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Thursday, April 19, 2007

If I'd a been there... 

So there's a certain amount of wanking going on about how nobody rushed the Blacksburg shooter guy. There's even been some references made to what the writers would have done if they'd have been there complete with asides about Flight 93.

Leaving aside the Monday morning quarterbacking of the dinks that have been making such comments, I need to comment myself. First, the military spends large amounts of time and money to train young men and women to be able to function when in a combat situation and under fire. Not to be heroes, but just to do what they are supposed to do. They do a pretty good job, but there are still many people who vapor lock when put in a situation where some stranger is trying kill them. Rushing head on into someone who's shooting a gun at you, with no training whatsoever is not behavior you can expect from anyone. So, with all due respect, to those of you who think you'd have done better if you were there: bullshit.

And as far as the Flight 93 references are concerned, they are a special case. The people on that flight knew (from cell-phone conversations) that at least 2 and perhaps 3 highjacked planes had already been flown into buildings. They knew they were already dead. And they had time to think about what that meant and to plan for how they were going to deal with it. Those last two bits are important. They knew they were almost certainly going to die. They had time to freak out for a while and then after that while, to make a plan. The people at VTU had a few seconds between the bad guy coming into class and the shooting to begin. They were stuck in the I'm-about-to-die portion of the response until long after the shooter had left the room. The fact that anyone did anything at all, e.g., the professor that held the door while telling his students to jump out the windows (and note that he lived through the Holocaust, no mean introduction to strangers trying to kill you) is nothing short of amazing. So again, to the people who say Flight 93 should show us what to do when someone starts shooting: bullshit.

Woulda, shoulda, coulda. Until someone has had had a handgun stuffed in their face,it is impossible to say just what they might do. All this post VT chest puffing would be funny if not for the fact so many lost their lives.

I also find odd, the recriminations aimed at the college for not doing more to secure the safety of the students. What bullshit. It's like trying to protect someone from lightening. Shit happens.
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