On Friday, as you know, a deeply troubled boy entered Sandy Hook Elementary School in Connecticut and killed 20 young children and 6 adults. It’s horrible, but politicians and the media have been warping the truth on what happened and attempting to use it as a way to centralize power and take guns away from ordinary citizens. I want to share with you today some facts, logic, reason, history, and perspective about what’s going on.
- On the 13th of December, a mentally unstable man stabbed an elderly woman and then went to a nearby school where he stabbed 22 children before being subdued. There were 6 knife attacks like this in a 7 month period in 2010 that killed nearly 20 and wounded more than 50.
Where did this happen? China. Why didn’t you hear about any of these mass killings? Because they don’t fit in with the message that guns are the problem.
- The worst mass killing at a US school was in Bath, Michigan in 1927 when a man who was mad at the government for raising his taxes so high that they could foreclose and use the land to build a school retaliated by setting off a bomb that killed 44, including 38 children.
- Roughly 1-3% of the entire population (including inmates) would be institutionalized if our mental health laws were the same as they were several decades ago. A LOT of mental health patients are now treated in jails after they commit crimes rather than in mental institutions.
While I’m not suggesting that 1-3% of the population should be institutionalized, I am saying that if/when these 1-3% go off of their meds or just plain go off the rails and take evil actions, the rest of society needs to have the tools at their disposal to protect themselves and other innocent people around them. To be clear, most of this 1-3% number will not go off the rails in an extremely violent manner, but when you’ve got a country of over 300 million, even 1/10th of 1% is 300,000 people.
Evil has been around since Cain killed his brother Able. Evil is with us now, and evil will be a constant, although hopefully infrequent, companion to one extent or another throughout each of our lives. Denying evil doesn’t make it go away…it only causes paralysis due to disbelief when crashes into your life.
- When cities, states, and countries institute more restrictive gun laws they experience an increase in almost all forms of violent crime. If anyone brings up Canada, England, or Australia as examples to the contrary, they are simply ignoring the reality that these countries experienced double digit increases in violent crime immediately following their most recent crackdowns.
- The presence of a firearm in an active shooter situation can be enough to end the killing. Take the Trolley Square killings in Salt Lake City OR possibly even the Clackamas Mall last week.
- Neither the AR-15 nor the Sig 556 is an M-16, M-4, or assault weapon. They are simply rifles that shoot a round that is BARELY legal for hunting in many states and not legal for hunting in some other states because of how underpowered it is for big game. Were they used in a horrible way? Absolutely. Was it the fault of the firearms? No. No more than the China stabbings are the fault of knives, the Bath, Michigan bombings were the result of explosives, that chlorine gas killings are the result of chlorine, or that if I get beat over the head with a rock that the rock should get blamed for my killing. BAD people kill people and the only thing that stops them is good people.
- 911 doesn’t have a teleport feature yet and cop cars don’t have warp drive, so you better be prepared to self-support for several minutes after dialing 911.
- The US isn’t the only country in the world, and we aren’t the first to face the issue of mass killings in schools. Israel and South Africa both faced a similar problem and their solution was to arm teachers and administrators. The reasoning? Hire teachers who love kids, who want to protect them, and give them the tools to do it.
- AT LEAST 3 of the adults murdered at Sandy Hook Elementary took the fight to the murderer and died trying to stop him. Principal Dawn Lafferty Hochsprung is reported as having been advancing on the murderer as he shot her and music teacher, Maryrose Kristopik, had her class hide in a closet and proceeded to lock the murderer out. First grade teacher, Victoria Soto, evidently acted as a human shield to distract the murderer so that her class would have an extra few seconds to get to safety.
In every group of people, you’re going to have sheepdogs like Ms. Kristopik who are willing to stand up to evil and sheepdogs like Principal Hochsprung and Ms. Soto who take it one step further and are willing to take the fight to the bad guy and protect the innocent.
But the will and the grit to stare evil in the face and decide to take it on doesn’t do a darn bit of good if they have the willingness to fight but don’t have the tools and/or the skills to fight effectively.
Now, since the teachers at Sandy Hook Elementary were law abiding citizens, they didn’t carry guns into the gun free zone. Of course, evil people intent on murdering innocents don’t really care. Despite all of the opinions to the contrary, I don’t believe that most psychopathic murderers target gun free zones—our politicians have just conveniently made it illegal for law abiding citizens to protect themselves when visiting the locations that happen to be the juiciest targets.
And the argument for more armed guards? Give me a break. The reality is that taxpayers don’t have money for higher taxes, teachers unions won’t agree to a cut in teacher pay to pay for additional guards, and most guards won’t work for free. If you hired the necessary number of guards to make a meaningful difference in the security of a school, you’d end up with half a dozen security guards who were VERY bored 99.999% of the time.
What’s the answer then? Give teachers and other school officials the tools that they need to protect their children. And not the sad excuse for a plan that says to “lock your doors, pull the shades on your windows, and hide in a closet or under a desk.” That is a plan for a school that is more interested in minimizing casualties than stopping the threat.
There’s a HUGE difference between the two mindsets. Put another way, it’s damage control vs. destroying your attacker. That mindset in sports is what loses games for teams who have a big lead going into the 3rd or 4th quarter. That mindset in an active shooter situation—where you are told to run and hide and give the shooter free reign for the minutes necessary for law enforcement to arrive—gets innocent people killed.
Don’t be naive and think that taking the fight to the murderer is a “clean” option. With a firearm, you may miss the shooter and hit an innocent. You may hit the brain, but not the base of the brain and cause a shooter to fire one last round into an innocent bystander. Heck, the NYPD had a shootout with 1 guy in front of the Empire State Building and shot 8 other people in the process. Stopping evil gets messy, and the decision to do so is sometimes a hero’s last.
So, given the fact that we can’t flip a switch and take care of the spiritual or mental health component of the equation, what do I think we should do?
- Encourage the warrior mindset of teachers who already have it. There are some sweet kindergarten teachers who have both an incredible nurturing nature and who excel at martial arts and a martial mindset, but they are rare.
Don’t ignore training for these teachers—just focus on teachers who are predisposed to taking the fight to a bad guy. It’s similar to firecraft. If you throw a log covered with pitch on top of a match, it’ll put it out. On the other hand, if you throw that same log covered in pitch on a fire that’s already healthy, you’ll get a bigger, hotter fire. You can put the log on the fire from the match eventually, but it will take a little time and nurturing to build it up.
- Pick the right tools. Firearms are one of the most efficient tools for innocent people to use to project force over a distance to stop evil as quickly as possible. If guns are a possibility, then training is the next step. Once training is taken care of, the next thing is secure storage that is QUICK to get into. I suggest gun safes with 5 button mechanical locks instead of electronic keypad or biometric locks.
- If firearms are not a possibility, then I suggest Tasers. Tasers are MUCH better than pepper spray in an environment with young children. As a note, Tasers are NOT stun guns. Stun guns operate on the basis of pain compliance and Tasers use a pulse that interrupts the electrical impulses between the brain and muscles. In addition, civilian Tasers shoot out 15 feet.
- The foundation for ALL martial training is empty hands training. Why? You may not always have access to a purpose built weapon like a firearm, and even if you do, you might have to fight to get to it or to buy enough time to bring it to bear on an attacker. If you’ve been following me long, you know that I am a HUGE proponent of Target Focus Training.
If the Sandy Hook shootings were the straw that broke the camel’s back for you as far as knowing you need to get serious about self defense, but you’re also concerned about pending anti-gun legislation, I would suggest that you sign up for a special $47 package that they put together for my readers. You can read more about it by going >HERE<.
- If you do have a situation where you’re limited to non-firearm defense against firearms, it’s important to identify people with a similar mindset who are willing to take the fight to evildoers in the event of an active shooter incident. One person going head-on with a shooter is likely to be needlessly committing suicide. They’re no doubt a hero, but the goal when confronting an evildoer is to go home at the end of the day, have as many innocents go home at the end of the day as possible, and do whatever is necessary to stop the evil party.
With multiple people, though, there’s a much greater chance that at least one of you will have or acquire an angle on the shooter that they can take advantage of to rush the shooter and set up a situation where the rest can swarm the shooter and render them incapable of continuing to hurting people as efficiently as possible.
In short, YOU as an individual can’t control the morality, spirituality, mental health, or tendency towards violence of the people around you. Someone determined to be violent will ignore firearm and other weapon laws. Cain didn’t have or need a gun to kill Able and even if you could click your heels together and make all firearms disappear, mentally disturbed people determined to kill will still kill. All you can do is equip yourself with the mental training, physical training, and tools necessary to be able to stop evil between the moment when it crashes into your life and a few minutes later when law enforcement arrives. Preliminary reports are that the Sandy Hook mass murders only took 10 minutes from entering the door to when the shooter was confronted by law enforcement and took his own life.
Stay safe and God bless,