Written by Heidi Groover.
On a cold February night, snow is falling in short spurts. A man lies bloody in the middle of the street.
Do you stop?
In Spokane last month, multiple drivers didn’t. Not the first driver who hit him and not at least two others who hit him afterward. Neither, presumably, did any number of cars that passed by the scene until, at some point, a man finally did. A dozen officers arrived; someone covered the victim with a yellow tarp.
Just a year earlier, an 8-year-old boy fell into a frozen Spirit Lake during a town festival. A local high school student, Jason Cole, leapt in and pushed the boy up onto the ice. Cole left the scene without telling anyone what he’d done until his parents asked why his clothes were wet. A month later, when he was recognized at an awards ceremony, Cole said simply, “I didn’t want to see him die.”
The two cases raise a question: In our most desperate and vulnerable — bloody on a dark, cold roadway, or gasping in a frozen lake — can we count on each other?
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