“All that is necessary for evil to succeed is that good men do nothing.” Edmund Burke
In the middle of March 2010 I walked to the bank from work. It was one of the first sunny 60+ days here in Charlotte and the mini-escape from my cube seemed like a good way to break up the day.
Along the way I saw 4 men breaking into a car. They were in plain view. Busy, the thieves didn’t notice me as I strolled by and towards the bank.
Once I arrived at the bank I told the teller and manager what I saw and asked that they call the police, since I didn’t see any security officers there at the bank. The branch manager said he would dial but I would have to speak. “No problem I told him.” The phone rang, I went through dispatch, and I explained what happened. They took my name and number and sent a squad car.
While this was going on one gentleman in the bank said “You mean those 4 guys just over there?” I nodded. He commented that he saw the same thing (but said and did nothing.) He slinked out of the building while I stayed on the phone with the police.
The branch manager and associated tellers all talked about how bad crime had grown in the area. Some even talked about how they saw crime in the surrounding parking lots. When asked, they never reported any of it.
“To avoid criticism do nothing, say nothing, be nothing.”
– Elbert Hubbard
They did nothing.
Their managers did nothing.
I’m sure someone’s leading by example here, though I am not sure who.
Don’t Do Nothing
I wanted to include a video of the Boondock Saint’s opening scenes where the sermon is “Good Men Did Nothing” but I couldn’t find it. If you can, please share that. [Updated!] Or anything else that comes to mind.