Wednesday, October 21, 2015
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Let me know if anyone has ever tried this. here is the Facebook link.
Thursday, October 01, 2015
(Excerpted from Surviving a School Shooting: A Plan of Action for Parents, Teachers, and Students by Loren W. Christensen.)
The Art of War by Sun Tzu teaches us to rely not on the likelihood of the enemy’s not coming, but on our own readiness to receive him; not on the chance of his not attacking, but rather on the fact that we have made our position unassailable.
.The sad reality is every year students are killed on school campuses across the United States, in large cities and in rural communities. In 2004, 48 children were murdered in U.S. schools and thousands seriously injured in incidents of school violence. Meanwhile, it’s been many years since a single child has been killed or injured by school fire. Yet, every school has sprinklers, alarms, drills, and extinguishers. But why are we not preparing for the thing that is killing our kids?
In every school shooting case, the killer is looking for a “soft target” — a military term meaning an easy target — so he can make a statement by taking the lives of as many innocents as possible because he knows a high body count will get his name on the 5 o’clock news.
If we can harden the targets — make it difficult for him to shoot people — by implementing a few simple measures, it will deter many potential killers.
The security and safety of our children are the most important functions any society can perform. Today our precious children are threatened from within and from without to a degree greater than ever before. Those who would do us harm — from inside and outside our borders — know that the path toward the greatest notoriety, and the way to bring the severest suffering to us, is to attack our children.
TIP 1: COMMON TRIGGERS
While a trigger isn’t always easy to identify, here are a few common ones that have caused shooters to bring a gun to school with the intent to kill.
Being a victim of bullying or teasing
Losing a boyfriend or girlfriend
Hearing about a high-profile school shooting
Being punished or scolded by a school authority
Being criticized, mocked, or taunted by other students
TIP 2: INDICATORS OFTEN IGNORED
Contrary to what people often claim, school shooters don’t just suddenly change from being nonviolent to violent. The path is a progressive one with indicators along the way, ones that fellow students, friends, teachers, and parents often ignore. A Secret Service study showed that 93 percent of the attackers acted in such a way prior to the event that it concerned people. One attacker asked his friends to help him get ammunition. Another told his friends several times that he thought about killing students at the school.
TIP 3: EXAMINE YOUR SCHOOL STRATEGICALLY
Perhaps you’ve taught on your campus for many years. But this time, look at and examine all those common places and things you have seen so often before, and as you do, think tactically and preplan your course of action.
How many are near where you are right now?
What is on the other side of each door?
Can the doors be locked?
Can they be fortified with chairs, cabinets, and lockers?
Do they have windows? Curtains?
Where are the doors in every location you frequent during your day?
Examine Potential Hiding Places
Can you hide under or behind your desk?
Can you hide behind a rolled wrestling mat?
Can you hide inside the janitor’s closet?
Can you hide behind the kitchen freezer?
Examine the Campus Grounds
It’s important not to get locked into thinking that a school shooting always happens inside the structure. Stand in various places outside the building and view your familiar surroundings as a potential battleground. If gunshots erupted from your right, where would you go? If you saw someone with a gun getting out of that red pickup, what would you do? Where would you go? If you heard gunshots outside but you couldn’t tell from which direction, what would you do? Where would you go?
TIP 4: COVER AND CONCEALMENT — THE DIFFERENCE
Cover prevents the shooter from seeing you, but more importantly it provides a shield against bullets, fire, and explosions. Common cover on campus includes:
Heavy metal desks
Solid metal doors
Large reams of paper
Cafeteria freezers and stoves
Car or truck engine blocks
Concealment is anything that prevents the shooter from seeing you, but it doesn’t protect you from bullets, fire, and explosions. Common school concealment includes:
Painted or shaded windows
TIP 5: SEE COMMON OBJECTS AS POTENTIAL WEAPONS
Know that at any given time you’re surrounded by weapons, but only if you can see beyond each object’s original purpose. One technique to help you see common things as a potential weapon is to play the “You know what really hurts?” game. If you’re uncomfortable saying these things out loud with a friend, just think them to yourself.
You know what really hurts? That stapler slammed into a shooter’s face.
You know what really hurts? The janitor’s bucket smashed against a shooter’s head.
You know what really hurts? This printer slammed down on a shooter’s gun hand.
When you look at commonplace objects in your environment from the perspective of this game, it’s as if you’re suddenly surrounded by an arsenal.
TIP 6: OPPORTUNITY AND AN AVENUE OF ESCAPE
You need two elements to successfully flee: opportunity and an avenue of escape. For example:
Opportunity: You can run when the gunman is at the far end of the cafeteria.
Avenue of escape: There is an escape route when the path to the closest door is unobstructed.
Opportunity: You can run when someone shouts that the shooter is on his way to where you are by way of the north door.
Avenue of escape: There is a place to flee to when the south door is unlocked and close to you.
An exception to the opportunity rule: Say you’re face to face with the shooter and, though there is an aisle next to you that leads straight to the door 20 feet away, he says he will shoot if you move. You have an avenue of escape but not an opportunity.
TIP 7: SHOULD YOU TRY TO TALK TO HIM?
There is no absolute answer. If you know the student, talking to him might help. It has in past shootings, although there have been many in which it didn’t.
Keep in mind the shooter’s mind is likely in another place, a dark world where all he sees are targets. Anything you say or do, no matter how sound it might look on paper, just might be the very thing that sets him off even more.
TIP 8: RUN!
Indications are he is going to shoot you anyway. So should you run? Yes, because maybe he is a lousy shot. No, because maybe he isn’t. This dilemma is a likely possibility, one you should think about now, while your heart rate is normal and your thinking is clear.
You’ve decided to flee the area:
Do keep objects — desks, cabinets, vehicles, boxes, machinery — between you and the shooter to both obstruct his view of you and possibly absorb or deflect any bullets he sends your way.
Don’t zigzag; just run hard.
Do grab something to use as a weapon without slowing. It might come in handy later.
Do know that a bullet can travel a mile or more. While it can be argued you’re harder to hit when a shooter aims and fires from 40 feet away (which has been recommended as a minimum distance to flee), know that a missed bullet fired at someone else still might hit you, though you’re a ways off.
Do move quickly from a locked door to a window. If you can’t open it, break it with a chair or heavy object by striking the weaker, lower corner of the pane. Breaking glass makes noise, so leap through the opening and run like the wind.
Do run behind trees, vehicles, and buildings that can block you from the shooter’s view as well as stop bullets. Use your cell phone to call 9-1-1.
TIP 9: A WORD ABOUT WALLS AND FLOORS
Know that when a bullet strikes a wall or the floor at an angle, it travels along the surface. For example, if a bullet hits a wall just right — say, 20 feet from a corner — it will travel along the surface until it runs out of energy or something stops it, like a face peering around the corner.
If you’re hiding behind a car, crouch down behind a tire. If you have a choice, choose a front tire so that you’re behind the engine block. Should you kneel at the middle of the car, a bullet hitting the pavement several feet away can travel along the surface, under the car, and into your shins.
TIP 10: MODIFYING COVER AND CONCEALMENT
Concealment: This hides you, but it doesn’t stop a bullet. Stack up empty boxes and crouch behind them.
Cover: This hides you and can stop a bullet. Those large, floor-model copy machines that hold reams of paper do a good job stopping powerful rounds, as does a thick roll of tumbling mats, some vending machines, and cafeteria ovens. If these things are positioned in such a way the shooter can’t easily see behind them, squeeze into the space and crouch down.
TIP 11: JAM A DOOR
When you’re inside a room where the door swings inward, push desks, file cabinets, and any other heavy furniture against it. Cram items under the door, such as clothing, rulers, erasers, book jackets, anything that will make it difficult to open. An examination of past incidents shows that when a shooter has difficulty gaining entry to a place, he gives up and moves on.
TIP 12: CALLING THE POLICE
Don’t assume that someone else has called the police. It’s OK if the 9-1-1 emergency center receives more than one call about what is going on. It actually helps them validate the call more quickly; besides, additional callers might have additional information.
Tell the 9-1-1 dispatcher there is an active shooter on your campus. The dispatcher and the police will know exactly what that means. Tell the dispatcher the name and location of your school. It’s common for callers under duress to forget to tell 9-1-1 where the incident is occurring or forget what the numerical address is. Consider noting it in your cell phone directory and posting it by your desk or wall phone.
If you’re calling from a wall phone in your classroom or a desk phone in the office and the 9-1-1 dispatcher asks you to stay on the line but doing so might jeopardize your safety, tell the dispatcher you can’t and then drop the phone (but leave the connection open) and run. This allows the dispatcher to hear what is happening. If you’re on a cell phone, stay on with the dispatcher so you can continue to update her as to what is going on.
TIP 13: OBEY THE POLICE
Since the police don’t know people when they enter a scene where kids and teachers have been injured and killed, they are going to treat everyone as a suspect until they can determine who’s who. They know that sometimes a suspect leaves a hectic crime scene by pretending to be one of the students or teachers. Therefore, should the police yell at you to raise your hands and lie down on your stomach, do so without hesitation.
TIP 14: FIGHTING BACK
Fighting back should be considered a last-ditch response after all other options have been eliminated. Under what circumstances you should or should not fight back needs to be pondered before you’re faced with the decision; don’t wait until your world explodes into bloody bedlam. You need to give serious thought as to whether you have what it takes to leap on someone armed with a gun, or smash someone in the head with a barbell plate from the gym or with a heavy stapler from your desk.
Teachers, staff members, campus security, visiting adults, and high school students are the most obvious candidates to fight back. Indeed, such people have been successful in school shooting events in the past.
Dog pile: This is when two or more people leap on a violent person, knock him to the floor, and restrain him by holding him down with their combined body weight. Think of a football game where several players pile on the man with the ball.
TIP 15: ASSUMPTIONS
Never make assumptions about someone armed with a handgun on your campus. You might think you know Tommy from math class, but until now did you know he was capable of bringing a weapon to school to hurt and kill people? Do you know if he is going to shoot one person or mow down everyone else in the library? Even if his initial intention is to kill one specific person, do you know if he just might snap even further and shoot someone else and then another and another . . .? It’s happened before in other schools, and those people didn’t know the shooter was capable of such carnage.
The only absolute, the only thing you know for sure, is that Tommy has a gun in the hallway and he has gone quite mad.
Police officers and soldiers train continuously to function in violence, using high-tech weaponry and sophisticated methods of combat. But how do teachers and older students prepare for such horror? How do parents prepare their very young children?
First, you must accept that school shootings are happening seemingly more than ever before and there is no way to predict where one will happen next. Then you prepare for it using every means available to you.
Loren Christensen is the author of two dozen Paladin books and videos, including Surviving a School Shooting. Loren was a military policeman in Saigon during the Vietnam War and retired from the Portland, Oregon, Police Department after more than two decades of service. He has been training in the martial arts for more than five decades. He can be contacted through his website at www.lwcbooks.com.
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