« Is There Some New Bug Going Around? | Main | Sheryl Crow's Plan to Save the World -- Ewww »

Do not go gentle into that good night

Next Monday, quite a few bloggers will be participating in One Day of Blog Silence, in memory of those killed at Virginia Tech last Monday.

I'm with one-time Wizbanger Timmer. I'll pass.

As he says, in proper context a moment of silence can be very powerful. Blogging is not one of those contexts.

More importantly, I think that silence is precisely the wrong message to send. There's an old aphorism that "silence equals consent." Silence is passive. And passivity is precisely the wrong lesson to take from the massacre.

Passivity, acceptance, consent, nonresistance -- they were not factors in the shooting, but very well may have been factors in its success.

The school and the state collaborated in making the campus of Virginia Tech a "safe" place. THey systematically inculcated a culture of dependence and security among the students. They told them, repeatedly and in multiple ways, that they were "protected." That they were "secure." They made it a completely harmless, passive, and defenseless environment.

But that kind of security, that kind of safety, is like virginity or pregnancy. It's digital, it's binary, it's an all-or-nothing kind of thing.

That security lasted precisely as long as it took for one person (who I shall not name) took it into himself to violate the rules and bring his guns on campus, and use them. At that point the sanctuary became a killing grounds, much like those vile "captive hunting" grounds, where the animals are penned in and can't escape.

The wolf was in the sheep pen, and there were no sheepdogs present. There might have been some dogs, but they'd been muzzled out of respect for the "sharp-teeth-free zone" rules. Free of being challenged, the wolf killed and killed until he grew bored, and then killed himself.

Too many of the students responded precisely as they -- as we -- have inculcated them. They trusted in the school, in the police, in the state, in society to keep the promises we had made. They didn't run, they didn't fight back, they hid and complied and obeyed.

And died.

They will participate in next Monday's day of silence. They have no choice.

Others will. That is their right, and they are sincere in their beliefs, and I will not criticize them.

I have that same choice. And I will not be silent.

Join me. Rage, rage against the dying of the light.


TrackBack

Listed below are links to weblogs that reference Do not go gentle into that good night:

» walls of the city linked with this weblog will not be silent

Comments (59)

J, do a Whois search of tha... (Below threshold)
marc:

J, do a Whois search of that domain.

It looks to be registered by a guy in Germany.

In the interest of fairness... (Below threshold)
goddessoftheclassroom:

In the interest of fairness, Jay Tea, the victims, being unarmed and, could not escape: the killer had chained the nearest exit door. Some jumped out windows. Besides allowing those with licenses to carry, the simplest preventative measure would have been to have locks on the classroom doors.

I agree with your overall premise; I just want to be fair to the victims.

I also think that teachers should be allowed to carry (after the proper training and certification).

Ian Bremmer has a discourag... (Below threshold)
kim:

Ian Bremmer has a discouraging article about Iran up today.
==================================

Speaking of a killer wolf.<... (Below threshold)
kim:

Speaking of a killer wolf.
===============

Locked doors sound like a g... (Below threshold)
jpm100:

Locked doors sound like a great idea until the school is on fire.

"Silence" is a P.C. substit... (Below threshold)
Jeff Blogworthy:

"Silence" is a P.C. substitute for prayer anyway. We can't pray, but we can be "silent." To be accurate, bloggers should offer up blog prayers next Monday. We've come a long way baby - not.

Blog prayers sound like a m... (Below threshold)
Bob Jones:

Blog prayers sound like a much viable idea.

A day of silence on blogs? How bout an hour of silence on blogs.

How about if I just promise... (Below threshold)
kim:

How about if I just promise to stay off topic all day.
===============================

Silence Blogging? Somehow ... (Below threshold)
Diane:

Silence Blogging? Somehow that seems like focusing on the importance of bloggers, instead of the deceased.

I agree with Jay. The only reason to be silent is for those who want to pray---and PRAY, by all means.

Will we ever in this country blame the people who cause the violence rather than to victims (VT was a victim, too), and accept that in life, sometimes people do really mean & stupid things.

Be silent? Being silent for a day is the answer?? Why not do something good for someone...someone you know, someone you don't...spread goodness for a day, to show that goodness still exists in this world...so we all can believe that Good will dominate Evil. Be silent? Get out and do something...something good! Quit whining and quivering in fear, and do something good!

Jay I think you are barkin... (Below threshold)
Steve Crickmore:

Jay I think you are barking up the wrong tree..If SWAT teams with years of training, loaded with artillery and wearing body armour are very reluctant to take on a rampaging psycho killers (first article, scroll down) why criticize the students with only clipboards and notebooks to defend themselves, who decided, with only a few seconds to spare, that the best way to save themselves was to try and get the hell out of the way.. The few heroes in this tragedy, were some of the students and the teachers, not those professionals who were well paid to exercise responsibility for the welfare and safety of the campus, but instead at every turn, showed passivity and inertia.

I like the reference to she... (Below threshold)
kevino:

I like the reference to sheep and sheepdogs. However, there is other breeds of sheepdog that is worth thinking about: there are breeds that were developed to look like sheep. They are trained to stay with the sheep and to keep their heads down so that they appear to eating grass. If the wolf comes down to attack, he'll think that there isn't a dog in sight. As he runs in, he won't believe his luck as most of the sheep are running away, but one or two are heading toward him. Then he notices that those "sheep" have fangs.

--------

I think that it is time for people to consider changes in personal security. Here's a simple one. If you are not willing or not able to carry a firearm to protect yourself and innocent third parties, will you at least consider carrying pepper spray?

1. Find out what the law allows. In some states, purchasing or carrying pepper spray requires a permit. If your state requires one, get it.
2. Get training. Numerous organizations (e.g. the evil NRA) offer training. In particular, there are certain conditions (esp. cold and wind) that make pepper spray ineffective. Inside a building, however, is very good.
3. Practice. No, I don't mean spray your friends. Buy two cans. Use one of them outside and see if you can effectively hit a five inch target from fifteen feet away. It's not as easy as it looks, particularly disengaging the safety mechanism. If you have to use it, you will be more confident and effective.
4. Note what the spray actually smells like. Remember it so that if someone gets sprayed, you will know it.
5. Note the expiration date. The material goes bad over time. When it does, you'll need to replace it.

It would be nice if the next copycat who bursts into a room to shoot people gets a face full of pepper spray and a chair (or kubotan) across the back of the head. The pepper spray will, at best, only prevent the attacker from being accurate, but the blunt force to the head will be decisive.

Similarly, go down to a gun range and see if you can recognize what various gun shots sound like. One of the things that I find hard to believe is that many people fail to recognize that they are in danger because they don't know what gunfire sounds like.

Not a blogger but do read m... (Below threshold)
Faith+1:

Not a blogger but do read many of them. The whole "moment of silence" thing from bloggers just comes across as pretentious attention grabbing "look at me doing something special". It's turning the focus away from the tragedy and trying to insert something not connected to the tragedy into the story.

Bloggers had nothing to do with Va Tech. You won't have anything to do with the families and friends trying to deal with the tragedy. The killings do NOT belong to the whole blogosphere or the rest of the country. Trying to insert themselves into this story is wrong, selfish and hugely inappropriate.

I'm speaking as someone who's next neighbor lost their son that day. I knew the boy. He mowed my grass, played with my kids and broke bread at my table. I watched him grow up over the years and I remember the day he left for college and how proud his parents were. I don't have a single right to try and insert my feelings over those of his devastated parents. Compared to them my own feelings are nothing. Disconnected bloggers have even less.

You want to pray for the families or hold a moment of silence? Go ahead. No one is stopping you. You don't need to fanfare to do so. When you proceed such moments with an advertising campaign calling attention to yourself over how wonderful you are at being silent you pretty much negate the whole intent.

For any blog selfishly capitailizing on this event your moment of silence will last forever for me since I will not visit any such blogs again. I find it as tacky as some stranger showing up at the funeral and trying to cry the loudest for attention.

It's pathetic.

Too many of t... (Below threshold)
Rory:

Too many of the students responded precisely as they -- as we -- have inculcated them. They trusted in the school, in the police, in the state, in society to keep the promises we had made. They didn't run, they didn't fight back, they hid and complied and obeyed.

And died.

Ummm-I wish people would stop passing judgement on the victims until the investigation is over at the very least.


From the Washington Post-

Granata, a military veteran, was in his office on the third floor. He walked out and across the hall to a classroom, where 20 frightened students were wondering what to do. He directed them into his office, where he ushered them to safety -- in close quarters but behind the locked doors. Then, aware that other students might be in danger on the second floor, he and another professor, Wally Grant, went downstairs to investigate, Slota said.


Granata and Wally Grant knew what was going on enough to tell the kids on the third floor to get in the office.

They went downstairs to investigate and likely stop the murder-

That is not the action of cowards.

What's more pathetic is Mar... (Below threshold)
Rory:

What's more pathetic is Mark Steyn and John Derbyshire trying to grab attention for their societal theories by calling the victims cowardly on the day after the killings no less.

Vultures circling......is the picture that comes to mind.

I usually like Steyn but this using the victims to garner attention for his own theories and make this situation "fit" into that is loathesome.

It's embarrassing as hell that Conservative critics are the ones doing this.

I'm grateful that at least J-Pod at the NRO tried to defend the victims.

Another thing that got me w... (Below threshold)

Another thing that got me was the almost immediate politicalization, by both sides. "MORE GUNS! LESS GUNS! LOOK, HE'S AN IMMIGRANT!"

I think we could have done with a week of no adding politics to the shootings, but that would have been too much to ask.

Crickmore:why ... (Below threshold)
marc:

Crickmore:

why criticize the students with only clipboards and notebooks to defend themselves,

It's not being critical, just puzzling why a 70 plus year old man who had witnessed far more horrific things 60 yeas ago than what occurred last Monday took on this nutcase armed with the same, or less, "weaponry" than clipboards and notebooks.

They are all heros at some level, but some stood far, far above the rest.

Rory, you are right. This w... (Below threshold)
Scrapiron:

Rory, you are right. This was not the action of cowards. I'll add it was the action of a former 'trained miliary' person who knew he should not become one of the frightened sheep. Time for training (not necessarly military) more people that there is danger out there and the police are powerless to do anything about it. How many police officers have been put on trial for doing their job? Hundreds per years are crusified by the left wingers for simply doing their job. Can anyone say Border Guards? If a criminal comes at you with a stick, much less a knife or gun, then you shoot the slime ball. Getting injured to satisfy the 'political correct' idiots that won't do the job, is not the job of a police officer.

AS I posted here several ti... (Below threshold)
Justrand:

AS I posted here several times last week, it is NOT "blaming the victims" to point out that they were ill-used and ill-served by a campus Administration that declared them safe...but couldn't actually MAKE them safe.

But by telling them in advance that they were perfectly safe, and then not even WARNING them in the 2-hour interlude that they might NOT be safe the Administration ensured they were all in place ready to be slaughtered.

When they heard the first gunshots, their first thoughts SHOULD have been: "We're in danger...what can we do NOW". Instead, every student I have heard talk about it assumed the sounds were carpenters "hammering". And when Cho came in there is no evidence of a struggle with him.

They were not taught to recognize danger...no need, they were told: "YOU'RE ALL SAFE AT ALL TIMES"

And they were NOT conditioned to RESIST...to FIGHT BACK. Instead they were conditioned to wait for someone to save them. I would hope that VT is going to being self-defense classes...NOW.

Rory:RE: "I wish p... (Below threshold)
kevino:

Rory:

RE: "I wish people would stop passing judgement on the victims until the investigation is over at the very least."
People need to act quickly given the high probability of one or more copy-cat crimes. If we can trust the eye-witness accounts, there are serious issues that need to be addressed. Waiting for official explanations may get a lot of people killed.


RE: "Granata and Wally Grant knew what was going on enough to tell the kids on the third floor to get in the office."
That's two people, plus a couple of others that got in the way of the shooter, out of how many others?
And by the way, these aren't "kids".

RE: "What's more pathetic is Mark Steyn and John Derbyshire trying to grab attention for their societal theories by calling the victims cowardly on the day after the killings no less."
As opposed to politicians and gun-control advocates who don't wait for the bodies to get cold to begin advocating their positions and trying to raise money for their political views.

As I said above, by any reasonable measure, this event clearly shows that we need to make changes in personal protection. The scheme that was used at VT clearly didn't work. "Be prepared." It's the Boy Scout marching song. In the gravest extreme you may only have seconds to put together a defense. It is far better to get the training and plan for the worst case scenario that wait until that moment to try to figure out what to do.

And we need to make those changes quickly because thanks to the glorification of the shooter by the MSM, one or more copy-cat crimes may be in our immediate future. I can only imagine how many psychotic losers spent part of last week staring bug-eyed at the fantastic press coverage that Cho got and spending the rest of the week purchasing guns and video cameras. The next deranged violent offender to make headlines may have been practicing at the local gun range this past weekend.

Dang it I've got a tight sc... (Below threshold)
Rory:

Dang it I've got a tight schedule today but just for starters-

One of the victims that died had a black belt in karate.

One of the victims that died had a red belt in taekwondo.

One of the victims that died was in the AF ROTC.

One of the victims that died was killed when he tried to distract the killer from someone else that was trying to play dead.


I do agree with the adminsitration not warning the kids sooner at military bases and in Tornado Alley their are these defense systems left over relics from SAC bases and the Early Warning System for nuclear attack and when you have a large campus like V Tech they could be easily used essentially they are sirens and a speaker system.

They work in Oklahoma to warn people about tornados-[trust me you can hear the peel of these sirens for miiiiles] the only thing is even if they had them the admin at VTech might not have implemented them.


Although on one of the tapes by the Swedish exchange students I think you can hear a public address system being utilized but that was only after the second shooting.

If the critics had waited until after the investigation then their theories would have carried more weight and perhaps would have been more effective instead they rushed to press to get the most shock and awe impact and what they have to say gets buried under the stench of the oppurtunism....

kevino-People n... (Below threshold)
Rory:

kevino-

People need to act quickly given the high probability of one or more copy-cat crimes. If we can trust the eye-witness accounts, there are serious issues that need to be addressed. Waiting for official explanations may get a lot of people killed.

youv'e got a point here but I don't think Steyn or Derbyshire said anything of practical advice and I really don't think they are that well read. Even the NYT isn't what it use to be.

That's two people, plus a couple of others that got in the way of the shooter, out of how many others?

we don't know yet how many others and my father who is the veteran of THREE WARS says always-

Teh BRAVE ONEs -D-I-E-D. So the ones that tried to stop the nut with TWO guns and HOLLOWED out bullets-

Ya they probably are the ones that are dead.

As opposed to politicians and gun-control advocates who don't wait for the bodies to get cold to begin advocating their positions and trying to raise money for their political views.

Two wrongs don't make a right-and I think by attacking the victims calling them cowards Steyn and Derbyshire make the gun advocate side of the equation look irrational. If you have to demean the victims and their families at their most vulnerable time you look desperate for attentionand that reflects poorly on their argument which is unfortunate for the pro-gun side. But again hopefully they aren't that well read.

Marc...Yes, Marc. this 75 y... (Below threshold)
Steve Crickmore:

Marc...Yes, Marc. this 75 year professor did the best he could..After some of the professors were so intimidated that they gave this deranged student A's , as was reported in the' Daily Mail' to keep him happy'....the professors at Norris Hall men and women old or young seemed to show the, most resistance to the killer on the day of the shooting. from Wikipedia."Jocelyne Couture-Nowak tried to save the students in her classroom, after looking Cho in the eye in the hallway. One of the five known survivors of the French class told his family that Couture-Nowak ordered her students to the back of the class for their safety in a fatal attempt to barricade the door.[20] and again from Wikipedia under 'active shooter' after Columbine "Instead of being taught to wait for the SWAT team to arrive, street officers are receiving the training and weaponry to take immediate action during incidents that clearly involve suspects' use of deadly force." so that is an improvement... we are getting there..This guy still managed to get off 175 to 225 shots before the police rushed into the building, so there is much work still to be done and (I know the doors were chained.)

The price of resisting v... (Below threshold)
Mac Lorry:

The price of resisting violence.

I live in a state that licenses law-abiding citizens to carry concealed weapons. The training takes 8 hours and you must pass a rapid fire marksmanship test as part of that training. The course costs about $50 and the license application costs $100. I purchased a Kel-Tech P-3AT and ammo for around $300. The P-3AT is the lightest pistol of the minimum effective caliber, but it's still weighs 11 oz loaded. This little semi-auto pistol has no separate safety as it's double action only. In English that means it takes a deliberate pull of a long and hard trigger to fire it.

Nevertheless, I don't like to have a round chambered with the gun just loose in a pocket. While highly unlikely, I don't feel comfortable knowing there's a loaded and cocked pistol in my pocket that could blow my private parts off should the trigger somehow get pulled unintentionally. Besides that, the outline of a pistol in your pocket does not attract the type of attention conducive to one's social or business life. If you don't want to wear a sport or suite jacket it's really difficult to find a practical and comfortable means to carry even a small pistol on a daily basis. About the best solution is an ankle holster, but the concealment is not all that great when you're walking.

As in most states, the politicians had to make compromises on where a person can carry a licensed weapon. Many employers don't allow employees to carry and all school's are off limits. Universities get to set their own policy, but being a bastion of the left, they seldom allow students or employees to carry. Even businesses can post notices that ban carrying of weapons. Thus, even someone who is licensed and willing to carry is prevented from carrying in the very places where most of these mass shootings occur. The inconvenience of carrying combined with these limits results in most license holders leaving their weapon home most of the time, and many don't renew their license when it expires. Once again we find ourselves disarmed.

One solution would be a two tiered system. The lower tier would be the current license to carry system. The new higher tier would be volunteers who have gone through a much higher level of background checking and training similar to what law enforcement personnel goes through. These high tier licenses would in fact be state marshals and allow the holder to carry anywhere regular law enforcement personnel can carry. Like volunteer emergency medical technicians, this system would allow volunteer security marshals to be among use when the need arises. That would be a high price to pay for some volunteer to take on, but I'm betting thousands of citizens would come forwarded for such duty if asked.

There was a kidnapping of a... (Below threshold)
Justrand:

There was a kidnapping of a child in a neighboring city when I was young that prompted my father to give me a lesson...which I passed on to my sons later on.

My father told me that if I ever felt threatened while walking to or from school I should do the following: "Find a rock or any other object that can break a window, and THROW IT THROUGH THE NEAREST WINDOW!"

His very wise theory was that while people will ignore cries for "Help", "Rape" or whatever...they will ALWAYS pay attention to the sound of glass breaking!

He assured me that he would back me up if I ever had to do so...even if it turned out I was NOT in danger. (he wanted me to be pretty sure BEFORE I broke a window, naturally)

The point is that he had me PLANNING at least SOME response to danger. And he was also giving a prime FACT OF LIFE: there are times you are on your own, and what YOU do will determine if you live or die!!

Rory:RE: Karate an... (Below threshold)
kevino:

Rory:

RE: Karate and Taekwondo
While most instructors teach their students about defense against weapons, it is certainly not a requirement. Even a black-belt may not know how to do much against a gun. I know one expert, an ex-cop, who teaches karate. He held classes every so often about edge-weapon defense. Against a gun he simply said that there wasn't much you could do about it. I told one of his students to quit that class and take Krav Maga.

RE: AF ROTC
Probably knows even less. May know how to shoot and clean a rifle.

RE: "One of the victims that died was killed when he tried to distract the killer from someone else that was trying to play dead."
Tremendous courage.

--------

According to eye-witness accounts, many students didn't know what the gunshots were. No one that I have read had any type of weapon (e.g. pepper spray or edge weapon) or used one.

According to eye-witeness accounts, many were order to line up against a wall and were shot execution-style.

But, by all means, let's wait for the powers-that-be to put together the official report. In the case of Columbine that took over a year. I'm sure the report will have lots of specific things that students can do to make themselves better prepared. I'm sure the report will make the usual recommendations for changes in the campus police departments.

Meanwhile, the next killer is already preparing his attack. The number to beat is thirty-two.

Rory:RE: Even the ... (Below threshold)
kevino:

Rory:

RE: Even the NYT isn't what it use to be.
LOL.

RE: "The brave ones died"
In this situation, the people who didn't recognize that they were in danger until too late also died. In this situation, the people that lined themselves up against the wall got executed.

RE: Two guns and hollowed out [sic] bullets
One of those guns is a .22 - not exactly a man-stopper. (I'd certainly rather get hit by a .22 than a 9mm.) The shooter is really able to aim only one-at-a-time anyway.

What can be done? Colin Ferguson. Long Island Railway massacre. A group of people in very confined space against a very effective, well-armed shooter. After he killed several of them, a group rushed him - bare-handed. Bad news: one of them got shot. Good news: the rest of them tackled him and stopped any further shootings.

Six people died.


kevino-Well that i... (Below threshold)
Rory:

kevino-

Well that is how Steyn's and Derbyshire's arguments actually weaken the pro gun argument.

They are saying that people should have rushed them, that they should have "thrown books"...

I'm saying no the thing that would have stopped him would be someone else with a gun.

I am giving the example of those people's backgrouns to counter arguments that the victims were not self defense oriented that's all.

But also Steyn argues further that feminism has turned men into 'wussies' or something to that effect and that they have been "infantilized'.

Well then that goes against the theory that people should be trusted with guns essentially>

It takes RESPONSIBILITY to own a gun. It takes a willingness to USE it. It takes weekly practice, etc, etc.

By Steyn's argument wussified and infantilized men shouldn't be trusted with guns-if he really believes his own argument-furthermore what's wrong with women in the military if he truly believes what he writes?

That real men have been bred out of the gene pool or have been neutered acculturally speaking?

kevino-Dude-one of... (Below threshold)
Rory:

kevino-

Dude-one of those weapons was a 9mm Glock.

Plus you know I worked in a bar and I've commented earlier about this but it once took ten of us to drag this one guy out into the parking lot. The bouncers swore he was on PCP and the cops later told us -no he was SIMPLY nuts.

The bouncers were using all the usual inflict pain tricks on him to no effect.

I swear one of these days they'll come up with a study that says that these deranged individuals have a chemical inbalance of the brain and that when they go into a state of rage or whatever they are oblivious to pain. I know the nut we were dealing with was.

So the only thing that might have worked is someone with a gun.

Or a damn dog. Bouvier des Flandres are my favorites because Hitler tried to have them exterminated after one of them bit him.

I'll catch you later. I'm off line for awhile.

Rory, I (at least) don't s... (Below threshold)
Justrand:

Rory, I (at least) don't see this as a pro OR anti gun issue.

I see it as a FIGHT BACK issue.

Teach children from a very young age to resist, and go on resisting while there is breath in their bodies.

Adults need this lesson too, of course. As I mentioned before, we ALL learned on 9/11 that the days of going along with a highjacker and waiting to be rescued are OVER. FOREVER. They are going to KILL you...they have NO other purpose. IT is them or you. Make it THEM.

So. the bottom line of all ... (Below threshold)
SShiell:

So. the bottom line of all of this is what?

How are you now going to talk to your children about this situation? We can all hypothesize about what society should or should not do after a tragedy like this - but in the real world, how do you now instruct your children if they are ever faced with such a situation?

We talk to them about what to do if there is a fire in the house (or we should). We talk to them about the evils of drugs (or we should). We talk to them about not speaking to strangers and what to do if a stranger approaches them (or we should). What are you going to say to little Johnny or little Mary when they ask you what they should do in a situation like Columbine or Virginia Tech?

Do you tell them to hide under their desk?
Do you tell them to cower in a corner?
Do you tell them to pull a dead body over them and play dead?
Do you tell them to try and escape through the windows?
Do you tell them not to worry because Society or the Police or the respective Administration will protect them?

You can talk all day about who did right or wrong while viewing the carnage. You can talk all day about society being at fault or the individual or the anti-gun crowd or the gun proponents. But nothing - no law or legislation - will stop another tragedy like this from happening. The best you and I can do is try to give your children some guidance that could save their lives some day.

Good Luck with that!

Rory:RE: One of th... (Below threshold)
kevino:

Rory:

RE: One of those weapons was a 9mm Glock
Yes, that's what I said. I'm well aware of that weapon and what it can do.

RE: Bouncers working a bar. "So the only thing that might have worked is someone with a gun."
Wrong. That is a very different situation than the kind of life-and-death struggle we're talking about here. The bad news is that a crazy person is exactly the type that you'll actually have to shoot. You can't control them or negotiate.

In hand-to-hand against that kind of person, you don't use pain-inducing pressure points: you bind them, break bones, or use a weapon (e.g. a knife) that makes further violence physically impossible. In this situation, you're not worried about being sued or arrested, you act or someone dies. There are no rules.

Also, if you've worked in a bar you know the answer to this question: in breaking up bar fights, what is the number one weapon used by police?

Answer: pepper spray. Now see my comment above.

RE: It takes RESPONSIBILITY to own a gun. It takes a willingness to USE it. It takes weekly practice, etc, etc.
It takes responsibility, yes.
It takes a williness to use it. Absolutely. And that is what we are talking about here. The problem is that our society is teaching people that they really aren't responsible for their defense. People should just rely on the police.
Weekly practice. That's nonsense. People should practice, but the level of practice required is not that difficult to acquire and keep current. The standard proficiency test uses a mixture of distances, including 50 and 75 feet, but the average distance in actual shootings is seven (yes, 7) feet.

You appear to be jumping to the conclusion that I'm recommending that people use guns. I didn't.

SShiell:RE: "How a... (Below threshold)
kevino:

SShiell:

RE: "How are you now going to talk to your children about this situation?"
Each family is different, and the conversation changes depending on the age of the person involved because the capabilities and the responsibilities change over time.

When my kids were younger, Mom and the kids' responsibilities were to recognize the threat and to draw a line between me and the threat. In the event of trouble, they were to immediately run 90 degrees away from that line. I would make the decision about if and when anything would happen, and if it does, I would deal with the threat. Their job was to escape without getting in my way.

Once they became older, they were on their own. In my book, there are three rules to fighting: (1) Walk away if you can, (2) If you can't walk away, run away, and (3) This is do-or-die: there are no rules. I taught a variety of techniques of dealing with multiple types of threats. In one case, I was asked to teach a girlfriend. The important thing is to be prepared: you have to plan in advance. When the time comes, training gives you confidence and can pull you through.

RE: "But nothing - no law or legislation - will stop another tragedy like this from happening. The best you and I can do is try to give your children some guidance that could save their lives some day."
Absolutely right. The only thing I would add is: "could save their lives or the lives of others."

I wrote an article about th... (Below threshold)

I wrote an article about the same thing. I will (hopefully) not be participating in the silence thing. Mourning should not be a fashion statement.
This international call for blogging silence is just that - a fashion statement.

Blog prayers? You guys cra... (Below threshold)
mantis:

Blog prayers? You guys crack me up.

Does God read blogs? Which ones? Who's God's ISP anyway? Maybe he's still on dial-up.

"Does God read blogs? Which... (Below threshold)
Faith+1:

"Does God read blogs? Which ones? Who's God's ISP anyway? Maybe he's still on dial-up."

I'm betting God is using Cox Cable. has to be. Only Divine Intervention could explain how that company stays in business.

Well..I agree there should ... (Below threshold)
nogo postal:

Well..I agree there should not be a disruption..
Unless it is on Memorial Day...where the troop "ultimate sacrifice" in Iraq..which now has surged to 3,013 and of course will be higher by then ...is recognized..

Support our Troops..their family and friends..
Bring'em Home..

(of course it is easy to take a position supported by the majority of Americans)

mantis:I'm not sur... (Below threshold)
Jeff Blogworthy:

mantis:

I'm not sure why you feel the need to ridicule a "blog prayer." Blogs are a form of public expression. It is the same as any other spoken public prayer or group prayer. People joining together to petition God on behalf of families, communities and our nation. Writing down a prayer does not make it any less significant.

BTW, if God has every hair on my head numbered, He no doubt knows my IP address as well.

I'm not sure why you fee... (Below threshold)
mantis:

I'm not sure why you feel the need to ridicule a "blog prayer."

Because it's hilarious?

It is the same as any other spoken public prayer or group prayer.

I would imagine such public and group prayers are performed by people less pompous and self-important than most bloggers.

People joining together to petition God on behalf of families, communities and our nation. Writing down a prayer does not make it any less significant.

Writing down a prayer in a place you normally reserve for such things as reviews of "Help! Mom! There Are Liberals Under My Bed", does tend to cheapen it quite a bit, at least to my eyes. YMMV

BTW, if God has every hair on my head numbered, He no doubt knows my IP address as well.

People who believe that an all-powerful creator of the universe and everything in it cares a lick about the hair on their heads are incredibly self-important at best, and probably totally delusional.

Don't forget to spellcheck your prayers! God hates a sloppy typist.

Hear hear. I decided not t... (Below threshold)

Hear hear. I decided not to be "silent" on the 30th about ten seconds after reading the webpage. Good to hear that Wizbang will be following suit ;).

The best way to honor the v... (Below threshold)
BigCatGirl:

The best way to honor the victims is live your lives to the fullest today and everyday.

mantis:"People who... (Below threshold)
Jeff Blogworthy:

mantis:

"People who believe that an all-powerful creator of the universe and everything in it cares a lick about the hair on their heads are incredibly self-important at best, and probably totally delusional."

Well, if your going to pontificate on prayer etiquette and pomposity it might help to occasionally examine the authoritative source on the subject (provided you pull can yourself away from the altar of Gaia and her worthy prophet Algore - may he live forever):

Are not two sparrows sold for a penny? And not one of them will fall to the ground without your Father's will. But even the hairs of your head are all numbered. Fear not, therefore, you are of more value than many sparrows. So everyone who acknowledges me before men, I will acknowledge before my Father who is in heaven; but whoever denies me before men, I also will deny before my Father who is in heaven. Matthew ch. 10

Mantis, there are no words ... (Below threshold)

Mantis, there are no words to describe the utter contempt I have for your last few comments. You clearly know nothing of the God of the universe nor His assurances that He knows exactly how many hairs there are on our heads.

Feel free to ridicule and blather. It signifies nothing.

May I suggest that knowledge, compassion, and understanding are much better watchwords than sound and fury.

Well, if your going to p... (Below threshold)
mantis:

Well, if your going to pontificate on prayer etiquette and pomposity it might help to occasionally examine the authoritative source on the subject

I know your books cover to cover, friend. For what it's worth I'm not pontificating, I'm ridiculing.

(provided you pull can yourself away from the altar of Gaia and her worthy prophet Algore - may he live forever):

Nice strawman. I ridicule Gore and Gaia proponents often (see the global warming thread above for one example).

Outward motives may keep the outside clean, while the inside is filthy; but if the heart and spirit be made new, there will be newness of life; here we must begin with ourselves. The righteousness of the scribes and Pharisees was like the ornaments of a grave, or dressing up a dead body, only for show. - Matthew ch. 23

Were I the religious sort, ... (Below threshold)

Were I the religious sort, mantis, I'd be tempted to quote Shakespeare here:

The devil can cite Scripture for his purpose.

The Merchant Of Venice, Act I, Scene III.

Good thing I'm an agnostic.

J.

Mantis, there are no wor... (Below threshold)
mantis:

Mantis, there are no words to describe the utter contempt I have for your last few comments.

Yet you keep typing.

You clearly know nothing of the God of the universe nor His assurances that He knows exactly how many hairs there are on our heads.

I'm aware of what your old books say, I just don't believe them.

Feel free to ridicule and blather. It signifies nothing.

I pull in resolution, and begin
To doubt the equivocation of the fiend
That lies like truth

The devil can cite Scrip... (Below threshold)
mantis:

The devil can cite Scripture for his purpose.

Does the devil disbelieve in himself?

So, mantis, your ridicule i... (Below threshold)

So, mantis, your ridicule is more important than something that someone *else* might find value in?

Granted, you're free to ridicule. Just don't think you come across as any sort of thoughtful during the exchange. And you usually are thoughtful, so that's a shame.

Re: After action reports...

...are not about finding blame. They are about figuring out what to do next time.

Re: karate and martial arts.

A few days ago I posted on my blog that no one in their right mind brings a karate chop to a gun fight. (Oh, and I've been working out for about a year and a half, just long enough to realize just how *little* it will take to get a black belt.) What you bring to the gun fight that might matter is *attitude*.

I disagree strongly with Rory, I believe, who seems to be saying that the *only* thing that will do any good at all is a gun. This seems like an insistence on helplessness and I find it distasteful if not out and out actively harmful.

It's like saying that because I'm a small, middle aged lady, that studying martial arts is a hopeless waste of time because I'm never *ever* going to be able to physically overpower an attacker. (Trust me, anyone *less* powerful than I am is not going to be attacking *anyone*.) But it's not about power. It's not about an equality of available force because that will never be equal. It's about other things. It's about fighting dirty and using what you do have to circumvent the inequality of power. Surprise, distraction... deception... what do you think the Kiyah! is for?

But then, I go to a "traditional" school. As far as I can tell, "traditional" means that we're not taught tournament fighting. We're taught to fight dirty, to deliver a single blow or series of blows (which if they land properly, could be fatal or at the least break bones) and to run.

I was in a tournament and fought a lady my age who was actually shorter than I am. How often is that going to happen in real life?

As for Steyn, the examples he used for feminized men was an instance where a gunman had the men leave *and they complied* after which the gunman killed the girls. I think his contempt is quite justified. And I think he's quite right that we teach people to be passive and to be helpless. And I quite agree that *this is a problem.*

Self-defense isn't about doing nothing if your attacker has more power than you do, because an attacker almost always will. It's about what you do to save your life, or others, in less than ideal circumstances.

And throwing stuff is a good plan. Moreover, it can be an effective plan. Chairs, backpacks. Human nature is to flinch and duck and protect your eyes by closing them. Someone said "clip-boards". Even clipboards will trigger involuntary protective reflexes flying through the air at an attacker.

It would be super if there is someone present who has a gun but plans for self-defense have to assume that there is *not*.

mantis:"I know you... (Below threshold)
Jeff Blogworthy:

mantis:

"I know your books cover to cover, friend. For what it's worth I'm not pontificating, I'm ridiculing."

That really is too bad. Your condemnation will be all the greater. To whom much is given, much will be required.

I thought we (actually, you) were discussing the appropriateness of blogs as a venue for prayer, and whether prayer is "cheapened" by such a venue. It turns out that you weren't concerned about those things at all and that they were only a pretense with the aim of ridiculing the religious beliefs of others. There's a good liberal. Thanks for straightening me out.

That really is too bad. ... (Below threshold)
mantis:

That really is too bad. Your condemnation will be all the greater.

Is this supposed to frighten me?

I thought we (actually, you) were discussing the appropriateness of blogs as a venue for prayer, and whether prayer is "cheapened" by such a venue.

We were. I don't dispute that prayer has value.

It turns out that you weren't concerned about those things at all and that they were only a pretense with the aim of ridiculing the religious beliefs of others.

No, I'm ridiculing "prayer blogging." I believe in the value of prayer to those praying. I don't believe prayers will be answered through supernatural intervention; they won't win the big game for you or help you pick the right lottery numbers, your prayers won't help the families of the VT victims (though their own prayers will). It is a salve in times of grief, and a solace for those who sympathize (prayer serves other purposes as well). Publicly announced prayer is narcissistic and arrogant.

FWIW I don't dislike Christians, Christianity, or any people of the Book. I just find those who believe the silliest stuff, often at the expense of the really valuable stuff, to be ridiculous in their unwillingness to accept the fact of human meddling in the texts, interpretations, and traditions of their respective religions that was present from the very beginning. Anyone who is willing to believe that the Bible (or any book) is true because the Bible says it's true is in my mind not someone to take seriously.

There's a good liberal. Thanks for straightening me out.

Most welcome.

So, mantis, your ridicul... (Below threshold)
mantis:

So, mantis, your ridicule is more important than something that someone *else* might find value in?

No, it's just my opinion, and I am but a bug.

Granted, you're free to ridicule. Just don't think you come across as any sort of thoughtful during the exchange. And you usually are thoughtful, so that's a shame.

There are many paths, friend.

Ah, mantis, ridiculing spir... (Below threshold)
kim:

Ah, mantis, ridiculing spirituality is unbecoming. From what great reservoir of faith comes the confidence to be so sure of others's error?
===========================================

Where did I "ridicule spiri... (Below threshold)
mantis:

Where did I "ridicule spirituality?" Can we not ridicule the beliefs of scientologists (Hail Xenu!)? Can we not ridicule those with faith that aliens have visited them? Does such ridicule rule the existence of extraterrestrials out?

I ridicule belief in supernatural powers, belief in infallible texts, belief that one's people are chosen above all others. I do so because I reject both their premises and their consequences. I do not ridicule spirituality as a whole.

My reservoir comes not from faith but from experience and reason. Should evidence come along to prove any of my conclusions wrong, I shall reconsider. The same cannot be said of most of the faithful.

Right, son, only your spiri... (Below threshold)
kim:

Right, son, only your spirituality is above ridicule.
===============================

And just what is so irratio... (Below threshold)
kim:

And just what is so irrational about the belief that sticking to rules would be rewarded? I mean, you want to couch it in terms of 'chosen people' but that's because your spirituality has made you ridiculous.
====================================

Right, son, only your sp... (Below threshold)
mantis:

Right, son, only your spirituality is above ridicule.

What spirituality is that? Oh, and I don't claim I am above ridicule.

And just what is so irrational about the belief that sticking to rules would be rewarded? I mean, you want to couch it in terms of 'chosen people' but that's because your spirituality has made you ridiculous.

I have no idea what you are saying here.

On evidence:"He an... (Below threshold)
Jeff Blogworthy:

On evidence:

"He answered, 'Then I beg you, father, send Lazarus to my father's house, for I have five brothers. Let him warn them, so that they will not also come to this place of torment.'

"Abraham replied, 'They have Moses and the Prophets; let them listen to them.'

" 'No, father Abraham,' he said, 'but if someone from the dead goes to them, they will repent.'

"He said to him, 'If they do not listen to Moses and the Prophets, they will not be convinced even if someone rises from the dead.' " Luke 16: 27-31

Oh, I will certainly be con... (Below threshold)
mantis:

Oh, I will certainly be convinced if Jesus comes by and raises someone from the dead. Has he done that lately?

Easily done with enough epi... (Below threshold)
anonyhwhmouse:

Easily done with enough epi.

Why suddenly so credulous a... (Below threshold)
kim:

Why suddenly so credulous at a parlor trick?
===========================




Advertisements









rightads.gif

beltwaybloggers.gif

insiderslogo.jpg

mba_blue.gif

Follow Wizbang

Follow Wizbang on FacebookFollow Wizbang on TwitterSubscribe to Wizbang feedWizbang Mobile

Contact

Send e-mail tips to us:

[email protected]

Fresh Links

Credits

Section Editor: Maggie Whitton

Editors: Jay Tea, Lorie Byrd, Kim Priestap, DJ Drummond, Michael Laprarie, Baron Von Ottomatic, Shawn Mallow, Rick, Dan Karipides, Michael Avitablile, Charlie Quidnunc, Steve Schippert

Emeritus: Paul, Mary Katherine Ham, Jim Addison, Alexander K. McClure, Cassy Fiano, Bill Jempty, John Stansbury, Rob Port

In Memorium: HughS

All original content copyright © 2003-2010 by Wizbang®, LLC. All rights reserved. Wizbang® is a registered service mark.

Powered by Movable Type Pro 4.361

Hosting by ServInt

Ratings on this site are powered by the Ajax Ratings Pro plugin for Movable Type.

Search on this site is powered by the FastSearch plugin for Movable Type.

Blogrolls on this site are powered by the MT-Blogroll.

Temporary site design is based on Cutline and Cutline for MT. Graphics by Apothegm Designs.

Author Login



Terms Of Service

DCMA Compliance Notice

Privacy Policy