Not Kitty Genovese

A sad and sordid story out of Ohio. A woman was raped on a busy street in daylight. But this is not Kitty Genovese. Several people driving by called 911 from their cell phones.

I would have wished that one person had been quick enough to pull over and intervene, but that’s asking a lot. Imagine the drivers, mind elsewhere, seeing something wrong from their car window. They are hundreds of yards away by the time it registers. At least several of them had the decency to call the police.

I once stopped my car and intervened when I saw a woman being beaten on a city street. I’m glad that the neighborhood children who were watching saw me do that. But I might have been ignorant of the risk. Years later in home care I had a patient who had defended someone and whose life was ruined by a bullet that cut his spine.

So I’m very sorry that this crime happened, but glad that we have cell phones, we have an emergency response system, and we have an awareness of violent crime. It’s too late for Kitty Genovese. May her memory not rest peacefully in our minds until we have made things better.

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One response

  1. The sordid story of violence,abuse and denial of basic rights to women seems out of place and out of time in the 21st Century. But it remains all too real in our own country and sadly in most of the world, where women are denied basic rights, education or opportunity, and even the medical information and care they need. All too often, in our own country, women are exploited and their sense of self violated. Not a lot will emerge to help deal with issues unless constant pressure is applied and acts of criminality pursued with energy. We should have zero tolerance for the exploitation of women (and anyone!). I for one would welcome “political correctness” in the recording industry for a statr with an effective ban on what passes for music, but really extolls malignant behavior towards women. Finall, all women would do well to learn to protect themselves with any of the variety of defensive equipment available for purchase; no one should tolerate victomhood.

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