Wednesday, June 29, 2011

The Indifference of Good Men

Now, we must all fear evil men. But there is another kind of evil which we must fear most, and that is the indifference of good men.
The quote above is from a movie called The Boondock Saints. I highly recommend it if you haven’t seen it. Although I will warn you that it is a VERY violent movie and the word "fuck" and its derivatives are used a total of 246 times.

I’m using this particular quote, not just because I agree with is, but as a reminder to myself regarding an incident that happened recently.

Let me preface this little story by telling you about where I live. I live right downtown in an above store apartment facing one of the busiest streets in the city. My neighborhood can safely be described as ‘not the safest’. In other words, there are drug dealers, prostitutes, crackheads, homeless people and, well, you get the idea.

My apartment is selective in its tenants; most of the other apartments nearby are not so selective. It’s not unheard of for there to screaming matches, cop cars, ambulances, noisy drunks and, once, even a ‘prophet’.

Depending on how serious things sound, I’ll grab my phone and head outside to see if anyone needs help or if I should call the RCMP. Although, first I look outside to assess the situation. The view from my windows is somewhat limited, but sometimes I can see enough to let me know whether to call the cops first or if I should just sit back down and ignore it because it’s nothing to be concerned about.

In the middle of the night, not long ago, I was awaken by the sounds of a very loud argument nearby. While my foggy brain tried to process what was happening, I took in every word. It was a man and woman and I’m still not exactly sure what they were arguing about.

I looked out my bedroom window and saw nothing. They were probably at the side of the building. The arguing went on for long enough that I debated about getting out of bed, putting on some clothes, grabbing my shoes and heading out to see if I should call the cops.

The only problem was, I didn’t want to get out of bed. I didn’t want to have to call the cops and stay up for more than hour because I’d have to make a statement. I just wanted the yelling to stop. I small part of me even just wanted to scream out my window “Shut the hell up!”, but I didn’t. In the end, it did stop and I fell back asleep.

And I admit that I feel really guilty about this.

I know, it’s not a safe neighborhood and I really should be out alone after dark, but I’ve rarely let something like that stop me from doing things before. I am embarrassed at my apathetic behavior. I did lay in bed struggling over whether to go out or not, but ‘not’ won the argument this time.

Should I feel guilty about this? Would have been better for me to go outside in the middle of the night and see if the cops were needed?

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