Created By: Kartoonkid95 on May 12, 2017 Last Edited By: TheWanderer on May 20, 2017

Not My Problem...Yet

Not caring about a problem until it affects you.

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First they came for the Socialists, and I did not speak out
For I was not a socialist
Then they came for the trade unionists, and I did not speak out
For I was not a trade unionist
Then they came for the Jews, and I did not speak out
For I was not a Jew
Then they came for me, and there was no one left to speak for me
—'''Martin Niemoller

Related to Didn't Think This Through and Hypocritical Humor. A subversion of Bystander Syndrome. Compare to Neutral No Longer and Awakening the Sleeping Giant.

Examples:

    open/close all folders 
    Comic Strips 
  • FoxTrot: One arc invoved Andy installing a MomVo, a device that records TV shows approved by Moral Guardians. At the end, Jason explains that she had realized it's wrong to let a complete stranger dictate what they should or shouldn't watch.
    Paige: It wouldn't record her soaps, in other words.
    Jason: You should have seen how fast she yanked out the cables.

    Live Action TV 
  • Arrested Development: A minor Running Gag involves Lindsay not caring about a cause until it affects her, often for petty reasons.
    • She decides to protest The War on Terror when her hairstylist is drafted.
    • She protests against a sculpture of the Ten Commandments when she breaks a heel on her shoe while walking past it. Even though it wasn't directly involved.
    • She gets the family to rally against a disease when Tobias contracts it. There is a cure for it, but not one that won't soil their social status.
    • She is against building a wall along the Mexican border until a "Mexican" (who turns out to be a Mongolian) steals her necklace.
  • Cheers: After Lilith leaves Frasier, he goes to attempt suicide by jumping off a ledge. His barmates see him on the news while channel surfing, but they don't really care until the realize it's him.
  • Community: In "Basic Intergluteal Numismatics'', Jeff is disinterested in pursuing the "Ass Crack Bandit" (whose crime is sticking quarters into the but cracks of Greendale students) until troy becomes the latest victim.

    Poetry 
  • As quoted above, First they came... was meant to be an attack on the Germans' wilful ignorance of The Holocaust before Hitler inevitably preyed upon them with nobody left to oppose him.

    Western Animation 
  • Family Guy: In "PTV", Lois initially approves of the FCC censoring real-life until she realizes that she can't have sex with Peter under their guidelines.
  • Futurama: In "Bender Should Not Be Allowed on TV", Bender doesn't mind that his TV show is influencing children to rob people until he finds out that some kids have robbed him, and he promptly joins a campaign to cancel his own show.
  • Robot Chicken: In a series of sketches spoofing the early years of World War II, Li'l Hitler takes over the desks of his classmates, and the American kid doesn't mind until the Japanese kid knocks over his milk.
    American Kid: Pssh, it's not my problem. [Japanese kid pushes over his milk and then walks away] Now it's my problem.
  • The Simpsons
    • In "Homer Alone", Homer watches a news story of an "overworked and underappreciated housewife" who parked her car on a bridge. He doesn't care and even mocks said wife, until he finds out that it's actually his wife. "D'oh!"
    • In "The Book Job", after Homer and company's teen lit novel gets meddled beyond all recognition and they plan to change it back, Bart reminds them that they were Only in It for the Money. He only joins them when Skinner tells him how one of his contributions got altered.
Community Feedback Replies: 22
  • May 12, 2017
    Chabal2
    Foxtrot: One arc has Andrea get a Momvo, a device that records TV shows if approved by Moral Guardians, which of course causes no end of complaints from her children. The arc concludes with Jason recounting their mother recognizing the wrongness of letting a complete stranger decide what they can or can't watch.
    Paige: It wouldn't record her soaps, in other words.
    Jason: You should have seen how fast she yanked out the cables.
  • May 12, 2017
    HeroGal2347
    I'm afraid the title of this might fall under No New Stock Phrases. The idea seems promising enough. It might be somehow related to Original Position Fallacy.
  • May 12, 2017
    Prime32
  • May 12, 2017
    Getta
    Supertrope to Heroic Neutral (someone who'll just mind their own business until they're wronged, which spurs them into action)
  • May 12, 2017
    NightShade96
    Wouldn't this be Bystander Syndrome?
  • May 12, 2017
    Getta
    ^ This would be subverted Bystander Syndrome
  • May 12, 2017
    NightShade96
    ^ Thanks for the clarification.
  • May 13, 2017
    BKelly95
    Live Action Television
    • The Community episode "Basic Intergluteal Numismatics'' has Jeff initially disinterested in pursuing the "Ass Crack Bandit" (whose crime is sticking quarters into the but cracks of Greendale students). Then Troy becomes the latest victim and Jeff joins the investigation.
    • After Lilith leaves Frasier on Cheers, he climbs onto a ledge to jump. The other patrons spot him while channel surfing, but don't really care until they realize who he is.
  • May 13, 2017
    BKelly95
    Live Action Television
    • On Arrested Development, this is how Lindsey usually gets involved with her various causes.
      • She decides to protest the War On Terror after her hairstylist is drafted.
      • She decides to advocate for removing a sculpture of the Ten Commandments from the courthouse after she breaks a heel on her shoe while walking past it. (The sculpture had no direct involvement with her heel breaking.)
      • She gets the family to support a medical condition after Tobias contracts it. The condition already has a cure, but not one that will preserve her and Tobias' social status.
      • She advocates against building a wall on the border with Mexico until a "Mexican" actually Mongolian steals her necklace. Then she starts to advocate for building the wall.
  • May 14, 2017
    Bisected8
    • The poem/speech First they came... is all about this trope, specifically in relation to the public's wilful ignorance of The Holocaust. Many variations exist, but it follows the format of various groups being targeted, until the final part says words to the effect of "and when there was nobody else left, they came for me."

    Whoops, missed it had already been posted.
  • May 14, 2017
    Argon2
    I don't think Unicode will translate the quoted guy's name.
  • May 14, 2017
    TheWanderer
    • There are several very short Robot Chicken skits with "Little Hitler" where a grade school Hitler is trying to take over his classroom. This involves bullying his classmates and stealing their desks. Meanwhile, "Little America" sits on the other side of the room, casually shrugging and saying it's not his problem... until Little Japan comes over and shoves him, at which point Little America takes a deep breath and calmly says "Now it's my problem."
  • May 14, 2017
    sarysa
    For whatever reason, ASCII characters 0x80 to 0xFE get mangled on this website. You need to change the name on the top quote to: Martin Niemölle. Click on the </> by my post and note how I use the URL code: ö

    edit: Okay, it seems that you CAN'T view it in my post source, but it'll remain as URL code in a trope entry. Without spaces, replace the garbage chars that keeps expanding to:

    & # 2 4 6 ;

    Again, remove the spaces from the above.
  • May 14, 2017
    KaiYves
  • May 14, 2017
    Getta
  • May 18, 2017
    hszmv1
    • The famous Debut cover of Captain America delivering a mean right hook to Hitler's face was very controversial for its time (It first appeared in the summer of 41). At the time, America was officially neutral and popular sentiment was that we didn't want to send more troops over to die in what looked like yet more squabbles between European powers. The Captain America was a very deliberate protest to these attitudes... if Americans believed in the values of Captain America, than they had no choice but to support Captain America in his fight against a super villain that wanted to take over the world. They chose a real villain with that real goal. Bonus points for being drawn by Jewish Jack Kirby.
  • May 18, 2017
    hszmv1
    Oh... fun fact about the page quote:

    • The first line wasn't Socialists... it was Communists... the original poem wasn't translated into English until the 1950s, and was done so by an American... considering this was the height of the Red Scare, he certainly didn't want to have any Commie sympathies, so changed it to Socialists (it also omitted the sick, but it was more to comply with Rule Of Three). In fact, the author of the poem put Communism first because he was guilty of it! He was a Reverend and all but cheered that the Atheistic Communists were taken out of the picture not to mention a member of the Nazi Party (up until he spoke out, about the Jews) at which point, they came for him... and he spent 8 years in Dachau for it. The order of the people purged in the poem is meant to go from Acceptable Target to Once Acceptable Targert to Its Personal. Just a bit of a point out because the quote is a translation that... sort of proves the point.
  • May 18, 2017
    Getta
    Supertrope to Heroic Neutral (mention it please)
  • May 19, 2017
    Diask
    This might be an outcome of Original Position Fallacy, when a character advocates an idea thinking they will benefit from it, only to find out they will be paying the price instead.
  • May 19, 2017
    Malady
    My Little Pony Friendship Is Magic: Recap.My Little Pony Friendship Is Magic S 2 E 20 Its About Time:
    • Compressed Vice: Spike seems awfully fixated on ice cream this week. Unlike candy in "Luna Eclipsed", there's no real motivation here. He initially does it to tease Twilight, and just because the effects will be someone else's problem — specifically, Future Spike's.

  • May 19, 2017
    CactusFace
    • In South Park New Jersey takes over all of the eastern united states. When they start conquering Colorado, Randy asks Arnold Schwarzenegger, governor of California, for help. He replies that he does not care, because there are still Utah and Nevada between them. In the end the only ones who sees the danger in this are al-Qaida, who then win the war for South Park.
  • May 20, 2017
    mhj0808
    I think this is almost ready to go, it just needs a different title...
http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/discussion.php?id=k2pwfa3u1q6dzcyab29cc428