The Bystander Effect: Girls Gone Wild

 

The Bystander Effect: “A social psychological phenomenon that refers to cases in which individuals do not offer any means of help to a victim when other people are present. The probability of help is inversely related to the number of bystanders. In other words, the greater the number of bystanders, the less likely it is that any one of them will help. Several variables help to explain why the bystander effect occurs. These variables include: ambiguity, cohesiveness and diffusion of responsibility.”

On March 13, 1964, Catherine Genovese was stabbed on two separate occasions near her apartment by a man later identified as Winston Mosely. The original report from The New York Times claiming that “at least 38” neighbors witnessed both of the attacks and did not to call the police has since been disputed. While we may never know the exact number of people who heard Catherine’s desperate cry for help and did not come to her aid, we know that at least one person tried to scare Mosely off by shouting out from his window. Unfortunately no calls were made by this man nor the handful of neighbors who turned their lights on. Mosely came back and it was only after the second attack in which she was stabbed in addition to being raped, that somebody called the police. Catherine died from fatal wounds on the way to the hospital.

So what does the murder of this woman or more precisely The Bystander Effect, have to do with ‘girls going wild’ in the red light district? Nothing and everything… Just watch

– Alex Suarez

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