On April 29, I posted a blog about an organization in New York City that was training citizens on how to respond if they see citizens being accosted on account of race, religion, etc. In that post,
I quoted the organization doing the training:
But before you speak up, Brandt says it's important to stay level-headed. Then, figure out what's the safest way to take action.
On May 26, an alleged white supremacist was harassing two young Muslim girls on a commuter train when at least three other passengers intervened to protect the girls. The harasser, 35-year-old Jeremy Joseph Christian of North Portland, stabbed the three men, killing two – an army veteran and a recent college graduate. The two are being hailed as heroes – a reminder this Memorial Day weekend that while all men and women who wear the uniforms of our military services are heroes, but not all heroes wear military uniforms.
Ricky John Best, age 53, who died at the scene; and Taliesin Myrddin Namkai Meche, 23, who died later in the hospital, can be described as martyrs to decency, humanity and respect.
Isn’t it sad that in our society we have martyrs to decency?
I have written a couple of times about moral courage, encouraging all of us to exercise this moral muscle in case we are faced with a situation that would call for action. The incident in Portland reminds us that exercising moral courage can be risky. So, I’m adding the five “D’s” of Bystander Intervention:
1. Direct – Is it safe/advisable to directly confront the harasser?
2. Distract – Ignore the harasser. Engage the target, without reference to the harassment – ask for directions/time/etc.
3. Delegate – Find person of authority. Make report, if safe for yourself and the target.
4. Delay – If you can’t act in the moment, you can still contact the victim later, expressing sorrow, support, assistance.
5. Document – If someone else is already using one of the first four D’s, you can record the incident. But be sure you and the target are safe before doing so. Be sure to have the target’s permission before sharing the recoring.
I encourage you to read the article in the footnote below.
And, let’s remember the families of Ricky John Best and Taliesin Meche in our prayers.
 For a complete description of Bystander Intervention techniques, see https://www.ihollaback.org/resources/bystander-resources/