Here's a relatively straightforward story - or so you'd think. A man fell off his bike and died in the road. Dozens of people failed to stop and help him.
Motorists who left a cyclist to die in the road after he was knocked over by a stolen car were described as inhuman yesterday.
Instead of stopping, they simply swerved around him, and detectives believe that one may even have driven over the badly injured Stephen Wills, breaking both his legs.
That does sound rather horrible. I wonder why these motorists didn't stop? What were they scared of? Well, as it turns out they're very scared indeed, and I think I have a fair idea why. More of that later.
He is thought to have had no children of his own, but was regarded as a "father figure" by the two sons of a divorcee with whom he had been in a relationship.
One of them, Shahid Karim, aged 25, said last night he was horrified to hear of Mr Wills' last moments.
"I called him 'Dad' even though he wasn't my biological father, and he was a wonderful dad," he said.
'Sons of a divorcee with whom he had been in a relationship' - you what? Can't the Mail ever hide its contempt for 'Broken Britain' and people who get divorced or have other relationships? If this guy had been in Dewsbury it would have been a different kettle of fish. And as for the guy who calls him dad, you can just sense the awkwardness in the Mail newsroom - well, we need to be sympathetic to this chap, but unfortunately the photos have come back and he's one of them.
Anyway, that's a minor quibble. My real problem is with the ever-growing madness of Mail commenters; they're like a senile old great aunt quaffing sherry in the corner, who gets more and more insane every Christmas:
Unfortunately, Health and Safety plus compensation culture means that if you stop to help someone and inadvertently do something wrong to a living person, or even just give your name, that person if he/she survives might tomorrow sue you for damages. It is difficult to find a Samaritan to help after a fall on the pavement these days. Sad but so.
- Giovanna, Rome, Italy
I think you mean 'bollocks lying stories about health and safety in the Mail' and 'people justifying selfishness by pretending it's someone else's fault'.
In our police state, if you were to stop then you'd like become a suspect, be arrested, have your DNA taken, and be in the papers. In today's Britain, if I was injured then I would NOT expect help from anyone. And that's very sad. A reflection of Labour's Britain. They're to blame for all of this with their target driven database frenzy. These words are in recognition of a man who we would likely wish to be around. We are ALL suffering as a nation, all of us, even the police too.
- Alison F, Cambridge, UK
Which papers would these be, accusing suspects of crimes and deciding they're guilty before anything's happened? Someone should tell the Mail about such disgraceful actions.
As soon as anyone stopped and helped, and rang the police, they would have been number one suspect.
I have seen it in the past, where the police take the very suspicious approach, that if anyone is reporting something, they must be hiding something!
So the story probably is true, when it says drivers most likely thought it was too much trouble to involve themselves.
It really is a sad era we live in!
- Chris, Preston
What, when pricks like you think you can't help others?
I don't believe these people were being uncaring. They probably wanted to stop but have read too many scare stories about people 'playing dead' in the street so that when people stop their cars and get out they are attacked and their car stolen.
- Matt, Glasgow
Yes, you read too many scare stories. I wonder where these scare stories come from?
How dare the police comment about the public failing to stop and help others in need? Plod evidently needs reminding that their mission in life appears to be protecting the villain to the detriment of the victim. It was not so long ago that two of them stood by and watched a young child drown. Pot, kettle and black springs to mind, with the exception that they are handsomely paid to sit on their backsides and do diddly-squat.
- Glyn, Southampton, U.K.
The classic 'two PCSOs who did something once equal every police officer ever' argument. Well presented. Where on earth could people have read about such rubbish being written about those PCSOs?
It is sad but I believe the police are largely to blame. People who involve themselves are likely to be arrested, photographed, DNA-ed and fingerprinted.
- Michael Murphy, Teignmouth, England
Says who. Where on earth might you get that bonkers idea from...? Oh yes. I see. Do you see a pattern emerging as to why these folk are so terrified to offer help, believing the world to be an evil place where you get carjacked and the police blame the victims - might it have something to do with their newspaper of choice?
He was hit on a dual carriageway? Isn't riding a bike on a dual carriageway illegal?
- Rob, Amsterdam, Netherlands
No. No, it's not. There, we've cleared that one up for you Rob. But I see where you're coming from. Which newspaper, whenever cyclists are mentioned, has a flood of comments from know-all twats saying that all they do is jump red lights? Any ideas...?
"What kind of a world do we live in"? It's called Nu Labour's Britain.
- Ken, London
Yay, it's NuLab's fault! What for? For making people suddenly change their entire personalities and behaviours in the past 11 years, of course. That really has happened. People would have been nicer to strangers under the Tories.
This country is lost. Too much compensation culture, human rights, suing, health and safety, arrogance and complete disregards for others. The 'me, me, me' has never been greater, but then I fear this government has done all the damage that needed to be done to an already weakening nation. I for one cannot blame others for avoiding a potentially difficult situation, based solely on the possible end results of any help that may have been given. In civilised countries such as Spain, it is actually against the law not helping someone in clear distress.
- Tony, Buckinghamshire
I can hear the faint kaboom of Tony's head exploding as I write this, just as I did over that level crossing story yesterday. He doesn't blame people for intervening because of 'human rights'. But he'd prefer it if his rights were curtailed and he was forced to intervene by law...?
The Labour party, with the advent of Blair set the rules of this nation. Greedy, selfish and moronic.
- T.B, Nottingham
Greed didn't exist under the Tories?
I often wonder if over-zealousness by the police in prosecuting drivers, especially where one may be just about on the drink limit, makes some think discretion is the better part of valour? It seems the good hearted are interrogated and inconvenienced more than the perpetrator. Sadly, a sign of the times.
- Michael Walsh, Liverpool England
Something to share, Michael? Personally I have no problem with coppers prosecuting selfish cuntwads who drive over the limit. But then I've never done it, have I.
The big problem now is that if you get involved with something like this, you risk having your DNA sampled and suffer a life sentence of having it stored on the police database! No wonder people don't want to get involved any more.
- Peter, London UK
I hate the police state as much as anyone, but I do despair for the majority of police just trying to do their job when they come across this kind of attitude, where people assume that they'll be in trouble for just being there. Where on earth could that come from? Who keeps suggesting that's the case, day after day after day? Maybe it's a particular newspaper? Ah well, the search goes on.
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