Should Civilians Police the Streets?
What are our responsibilities in making sure our fellow citizens are being treated fairly? Should we interfere when we notice something wrong, or should we call law enforcement? ABC's show "What Would You Do?" really made a number of us consider how we'd react in certain situations. Numerous videos have emerged online, showing people who interfered when they perceived another person to be mistreated. Sometimes, it worked in the "hero's" favor. But other times, the person who chose not to mind his/her own business reaped detrimental consequences.
In recent months, I've encountered two different women who were verbally assaulted for parking in spaces reserved for the handicapped. Those that saw them emerge from their vehicles didn't immediately notice a handicap. So, they deemed it necessary to humiliate the person who took advantage of the accommodations that were available to them, one that our governments honor and authorized them to use.
It's a totally different scenario when a person in a convertible parks in the handicapped space and hops over the door to exit the car. That person obviously doesn't need special accommodations and probably won't have a decal indicating a handicap. Of course, there are some people who use another person's decal and park in those spaces without need. But how do we determine who should be able to park in the spaces and who shouldn't? If a person with an unnoticeable prosthetic leg parked in a handicapped space, should that person be subjected to ridicule? Most of us would think, "I'd say something if I saw someone use a handicapped spot and I didn't think they were handicapped. All they'd have to do is show/tell me how they're handicapped." I don't think they should have to. I think the only person that should confront another person over something like a handicap should be law enforcement. What do you think?
What about a person being assaulted? Would you jump in to save the victim, or would you call the police?
If it's one thing I can't stand, it's a car in the left lane going slower than the traffic on the right. I've actually heard a person say, "Well, the speed limit is 70, which means you're not supposed to go over 70. So, I'm doing nothing wrong. No one should be going faster than me." In theory, that's absolutely correct. However, it's not that person's responsibility to police the highway. That driver should have gotten into the right lane and let others go by to be pulled over later if need be.
What do you think? Is it up to us to maintain order, or should we call those designated to enforce the law?