I think the subject of this story is about making life and death decisions right there on the spot, about staying calm in hard situations. It's also about the consequences of those decisions. Everyday you have to make certain decisions and follow through with them, I feel that it tells what type of character you have when faced with hard decisions that affect someone elses life and you still follow through.
I believe that the doctor did the right thing by helping the victim out of the truck. He wouldn't be alive right now if it wasn't for Dillard. The victim had a blocked airway and was passed out due to the consequences of to much alcohol.
Dillard wasn't quite a doctor yet, but he had been going through medical school to become one and was almost ready to graduate. I think that James was put in a bad situation, does he try to save someone's life and risk his future or does he walk away and do the safe thing? Being trained as a doctor, he knew what to do for a blocked airway and a possible spinal injury.
He had the training to stay calm and not panic.
I think that your adreneline kicks in when you are put in a situation like this, and if you have the training you kind of run on automatic pilot. You do what you have to do and don't think about the consequences, about whether your actions are right or wrong.
I don't understand why anyone should have to stop and think about the consequences in a life threatening situation. If you are willing to risk your life to help someone, there should not be any consequences to you for being a good Samaritan. If James had not been willing to help that guy, the guy would more than likely have died.
Our society is so sue-happy, it seems that people are out to make an easy buck. We have lost the innocence and the good Samaritan out look that we used to have. We shouldn't have to be concerned with whether or not to help. If we should see someone in need we should help out automatically. If I am stranded along side of the road because my car breaks down, I wish people wouldn't think, is she a serial killer or does she have a gun to steal my car it should be an automatic reaction to help.
I think that at the end of the story where Dillard says "I would drive on" he is being swayed by other people's reactions, and by the fact that he could be sued and lose all the hard work he put into being a doctor.
I think the message here is about making decisions and using your own judgement.
This guy had to make a spur of the moment decision .The longer he waited, and thought about what he was going to do, the more chance that this guy was going to die, and I think a lot of things would go through your head. First of all would be, are you qualified to help here? What if he dies anyway? Maybe someone else here is more qualified. Your conscience would really be a hard cross to bear if he died, and later you found out that you had made the wrong decision. Then again, how about the guilt of not making the decision to help. How would you feel if you didn't help this guy out and you watched him die right in front of your eyes? Again I say," don't wonder." If you can help you should be free to do so.
I have a small amount of experience in this as I have been a lifeguard for the last two years. I have had to jump into the pool to save a little kid from going under the water more than once and it is a gut reaction to do so. But I do think about doing C.P.R. on someone's child what if I forget what to do or I do it wrong and I end up hurting the kid I am trying to save. I know that the mother would be standing over me worrying and what if I mess up. I hope that I wouldn't think about these things and go for it. I think that it would be a great feeling to know that I made a difference in someone's life.
I have tried to put myself in Dillard's position, and wondered if I would do the same thing. I know that I would do the same thing that Dillard did because I could not live with myself knowing that I left the scene of an accident knowing a man was going to die. I think that having that kind of training and not using it would be the greater crime. What does a person go to medical school for, what about the Hippocratic oath that is taken by doctors ? Most of all, what about your conscience ? Could you live with yourself knowing that you did not do all that you could do to help another human being when that person is in need? I think I would like to address this Paper to students in elementary school and also to college students far away from home who are learning to make decisions on their own on a daily basis. To parents of small children who can teach their kids to make a difference in this life. Keep your kids innocent of the bad things and teach them to trust more in their instincts. I think of the story about the black lady who was standing along side of the road in the pouring rain after her car broke down. This story was in the deep south, when times were tough for the black people of the south. A white man comes along and picks her up and gives her a ride to her destination the local hospital. He leaves with the feeling of doing his good deed for the day and not thinking anything of it. A couple of weeks go by and he has forgotten the incident. There is a knock on the door and when he answers there is a delivery man at the door with a new television. The note attached reads : Thank you for your kindness in the ride you provided me the other night. Your kindness allowed me to reach my husbands bedside before he passed away. Thank you again Mrs. Nat King Cole.
In conclusion, I have had to make many personal choices on my own, (not life and death choices) choices that would affect my life, and my decisions for the future. My parents have given me all the freedom that I have needed. They have taught me to make wise choices with the freedom that they gave me, and not to take advantage of that freedom. Those choices would be to help other people in need, and to use compassion and not judge others.