In the news report from United Press International, the family expressed ‘concerns about the indifference the victim encountered after the attack’.
And rightly so.
She was stabbed on Wednesday morning a little past 10 am according to a security camera that captured the scene. The victim was walking down the sidewalk when the man went up to her and started stabbing her.
The attacker, a 35 year old man, was arrested. He had a history of prior arrests for burglary and a homicide charge from 2016 that was dismissed in 2019 for lack of evidence.
The lady is recovering at San Francisco General Hospital.
It is not difficult to imagine how anyone of us can be either a victim or a witness.
If a victim and there are witnesses, it stands to reason that one would expect some assistance from those nearby.
But that is not assured, is it?
Judging from this attack, and similar ones reported recently, it is quite possible that one will be left to fend by oneself if assaulted, the witnesses preferring to not step in and put themselves at risk.
Sure. But is it the right thing to do?
There is always something a witness can do.
You may not wish to tackle the assailant and take the knife out of his hands, for fear you will turn into their victim, but anyone of us can certainly shout loudly to the attacker to stop hurting the other person.
Anyone of us can certainly attempt to summon others for help or try and pull the victim away from the attacker.
We don’t have to get in front of the knife, unless we feel we have to power to do so and disarm the person, but we owe something to each other, a minimum of civility, a minimum of consideration to not let the assailant keep doing harm to the person while undisturbed.
A witness ought to make some effort to intercede.
Some effort to distract the assailant, something to stop the cowardly act.
If we don’t, then how do we live with ourselves?
It can happen to anyone of us. Today, tomorrow, anytime.
Fear paralyzes the will and it may have paralyzed us before as I, myself, have been. But we cannot simply surrender without an effort.
We have to do something. Something. Something that says we are alive and will not let fear rule our lives.
Oscarvaldes.net Oscar Valdes