not think of the lives that might be at risk or affected. While being a bystander, you have so much time to think about you’re risks in helping and processing what’s going on. Although I think it’s never okay to be a bystander, after reading, “The Trick to Acting Heroically” by Erez Yoeli and David Rand, showed a counter argument to why it can be hard to step in. In this article it talks about how when most people act heroically it’s usually without thinking and reflecting on the potential risks. I know that when things happen out of nowhere without thought, it’s so much easier to take initiative, but sometimes we have to put others first, as their consequences may be worse than our own. This showed me that when people reflect on the consequences they must have to face, it might be easier to be a bystander. However, I think we should all try to take into consideration of even when thinking of risks, we still do our part in helping others.