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View Poll Results: Should students be taught to fight back against a gunman or flee the room/school?
attack as quickly as possible 21 48.84%
turn and run away 22 51.16%
Voters: 43. You may not vote on this poll

 
 
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Old 10-14-2006, 06:55 PM   #41 (permalink)
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Well now that all depends...

If a man comes into a place where I am and hes already shooting my chubby butt is running away.

If he acts all bad and whatnot and presents an op for me to bash in his head with something fairly heavy..... I would.

I see no problem with teaching kids to defend themselves but we should also teach them when to run. There is no shame in running when you know you cant win.
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Old 10-14-2006, 07:44 PM   #42 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ngdawg
All the school shootings had one thing in common: there was no fighting back.
I'd want my kids to do everything possible to get them out relatively unscathed-throw chairs, bite the gunman's fucking thumb off, if they could...
It's a damned if you do, damned if you don't scenario, but there are reports in other instances (rape, robbery,abduction, etc) where fighting back was the thing to do.
Whether or not it's apparent, the subtext of my statement isn't an argument at all for passivitiy.

In truth I'd sooner have teachers trained with access to a firearm in a quick-access lockbox on school grounds. Most people don't know this but in every hospital Emergency Department in which I've worked there is a revolver in a hidden lockbox available. Most locums physicians don't know about it but it's there.

Again, I'm not even arguing for students to passively submit, either. On the contrary I'd rather have them actively running.

If you want another reason ... twenty students running away are twenty moving (and receding) targets going in twenty different directions.

But if they attack they converge into a pack (especially if a gunman retreats a few yards before making his shot) wherein multiple targets can be taken down with every single shot.

And consider this ... we all are familiar with the scenario of the young soldier trained intensively in boot camp for warfare only to become petrified in the face of danger as his comrades die about him (in truth an uncommon scenario given the quality of modern military training). And now we expect that untrained, unconditioned and unarmed children to exhibit the courage of ghurka warriors and charge ahead undaunted by loud sounds of gunfire or the screaming of classmates either shot or trampled ... just because someone gave them a 10 minute lecture on the subject?

There are many better alternatives to making our children into cannon-fodder - e.g. Arming Teachers or having the kids run away.
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Last edited by longbough; 10-14-2006 at 07:51 PM..
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Old 10-14-2006, 08:54 PM   #43 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by longbough
having the kids run away.

The poll is missing the option of having the kids sit quietly and wait for the police, even though that might not always work.

If the gunman blocks the door, and it is the only escape, I don't see running away as a great option. If the gunman is in the hallway or cafeteria, then sure, it would be best to get as far away as possible.

I think they need to do a few simulations to see what would work and what doesn't work. And then really look at preventing this in the first place.
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Old 10-14-2006, 09:39 PM   #44 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by analog
A lot of times, the point of a hostage-taker is not to hurt those they've taken hostage, but will hurt them if necessary to get what they want. That's the very definition of hostage-taking. Also, they do not at all always end in the hostage-taker killing anyone. By and large, ignoring hollywood, hostage-takers are vying for attention and want something, but are actually total cowards unwilling to actually kill anyone.
True, but if I've been hearing gunshots on campus, and he comes in my door, fuck it, I'm gonna do my best to kill the dude. If he's already been shooting, then why would he suddenly stop?

Quote:
Originally Posted by billege
Personally, I'm choosing my moment and throwing a desk at the mother f'er.
I'm with him. Distract him with a flying object, and take 'im. At least they can't say I died in the fetal position under my desk.

Honestly, it depends on your mindset. It is my personal opinion that I don't have a lot to live for. If I die trying to save my students, it was an honorable notion. If I died and saved the students, I accomplished my goal. If I didn't die and saved them, then that's all well and fine too.

Of course, this is last resort. I'm not gonna go Rambo and look for the bad guy. If we can successfully block the door before the gunman arrives, then that's the better option.

Not just gonna sit there twiddling a pencil in my hand as the cops outside the school are sitting there trying to assess the situation.
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Old 10-15-2006, 06:03 AM   #45 (permalink)
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I'm still waiting for a convincing argument why running away isn't a good idea.

What is the MAIN objective?
Is it to disarm/disable a gunman or to have the children live? These objectives aren't the same.

If the main objective is to have the children live then all arguments should be based on the probability of survival - not the probability of stopping the gunman.

So far most folks reason that it's better to fight than to passively await certain death. I agree but waiting around isn't an option. We're talking about running away.


"What if he's blocking the only exit?" That will only happen if he chooses to take only a single classroom on a second floor or higher. Why not have the teacher (who could be trained by state mandate) attack the gunman while the children escape?

What's wrong with running away?

In the real-life encounters the children weren't instructed to run but wait around quietly and wait for the authorities to come and rescue them. Just instruct the kids to run away instead and have the teachers attack the gunman.

What's wrong with running away?

In martial arts I've learned that, for the purposes of personal defense, in a real encounter against someone with a knife or gun, the object is to get the hell out of there. If I'm cornered the objective is to attack to manufacture the opportunity to escape. (... so why would we teach our kids to do otherwise without the benefit of training?)

What's wrong with running away?

A cop is taught that their first obligation is for their own well-being - even at the cost of letting a subject escape. If a cop finds himself unarmed face to face against someone with a firearm he/she is going find the opportunity to get away and call for assistance. (... so why would we teach our kids to do otherwise without the benefit of training?)

What's wrong with running away?

When a gun goes off in a closed space it makes a deafening and startling noise. A mob of kids is more likely to stop dead in their tracks when the shots start to ring out. In fact, as soon as a few kids stop/retreat then it's human nature for their friends to do likewise.

What's wrong with running away?

Fleeing children are less likely to get shot. i.e. twenty students running away = twenty moving (and receding) targets going in twenty different directions.

But if they attack they converge into a pack (especially if a gunman retreats a few yards before making his shot) wherein multiple targets can be taken down with every single shot.

What's wrong with running away?
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Last edited by longbough; 10-15-2006 at 09:20 AM..
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Old 10-15-2006, 09:34 AM   #46 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dksuddeth
everyone that has said 'it would be easier to shoot all the kids as they charged you', think a minute. 17 kids stand up and charge you all at once....will YOU be able to shoot them all? I was a marine for 6 years, a damn fine expert shot with both rifle and pistol, and there is absolutely no way I could plug more than 3 of them before I get swarmed. People have to STOP considering people with criminal intent as some sort of superhuman.
..........
They are clearly not super human. Columbine's Harris and Klebold retreated pretty quickly in the face of return fire. These criminals always look for the path of least resistance. The problem in this scenario is that if you are one of the three of seventeen unarmed resistors who gets shot you become a 100% statistic. I don't like the idea of unarmed resistance because that's a virtual guarantee that someone is going to get hurt badly.
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Old 10-15-2006, 10:00 AM   #47 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Blackthorn
They are clearly not super human. Columbine's Harris and Klebold retreated pretty quickly in the face of return fire. These criminals always look for the path of least resistance. The problem in this scenario is that if you are one of the three of seventeen unarmed resistors who gets shot you become a 100% statistic. I don't like the idea of unarmed resistance because that's a virtual guarantee that someone is going to get hurt badly.
Exactly.

School Principal: "Hello, Mrs. Smith. I'm sorry to say your 10 year old daughter was one of two students killed today."
Mrs. Smith: "Oh God! How did it happen?"
School Principal: "Well, we taught the children to attack in this situation. Unfortunately your daughter was one of the ones killed."

Any guesses on the amount settled in the class action lawsuit against the school and state?
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"I do believe that, where there is only a choice between cowardice and violence, I would advise violence. Thus when my eldest son asked me what he should have done, had he been present when I was almost fatally assaulted in 1908, whether he should have run away and seen me killed or whether he should have used his physical force which he could and wanted to use, and defended me, I told him that it was his duty to defend me even by using violence." - Mahatma Ghandi
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Old 10-15-2006, 03:22 PM   #48 (permalink)
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The only problem with running away is when a gunman picks one classroom (it doesn't really matter if it is on the first or second floor, you can't get 30 kids out of the window or door before the gunman shoots them. He would probably walk in and block the escape through the only door. Anybody who comes near him would get shot.

If a few kids did manage to throw stuff and jump on the guy, the rest of them would run away, leaving three or four kids that will either stop the guy until cops can show up, or they will be killed by a pissed off gunman.

So neither idea is really the perfect solution.

My best idea would be for cops to use thermal imaging sniper rifle scopes and take out the gunman through a window. Then storm in and take control of the situation. That is unless the gunman is already shooting, then running away or attacking the gunman and hoping others will help is the way to go.

Last edited by ASU2003; 10-15-2006 at 03:29 PM..
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Old 10-15-2006, 05:33 PM   #49 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by roachboy
what i really have to say about this hiredgun said quite eloquently above....

there are no good ideas in such a context.
there should not be such contexts.

and there seems something--o i dont know---horrifying about the idea that the idea is afloat out there because of saturation coverage of isolated instances by television that some guy with a gun and a whole series of inward problems and a plan of killing children is likely enough to turn up in any classroom anywhere that a defense routine of any kind is a topic of discussion in elementary schools--- it's as if tv has generated the impression that there is some screwed up sense in which this is now somehow "normal"---part of a reasonable set of expectations about life in america.


how many school attacks have there been over the past decade or so?
how many schools are there in the united states?
how many students were affected by such attacks?
how many students have there been through all the schools in the united states over the past decade?


this texas idea seems hysterical to me, on the order of those creepy "duck and cover" films that circulated during the cold war. the message in those was: hi kids, do you know that your whole life is contingent and that you could be blasted to atoms at any moment? well you could. so you'd better be constantly "prepared" (afraid), ready to dive beneath a closet door in order to ride out the thermonuclear holocaust. o and have a nice day.

i really dont see much of a difference.
and i didn't respond to the poll.
My school did those old "if the US gets attacked by an atom bomb" drills ( many here probably never had to do those)....
Here's how assinine they were:
The 'air raid' alarm goes off (it sounds a bit different than the fire alarm). We then went into the halls, crouched against the walls, single file, head between knees, arms wrapped around legs.
The running joke for years was : Crouch low to the ground. Put head between knees. Kiss ass goodbye.
My kids' middle school did terror attack drills. At the sound of the alarm, they were to go outside, about 100 ft from the building and 'find' their homeroom teacher in designated areas. Yea, that'll work Ever see 1300+ students wandering around? By the time they'd find those teachers in a real scenario, they'd be dust.
I agree, the chances of such things happen are minute. But so are many of the more dire predictaments we discuss regularly every day. I'd be willing to bet that more women here have been a victim of sexual assault than any other crime and that no one here has ever been in a hostage situation. But having a Pollyanna outlook isn't prudent. We are all vulnerable to any number of actions that threaten our lives; what we say we'll do and what we truly end up doing are not always the same thing.
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Old 10-15-2006, 06:13 PM   #50 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ngdawg
It's a damned if you do, damned if you don't scenario, but there are reports in other instances (rape, robbery,abduction, etc) where fighting back was the thing to do.
When there is no way to escape then fighting is the only option - I agree. But I believe that the question is if fighting should be the FIRST option.

Let me put my opinion this way:

Run Away > Fighting > Doing Nothing
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Old 10-15-2006, 09:01 PM   #51 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ASU2003
Maybe we should just allow any student that wants to bring a gun for self-protection be allowed to do so. You outlaw guns and only the outlaws will have them...
or we could turn this into another gun control thread

I voted for run away - but I live in a country where guns are not freely available and school massacres are a rarity (or non existant)...
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Old 10-16-2006, 02:42 AM   #52 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by longbough
I'm still waiting for a convincing argument why running away isn't a good idea.

What's wrong with running away?
The idea behind this kind of instruction is not to teach kids to run down the hallway towards wherever they hear gunshots, it's to teach them that if they find themselves trapped in the classroom with a gunman, to swarm that individual instead of just waiting for your time to be shot in the head. There is absolutely nothing wrong with running away if shots are heard while they are in the classroom WITHOUT a gunman standing in the doorway.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Blackthorn
The problem in this scenario is that if you are one of the three of seventeen unarmed resistors who gets shot you become a 100% statistic. I don't like the idea of unarmed resistance because that's a virtual guarantee that someone is going to get hurt badly.
Quote:
Originally Posted by longbough
Exactly.

School Principal: "Hello, Mrs. Smith. I'm sorry to say your 10 year old daughter was one of two students killed today."
Mrs. Smith: "Oh God! How did it happen?"
School Principal: "Well, we taught the children to attack in this situation. Unfortunately your daughter was one of the ones killed."

Any guesses on the amount settled in the class action lawsuit against the school and state?
so it's much better for the students to do exactly as the psycho demands to lessen the liability of the school?

Gunman: "Turn around and get down on your knees"
Student: "yes sir, mr. gunman"
BANG!

Quote:
Originally Posted by longbough
When there is no way to escape then fighting is the only option - I agree. But I believe that the question is if fighting should be the FIRST option.

Let me put my opinion this way:

Run Away > Fighting > Doing Nothing
And then I read this post, so pretty much disregard the first part of this post. This is also my line of thinking and fighting back is better than doing nothing, but running to safety certainly is the best option. My OP was about what to do if there is no escape.
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Last edited by dksuddeth; 10-16-2006 at 02:48 AM.. Reason: Automerged Doublepost
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Old 10-16-2006, 12:11 PM   #53 (permalink)
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Quote:
Five or six seventh-grade kids and a 95-pound art teacher can basically challenge, bring down and immobilize a 200-pound man with a gun.
It's one thing to say that, but when you actually have someone standing in front of you pointing a shotgun at your face, the best of training can go right out the window. Yeah a full class can maybe take him down, but how likely is it that they will try? I see a kid or two maybe trying to do something and getting gunned down while others stand like deer caught in headlights.

Seems like a lot of these gunmen just walk right into the schools and into the open classrooms. Maybe lockable classroom doors with a bulletproof glass or something?
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Old 10-16-2006, 06:42 PM   #54 (permalink)
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Empowering kids and teachers is the best thing we can do. They'll feel less helpless against these 'bullies' with guns who threaten our school. Fear is the tool that these criminals feed on and they're killing the fear by giving these kids the tools to stand up against them when they try something. Not all or maybe even many may react with an attack but enough of them will that others will be encouraged to join in. Teachers need to be FREE to fight back. Teachers are too afraid to fight back because they could be blamed for anyone getting hurt. We are seeing that a passifistic attitude does not calm the criminals but seems to encourage them. Even if an aggressive attitude does not work better I doubt it will be any worse. For example - 1st classroom that the shooters walked into in the columbine incident, say the students rushed the shooters and took one or both of them down? Even if one was left I doubt he would have been as cocky as to keep waltzing around the school hunting kids. I doubt as many of the rest of the school would have been terrorized and shot down or watched their fellow students killed. I'd much rather my daughter go down fighting than cowering. Myself either. If I were a teacher I would prefer not waiting, locked in a classroom and cowering in the corner with all my students, wondering if the shooter would find us first. I'd rather grab a broom handle and stand by the door waiting for him to stick his greasy litting head in only to have his nose bashed in.

If we want the kids to fight back we need to give them the tools though. Self defense courses all around - Teachers, staff and students.

Here's this attitude (Fight not cower) in action http://www.rd.com/content/openConten...ontentId=26879. Granted there were some consequences and the student was larger BUT it CAN work in the right circumstances. Run if you can Fight if you can't. That's how I'd operate.
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Last edited by raeanna74; 10-17-2006 at 09:23 AM..
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