Overheard on CNN.com: Are Americans better 'Good Samaritans'?
Wang Yue, 2, is treated at a hospital in China on Sunday after being hit by two cars. She died Friday.
October 21st, 2011
01:29 PM ET

Overheard on CNN.com: Are Americans better 'Good Samaritans'?

Exchange of the Morning:

"Someone please tell me things are different in the USA."–PointNoted
"Things are quite different here. For one thing, we tend to value human life a lot more."–ShovelingSnw

Chinese toddler dies a week after being hit by cars, ignored by passersby

A Chinese toddler who was hit by two cars and ignored by more than a dozen people before rescue died Friday. The video footage sparked a global outcry about the state of morality in China's fast-changing society. CNN.com readers argued over whether Americans were any better, while some identifying as Chinese or Chinese-American responded.

elfster said, "My heart sank seeing the video in its entirety. The van continued forward upon striking her the first time knowing they ran over a child. It is unthinkable, callous, apathy at its worst. She sustained some serious injuries when the rear wheels rolled over her torso, not to mention the truck that ran over her legs 8 minutes later. To watch passerbys on foot, on motorcycles, and in vehicles look and leave her there is repulsive."

CaitieLady08 said, "I know, I watched it too. Jaw-dropping. I don't understand at all!" Einstein1111 said, "I wonder if this is a general disregard for life in China or if it was the fact that the child was female. It is well known that females are not as 'valuable' in China. I would like to know the thought process on ignoring a severely wounded child in China."

paulbark said, "Lack of bystanders helping is not unique to China. It often happens in the U.S. and elsewhere. Oddly, the more bystanders there are, the less likely someone is to get help from anyone. It's called 'diffusion of responsibility.' " amlesser said, "The 'bystander effect' is a well-documented psychological phenomenon; this has nothing to do with China or human rights."

ken1010 said, "This exact same thing happened in Connecticut where a guy was hit by two cars in broad daylight and people ignored it. Granted, it was an elderly man and not a toddler, but still it shows that we aren't in any position to point fingers as if we have superior moral values."

Some readers said an earlier Chinese court case had made many hesitant to interfere. qdbw said, "This is deeply troubling. As a Chinese, I feel ashamed. However, let me give you some background. There has been multiple instances in China where people who tried to help others who fell on the street were later accused by the injured. In one such instance, the court determined that the person who tried to help must be guilty. Otherwise, he wouldn't have tried to help. He was ordered to pay a large amount to the injured old lady."

CherriH said, " 'Nanjing judge' refers to the infamous 2006 case of a man named Peng Yu who helped a woman to the hospital after she had fallen only to have the old woman accuse him of knocking her down. The Nanjing judge in that case ultimately ruled that common sense dictated that only the person who hit her would take her to the hospital, setting a precedent that continues only further discourages and reinforces many Chinese people's wariness to help others in similar situations.

liuconsis said, "I think in China, we know what is right, but sometimes we dare not to do that, such as criticizing the president, the premier, is that the ting we should do? Sure. But dare we? We dare not, because we are afraid, losing job or even going into jail. That's the main problem, and can we trust our policeman? I think in American are not more upright, but they are more brave. They have a clean government or policeman to trust and rely on, do we have in China? What are the officials doing everyday? We cannot supervise them, because we don't have freedom."

Do you feel your views align with these commenters' thoughts? Post a comment below or sound off on video.

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Open Thread

Compiled by the CNN.com moderation staff. Some comments edited for length or clarity.

soundoff (68 Responses)
  1. leeintulsa

    I don't think there should be a law or anything, but me, i'm doing something, including getting others around to help me help..

    October 21, 2011 at 7:36 pm | Report abuse |
  2. leeintulsa

    Man, woman, or child, doesn't matter. I'm at the very least calling 911. I don't know *how* anyone can do nothing.

    October 21, 2011 at 7:49 pm | Report abuse |
    • YouTube's Inventor

      There was this video released on CNN about a year ago of someone homeless who was lying face down in Miami and like 20 people walked by – some of them even kicked the body – and did nothing and didn't even call 911 for 18 hours.

      October 22, 2011 at 10:50 am | Report abuse |
  3. chrissy

    yea as usual u flip, trip and skip! lmao chao philip and hello bimbo, fernace and s kel. didnt mean to go on and on just tired of hearin the same ole crap ya know? i apologize to you all for that!

    October 21, 2011 at 8:10 pm | Report abuse |
  4. chrissy

    oh and leeintulsa u too dear man! hows your campaign going? aint you glad sir philip discovered his niche and arent you also glad it was directed only at WOMEN? lol

    October 21, 2011 at 8:30 pm | Report abuse |
    • leeintulsa

      I think i missed it.. I've pretty much come to ignore his posts. It's either pity party or whine at someone. Ain't got that kinda time.

      The campaign is fomenting in my mind. The past has been checkered. People who have looked at me for a long time might come to look at me differently.. Doesn't matter so much with a win, though LOL! 'screw em, i'm the prez' lol

      October 21, 2011 at 8:40 pm | Report abuse |
  5. chrissy

    lol @ lee, do you really think 99% of the fools we presently have holding various political positions DONT have a checkered past? who cares, everyone makes mistakes and if not they would be walkin on water right? so u just go with ur bad self 🙂

    October 21, 2011 at 9:17 pm | Report abuse |
  6. leeintulsa

    I do think i'm likable enough where those in the past would not only keep their mouths shut but vote for me.. The office would have to form to fit me, not the other way around.. It'd certainly be... Different..

    October 21, 2011 at 9:26 pm | Report abuse |
    • leeintulsa

      If they didn't, would "yeah. So?" work as an answer?

      October 21, 2011 at 9:30 pm | Report abuse |
  7. 小狗 (休息在和平王悦。)

    It doesnt matter if your chinese or americans its about human decency or lack there of.
    Poor Wang Yue's life was violently ended. She wasnt even granted a peaceful death....Her bloodied broken body fought to keep her alive. Religion shouldnt even be played into this. People should just care, and people should see and act. What happened to her was horrid. and the lot of you who sit there and have the gall to say you wish you didnt watch videos of her being hit. May she rest in peace and i hope her death wasnt in vain. Maybe this will be an eye opener for people.

    October 21, 2011 at 11:15 pm | Report abuse |
    • 小狗 (休息在和平王悦。)

      The lot of you should just disappear.

      October 21, 2011 at 11:16 pm | Report abuse |
  8. Bill W

    In a country that limits child births to one per family,and counts its population in the billions,I believe that the possibility
    for a tragic incident like this,is much higher than in a smaller nation.This does not in any way excuse such callous
    behavior,but our views about children here in the U.S. may not necessarily be the same as in other countries.That said,
    Americans also have shown indifference to suffering,as well,and we who live in glass houses should not be tossing
    stones about either.I want to believe that the average Chinese man or woman,values children like the rest of the civilized
    world does,and I am certain there are many sorrowful hearts in China,over this tragedy.I would also hope that the Chinese authorities prosecute,those who turned their hearts and their backs on this child.

    October 22, 2011 at 2:41 am | Report abuse |
  9. Mike R of Tampa, FL

    China is the richest country in the world; like U.S used to be. Like Biggie said: "Mo' Money, Mo' Problems". You can be very rich in having lots of money and material possessions; but how rich are you in your ethics and moral values? That's a question every person should ask themselves, regardless of the country they are in...

    October 22, 2011 at 6:21 am | Report abuse |
  10. Portland Tony

    All societies have their regrettable incidents of apathy and apparent lack of caring for our fellow man. I can remember from college having to research the killing of a woman named Kitty Genovese in NYC where some 30 plus people heard her screaming for help after being assaulted and stabbed yet none helped. America and big city indifference took a big PR hit on that one. As long as we humans realize that's not OK to look away when something bad is happening to someone that we can prevent, we're OK!

    October 22, 2011 at 8:53 am | Report abuse |
  11. RUFFNUTT ( ELF SLAYER & BUGBEAR KILLER )

    curse you elfster.... all elves are evil, the put mind control medicine in the cookies and skate on sidewalks clearly maked no skating allowed..

    October 22, 2011 at 8:56 am | Report abuse |
  12. i may try it

    phillip, thanks for the dieting tips! Yes, we are too fat. Your plan seems single. Im going to grab an apple now!

    October 22, 2011 at 12:31 pm | Report abuse |
  13. i may try it

    i meant simple. Lol

    October 22, 2011 at 12:32 pm | Report abuse |
  14. Gepaart Vision

    ANTI WALL STREET PROTESTS = TRANSFER OF OWNERSHIP = COMMUNISM

    WHITES AREN’T WELCOME IN AMERICA ANY LONGER !!! OUT OF AMERICA WITH WHITES NOW !!! http://www.youtube.com/user/BostjanAvsec <== OBAMA'S HEALTH CARE RECORDED LIVE IN 2009. These are hard facts about lunatic Obama/Bush's twilight zone administrations(HORROR) or genocide against white population

    Ask your local newspaper/media why do they keep silent about crime/genocide !!? Ask them why do they KNOWINGLY participate in crime/genocide !!! BECAUSE SILENCE = CRIME !!!

    WALL STREET PROTESTS...NOT ANTI WALL-STREET AT ALL, BUT INSTEAD RACIALLY MOTIVATED VIOLENCE AGAINST WHITES !!!

    ANTI WALL-STREET PROTESTS ARE ALSO KNOWN UNDER ZIONIST "TRANSFER OF OWNERSHIP" IN AMERICA !!! TRANSFER OF OWNERSHIP FROM HANDS OF WHITE AMERICANS TO SO CALLED "MINORITIES"(COMMUNISM) http://multiculturalismisterrorism.blogspot.com/

    THEY WERE MURDERING YOU WITH AND INSIDE OF THEIR CORPORATIONS FOR OVER 66 YEARS !!! THEY HAVE CLOSED DOWN ALMOST EVERY SMALL COMPANY(FARMS) IN UNITES STATES OF AMERICA AND NOW, THEY WANT YOU TO GO OUT THERE AND PROTEST FOR THEM AGAINST WALL STREET(because corporations = Wall-street) !!!

    THEY WERE CRIME CONTEMPLATING AGAINST US PER EQUAL EMPLOYMENT OPPORTUNITY COMMISSION FOR OVER 66 YEARS AND NOW, THEY WANT YOU TO RAISE COMMUNIST FLAG UNDER AMERICAN SKY !!! ONE RACE; RAT RACE(Wall street protesters are Obama's raise of the planet Apes army which spread from London per Zionist Washington DC and communist Moscow where new Stalin is in place – PUTIN) !!!

    IF YOU PROTEST(YOU SHOULD), MAKE SURE TO RAISE SIGN WHERE DISPLAYED I CITE "66 YEARS OF GENOCIDE AGAINST WHITES IS NO LONGER ACCEPTABLE" OR GET LOST HOME IF NOT ALREADY HOMELESS(I despise people who starve to death out there and are afrraid to say out loud what is truth...I despise people who only see themselfs and do NOT care even about children of their own...chidren who will be turned one day in white refugees as seen on above video) !!!

    CREATE AWARENESS AND POST THIS VERY SAME VIDEO ON YOUR YOUTUBE CHANNEL.

    WAKE UP YOUR FRIENDS AND SAVE YOURSELF FROM AGONY(did you know that over one hundred million of so called minorities lives already in United States very today and as a result, over 450 million whites worldwide were murdered with economic genocide/oppression since WWII just as seen and proven in above video !!?)...

    THERE IS ESTIMATED THAT ONGOING GENOCIDE TREND WILL CONTINUE TO GO ON FOR AT LEAST ANOTHER 50 YEARS IF NOT DESTROYED(is completed only 30% so far) AND IS ONLY MATTER OF TIME WHEN YOU ARE NEXT IN LINE FOR THE SAKE OF MULTICULTURALISM(TERRORISM)...

    911 WAS CREATED FOR PEOPLE TO WAKE UP(deliberately by CIA)....HOWEVER, WAKE UP EITHER WHAT IS TRUTH(sanity) OR WAKE UP TO LIES(insanity = with what your self elected governments have brainwashed you when forcefully jobless/persecuted....therefor­­e, I want you to think about "WAKE UP" when watching next time ALEX JONES = CIA)

    WHEN YOU WAKE UP, I WANT YOU TO WAKE TO YOURSELF AND NOT TO SOMEONE ELSE'S DREAM (ZIONIST/COMMUNIST/LIBERAL DREAM CATCHERS/THIEFS, WHO PLOTTED 911 TO WAKE YOU AFTERWARDS WITH ECONOMIC OPPRESSION IN A WORLD OF LIES !!!)

    HOW DO YOU KNOW WHAT TRUTH IS !!? WHATEVER YOU WERE BORN IS WHAT YOU ARE(truth therefore) AND FOR WHATEVER REASONS YOU HAVE CHANGED(distorted yourself) SINCE 9/11 IS WHAT YOU ARE NOT !!!

    IS IT INDEPENDENCE THAT WE CELEBRATE OR DEPENDENCE (what are your credit card bills or alimony saying about it) !!? HOW IS YOUR DIABETES AND LOST MARRIAGES !!? FORECLOSURES AND JOB SEARCH !!? THAT IS THE QUESTION TO BE OR NOT TO BE !!! IS IT LAND OF THE FREE OR STATE OF TERROR AGAINST OWN WHITE POPULATION !!? IT IS TIME TO LET THEM KNOW WHAT COLOR ARE THE STRIPES ON OUR STAR SPANGLED BANNER !!! TIME TO DETERMINE WHOSE INDEPENDENCE/AMERICA, WE CELEBRATE TODAY(who wants to erase us and denies us the right to exist) !!! IT IS IMPORTANT TO KNOW WHOM WE ADDRESS WITH "PRESIDENT" (STOP HUMILIATING YOURSELF) !!!

    October 22, 2011 at 4:10 pm | Report abuse |
  15. Gepaart Vision

    ANTI WALL STREET PROTESTS = TRANSFER OF OWNERSHIP = COMMUNISM

    WHITES AREN’T WELCOME IN AMERICA ANY LONGER !!! OUT OF AMERICA WITH WHITES NOW !!!
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_xGfYOAydjw OR http://www.youtube.com/user/BostjanAvsec <== OBAMA'S HEALTH CARE RECORDED LIVE IN 2009. These are hard facts about lunatic Obama/Bush's twilight zone administrations(HORROR) or genocide against white population

    Ask your local newspaper/media why do they keep silent about crime/genocide !!? Ask them why do they KNOWINGLY participate in crime/genocide !!! BECAUSE SILENCE = CRIME !!!

    WALL STREET PROTESTS...NOT ANTI WALL-STREET AT ALL, BUT INSTEAD RACIALLY MOTIVATED VIOLENCE AGAINST WHITES !!!

    ANTI WALL-STREET PROTESTS ARE ALSO KNOWN UNDER ZIONIST "TRANSFER OF OWNERSHIP" IN AMERICA !!! TRANSFER OF OWNERSHIP FROM HANDS OF WHITE AMERICANS TO SO CALLED "MINORITIES"(COMMUNISM) http://multiculturalismisterrorism.blogspot.com/

    THEY WERE MURDERING YOU WITH AND INSIDE OF THEIR CORPORATIONS FOR OVER 66 YEARS !!! THEY HAVE CLOSED DOWN ALMOST EVERY SMALL COMPANY(FARMS) IN UNITES STATES OF AMERICA AND NOW, THEY WANT YOU TO GO OUT THERE AND PROTEST FOR THEM AGAINST WALL STREET(because corporations = Wall-street) !!!

    THEY WERE CRIME CONTEMPLATING AGAINST US PER EQUAL EMPLOYMENT OPPORTUNITY COMMISSION FOR OVER 66 YEARS AND NOW, THEY WANT YOU TO RAISE COMMUNIST FLAG UNDER AMERICAN SKY !!! ONE RACE; RAT RACE(Wall street protesters are Obama's raise of the planet Apes army which spread from London per Zionist Washington DC and communist Moscow where new Stalin is in place – PUTIN) !!!

    IF YOU PROTEST(YOU SHOULD), MAKE SURE TO RAISE SIGN WHERE DISPLAYED I CITE "66 YEARS OF GENOCIDE AGAINST WHITES IS NO LONGER ACCEPTABLE" OR GET LOST HOME IF NOT ALREADY HOMELESS(I despise people who starve to death out there and are afraid to say out loud what is truth...I despise people who only see themselves and do NOT care even about children of their own...children who will be turned one day in white refugees as seen on above video) !!!

    October 22, 2011 at 4:49 pm | Report abuse |
    • Portland Tony

      Hey Mommy, can 10 thousand monkeys using 10 thousand keyboards for 10 thousand years come up with crap that's on this page?

      October 22, 2011 at 5:29 pm | Report abuse |
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