În ceea ce urmează sunt prezentate două atitudini diametral diferite. Zimbardo o numeşte pe cea de-a doua eroică. Eu cred că e una normală. De multe ori ni se spune „nu fă pe eroul” sau „ce te bagi, nu-i treaba ta” sau „nu eşti tu cu asta”. Dacă nu sunt „eu” cu asta, nu eşti nici „tu”, nu suntem nici „noi”. Şi aşa este lumea dominată de cei răi, cei nesimţiţi, violenţi, mincinoşi, ucigaşi, etc. Aşa dispare opinia publică şi aşa ajungem sub dominaţia unora care impun standarde de genul „fac ce vor muşchii mei” sau „nu mă interesează de alţii” sau „eu, eu şi numai eu”. Şi ne mirăm că ţara noastră se duce pe rîpă, că oamenii preferă să lupte în altă ţară unde mai au o speranţă că lucrurile stau un pic altcumva în ciuda faptului că încep de la zero. Rămîne întrebarea: dacă tot nu putem pleca toţi, ce e de făcut?
As he stepped away from the cab, four scruffy-looking youths surrounded him and said, “Give us your money.” He did. Then one of them took a pistol and beat him over the head. Rudd fell into the gutter, just a few steps from home. For seven hours on the fashionable East Side of New York, he lay on that street. He was semi-conscious. A whole parade of people went by: milkmen, people coming home from parties, people going out to work on an early shift. As they passed by him, he kept saying, “Help me, help me.” They would shrug and look the other way. His wife, worried sick, finally called the police. They came and found him at 7:00 the next morning.
On Monday, August 9, 1993, a thirty-one-year-old woman, Sophia White, burst into the hospital nursery at UCLA Medical Center in Los Angeles, wielding a .38-caliber handgun. She had come gunning for Elizabeth Staten, a nurse whom she accused of stealing her husband. White fired six shots, hitting Staten in the wrist and stomach. Staten fled, and White chased her into the emergency room, . . . firing once more. There, with blood on her clothes and a hot pistol in her hand, the attacker was met by another nurse, Joan Black, who did the unthinkable. Black walked calmly to the gun-toting woman, hugged her, and spoke comforting words. The assailant said she didn’t have anything to live for, that Staten had stolen her family. “You’re in pain,” Black said. “I’m sorry~but everybody has pain in their lives . . . I understand, and we can work it out.” As they talked, the hospital invader kept her finger on the trigger. Once she began to lift the gun as if to shoot herself. Nurse Black just pushed her arm down and continued to hold her. At last Sophia White gave the gun to the nurse.