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Yet another school shooting rampage, and yet again the Brady Campaign can't resist exploiting the tragedy to push their gun ban agenda, regardless of whether whatever "common sense" restriction is currently fashionable with them would have done anything at all to prevent the tragedy.

Ahhh, it's a simple problem, just place strict limitations on who can obtain dangerous weapons to make it harder for "the wrong person to get deadly weapons".  The recent Dawson College shootings in Canada suggest that it may not be so simple to determine who "the wrong person" is; the perpetrator, Kimveer Gill, apparently passed whatever qualifications were required to buy and register the Beretta Storm carbine he used (a "restricted" weapon in Canada).

Looking beyond idealistic "It was committed with guns, so stricter gun laws will magically stop any event such as this from ever happening again" reasoning pushed by the Bradys, one wonders what can be done.

Perhaps instead of wasting money on teaching abstinence or how to take a test er, uhh, I mean how to make schools accountable so that no child gets left behind, we should be giving teachers and students practical exercises in how to take out a lone gunman.  The children outnumber the attacker, and would be small, fast targets - they would be very hard to hit, especially if they are throwing textbooks at the guy and charging at him swinging chairs or other heavy objects.  If the teacher and every one of the students grabbed something and converged on the guy from different directions, collectively they should be able to beat the guy senseless.  Yes, most likely one or two would be shot and injured, but their chances of survival would be much better than when being shot while tied up in a line.

Looking back to the attacks on 11 SEP 01, the attacks worked for the first three planes because airline personnel had been trained to cooperate with hijackers, try to follow their directions so no one gets hurt while they negotiate for whatever it is the want, and generally let them have control of the plane.  As soon as it became clear that this approach did not have the desired effect, and the passengers resisted the hijackers, this mode of attack failed.  If drawing a parallel is valid (admittedly a very big IF), then teachers and students should be taught to assume that some gunman stomping into their classroom and waving a gun around to take control wants to kill them, and most likely himself, and that their best chance of survival is to resist.  Have the attackers in any of these school shooting rampages held hostages in hopes of obtaining their demands?  It seems that most of them are disgruntled sociopaths who are beyond reasoning and who are best disposed of as quickly as possible.

Originally posted to Nightwing1 on Thu Oct 05, 2006 at 10:08 AM PDT.

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Comment Preferences

  •  how about just (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    hiring a security guard????????
    We have food service people, janitors, (used to have nurses) you know a community protecting it's children??
    oops, too expensive.  Just give the teachers guns.

    •  Hell no! (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      matx, alicia logic

      Most teachers, like most non-teachers, don't have the first clue about how to handle firearms properly. Maybe the ones who do could handle having guns in school, but what the hell has happened to our schools when we turn our teachers into prison guards instead of educators?

      If you want to talk about beefing up security at schools, fine. But let's not start arming the teachers -- and I'll bet most police officers and teachers would agree with me on this.

      Thwarting the forces of idiocy since 1978. -6.38, -6.00

      by wiscmass on Thu Oct 05, 2006 at 11:24:00 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  I think the Wisconsin lawmaker who floated this (0+ / 0-)

      intends for all school employees to be able to carry guns, not just teachers.

    •  some schools do have security guards n/t (0+ / 0-)
    •  As far as funding goes (0+ / 0-)

      For my school, if I had funding for an extra body, I would prefer to add an extra aide to the kindergarten rather than a security guard. I also am skeptical that a single armed security guard would be of any utility in any of these instances.

      What they tend to do instead is harden the facility - add more fencing, more gates, change locks so that buildings can be locked from the inside, and the like. Some of them are good changes, some (like limiting windows, making schools look like prisons) are IMHO regrettable.

  •  La La Land (5+ / 0-)

    I'm sorry, but teaching school kids to attack deranged grown men with guns is just plain stupid.  It is proposals like these that encourage skepticism of proponents of gun rights.

    It is a prescription for a room full of dead kids, instead of the usual progression of these events, which is that a roomful of people are taken hostage, police arrive, bit by bit many hostages are released, and the survival of the last few is an uncertain proposition handled by people with years of training in special weapons and tactics.

    This is totally different from storming a hijacker on an airplane where the choices are to have everyone on the plane and more die, or some people on the plane possibly seriously hurt, and you know for a fact that the hijacker doesn't have a firearm.

    Stricter gun control is not a panecea, and it probably wouldn't have stopped any of the three most recent school shootings in the United States, at least.  

    This doesn't mean that gun control, particularly over a wide geographic area like the entire United States and Canada, as opposed to the patchwork system we have now, couldn't be helpful.  There are certainly plenty of deadly criminal shooting where one can safely say that national gun control legislation would have made a difference.

    Murder is far less common in countries with strict gun control like Japan, Canada and the U.K., and while places like Switzerland with widespread gun ownership are touted as proof that gun control isn't necessary to security -- Switzerland has a sad legacy of suicides and violent nutjobs using guns to kill to go with it.

    "Those who can make you believe absurdities can make you commit atrocities" -- Voltaire

    by ohwilleke on Thu Oct 05, 2006 at 10:25:11 AM PDT

    •  Some cites? (0+ / 0-)

      "the usual progression of these events, which is that a roomful of people are taken hostage, police arrive, bit by bit many hostages are released, and the survival of the last few is an uncertain proposition handled by people with years of training in special weapons and tactics."

      Is there some support for this characterization of “the usual progression” (a question asked in the original post)?  Perhaps there are some school hostage events of that sort that do not make the news?  In those in the news in recent years, there seems to have either no attempt to hold hostages, or only holding them to be raped before being killed.

      I fail to see how complying with such attackers  results in a more positive outcome for the students.

      •  In Bailey, Colorado (0+ / 0-)

        all but two hostages were released alive before the shooting at people started, and SWAT teams saved one of them.

        Some discussions of how to act if you are a hostage can be found here ("In the beginning take-over stage the potential to be shot, slashed, or attacked has the greatest likelihood of occurring."), and from here ("The longer a hostage situation lasts, the more likely that it will end peacefully.")

        Here's from the U.S. government guide to surviving a hostage situation for families of soldiers abroad:

        Remain calm, be polite and cooperate with your captors. . . .
        — Don't draw attention to yourself with sudden body movements,verbal remarks, or hostile looks. . .

        The chances of you being taken hostage are truly remote. Even better news is that survival rates are high. But should it happen, remember, your personal conduct can influence treatment in captivity. . . .
        If kidnapped and taken hostage,the hostage has three very important rules to follow:
        • Analyze the problem so as not to aggravate the situation.
        • Make decisions to keep the situation from worsening.
        • Maintain discipline to remain on the best terms withthe captors. . . .

        your chances of survival actually increase with time.

        "Those who can make you believe absurdities can make you commit atrocities" -- Voltaire

        by ohwilleke on Thu Oct 05, 2006 at 12:09:18 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Yup, there's at least one case. (0+ / 0-)

          They were released alive, but not unharmed.  It is unclear from the Wikipedia article whether the perverted narcissist released the four girls in response to negotiations or simply because he had gotten all he wanted from them.  I think it is debatable (and almost certainly unresolvable) whether the students might have come out better if they had attacked the creep while he was shooting into the air.  The Wikipedia article does note that the SWAT team made the decision to go in after they had witnessed him assaulting the girls.

          The event as described by Wikipedia does suggest that a lot could be done in teaching students to be more active participants in protecting themselves.  The article seems to describe a several ignored warning signs:
          Student saw an apparently angry man in hooded sweatshirt in a vacant classroom, but did not report it.
          Students saw strange guy sitting in a vehicle in the parking lot for almost an hour, and mingled with him, but apparently did not report it or no action was taken if they did.
          Student was asked by a strange man about a list of female students (it appears from the Wikipedia article that he may have specifically selected a small, predominantly female class), but either did not report it or no action was taken.

          It is curious that the school took the time and expense to install surveillance cameras and drill the students how to respond when the “code white” was issued over the PA, but somehow there was a failure to recognize or act on unusual events that should have indicated a potential threat.

          Never try to baptize a cat.

  •  Glocks for 8-year-old Amish schoolgirls? (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    wiscmass, anniethena

    Surely you jest.

  •  Fucking genius (0+ / 0-)

    Well, maybe not that good, but I remember fantasizing about this sort of scenario before.  The only chance for success in my mind played out pretty much as you describe, with all the people in the room basically rushing the guy.  For lack of training the idea is not practical, but it is better than getting tied up and executed.

    -5.88, -4.82 "He deprives the leaders of the earth of their reason; he sends them wandering through a trackless waste." Job 12:24

    by slothlax on Thu Oct 05, 2006 at 11:08:01 AM PDT

  •  It's a knee-jerk reaction (0+ / 0-)

    The WI state lawmaker(R) who proposed it is shown in his office--apparently he was a sheriff at one time because it's on a poster right behind him in the video.  He proposes a rigorous training and certification, but if someone wanted to go through that process, why wouldn't they just have become law enforcement officers?  And unless they keep in on their person all the time, loaded and ready to go, what good would it be in a crisis situation, and how would a crisit situation be determined?  Too much could go terribly wrong.

  •  Texas beats Florida in actually trying it (0+ / 0-)

    I would have thought that liability concerns would prevent such programs, since it would seem far easier to sue for a student death resulting from following school policy than a student death occurring in the absence of a specific policy.  Perhaps the trainer for the program is the Superintendent’s brother-in-law?

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