On Untrained Civilians Swarming an Active Shooter – Marc MacYoung

I posted this in response to someone asking about Ben Carson’s response of going after an active shooter…

~sigh~ Yes, no, maybe, sometimes.

We modern Americans love soundbite answers. “Gorsh it’s short it must be an aphorism.” (Aphorism a pithy observation that contains a general truth, such as, “if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.”)

Yeah, yeah, my dick is short; that doesn’t make it an aphorism.

In our too long, didn’t read world we don’t like to deal with realities, complications, much less problems. We hug ourselves every time someone comes up with a ‘you just do this answer.”

Here’s the thing about active shooters, in an overwhelming majority of incidents (I’m talking not-sos being so numerically small as to be nearly statistically meaningless) they are ended via gunfire. Now whether the gunman is shot or shoots himself depends on the issue.

This is important because in the situations where the gunman doesn’t just run out of steam and cap himself, it is resistance that usually prompts the self-solving of the problem. Basically resistance of any kind flips the self-destruct switch.

So the obvious answer when you can’t run is to rush him right?

Lemme get this straight. You want — people who have no training, no experience with violence, massive conditioning AGAINST physical action and another conditioned phobia towards guns to do a coordinated mass rush against a shooter? Charge the guns and sacrifice themselves to save others?

C’mon man we live in a world filled with people whose attitude is “What is someone else going to do about this problem?”

Furthermore, you’re expecting this from people who have been brainwashed by Hollywood that getting shot means you fly back/spin around fall down and die? Unless you’re the hero (which they don’t think of themselves as) getting shot means you die. These people don’t know that the survival rate from one gunshot wound is in the low 90 percentile. (Basically triage has advanced so much that unless a single wound is in a rapidly fatal location, you’re more than two hours away from medical help or your shot multiple times your chances of living are — like I said 90+). If you know that your chances of living are better if you rush, then yes, someone might rush. But the chances of everyone rushing at once? Not real likely — UNLESS they have had training.

And even then you’re going to get a lot of people doing the Ghostbusters “Go get ’em Ray.” In a civilian context, nobody is hot and bothered to take a couple of rounds for the team. Because there ain’t no team, but a bunch of untrained, scared and socially conditioned to be non-violent individuals. Yeah, nothing could go wrong there.

The other thing is there’s talk about rushing and dogpiling. You ever been in a dogpile? Hell you ever taken someone down with a partner? I have. Taking someone down — ESPECIALLY with a weapon — requires certain standards (like I tackle him, you pin his gun arm). If those standards aren’t met, someone is going to be eating a lot of bullets.

It’s — technically speaking — a lot easier and safer to close and just kill the guy (and failing that, break him so bad that he’s either unconscious or crippled). But most people can’t do that — including most martial artists and so-called combative trained people. They lack the commitment and understanding how to. So instead — and this is another way to eat multiple bullets — they’ll try to ‘fight’ the guy. (This BTW, is my major bitch with most of what is taught as ‘knife defense’ instead of just killing the fucker, they try to immobilize the knife arm and then proceed to beat the shit out of the guy. Small fuckin’ problem, as you’re hitting him, odds are good he’ll get his knife hand free and now you’re in knife range trading a punch for a stab/slash.)

So yes, technically Carson is correct. Rushing the motherfucker would have saved lives. But it happening? Snowball…chance…hell…?

The above addresses the issue of untrained. I on the fence as to trained — because it seriously depends on the quality of training. As I said in these guys often fold like cheap suits when they hit resistance. So anything is better than nothing. I still have problems with the idea of sending people charging the guns just because the powers that be either don’t like the idea of shooting back or are listening to those who are. I support the training, but damnit shooting back shouldn’t be taken off the table.


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