Well, we’ve sunk to the following new low arriving in a school email from university administrative powers –with a standard pre-warning that this is informational only, and not based on a current threat — with an active link to a NYPD Shield Safety Pamphlet included for good measure:
NYPD says: Avoid. Barricade. Confront. (ABC)
DHS says: Run. Hide. Fight.
The words are different, but the three actions are essentially the same:
1. Get out and get away, as quietly and quickly as possible, leaving your belongings behind. Run. Avoid.
2. If you can’t flee, lock or barricade the doors, silence your cell phone and hide. Hide. Barricade.
3. If all else fails, and only as a last resort, attack the shooter with whatever makeshift weapons you can find (scissors, portable fire extinguishers, chairs, etc.) to disarm and disable. Fight. Confront.
Of course, call 911 to report the attack as soon as it is safe for you to do so.
Okay, sure it’s good to be safe, but at what human emotional cost? The following video was also linked in the university email:
It’s a little chilling how plainly the video states Active Shooter events are usually random and your survival is pretty much based on the luck of the draw: Are you in the gunman’s range or not?
The video is pretty scary stuff with all the blood and dead bodies strewn about — I guess Active Shooter events really are like videogames where the gunman randomly kills anybody nearby and he wins the game by blasting you with lead shot.
It’s odd how we see in that video the shooter killing at least five people with his pump shotgun, but we never see the ordinary people hiding in the room successfully work against him by fighting/confronting him! Why is that last-ditch hope left to the imagination while his bloody murders are not? Is dying the only guaranteed outcome?
Do we believe the NYPD’s — “Avoid. Barricade. Confront.” — advice?
Or the DHS with their — “Run. Hide. Fight.” — mantra?
The messaging is confusing. Is it that hard to create one, cohesive, response to an Active Shooter?