This should be the inculcated value of every Civil Servant and every Citizen. And for those who witness someone being mistreated by a mob, it is your duty to become involved.
We have raised multiple generations now of cowardly, avoidant men who can quickly calculate their own self-interest. Fatherless children are acquiescent and malignantly compliant and conformist. Even their attempts to be an individual depend on imitating the crowd. They are rebels and mavericks as long as there is a cheering crowd and the power to which they think they are “speakin’ truth” is commonly accepted to be a demon.
This is further accelerated by sissifying rules in institutions and psychologically malicious HR departments and the twisted reasoning behind corrupt legislation.
True prudence is not a cover for cowardice. True prudence is the exercise of wisdom in deciding when, and when not, to act–and thereby contributes to the practical sagacity of knowing how to act. But prudence assume an acting agent. True prudence is not typified by someone who routinely opts to head for the corner when a task is to be done or a conflict countenanced.
Rise up truth tellers! Rise up men and women of integrity! Think, pray and–if there is time–deliberate, but set about acting. Act, if not in this precise moment and if not in the first way that comes to mind, commit yourself to acting if the matter is significant.
My background is animal behavior. One of the foundational books that I read for my dissertation work on the orientation of honeybees in earth-strength magnetic fields was a title by Jacques Loeb, Forced Movements, Tropisms, and Animal Conduct. (1)
The nervous system guides the movements of the healthy, adaptive, organism in some patterned ways. Pay attention and do not be given to idle distractions. Turn and orient towards alerting changes. Employ hightened perception to analyze objects and their informing contexts. Move toward, away, or in some cases temporarily freeze for tactical reasons. Engage the object.
The military and police departments teach a version of this called the O.O.D.A. Loop: Observe, Orient, Decide and Act. [Repeat.] One does not need to envisage the extreme of violent situations such as what soldiers and lawmen train for in order to usefully employ these principles. Is a neighbor doing something offensive or wrongful? Talk to them if it is a minor matter. Is there a policy problem? Bring it to the attention of a lawmaker after you have done the appropriate study. Is there corruption in your work environment? Work within the system or seek help from outside authorities. Are there large scale social and civilizational threats, such as the sexual abuse crisis in the Catholic Church or mass invasions by illegal aliens and an opening of the gates by traitorous politicians, journalists and churchmen? Raise awareness.
Do not go to your grave thinking that you did something right by always running away.
(1) Loeb, Jacques. Forced Movements, Tropisms, and Animal Conduct, 1918. You can read it online, here: https://archive.org/details/forcedmovementst00loebrich