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Amanda Dunman1Psy 2400Assignment 8Bystander Intervention: When Do People Help?At a boating lake in New York on August 21, 1993, a nine year old girl named NaimaQuaghmiri fell out of a boat in the middle of the shallow lake and noisily drowned. The other girlin the boat, a year or two older, attempted to hold her above the water’s surface, but failed, whileapproximately two hundred witnesses looked on (Gantt & Williams, 2002). One even made avideo recording of it. Currently, there is no federal law requiring citizens to render aid to victimsof a crime: you are your own priority.Research has revealed many social-psychological factors that frequently undermine bystander motivation to aide other people in distress. First, there are hardly any rewards involvedduring an emergency (Darley & Latané, 1969). The lives of both the victim and the helper are put at risk. Secondly, emergencies come without any warning or trained responses to count on, but it requires immediate action. Overall, it can put the potential helper in a mental conflict. Anintervener must make a series of decisions, beginning with noticing the event and interpreting itas an emergency ( Darley & Latané, 1969). Serving as non-responsive models, other bystandersmay appear to be unconcerned, influencing the potential intervener’s interpretation. Finally, hemust decide if he has responsibility to act and if so, what form of aid he should offer (Darley &Latané, 1969). A person meets many hurdles on the path to helping – and has to overcome all of them if a victim hopes to be assisted.
New York Times
headline in March 1964 read “37 Who Saw Murder Didn’t CallPolice,” referring to the murder of Catherine Genovese, who, over the period of half an hour andwithin a hundred feet of her apartment, was victim to three separate stabbing attacks by her assailant (Silk, 2005).With the exception of one man calling out from one of the apartment