Department of Homeland Stupidity: Huddle like Sheep and Die
The Department of Homeland Security just posted a video called "Options for Consideration Active Shooter Training Video." Its grossly incompetent guidance on how to survive a workplace shooting underscores the Obama administration's total lack of fitness to tell citizens what kind of firearms they can own for self-protection. We should also make sure that as many police as possible see this DHS video, which portrays law enforcement professionals as incompetent buffoons who recklessly endanger their partners and innocent bystanders.
Duck and Cover versus Huddle like Sheep
The DHS video takes a cue from the much-maligned "Duck and Cover" film of the Cold War era by advising people to hide under desks, which would actually be the right thing to do upon seeing the flash of a nuclear bomb. The desk would block the bomb's heat, along with shards of imploded glass. If you were far enough from Ground Zero that the entire building did not collapse on you, you could easily walk away with minor or no injuries while everybody who did not "duck and cover" was ripped apart by flying glass and/or burned to death by the thermal effects. A nuclear bomb will not, however, walk into your school or workplace and look under desks for individual people to kill.
At 1:44 in the video, a woman hides under a desk and pulls a chair after her to conceal her. Note that for every person who agreed with this video, more than ten disapproved, and with good reason. All the shooter has to do is look under the desks to find the people who have followed DHS's advice to huddle there like sheep, and then slaughter them accordingly.
This is, in fact, what Adam Lanza did to a teacher and her students.
They found Lanza dead from a self-inflicted gunshot, and beyond him a group of children huddled with their teacher, all dead. Nearby in a bathroom another group of children huddled, also dead, CBS reported.
In FrontSight's four-day defensive handgun class, students are taught how to clear a room of armed and hostile occupants. The procedure involves working one's way across the door slowly, with a weapon at the ready in case a "shoot" target appears. (The person in this video allows his gun to point toward the camera and the person behind it, but this is almost certainly an inert plastic firearm. It is the kind that you can, in fact, point safely at another person in a training exercise because it cannot possibly fire a bullet or even accept a magazine. We will compare this to the DHS video.)
The next step is to go through the door quickly to avoid fire from concealed enemies whom you cannot see. When you do that, you look up, sideways, and down, with the latter including underneath desks and other potential hiding places. If this procedure works for an armed defender against armed bad guys, then it is pretty easy to envision what an armed bad guy can do to unarmed defenders who follow DHS's advice.
The bottom line is that the Obama administration, of which DHS is a part, has published a training video whose guidance can easily kill anybody who relies on it. These are the same people who want to tell us what kind of firearms are "reasonable" for us to own for self-defense. FrontSight, by the way, posted an interview with a senior citizen who needed 11 rounds of 40 caliber -- that's one more than Dianne Feinstein and four more than Andrew Cuomo thinks he needed -- to stop two armed home invaders
If huddling like a sheep doesn't work, then DHS advises the use of improvised weapons like scissors.
Here is what Paxton Quigley's Armed and Female (page 36) has to say about kitchen knives, which are far deadlier than scissors:
... unless you are well trained a knife will be taken away from you in a matter of moments by an assailant. ... To stop somebody by stabbing, you would need to stab twenty to thirty times.
The context is self-defense against rape, and it might be somewhat harder for an assailant to take a knife (or a pair of scissors) from a man than from a woman. If the assailant is an active shooter, though, all he needs to do is shoot either the man or the woman who attacks him with a knife, much less scissors. Knives whose purpose is to actually kill people are almost certainly illegal to carry in public.
Are the DHS "Police" More Dangerous Than the Active Shooter?
If advice that can kill you demonstrates the Obama administration's gross lack of fitness to address the issue of workplace and school shootings, worse is to come. Here is how the "police responders" in the DHS video handle firearms. At 2:42, the "police officer" (he is almost certainly a Hollywood actor, because real police do not handle weapons this way) points his rifle squarely at two innocent people who are trying to escape from the active shooter.
At 2:47, one of the "police officers" allows his weapon to point at the back of the "officer" in front of him. I doubt that any real police officer would want any of these clowns as his or her partner, because blue-on-blue fire is Not A Good Thing. (This is not obvious in the still photo, but you can see the rifle move across the "officer's" back in the video.) Also note that the one in front aims his weapon almost squarely at whoever is operating the camera, and everyone and everything behind the camera. This is a gross violation of basic firearm safety because guns, even when empty, must always be treated as loaded.
Here is another frame (2:42) in which one of the "police officers" points his weapon squarely at the camera, and therefore at everybody and everything behind it. These performers apparently never heard of the gun safety rule "Never point a firearm at anything you aren't willing to destroy," which is typical of the Hollywood actors and producers who oppose the Second Amendment. The typical action movie will usually feature many incidents of the kind of gun handling in the DHS video.
In fairness to "Options for Consideration Active Shooter Training Video," it does provide two useful precepts: (1) be aware of your surroundings and possible escape routes, and (2) don't do anything to suggest to responding police officers that you might be the bad guy. Other than that, its empty platitudes and snake-oil quackery reflect squarely on the Obama administration's competence and fitness to address the problem of active shooters. If you want to learn how to actually protect yourself, get advice and training from somebody who actually knows what he is doing. Examples include Masaad Ayoob's books on self-defense, FrontSight, and Gunsite.
William A. Levinson, P.E. is the author of several books on business management including content on organizational psychology, as well as manufacturing productivity and quality.