Re: Assisting boats run aground in mud?
"The main rationalization for not helping is that "
I seem to recall "rationalizing" means creating an excuse for what we know is the wrong act. So it would appear that you are conflicted over this.
You are under no onbligation to put yourself or your vessel into what you think might be danger (of lawsuit or damage) in order to avoid an inconvenienced vessel. Nor a vessel under distress, although you are obligated to make some attempt to aid the vessel in true distress. If you feel that your only safe response would be to stand by to pick up survivors, and call/radio the situation in to the USCG, that's perfectly valid.
But I think what you feel the conflict about, is your conscience telling you it is time to bank some karma points, by rendering aid when you can safely do so. Hailing them getting some information, and responding might be all you can do. Throwing a line and investing an hour, depends on whether you need to get home to walk the dog, and whether they can survive until the tide comes in.