Here’s a question for you. If you were driving down some dark deserted road, be it in an urban area or in the middle of nowhere and you came upon a motorist in trouble, would you stop to help? Instinctively I bet that you’d want your answer to be “Yes”, but just stop and really think about this for moment. 9 times out of 10 the odds that something bad could happen from your actions as a good samaritan are very small. What about if something does happen though, then what? When I was younger and saw people in trouble the odds of me stopping to help out were pretty good. I’d first assess the situation and then see if there was truly anything I could do, if not I’d usually offer up a cell phone, or a ride if the person was stranded.
Nowadays though, my thoughts on lending a helping hand have changed somewhat. I’m not saying that I don’t do it, but I am saying that I’m much more cautious in doing so. I’ve lived in the outer boroughs of New York City now for 20 years and in that time I’ve seen people do wonderful things for their neighbors. To the contrary though, I’ve also seen the very worst as far as human behavior goes, behavior that was not only exhibited to others, but to myself as well. Because of this I always find myself a little gun shy of helping out unless I feel it’s extremely necessary.
It’s a tough call really. On the one hand most people are taught to do the right thing and help out when needed, but on the other, we now live in a land of lawsuits and fraud were people see no wrongdoing in taking advantage of others kindness. With that in mind let me present you with a hypothetical situation: It’s nighttime, around 11 pm and you find yourself driving down a lightly trafficked road in a rural area. Yes, there are some shops and plazas around, but for the most part they’re closed. As you’re driving you come up upon a late model car with a young girl flagging you down, you also notice the hood is up with a guy working underneath it.
The question – Would you stop, or would you keep going and why? Think about this for a few minutes and then post up your comments.