Why readiness to help becomes a risk in China?
It’s actually risky to lend a hand to someone who’s fallen on the street. It sounds ridiculous, but for most Chinese, it might sadly be the case.
In some recent incidents, car drivers and passers-by tried to help out some elderly people who happened to fall on the ground while crossing the street, but they ended up being charged by some of the elderly who claimed that it was actually they who ran them off.
For some, thanks to CCTV camera and witnesses, the charge was finally dismissed. But for the other, due to lack of proof, they might face a verdict of thousands of dollars’ compensation.
This vicious cycle ended up with the latest case on the 2nd September, when an 88-year-man fell on the ground in a food market near his house in the city of Wuhan. Since nobody came up to help, he was sent to the hospital only one hour afterward, and finally died of nosebleed blocked.
So the question is why people are reluctant to help. Is it really that Chinese are losing their faith and social conscience during the economic boom? Why is it so hard to do good in China? And particularly why those who actually do receive help tend to charge the innocent?
One good reason for the unfathomable phenomenon is that these elderly once injured, are facing an exorbitant medical bill that would traumatize them much more than the illness. So out of natural or purposed reaction, they tend to find a scapegoat who could pay the bill, no matter whether the accused is actually guilty or not.
Seeing this, the lack of conscience and loss of moral limits is definitely a persistent problem in Chinese society nowadays. But behind it, a wide range of work needs to be done in terms of social welfare, health care and justice system – the fundamentals to protect social conscience and moral basics.