There are two indisputable facts in this story. Hugo Alfredo Tale-Yax is a hero — and no one else who crossed his path in his final hour of life was. Tale-Yax intervened to stop a woman from getting mugged, but got stabbed several times in the exchange. He collapses in the street, and several people pass him, including one who pulled out his camera — but not to call 911:

Why did passersby leave a Good Samaritan bleeding to death on a New York sidewalk last week, with one even pausing to snap a photo of the dying man who had been stabbed after thwarting a mugging?

A psychologist believes there could be several reasons why people didn’t offer help Hugo Alfredo Tale-Yax, 31 — whose fate was captured on a grainy surveillance video — perhaps including our culture’s desensitization to violence from so much exposure in movies, video games and music.

“We love violence in this culture,” said the psychologist, Michael Bradley. “We have this kind of 24/7 pounding of violence. We now know that that pounding of violence actually causes brain changes where people start to not distinguish between real violence and cyber violence. We’re actually rewiring our brains to not react to violence and pain the way we should.”

The “we love violence” explanation is nonsense. The violence took place out of sight of everyone but Tale-Yax and his murderer, and the surveillance camera. The other people who passed by didn’t see any violence. They just saw a man passed out on the sidewalk, bleeding, and did nothing about it. Unlike Tale-Yax, who saw someone in danger and took action to help, they just couldn’t be bothered.

Tags: New York