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The typical line of the Heroic Neutral to the Wide-Eyed Idealist or any Good aligned characters, this is taking the belief that an issue is someone else's problem only and shoving it on others. Upon encountering another character who is trying to get involved in a bad situation to try to resolve it positively, the speaker will frankly state that it isn't their problem... they may even go as far as to state it is none of their business and they'll probably just make everything worse.

Sometimes, the speaker is right. Intervention really will make everything worse. Interfering in a situation you simply don't understand, even with the best of intentions, can often produce considerable harm. Outsiders often have no clue why things work the way they do in a situation or a place, and thus their attempts to help can produce results ranging from nuisance to catastrophe.

Politicians beholden to Realpolitik will tell any more idealistic politicians or citizens this as well. Of course, it's important to remember that characters with this belief are not necessarily Stupid Neutral: if they see a way it could affect the idealist, they will praise the idealist's foresight if they can explain how it is in their interests to act... but they will scold ignorance of why they are acting even if it is in the character's interest by chance. It can also be from friends trying to explain to a hero with Chronic Hero Syndrome that if they keep going after every problem in a world full of problems that doesn't affect them personally, they are going to crack up.

Compare Bystander Syndrome, Not in This for Your Revolution.


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    Anime & Manga 
  • A Certain Magical Index: Several characters like Index and the members of Necessarius urge Touma Kamijou to ignore situations that have nothing to do with him, including the sweet and innocent Orsola Aquinas being arrested by the Roman Catholic Church and scheduled for execution. Touma always ignores them to do what is right.
  • In Puella Magi Madoka Magica, Homura is always saying this to Madoka in an effort to prevent her from becoming a Magical Girl - and, by extension, a witch waiting to happen.
  • In Sailor Moon S, Haruka and Michiru constantly tell the Inner Senshi to back off and leave everything to them. The Inner Senshi, being who they are, never listen.

    Asian Animation 
  • The Simple Samosa episode "Tufaan" features an inversion. In the episode, Samosa becomes so obsessed with riding a new bicycle he has received in the mail that he ignores the requests of townspeople asking him for help, saying something along the lines of "Sorry, but it's printed on the back of the bike's box in bold letters: do it yourself" each time he's met with a request.

    Fan Works 
  • Never Be Silent: Subverted. John tries to convince Oliver to stay out of the metahuman issue to prevent a possible fight between Team Arrow and Team Flash, after Felicity suggests to him that the only reason he's getting involved is because Laurel is a metahuman. However, while Oliver acknowledges that Laurel's situation is what alerted him to the issue, he also points out that even if that weren't the case, they'd still be involved because metahumans are not isolated to Central City. They're everywhere now, and they aren't going away. Upon hearing that, John can only concede that he's right.
  • In Two Letters, Luka repeatedly reassures Marinette that she doesn't have to work about akumas anymore, since there's a new Ladybug who's protecting Paris now. Neither one of them especially likes her, but they appreciate how she gets the job done so they don't have to concern themselves with it.

    Film - Live-Action 
  • Hardcore Henry: When Henry and Jimmy are walking to Jimmy's hideout, they come across three corrupt cops about to rape a woman. Jimmy tells Henry it is not their problem, but Henry marches over and kicks their asses, killing two of them. An annoyed Jimmy shoots the last cop and tells Henry to quit wasting time.
  • Transformers: Age of Extinction: There's a version with Brains, an Autobot captured by humans and forced to reverse engineer cybertronian technology to create transformers for the humans. He noticed Megatron exerting his influence over the Galvatron project, and eventually taking over it and he chooses to do nothing about it as the humans imprisoned him, tortured him, and melted his friends down in front of him. When the problem manifests itself as a threat to Humanity, Brains just dismisses it under this trope.

  • The story The Frogs and the Lobsters in Mr. Horatio Hornblower has Hornblower, with a detachment of the British Army, fighting with the royalist French army against Republican forces, and told several times that it is not their fight. Hornblower later hears the same thing in Lieutenant Hornblower while assaulting a Spanish fort in Haiti during a Haitian rebellion.

  • This is Fesxis' attitude in Dawn of a New Age: Oldport Blues. As a non-human Time Abyss she has little concern for other people's problems, and will advise her host Sebastian to ignore them in favour of his own objective. Sebastian, being heroically inclined, usually ignores her.

    Tabletop Games 
  • The Crusade in Forgotten Realms. Cormyrean king and his supporters wanted to go out and meet Tuigan Horde's forces head-on. Many others who weren't affected, didn't want this. Even Dalesmen who were closer to the Horde wanted to wait and watch or try to solve the trouble in any way not involving their southwestern "friends" — whom they tend to distrust, and for good reasons. Not that Cormyr itself was united about the issue: the Royal Magician and guilds claimed that until proven otherwise, the political development half a continent away from their borders is neither their business nor a valid cause for expenses a large military campaign would need.


    Video Games 
  • This becomes a major conflict in the first chapter of Corpse Party 2: Dead Patient. When Ayame's group gets a Distress Signal from another isolated group of survivors, Ritsuko doesn't want to leave their barricaded room to try and help them. She's so determined to stick to this that she throws Chiyomi out for arguing and locks the door, with Ayame being left to decide who to side with.
  • In Dragon Age: Origins some of Warden's more pragmatic companions present this attitude. Morrigan gets annoyed if you insist on saving Redcliffe and Sten asks why are you chasing after "the charred remnants of a dead woman" (Urn of Andraste), when you should be focusing on defeating the archdemon.
  • Kingdom Hearts: When the party witnesses Alice being arrested and scheduled for execution, Sora wants to help, but Donald sternly tells him they are not supposed to meddle in other world's affairs except for fighting the Heartless. Sora ignores him and helps her.
  • Pokémon Sword and Shield bucks the usual series trend of having the protagonist always be the one to fight the villains. Instead, the older members of the cast logically point out that you and your rival are kids and it's not fair to dump such problems on you. Indeed, things stay mostly under control until the climax, at which point you're forced to intervene.
  • In Red Dead Redemption, John Marston sees two guys trying to drown Irish, he asks what's going on. He gets this response:
    Welsh: Fuck off, boyo! This don't concern you!
    • Which leaves John to retort:
      John: When a man with a sing-song voice tells me to fuck off, it always concerns me, "boyo."

  • In Tower of God, Ja Wangnan stops Yeo Goseng from helping an injured Regular, since it's his fault he got hurt so badly and they'd have to drop him again anyway if they wanted to continue climbing.

    Western Animation 
  • Avatar: The Last Airbender: This is Sokka's attitude regarding any side quest that doesn't involve their main mission, like for example Katara's trying to help the Fire Nation village in "The Painted Lady", unless it's extremely personal.