Monday, August 20, 2007

WikiHow

I don't know why I've left it on my Google page, but I get the Wikihow of the day. With such gems as how to gather chicken eggs (which includes such advice as slamming things into the nest boxes...not a good method), you'd think I would've removed the useless thing by now. I know...city folks don't always know how to approach a chicken, but it's ridiculous.

Well, they recently decided to tell me how to survive a school or workplace shooting. I had to click...how could I not be curious? They pissed me off from the get-go, though, as I suspected they might:
If there are students or coworkers who lawfully carry weapons or tools, they
will be able to explain this to your supervisor.

Yeah, I can explain to a supervisor that I want to have the means to defend myself in a victim disarmament zone. That's going to keep me on the job nicely.

They then say to lie flat and hope the shooter will mistake you for dead. To the article's credit, it says to fight back if you are about to be shot, but it's kind of late at that point.
Try talking to the shooter if you know them, but use caution. You could possibly change their mind, but remember, if they have a gun in their hand, they may not be
convinced by anything.
Y'know, because that gun will affect a person's mind. I'm not saying it's a great idea to try to talk a shooter down, but this wording tries to put the gun at fault.
Attacking an armed assailant is unwise unless you have absolutely no other
option. They have likely already decided to shoot people, and threatening them
will likely result in the deaths of you and even more around you. Leave
attacking the gunman to those equipped and trained to do so.

In other words, as long as there's a chance he'll be happy killing a few of your friends, just hope and pray he doesn't notice you. The worst thing you can do for yourself, in terms of survival, is just be a target. Remember, even if you survive, some won't. Can you live with yourself after you did nothing to try to save your friends? And the "Only Ones" have a tendency to not get in too quickly, so waiting on them will only be a means to watch the carnage.

The next couple points they make are about attacking the shooter as a group or grabbing his gun. I'm glad they at least mentioned some form of resistance.

They also go on to cover running and hiding. One little note I almost missed:
If you hear gunshots and are in a bathroom, your best bet is to remain in the
bathroom. The shooter could be right outside after all and probably won't waste
their time checking the bathrooms. Lock the bathroom door if you are able to. If
there is soap, put it on the floor near the door to make it slippery. It may
seem silly, but there is a good chance the shooter could slip and you could make
your escape.

Or, y'know, you could take that opportunity to try to disarm and/or detain the shooter. I think he might be pissed off if you've made him slip AND have run to get help.

In the "Tips" section, they mention karate as an option...but no mention of concealed weapons (or openly carried weapons, should that be an option). They do suggest pepper spray or a taser, though they say to only carry something that will be within the rules. My life, at least, is worth breaking a rule for.

I also noticed a link to How to Dodge Bullets. It's not all that bad, except in that it includes such tips as:
If you want to avoid this whole situation, do not have friends or enemies who
play with guns.

and
Realize that the best response when confronted by an armed assailant is passive
response. On the rare chance you are faced with a weapon, increasing the tension
or aggravating your assailant greatly increases your chances of dying.

Yeah, that's a great couple of tips. Don't know people with guns (because the assumption most will make is that anyone with guns is "playing" with them)...you probably already have friends with guns. And passive response? Yeah, you wouldn't want to aggravate him by surviving. If you are dealing with an armed assailant, he probably wants to kill you. You should want him to fail to kill you.

They do have several how to articles on pistol and rifle shooting, which is a plus, but they don't hit the Wikihow of the day, nor do they get linked to very much outside of the articles like them. They also always have warnings telling people to transport firearms unloaded, only handle them if you are experienced, and follow all applicable laws and rules. While the last one seems like good advice, I cannot offer it in good conscience. After all, the rules that disarm should be weighed against the small chance you'll need the gun. And that small chance will cost you a lot more than will the small chance your employer notices the concealed weapon.

I would've edited the school and workplace shooting article a little, but they had it locked. I guess they were afraid someone might encourage actual self-defense.

1 comment:

AlanDP said...

He forgot to tell how to listen to the sound of the shooter's knuckles moving when he starts to tighten his trigger finger.

And how to get away by running across wet cement.