Wednesday, June 15, 2016
Come on, punk. Make...my...day!
Yes, the massacre in Orlando was truly tragic, but the knee jerk reactions coming out of this sad affair are just getting ridiculous.
"A few good guys with guns inside that night club could have ended it really fast!" Umm....easier said than done. The right person, with the right training, positioned in just the right place, might have been able to stop it. But the odds of all those stars lining up juuuust right are somewhere between slim and none.
First of all, when faced with the threat of imminent death, and with bullets flying, otherwise brilliant people will suddenly display the IQ of a gerbil. Panic trumps clear thinking. And despite what you see on TV and in the movies, it is extremely difficult to accurately shoot a defensive handgun past 25 yards.
Unless you've received intensive training and have nerves of steel, and with adrenaline pumping, thinking you can pull your gun and pop a cap in a bad guy to become an instant hero is simply delusional. And who could ever think allowing guns in bars could be a good thing?
"More gun control!" Call me skeptical. A dedicated jihadist/crazed person will get a gun, laws be damned. With enough guns of all types, including millions of "assault rifles", already out there to arm every man, woman, and child in America, I'm afraid that genie can not be squeezed back into the bottle.
Gun control might sound like a proactive, commendable thing, but I think it would be a futile effort, unlikely to stop those we want stopped. I would rather see us concentrate our efforts on getting guns out of the hands of felons who are already prohibited from having them (but do anyway), and keeping guns out of the hands of those who have demonstrated they are too mentally troubled to have them.
"Ban Muslims from coming to America." Too late, folks. There are already approximately 3.3 million Muslims living in America right now, many of them born here. They are the ones being radicalized/recruited by ISIS and others to attack us. Thoroughly vett all new immigrants, of course, but lets not think that will be some magic fix.
"No fly, no buy!" Yes, it does seem ironic that we can prohibit someone (on a watch list) from getting on an airliner, but we can't stop them from buying a gun. That's because no one has a constitutional right to fly, but (to the consternation of some) most of us do have the constitutional right to buy a gun. To get on a "no fly" watch list could require little more than an anonymous call to the FBI saying someone was up to no good. Isn't that what the German people were urged to do by the Nazis....spy/report on their neighbors? Yes, do watch out for things out of order, but that in itself doesn't constitute guilt. Lets not crawl into that gutter, OK?
So what should we do to be safe? Just stay home? Just pull the curtains closed and cower? Oh HELL NO! If we do that, they win!
I say go about your business. Go to work, to school, shopping, out for dinner, etc, but pull your head out of your arse and pay attention to what's going on around you.
Don't walk down the street texting on your iPhone or reading email. Bad guys don't just pull rifles out of their pants pockets. If you see someone walking down the street trying to be discreet about the AR-15 at their side, or walking with a gun visible across a parking lot towards a mall or a business, run, call 911, yell.
When you go into a restaurant, theater, auditorium, etc, pay attention to where the exits are. Know in advance where your escape routes are if it all hits the fan. I don't mean you need to become all paranoid about everyday life, but be calmly aware of your options, just like you (should) be aware of where the exit doors are on your airline flight to visit grandma.
The old thinking was that in such dire circumstances you should "run, hide, fight"....run away if you can, hide if you can't, and as a last resort, fight. Now the experts are advising us to either run or fight. Trying to hide, especially in a place with only one way in/out, isn't likely to fool a gunman. Most hiding places, such as public restrooms, are dead ends. And if you are able to run, and get out in the open, run low and left.
They say if you can't run, position yourself so that when/if the door is kicked in, a mob can instantly gang tackle the bad guy. In the time it would take you to close 8 feet, for example, a shooter is unlikely to be able to see what is happening, react, and swing his gun around. Although it sounds counter-intuitive, running towards a gun can make sense....if you have the presence of mind to do it.
And yes, if you are licensed to legally carry a firearm, do so, but don't think this will provide some sort of impenetrable protective bubble around you. Know its/your limitations.
If you repeatedly do these things every day, everywhere you go, you should be able to react instinctively in an emergency, without having to think about it. Lets not make things more difficult than they need to be. KISS*
*Keep It Simple, Stupid