The ABCs of Surviving an Active Shooter Event

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.

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My Ideal Place

by Malaika Booker-Wright

I have been here many, many times. This is the place I come to when I am lonely, fearful, hurt, or angry. I also come here to relax and get away from the everyday stresses of life. Where is my ideal place?

I walk through the arched doorway and down the long, narrow, and steep set of steps to my basement bedroom. I take off my shoes and socks at the bottom of the steps and marvel at the smooth blue plush carpet beneath my feet. The pale blue walls of this room compliment the black lacquer framed seascape hanging on it. This painting of the ocean crashing against some rocks is painted in an array of blues. On the opposite wall of this seascape, there are numerous portraits of family members and friends. All the portraits are different sizes, but in frames of only blue, black, or gold.

Due to my exhaustion, I speak a melodious “hello” and walk towards the two large, square windows. My feet sink into the carpet, like quicksand, as I push back the blue linen curtains, stiff from starch, and look out into darkness. I sigh slightly, then fall into the large black recliner. I remove, from underneath me, it’s blue satin pillow and blue blanket, crocheted by my grandmother, even though the softness cushioned my fall.

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