sarah_sensei: Midna: LoZ Twilight Princess (Default)
So, every once in a while my husband turns on "ABC's What Would You Do?". If you haven't seen it, it's a show where they present a situation and secretly film passer-byes to see what they will do. For example, they may stage kids destroying someone's property or they may stage someone begging for help. Then they analyze the various responses both positive and negative.

One thing I have noticed about the show is they don't really seem to touch on one of the many reasons why, as a woman, I hesitate to do much of anything -- the chance of repercussions.

In one situation this guy jogs by teens staged to deface a car in a public park. The guy actually gets in their faces instead of running off to call the cops. Now, why wouldn't _I_ do that? Duh, they could be packing heat or have knives. You don't know what their punk asses are carrying. But did this come up in the analysis? No, they mostly talked about race or how women tend to go off and call when they are safely away -- yeah we do that so we don't get SHOT in the FACE. (This story also has unfortunate racial connotations but that was part of a second half of the experiment. The basic premise was, "how many people would stop them or do something").

They had another situation where they had a woman begging for gas at a gas station and they showed all the men helping her. You know WHY men help women? Because men think they have a chance of getting lucky. Men also don't suspect that women are going to kidnap them, take them out to the middle of nowhere and rape and kill them. As part of the "social experiment" they recruited this young foreign guy (who helped their planted girl) and asked him to try and beg for gas. They pointed out that most of the women were hesitant to help him. They chalked it up to his body language, his being shy or nervous and the women picking up on that. Yeah, how about the threat of death and rape? Or as in the first scenario getting shot in the face or knifed?!

I guess ABC doesn't want to scare all the old ladies who watch their channel, but it kinda annoys me that they sidestep violence and talk about "oh they didn't help because he was foreign or carried himself funny." No, the bottom line is, it's NOT COOL when dudes come up to a woman and ask her for "help." It's not cool to just go up to possibly dangerous people and intervene without having backup or a PLAN.

This morning I was on my way to the apartment complex laundry room. This random dude comes running up to me and starts telling me this sob story about how his car is up the street at The Waffle House and he somehow ran out of gas and he needs to get back to Lagrange (which is over 40 miles away). He tells me [inexplicably] that the gas station, which is right next door to the Waffle House, "doesn't have the kind of gas [he] needs" and he was forced to spend the night here (dude what does your car run on?). I just tell him I don't have anything that can help him and I go to the laundry room. Then I took the roundabout way through the complex (past the office where people are) to get back to my apartment so he didn't see where I lived. I told my husband to get the laundry for me when the dryer finishes because, "there's some creepy dude in a wife-beater out there asking for help." Columbus has over 150 registered sex offenders living in the city-- my fears are not unfounded and I was NOT taking a chance of getting approached again. [Edit: Also, there were about THREE other people besides myself coming out of their homes at the same time. Why did he approach the lone woman and not the couple or the single male??? Suspicious much?]

I'm not a bitch (all the time). I'm not "mean" or "selfish" and it's not that I don't want to help people. _I_ am concerned about MY personal safety. I'm not going to risk getting carjacked or shot because I stopped to help some suspicious, random, dude. It has way more to do with the threat of violence and less to do with people just standing by and doing nothing. We, unfortunately, live in a society where we need to be on guard and can't stop to help people because there's too much of a chance that we will be punished for "being stupid," instead of being rewarded for "doing the right thing."

I kinda wish that this would come up once in a while in the show. Usually, they try to steer it more toward the whole, "oh it was the right thing to do" or, "I wouldn't want someone doing this or that to me" or alternately, "I'd want someone to help me if I were in that situation." Yeah that's fine... but I don't think I'll be helping any random people until I start walking around with a taser (one of those ones that shoots across the room and makes them piss all over themselves would be nice...)


sarah_sensei: Midna: LoZ Twilight Princess (Default)

January 2015

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