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pizza
Posts: 13

Originally posted by Earl Grey Tea on September 27, 2020 16:39



I really don’t understand how there can be a law named after Sherrice Iverson, saying something like it’s illegal to do what David Cash did, and then not being able to convict Cash of that very thing because our system doesn’t work like that.

This point that you made about the naming of the law really fascinated me because it is pretty ironic to believe. Our system is so focused with the laws, and it just leads back to where people like David Cash can get away with it. I think even though Nevada didn't have the Good Samaritan placed during Sherrice's case, David still should've been charged. What's the point of imposing this law named after the girl who got murdered and not charge the person who could've helped her? In my opinion, if rules are meant to be broken, then the system can break this one to bring justice for Sherrice.

Lobster9
Boston, MA, US
Posts: 11

Take Action

Cash’s actions were governed by his relationship with Strohmeyer when they really should have been governed by the little girl right in front of him who was in desperate need of help. Cash knew what Jeremy was doing was wrong but he failed to intervene because he felt more connected to Jeremy than to the young Sherrice Iverson who he had never met before. Cashs actions were wrong, when witnessing a wrong it does not matter if you personally know the victim of the wrongdoing, put yourself in Sherrice’s shoes, if Cash had acted her life could have been spared. Cash should have acted when he saw Jeremy restraining Sherrice and muffling her screams while saying “shut up or I’ll kill you”. When a person witnesses another wrong they have the obligation to intervene or at the very least find someone else to help if they do not feel safe doing so. When witnessing a wrong people are often influenced by people around them, the man on the bus who stood up to intervene on behalf of the young boy questioned his own instinct to help the young boy because others around him did not react or try to help (Nightmare of Bus 36, Brian McGrory). If a large number of people are witnessing a wrong, it is not right to wait for someone else to act first, each person is obligated to act, but if you stand around waiting for someone to act first the needed action may never come. I think it is necessary to intervene no matter how small or large the “wrong” is, the consequences of not intervening will always outweigh the consequences if you do intervene. No matter how small the wrong may seem you never know what is going on in private when there is no witness, your one small intervention may save a life even if it seems like a small wrongdoing.


Everyone has a different thought process when they decide whether to take action or to merely witness wrongdoing. As mentioned in the story of the man who ran to the burning home to help get the residents out of the building, he wondered why some people's immediate reaction was to film the flames rather than get the residents to safety. (The Bystander Effect in The Cell Phone Age, Judy Harris). The man who ran to the building could not believe that others didn't think to help the residents, his thought process led him to take direct action while others became mere witnesses as they took out their phone to document the flames. Some commonalities that help people make their decision to take action or become bystanders include one's ability to recognize danger in a situation and put their own fears to the side to potentially save a life. Another thing that impacts a person's decision whether to take action or not is their own ability to distance themselves from a group, to become a leader. In a large group of people it only takes one person's action for others to follow, if no one takes the first step toward action then the group becomes bystanders instead of action takers. Physical laws that help people take the step into action include Good Samaritan laws that incentivize people to provide aid to others in times of need. Another reason people may take action is to avoid becoming an accomplice or an accessory to the crime at hand, they don’t want to face legal repercussions for their failure to intervene. I would say that we always have an obligation to act, it does not always have to be direct intervention with confrontation to the perpetrator, but you have an obligation to act in other ways as well. Witnesses to wrongdoings have the obligation to call for help or notify the authorities of the situation if they do not feel safe intervening or asking for help.


HCK6614JD
Boston, Massachusetts, US
Posts: 10

In A Second's Time

Though David Cash didn’t actually commit the murder or assaulted Sherrice Iverson, he is also to be blamed for how the entire case ended up. From the beginning, there’s a question to be asked: if Cash did or did not witness Jeremy walking into the girl’s bathroom shortly after Sherrice did. Another question that pops up is why did Cash follow him/go(in the case that he did not see the two going inside back to back) into the bathroom? From the moment that Cash stepped into the very same girl’s bathroom that Jeremy and Sherrice went into, he had chosen to involve himself in the case. In the “The Bad Samaritan 60 Minutes Clip” video that we watched in class, Cash said that he shouldn’t have to feel remorse over this case and he couldn’t possibly have felt remorse for all the tragedies that’s happening around the globe because he simply doesn’t know the victims who were affected. From the moment he stepped into the bathroom and saw the two “throwing paper towels” at each other, he has already seen the girl and knows her from this instance as the little girl who his friend was playing with in the bathroom. One thing to also be noted is that he didn’t question the exterior motives Jeremy might’ve had and why his 18 year old friend followed a little girl into the girl’s bathroom to just play with her. He could’ve done that outside while Sherrice was being neglected by his gambling father but instead he chose to do this in a place hidden from the rest of the people within the casino. While all of this was happening, Cash knew this was an issue but didn’t ask any questions and he himself had said “when a 18 year old male grabs a seven year old child, you know, that’s not a position I wanted to be in” in the interview yet he never asked for outside help and for others to step in. It’s extremely baffling to analyze his actions so many years after the case and see that he simply does not care enough to step in through all his actions and his indifferent attitude during the interview.

Any person in their right mind would’ve stepped in when they see their friend dragging a much younger child of the opposite sex into a bathroom stall. Their conscience would question why their friend did that and whether they’re about to do something bad. Subconsciously, they should feel the want to rush in and make sure everything’s going well which Cash did as he went into the adjacent stall and looked over. I think Cash’s common sense and sense of morality and justice should’ve governed his actions that tragic night. I can’t help but to wonder whether there’s anything would’ve stopped him from thinking how a normal person would since he clearly saw that in all ways Jeremy had suppressed Sherrice(voice and body) yet his lack of irresponsibility and care led him to just disregard everything Jeremy was doing with just a look. Cash said in the interview that he very well knew that Jeremy was muffling Sherrice’s screams. Who was he to decide that Sherrice didn’t need or want his help and would be well off with the “look” that he gave?

As a person who just witnessed wrongdoing, even if they were scared to intervene, they should hold the responsibility of asking for help from others to stop what’s happening but that isn’t what happened with this case. Cash could’ve shouted or pushed Jeremy hard and grabbed his attention that way as Cash was said to be around the height of six feet and he wouldn’t have lacked the strength to do that. If Cash had just done that, in a second’s time, he could’ve changed so many people’s lives forever. Sherrice wouldn’t have been raped and murdered. Her family members do not have to deal with the loss of their daughter. Jeremy could’ve snapped out of it and not do something that would’ve ruined his future for the rest of his life. He himself won’t have lived a life of hiding and be ashamed or even afraid of being in the public spotlight.

As it might’ve been Jeremy’s first time acting like that, Cash shouldn’t have been afraid to talk his friend out of what they’re doing. This situation is much different than for example, someone who’s witnessing a serial killer kill someone right in front of them because Jeremy wasn’t carrying a weapon at the time and Cash stated that he trusted Jeremy and knew he had never done something like that before. If the case was like the example with a serial killer that I described, Cash could’ve prioritized his safety over the little girl’s because he might very well be killed right after the serial killer was done with the previous victim but this wasn’t so there were no excuses to why he did nothing to stop Strohmeyer.

In “Nightmare on the 36 Bus”, the bus driver might’ve been afraid to act on what was happening between the little boy and the older man as there’s a chance they would lose their job afterwards but there’s no excuses for the passengers that witnessed the acts of violence between the two to not intervene. The little boy could be saved from his despair if anyone stepped in since they were still in public and the older man can’t do much when faced with everyone else that was on the bus. This very much relates to “The Bystander Effect In The Cellphone Age” article as the bystander effect was described to “occur when the presence of others discourages an individual from intervening in an emergency situation. Every one of the passengers in the bus didn’t wish to intervene simply because no one else decided to step in before them.

With this taken in consideration, we can see with the case of Sherrice Iverson that the only bystander at the time was David Cash and there was no one to discourage him from stepping in. In David’s case it would be an obligation for him to take it upon himself to stop Jeremy or to gather outside help to stop what was going on in the stall because he was the sole witness so the bystander effect would not have silenced his ability to do anything to save the little girl. With the bus and bystander effect article however, there were much more people present that could take action so there isn't obligation placed importantly on one person.

Agreeing with what @EarlGreyTea said, I can not fathom the fact that a law was placed in justice of Sherrice Iverson’s case but even so, there were no actions taken towards David Cash and as a result that allows him to live the rest of his life without any punishments and out of the public view. I also agree with what @Odinous said in that although everyone would want to help in those types of situations because they know it’s the right thing to do, it’s very hard to have the courage to actually act upon their heart and do it. There's so many people that have been in the very same spot as the passengers on the 36 Bus and the people that had stood outside the flaming apartments just watching and waiting for someone else to do something in reality and it leads to regrets many more years later as they reminisce what had happened while they chose to not do anything. It might come back and haunt some and make them restless at night or for others, they might've well forgotten about it completely and lived on without any sense of guilt like Cash does.

Lobster9
Boston, MA, US
Posts: 11

Originally posted by 20469154661 on September 27, 2020 16:27

Morals should have governed Cash’s actions. A person witnessing any type of extreme wrongdoing, who is in a place where they can interfere, should always act. Unfortunately, many people don’t let morals or basic human decency govern their actions. That is why there are usually laws in place that create a pressure to make the right decisions and to deter people from making the wrong ones.


David Cash was not the person who assaulted and killed Sherrice Iverson. He was a bystander who chose not to interfere while the crime was taking place or even turn in the perpetrator after he had confessed to murder. David Cash was also responsible for what happened. He should have been held accountable for allowing the assault and murder to happen. David Cash should have faced charges along with Jeremy.


What actions should be taken depend on the nature of the “wrong”. I agree with @madagascar, “ littering it is clearly not on the same level as witnessing a murder”. If you saw someone littering, you might just tell them to stop. If you are witnessing or have any knowledge of a murder, your immediate response should be to interfere or alert people that can. In The Samaritan’s Dilemma: Should the Government Help Your Neighbor, Kendall Egellston pulled over on an overpass to help stranded motorists. When Kendall was asked about it, he attributed his decision to his character. Good samaritans like Kendall think that anyone would not hesitate to act in the same way. This is how it should be for everyone, helping people in need should be a part of your character. The overarching rule is to not be silent or not act at all when you see something you know is not right.


Witnesses should legally be required to at least alert the proper authorities when they see an extreme wrongdoing taking place. They should not be required to become physically involved because that would put them in danger, but if they felt that taking further steps is necessary, then they should be protected by the law and not feel like they are at legal risk. I completely agree with @anonymouse, “There should be a law that prevents someone from being charged for helping a victim”. We always have an obligation to do what we know is right and never turn a blind eye on a wrongdoing. It should be a natural human instinct to help anyone or interfere with a “wrong”. In The Trick To Acting Heroically, four young men thwarted a gunman’s attack on a passenger train. They acted in seconds even though there was great risk involved. Similarly to how the four men acted, stepping in or speaking up should be instinct. The action should be intuitive. The four young men did not hesitate to risk their life. This does not mean that everyone must be willing to risk their lives for others, it simply means that at the very least, you should not be a bystander.

Post your response here.

I agree with @2046914611 when they said that they believe witnesses should be legally required to at least alert the proper authorities when they see an extreme wrongdoing. This lead me to wonder about the classification of an "extreme wrongdoing". Everyone may have different views on what they think constitutes as an extreme wrong doing. I originally thought that people could be their own judge of whether or not something was extreme enough to report to authorities, but then I thought back to the video we watched of David Cash, he knew what Jeremy was doing was wrong but in his mind it was not wrong enough to report. If we do ever have a system in place where people are legally required to report wrongdoings it would be very interesting to see how the authorities go about deciding what constitutes grounds for a report.

Lobster9
Boston, MA, US
Posts: 11

Originally posted by anonymouse on September 27, 2020 17:14

After hearing about this, I can only begin to think of the reasons why David Cash decided to walk out and ignore what Jeremy Shrohmeyer is doing to Sherrice Iverson. Being the best friend of Jeremy Strohmeyer, Cash might have wanted to protect him and perhaps thought that Jeremy is not capable of murder. Another thing is that Cash may not have wanted to ruin his future and his reputation by being caught in the middle of such a hideous crime. By witnessing this event, he is already part of it. What followed after he left the restroom could have been avoided if he had intervened. Because Cash failed to intervene, Sherrice Iverson is dead. Even though he might not have been the doer of the crime, he is as guilty as Jeremy Strohmeyer. He should have decided that saving a girl’s life is more important than what could happen to him or his best friend.


Seeing that someone’s life is at risk, one has an obligation to help to the best of their ability. To help could simply be by telling another person. David Cash did not bother to tell anyone and went on with his night. This is similar to what yelloworchids stated: intervening “doesn’t necessarily mean sacrificing your life to save the life of a stranger, but there are many other actions that could be taken to assess the situation.” There are many ways that one could help without risking other lives.


In “The Bystander Effect in the Cellphone Age”, many people just stood around documenting the event rather than helping, but there was an upstander that warned the people and helped to get people out of danger. Many of us are conditioned to think that there are others that can help and rather not take the risks. It is important to be an upstander, in whichever form that might look like. Cash could have chosen to be an upstander, but instead became a bystander, which did not benefit him or others in any way, therefore causing more harm.


When we witness a crime happening, we always have an obligation to act. I believe that there are certain rules in place that people follow when deciding whether to intervene or not. Most people might choose not to intervene if they believe that the consequences would be too big for them to handle. There should be a law that prevents someone from being charged for helping a victim. If there is a law that makes it necessary to help when a life is in danger when it is safe to do so, then more people would help.


There are other situations in which it is deemed too dangerous for someone to intervene. The police in “The Samaritan’s Dilemma: Should the Government Help Your Neighbor” told citizens that it would be better to call 911 and wait for help. If the situation is too dangerous or if you believe you could harm someone in the process, then you should call for help. This does not mean to ignore the situation and leave it be, but it is a means to find other ways to help. Whenever you see someone in need of help, be an upstander and not a bystander.

Post your response here.

This post was interesting as it opened up a new avenue of thinking for me; What was going on in David Cash's head when he left that bathroom? Twenty two minutes is a long time. I can't even imagine how long it would feel if you were sitting waiting for your best friend to come out of the women's room after you had just seen him threaten to murder a little girl. David Cash may not have been thinking thoroughly when he left that restroom, but he had 22 minutes to reflect on his actions. I already believed that Cash was guilty even though he did not kill Sherrice, but after imagining him sitting waiting for almost half an hour it has become so incredibly clear that even if he wasn't in the bathroom with Jermey and Sherrice the entire time he knew what was going on. Cash had every opportunity to speak out, tell Jermey to stop, get help after he left the bathroom, anything he could have done to help Sherrice would have been better than leaving the restroom and then continuing on with his casino night like nothing happened.

hero
Posts: 12

Be the Change

David Cash’s decision to not intervene in the rape and murder of Sharrice Iverson by Jeremy Strohmeyer puts him in the same boat as Jeremy. Although David Cash did nothing to Sharrice physically, he should at least face some penalty for being a bystander. The “bystander effect occurs when the presence of others discourages an individual from intervening in an emergency situation” (Judy Harris) shows that Cash most likely did not experience the bystander effect. In this situation, Cash was only in the restroom with Sharrice and Jeremy. Thus, when Cash saw what Jeremy was doing, the excuse that they were best friends is a facade to his cowardice to speak up.


When one witnesses a crime ongoing, it is morally correct to speak up against it. No one can fully enforce an obligation onto people to help. However, people should at least feel an obligation to morally judge how significant that crime is and when to intervene. When someone judges that a crime or wrongdoing doesn’t hurt anyone else but the suspect, then they don’t have to necessarily intervene. If it is a crime or wrongdoing, where the person will likely be in danger if they intervene, then the person should only be required to seek the police. In the case of Nightmare on the bus 36, reported by Brian McGrory, when someone sees an old man who is visibly drunk punching a little kid multiple times, the people in the bus should have had the moral obligation to help the kid out.


Furthermore, there may be the need to enact legal rules in all states which says how a witness may need to act in some way that marks a beneficial change towards the result of the situation. This is a super general rule which can result in some backlash from folks who don’t want to feel controlled. However, even with that rule, people should be obligated to act at least occasionally. If the teaching of “speaking up when you see wrong” were preached more often in society, then there would be less people like Sharrice. People being the change occasionally is always better than no one doing anything. It only takes the few who will act when they see wrong, to save so many other victims.

hero
Posts: 12

@Lobster9

Originally posted by Lobster9 on September 28, 2020 00:53

Cash’s actions were governed by his relationship with Strohmeyer when they really should have been governed by the little girl right in front of him who was in desperate need of help. Cash knew what Jeremy was doing was wrong but he failed to intervene because he felt more connected to Jeremy than to the young Sherrice Iverson who he had never met before. Cashs actions were wrong, when witnessing a wrong it does not matter if you personally know the victim of the wrongdoing, put yourself in Sherrice’s shoes, if Cash had acted her life could have been spared. Cash should have acted when he saw Jeremy restraining Sherrice and muffling her screams while saying “shut up or I’ll kill you”. When a person witnesses another wrong they have the obligation to intervene or at the very least find someone else to help if they do not feel safe doing so. When witnessing a wrong people are often influenced by people around them, the man on the bus who stood up to intervene on behalf of the young boy questioned his own instinct to help the young boy because others around him did not react or try to help (Nightmare of Bus 36, Brian McGrory). If a large number of people are witnessing a wrong, it is not right to wait for someone else to act first, each person is obligated to act, but if you stand around waiting for someone to act first the needed action may never come. I think it is necessary to intervene no matter how small or large the “wrong” is, the consequences of not intervening will always outweigh the consequences if you do intervene. No matter how small the wrong may seem you never know what is going on in private when there is no witness, your one small intervention may save a life even if it seems like a small wrongdoing.


Everyone has a different thought process when they decide whether to take action or to merely witness wrongdoing. As mentioned in the story of the man who ran to the burning home to help get the residents out of the building, he wondered why some people's immediate reaction was to film the flames rather than get the residents to safety. (The Bystander Effect in The Cell Phone Age, Judy Harris). The man who ran to the building could not believe that others didn't think to help the residents, his thought process led him to take direct action while others became mere witnesses as they took out their phone to document the flames. Some commonalities that help people make their decision to take action or become bystanders include one's ability to recognize danger in a situation and put their own fears to the side to potentially save a life. Another thing that impacts a person's decision whether to take action or not is their own ability to distance themselves from a group, to become a leader. In a large group of people it only takes one person's action for others to follow, if no one takes the first step toward action then the group becomes bystanders instead of action takers. Physical laws that help people take the step into action include Good Samaritan laws that incentivize people to provide aid to others in times of need. Another reason people may take action is to avoid becoming an accomplice or an accessory to the crime at hand, they don’t want to face legal repercussions for their failure to intervene. I would say that we always have an obligation to act, it does not always have to be direct intervention with confrontation to the perpetrator, but you have an obligation to act in other ways as well. Witnesses to wrongdoings have the obligation to call for help or notify the authorities of the situation if they do not feel safe intervening or asking for help.


I find it really interesting on how you said Cash didn't intervene because he felt more connected with Jeremy than Sherrice. I think this is very true because I feel like people are more urged to help those who they can relate to. Unfortunately in this case, Cash couldn't relate to Sherrice at all, and decided to not out his best friend. I also agree with you on how people obligated to act when they see wrong. However, we differ in opinions in that I do not think people need to intervene when the crime or wrongdoing does not affect anyone but the suspect. Furthermore, I said something similar when you said it only takes one person in a large group to enact change. If we had more of those few leaders, and turned it into majority leaders, then so many more people would be saved.

hero
Posts: 12

@greenflowers58

Originally posted by greenflowers58 on September 27, 2020 18:22

There is no doubt in my mind that Cash should have stepped in and intervened. I believe that Cash is just as responsible for what happened to Sharrice as Strohmeyer. He could have stopped Strohmeyer before going into the women's restroom after a 7 year old girl, he could have told Strohmeyer to stop once he was in the restroom, he could have stopped him from going into the stall, even after that he could have went to an adult or security outside of the restroom to go intervene. There were way too many points passed in which David Cash did nothing to stop Strohmeyer. I think there is an obligation to do something when witnessing wrongdoing, and if it’s not your own moral standards, then it should be the law. If Cash felt as though he could have been harmed while intervening, he could have gone to someone else for help.

@madagascar “If you were to witness a person littering it is clearly not on the same level as witnessing a murder.” I agree with this notion that there are clearly different levels to wrongdoings, but when there is a direct harm to someone else's life, you have an obligation to do something about it. In the article “Nightmare on the 36 bus” there are several people on a bus when a child is clearly being abused by an older man, yet no one seemed to think like it was their place to intervene. In a situation like this there could be a number of things swaying one’s opinion on whether or not to intervene, but I think at the end of the day, the people on that bus were responsible for what happened to the little boy because they had the power to stop it, or at least do something.

In “The Trick to Acting Heroically”, it talks about how there is oftentimes a natural instinct by people to risk their lives for the saving of others. But I think when people are given the chance to weigh their options, other factors play a part and result in people possibly not acting as heroically as they would have originally. Personally I think that when your own life is at severe risk, you shouldn’t have to intervene in whatever situation it is, although it is amazing when people do, but these people still have the obligation to make some move like calling someone else to help. But when your life isn’t at risk, like in Cash’s situation, there is even more obligation to do something. Like @yelloworchids said, “There are numerous ways to get involved without risking your life, staying silent should not be an option.” I think that was a great way of putting it.

I also think that when it comes to a crime that genuinely puts the witness in danger, they don't have the obligation to intervene. They should call the police though. When the article you read talks about how often it is natural for people to risk their lives for saving others, I think that only applies to a select amount of people. It is human nature to survive, so I am not too sure where that article got its information. When you said " other factors play a part and result in people possibly not acting as heroically as they would have originally", this probably applies to most people. In our minds, we feel that we would've been the change in so many situations, but in the moment, it is just too much for most people to think about what they would do on the spot.

muumihalit
Boston , MA, US
Posts: 10

Multiple Chances to Act

I think seeing someone harming another person should have governed Cash’s actions. In “The Trick to Acting Heroically”, it says people have a natural instinct to help others when they see they are in need. David Cash should have recognized the harm Jeremy was doing to Sherrice and used basic morals to intervene. I believe that in society, people have the obligation to help others. Life may not be the easiest, and it helps to have the aid of other people. However, like other posts have commented on, there seems to be an idea in society that people should mind their own business. But in “The Samaritan’s Dilemma: Should the Government Help Your Neighbor” we read of humans stepping in to help others who are in need. Especially when the harm is immediate and severe, like someone being chased by an attacker, but also when it is small, like someone falling down and another person helping them up - humans have the innate instinct to help one another. “The Samaritan’s Dilemma: Should the Government Help Your Neighbor” talks about how some people may not intervene when there are other bystanders witnessing an event- everyone thinks someone else will step in. However in David Cash’s case - there was no one else there to witness this event. No one else could help Sherrice.


I agree with @madagascar “Although the severity of the wrongdoing doesn’t change the fact that it is still wrong, I do believe that there are different rules depending on the nature of the wrong. If you were to witness a person littering it is clearly not on the same level as witnessing a murder. In reality it all boils down to each person's unique beliefs, whether or not they consider littering to be “wrong enough” to intervene or not. However, I do believe that any wrongdoing that involves the endangerment or violation of anyone's life should be automatic cause for an intervention.” In terms of "rules" whether to act or just witness something, it depends on the event. If someone is littering, personally I might just pick up their trash. But if a life is in danger, like Sherrice’s was, I agree with @madagascar that David Cash was obligated to intervene, as she was clearly in severe danger.


In an interview on a Los Angeles radio station, David Cash said “I do not know this little girl. I do not know starving children in Panama. I do not know people that die of disease in Egypt.” To me the examples of children in Panama and people in Egypt seemed to be excuses on his part. To me it seemed like he was saying “there are tragic things happening all over the world, but they are so far from me, why would I help?” The thing is that in this situation, while he is far from Egypt or far from Panama, he was in that bathroom with Jeremy and Sherrice. He saw with his own eyes what was happening. He may not have “known” her personally, or before this incident, but he was there, and he could have done something.


David Cash also said in the interview “I know as his best friend that he had potential…I’m not going to lose sleep over somebody else’s problem.” In this statement he seems to be first, excusing himself for not intervening because Jeremy was his best friend. I acknowledge that it may be hard sometimes to realize that someone you are so close to or thought you knew so well, was doing something so despicable, but then he calls it “someone else’s problem”. I am confused about this because at first, he seems to say he didn’t intervene because he was in denial Jeremy could do this, this wasn’t the Jeremy he knew. But then after he distances himself from Jeremy, saying it was “someone else’s problem”. But isn’t the “someone else” your supposed best friend? I believe that if you are that close to someone, you want the best for that person. At the moment that David was peering over the bathroom stalling, watching what Jeremy was doing to Sherrice, I believe your strong relationship with a person might compel you to stop them from doing a bad thing. David Cash also mentioned that Jeremy looked back at him while in the bathroom with “a blank stare”. I think that even if David was scared or shocked at Jeremy’s actions, and nervous to intervene himself, he still could have gone out, and told someone or anyone what was happening.


I agree with @pizza that David seemed inherently selfish. He didn’t want to “lose sleep over someone else’s problem”. The problem being the rape and murder of a little girl. The someone else being his supposed best friend. The way he phrased this - he didn’t want to sacrifice something as small as a little sleep, in exchange for the life of another human being? Even after the event, I agree with @Earl Grey Tea that in the 60 minutes video and in the radio interview, David showed little remorse. He seemed only to be giving excuses for himself, rather than commenting on how maybe he might have done something differently. In this I believe he is different from some of the other bystanders mentioned in the articles: Daniel Auclair from the “Nightmare on the 36 Bus” showed remorse for not intervening, both in his statement, and in the fact that he came forward to report what had happened. And Judy Harris from “The Bystander Effect in the Cellphone Age”, who comments on how she was too a bystander, who stood and took pictures as a house was burning. But she questions her actions, and seems to feel like she should have done more.


It is unfathomable to me how many chances David Cash had. Each moment that he chose to say nothing and do nothing. From the beginning when he saw his friend go into the women’s bathroom. He might have questioned Jeremy what he was doing. Then when he saw Jeremy was in the bathroom with a little girl, he might have questioned this as it seems a suspicious act. But then when Jeremy pulled Sherrice into a stall! David might have stopped his friend from doing this. At that point, something is obviously wrong - an older teenage boy in a bathroom stall with a young little girl. Yet David said nothing. But then as he was looking over the stall, literally watching Jeremy physically restrain and then threaten Sherrice with death, he still decided not to intervene. Even after he walked out, he had a chance. During the 22 minutes before Jeremy walked out of the bathroom, he had a chance. If David had maybe said something, or done something given the several chances he was given, Sherrice could still be alive today. In “The Trick to Acting Heroically”, it says that many people who intervened to help others, did it on a matter of instinct, rather than thinking it through, their natural instinct was to help something they saw hurting. Even though David’s initial reaction was not to intervene immediately, he still had several chances after that.




bskittles
Charlestown, MA
Posts: 6

Cash' Moral Code

I think that Cash’s moral compass should have guided his actions. Cash said he gave Jeremy “a look” meaning he knew that what Jeremy was doing was wrong. Erez Yoeli and David Rand wrote about heroes acting on instinct. Cash’ instincts told him to stop Jeremy by giving him ”a look” but that was ot enough to save Iverson. Cash was 18 years old, at that point he knew right from wrong. He should have had empathy for the little girl and reported the murder immediatly. Cash knew what his friend did was wrong. It should not have mattered that he was Cash’ best friend, Cash should have reported him. Judy Harris wrote about the bystander affect and how the presence of others may discourage someone to report an emergency. I think that that is what happened with Cash. He was accompanied by his best friend so he didn't feel the need to report the murder, afterall it happened in a public space and someone was going to find the body eventually. I think that we have a moral obligation to other peoples wellbeing. If someone is witnessing a crime committed against another person then they should report it or intervene if it is safe to do so. I think that there are different levels of crime and someone should rely on instincts to tell how they should act. I think if you see someone stealing from walmart you should mind your business because you don't know what that persons situation is and walmart has insurance. I think if you witness an assault or a murder you need to report it.
bskittles
Charlestown, MA
Posts: 6

Originally posted by anonymouse on September 27, 2020 17:14

After hearing about this, I can only begin to think of the reasons why David Cash decided to walk out and ignore what Jeremy Shrohmeyer is doing to Sherrice Iverson. Being the best friend of Jeremy Strohmeyer, Cash might have wanted to protect him and perhaps thought that Jeremy is not capable of murder. Another thing is that Cash may not have wanted to ruin his future and his reputation by being caught in the middle of such a hideous crime. By witnessing this event, he is already part of it. What followed after he left the restroom could have been avoided if he had intervened. Because Cash failed to intervene, Sherrice Iverson is dead. Even though he might not have been the doer of the crime, he is as guilty as Jeremy Strohmeyer. He should have decided that saving a girl’s life is more important than what could happen to him or his best friend.


Seeing that someone’s life is at risk, one has an obligation to help to the best of their ability. To help could simply be by telling another person. David Cash did not bother to tell anyone and went on with his night. This is similar to what yelloworchids stated: intervening “doesn’t necessarily mean sacrificing your life to save the life of a stranger, but there are many other actions that could be taken to assess the situation.” There are many ways that one could help without risking other lives.


In “The Bystander Effect in the Cellphone Age”, many people just stood around documenting the event rather than helping, but there was an upstander that warned the people and helped to get people out of danger. Many of us are conditioned to think that there are others that can help and rather not take the risks. It is important to be an upstander, in whichever form that might look like. Cash could have chosen to be an upstander, but instead became a bystander, which did not benefit him or others in any way, therefore causing more harm.


When we witness a crime happening, we always have an obligation to act. I believe that there are certain rules in place that people follow when deciding whether to intervene or not. Most people might choose not to intervene if they believe that the consequences would be too big for them to handle. There should be a law that prevents someone from being charged for helping a victim. If there is a law that makes it necessary to help when a life is in danger when it is safe to do so, then more people would help.


There are other situations in which it is deemed too dangerous for someone to intervene. The police in “The Samaritan’s Dilemma: Should the Government Help Your Neighbor” told citizens that it would be better to call 911 and wait for help. If the situation is too dangerous or if you believe you could harm someone in the process, then you should call for help. This does not mean to ignore the situation and leave it be, but it is a means to find other ways to help. Whenever you see someone in need of help, be an upstander and not a bystander.

You said that Cash may not have thought that Jeremy was capable of murder but Jeremy was already strangling Iverson when Cash looked at him over the bathroom stall. I think that Cash knew what Jeremy was doing and he might have even asked Cash to go outside of the bathroom so he could "finish" or even to look out for Cash's dad or Iverson's dad. I thought it was interesting what you said about being an upstander and I agree with you. I think that humans can be selfish and think too much about their personal risks instead of thinking about the consequences for the person they are refusing to help.

bskittles
Charlestown, MA
Posts: 6

Originally posted by pizza on September 26, 2020 16:39

David Cash chose to ignore this situation. Even though he did not physically take part in the case, he was a witness--a bystander. His decision to not help Sherrice or stop his so-called friend from AP lit ruined Sherrice’s chances of being alive today.

Without a doubt, Cash should have been held accountable for not intervening. He does not necessarily have to be charged with the same ones as Strohmeyer, but something that reflects his poor decisions. I agree with @yelloworchids; an obligation of a witness “doesn’t necessarily mean sacrificing your life to save the life of a stranger,” but just taking the steps to tell someone else, or even try to convince the perpetrator to stop can do so much. There are no written rules, but I think when someone immediately notices something “wrong” is about to happen (no matter what nature of “wrong” it is), they should just take that one step that can (hopefully) affect the whole situation. In Cash's situation, he could've told his dad, told a security, or dragged his friend out that bathroom since he cares about him so much. When Cash says that he “doesn’t want to lose sleep for somebody else’s problem,” it unsettles me how much he lacks in morality, sympathy, and empathy. It really doesn’t take someone to actually know someone else to help them. From Nightmare on the 36 Bus, the passengers were uncomfortable when the man was hitting the boy, not once, but multiple times till he was bleeding. As a passenger, Auclair said he felt like he didn’t want to intervene because he felt like it was a “family thing.” People learn to mind their own businesses, but I think when you feel you are uncomfortable with what is happening in front of you, you should say something.

I think there should be more laws like the Good Samaritan or policies placed that enclose some broad context for what obligations witnesses have. Agreeing with @anonymouse, witnesses should not feel the pressure of being charged/sued later with some nonsense. As people in society, I think it is important to look out for one another. If we have the power to speak up or act on something, we should take that opportunity to help someone else. It’s like two birds one stone, helping someone, and gaining a good feeling of that action. There are times where fear and the feeling of being uncomfortable will be overbearing which is understandable, but acting occasionally can easily deescalate a lot of situations. I like how @yelloworchids mentioned the 5Ds workshop because it teaches people on how to be a good bystander and the point where documenting might not be applicable in severe situations. In the article, The Bystander Effect in the Cell Phone Age, the husband was bewildered that people were more focused on taking pictures of the fire than actually warning people to evacuate. In times like these, people should understand what is appropriate to do and take a second to reevaluate what is the best choice.

I agree that Cash should have been held accountable for not intervening. Today there are good Samaritan laws that would hold Cash responsible for not intervening. I also think that Cash lacks morality, sympathy or empathy. Cash knew what Jeremy was doing was wrong but he chose to do nothing. He didn't try to help Iverson or Jeremy, he just stayed neutral in the situation. He continued his night with Jeremy as planned without giving what had just happened a second thought. All Cash did was give Jeremy "a look" then he decided it was none of his buisness and went about his day as normal. He wasn't even going out of his way to protect Jeremy, he was simply doing what he wanted to do, this shows how selfish Cash is.

purplenailpolish00
Boston, MA, US
Posts: 6

Bystander Effect

To be completely honest, I’m not sure how to answer these questions. I’m naturally an empathetic person; I can’t even imagine what it’s like to have the moral compass of Cash. I think what I found chilling about Cash was that he was completely emotionally detached. He said in the interview that he didn’t care about Sherrice any more than he cared about suffering people in other countries. Despite seeing this little girl suffer, he still had no emotional acknowledgement of her. That is something I can’t wrap my head around.

Most of our laws are based off of pretty simple ideas-- don’t kill, don’t steal, don’t hurt other people. But it gets a lot more complicated when you look at non-legal social norms, which are often selfish, or assuming others are selfish. For example-- growing up, girls are taught to yell “fire” instead of “r*pe” because people are more likely to respond to fires. It’s not illegal to ignore a girl yelling for help, even though it's immoral. I feel like as a person the only person I should have the right to control is myself. Maybe I’m naive, but if I can’t understand the moral compass of people like Cash, who am I to say it’s wrong? Obviously it’s disgusting, and Cash should have been charged as an accessory, but it’s harder to determine in a general sense.

I think it’s interesting that Kitty Genovese was mentioned in “Nightmare on the 35”. In general it’s what people cite for the bystander effect, but theres also significant evidence that she was a lesbian, and many believe that is another factor into her death. It provides a helpful analogy to the 35 bus and Sherrice. The man on the 35 was speaking Greek, so people assumed he was an aggressive father, while Sherrice was a black little girl. I personally think that may have affected Cash’s decision, consciously or unconsciously.


the negotiator
Boston, MA, US
Posts: 13

The Obligation to Step in

In my opinion, I believe that Cash should’ve felt urged to step in and stop Jeremy Strohmeyer from assaulting and killing Sherrice, because it would be the only moral thing to do in the situation, and I don’t know why anyone wouldn’t step in to save someone's life. Even if Strohmeyer was armed, which he wasn’t, I believe that anyone in their right mind should step in and prevent the awful situation at hand. Cash didn’t even make the effort to even vocally express his disapproval. The sole thing that he supposedly did was tap Strohmeyer on the head and give him a “blank look of disapproval,” which is pathetic and disgusting. He cared more about not being there for what happened, so he left the bathroom. Furthermore, Cash didn’t even make the effort to turn Strohmeyer in after Strohmeyer admitted to having killed her. Cash said that eventually his day would come and he didn't want to be the one to turn Strohmeyer in. In my opinion, a person who witnesses another wrong should be and feel obliged to step in and act on it. I don’t think there should be different rules at all. A person should always step in. This is greatly exemplified in “The Trick to Acting Heroically” where it was found that all people that were considered heroes stepped in instinctively to help before giving any thought to the situation. It was also found that those who think about the consequences first are less likely to act. In Cash’s case his “consequence” was losing his friend which is pathetic because he cared more about being friends with a murderer than saving an innocent little girl’s life.

I believe that there should be laws nationwide saying that people are obligated to act at the scene of a crime using their best judgement of what would be right. We should always have this obligation to act. One example of a person instinctively stepping in is shown in “The Bystander Effect in the Cellphone Age,” in which a man runs into a burning house to save the people inside, all of whom had no idea that the building was burning. What infuriates me is that there were multiple people taking pictures and not acting, before the man who actually stepped in got there. Those people should be obligated to go in and save the people inside as oppose to just standing there and watching, with a cell phone in hand. The next day there was an article starting with “A quick-acting JP resident took photos of names bursting out the roof of a Child Street home...” this is so awful because the resident was just being a bystander and doing nothing to help the problem but instead taking photos for the news, further encouraging people to do the same thing. This needs to stop. Feel obligated to step in instinctively, no matter the situation.

the negotiator
Boston, MA, US
Posts: 13

Originally posted by iloveikeafood on September 27, 2020 21:16

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.

I completely agree with you. Cash was as self centered as they come, to the point where it is scary. It is chilling to me that Cash would rather save his friendship with a murderer and sexual abuser than step in and help, get someone else to, or even give verbal disapproval. Not only that but Cash did not even turn him in after the fact. They continued on to another casino and then on a long ride back home to Long Beach with no further talk of the situation. Great post, you summed up the situation perfectly and have the same ideas as I do about being obligated to step in.

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