To The Daily Sun,
This is the 23rd in my weekly reports to you. As I said before, with the Legislature out of session I am going to cover some topics I find interesting.
My wife and I attended an active shooter training class on Sunday with a classroom portion at the Sunapee Police Department, with follow on instruction at a nearby firing range. I worry that we may be getting too absorbed in this scenario, but it is a fact that impacts our lives today. An active shooter is somebody who goes in to a target rich environment and murders indiscriminately as many people as possible. It can be in a mall, a movie theatre, a workplace, or some other location. There are two characteristics. First there are innocents and second it is almost always a gun free zone. Rarely is it spontaneous. Usually it is planned. 90+ percent of the time the shooter is taking or has a history with psychotropic drugs like those prescribed for depression or ADHD.
So, what did we learn? First, we learned how to avoid becoming a victim. We learned techniques to protect our loved ones. When the adrenaline is rushing, being the Rambo is not the best decision, considering the consequences. In most circumstances, the best action is to get to a safe area and be the best witness for law enforcement. Since the analysis of the Columbine school shootings, authorities no longer establish a perimeter and wait for the SWAT teams. The first police to arrive at the scene will initiate appropriate action with the protection and weapons they have to try to neutralize the shooter. They learned that waiting, establishing a perimeter and waiting for SWAT gives the shooter time to kill more innocents. I say shooter but a person with a knife blade is just a dangerous. He is lethal at 20-30 feet and you must react. I focus on guns but in the case of Columbine the perpetrators also had 99 bombs/IEDs.
All too often we think it can’t happen here. Newtown isn’t that far away. Our school boards need to seriously assess how to provide the best deterrents, like allowing personnel to be armed. A false sense of security can exist with strong doors and lock down procedures. A locked door might also prevent rescue from arriving.
Since gun free zones are a common factor, are the stores and restaurants that ban guns sticking their heads in the sand and inviting danger? I personally avoid these establishments. However, if the sign is ignored, and the business owner asks you to leave, please cooperate. It isn’t worth the hassle or more.
It was worth the long day. Adding new or refresher courses is good practice. We always learn something new and four hours on the firing range with good, professional instructors help hone your skills and improve accuracy.
Franklin & Hill
- Written by Edward Engler
- Category: Letters
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