Sunday 25 September 2016

A salutary tale from the streets of London

Joe Barry

Published 02/03/2016 | 02:30

Some of us are more likely to respond to a dog in distress than aid a fellow human
Some of us are more likely to respond to a dog in distress than aid a fellow human

A recent TV programme showed a startling experiment in human behaviour being carried out on the streets of London.

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A dog was chained to a railing and left there while hidden cameras recorded the reaction of each person who passed by.

I cannot recall the exact details but about half the people walking by stopped, looked at the dog, searched up and down the pavement to see if an owner might appear and some also patted it and tried to comfort it.

The dog was then removed and replaced with a young girl, aged perhaps eight or nine who was also chained to the railing. Some people glanced at her but all passed by.

She just stood there quietly and no one stopped to ask her if she was all right or might need help.

This speaks volumes for our attitudes towards our fellow human beings.

No doubt most passersby were afraid of becoming "involved" when it was a child that was being ill-treated yet there was another well-known incident where a motorcyclist was badly injured trying to avoid hitting a dog.

Everyone rushed to see if the dog was ok and ignored the cyclist. It's a funny old world.

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