Teaching kids to fight back against classroom invaders

Discussion in 'Politics, Religion, Social Issues' started by zimv20, Oct 14, 2006.

  1. zimv20 macrumors 601

    zimv20

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    #1
    AP

    is it just me or is this insanity? as mac has pointed out, the number of incidents is really quite low, but we're going to put The Fear into 7 year olds?

    i'm really sick of this country being so driven by fear.
     
  2. EricNau Moderator emeritus

    EricNau

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    #2
    There's a fine line between being prepared and being afraid, and as always, it's hard to determine where exactly that line is.

    On one hand, it does sound ridiculous, but on the other, is it really wrong to start teaching kids at a young age how to handle emergencies?

    Fortunately, being afraid won't kill you. Unfortunately, not being prepared could cost many lives (as it has in the past).
     
  3. zimv20 thread starter macrumors 601

    zimv20

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    #3
    in general, no. in the tornado belt, imo it's fine to teach kids about seeking shelter. it's fine to teach kids to dial emergency services in case of fire or a parent needing medical attention.

    but as a kid, i was taught to fear a nuclear death and that i should hide under my desk. it terrified me and my friends. ignoring that hindsight is 20/20, was it really necessary to terrify two generations of elementary school kids with the images of mushroom clouds, perishing in a wall of fire, or wasting away while your skin fell off? i don't think so.

    and i don't think we should terrify this generation of kids with the image of a man walking into a classroom -- what's supposed to be a safe environment for learning -- and pointing a gun at their heads.
     
  4. toontra macrumors 6502

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    #4
    Doesn't this go contrary to advice given to store workers and others who may face gunmen? I thought the idea was to be complicit, thereby reducing the risk of provocation and therefore injury or death.

    And why should the opinion of "a major in the British Army reserve and an instructor for Response Options, the company providing the training", who obviously has commercial interest in this confrontational style programme, be any more valid than anyone else? I wonder what his training is in classroom massacres?
     
  5. Osarkon macrumors 68020

    Osarkon

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    #5
    Wouldn't it be a better idea to comply with the gunman, because he or she is going to most likely be mentally unstable, attacking them is just going to tip the scales and most likely they will shoot. Whereas complying with their demands is a much more peaceful way, and people are less likely to be killed? Even if the class did manage to overpower them, it would be at the cost of some lives.
     
  6. Dont Hurt Me macrumors 603

    Dont Hurt Me

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    #6
    I doubt this is a good idea, I mean these are kids but now we are installing Fear into Kids. Terrific. Whats a kid going to do against a adult? a adult with a gun? There is allways going to be a crazy human somewhere and if they are crazy enough to kill themself then there is little anyone can do. Selling Fear isnt a solution to societys problems. More wild west philosophy.
     
  7. Lyle macrumors 68000

    Lyle

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    #7
    This is bizarre. I'm not bothered by the fact that they're addressing what kids should do in the event of an invasion -- I think every school should have such a plan. I am, however, extremely disturbed that the plan for this school system is for the teachers and kids to fight back against armed gunmen.

    I was wondering about what the parents have to say about this, since zimv20 didn't include that excerpt in his earlier quote of the story:
    I find it hard to believe that they've received no complaints from parents about this. This idea would go over like a lead balloon in our school system.
     
  8. mactastic macrumors 68040

    mactastic

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    #8
    I have mixed feeling on this concept. While I do think many of these cowards with guns could be overcome by a group of determined students and/or teachers, I don't think this kind of response should be institutionalized by the school system. For one, once the School Shooters of America learn about this, they'll simply adapt by being prepared to shoot several people immediately.

    For another, this kind of behavior could lead to provocative shootings. Last week there was a story about a kid who fired into the ceiling while threatening students and saying "don't make me do this". That incident wound up being resolved with no one shot. However, if the response had been to charge the kid, people likely would have died.

    So while you may save lives, you may also cost lives with this policy. I suppose it could be looked at in terms of "which way is better", but when you add in the "fear" factor that Zim mentions, and the effect of children becoming vigilantes in school, it seems to me to be a losing proposition.

    There is great controversy about responding to violent crime with force, and how effective it is. The problem is that there is no single profile of criminals that allows you to say "always attack" or "always submit" to them. What may be an appropriate response in one situation may get you killed unnecessarily in another. Responding to violence with violence is a very tricky thing.

    If there is 25 feet between you and a gunman, do you charge him if he's got the drop on you? That's suicide. But if you're hidden only a few feet behind a gunman, and he's distracted by other people, then yeah you might consider jumping him. But when I was trained in this kind of thing, guns were tricky because they must be controlled at all times or you risk them going off in a melee and harming innocents. One preferred method is to pin the hand with the gun between your arm and side with the gun protruding slightly beyond you while you break the collarbone of the weapon arm, followed by the neck, if necessary. In order to do this, however, you must be certain there is no one behind you. This kind of thought process in the midst of combat is extremely difficult without extensive training.

    Occasionally we'd have lessons where a wooden gun blank would be unexpectedly pulled on you while the rest of the class was milling around. Dealing with the weapon, the attacker, and knowing where everyone else was was an exceedingly difficult challenge that I failed more than once at.
     
  9. pseudobrit macrumors 68040

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    #9
    And what makes you think the average pack of seven-year-olds would fail?

    If we dropped some superficial class like science or math (nobody uses that stuff anyway) and devoted an entire hour of classroom instruction to hand-to-hand combat techniques and battle management, I think we'd have quite a force of little soldiers by the time they were eight.
     
  10. Chundles macrumors G4

    Chundles

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    #10
    Why don't we just give the kids and the teachers guns?

    Surely that would solve the problem. Then, when every single man, woman and child in America has a gun we can move onto the next stage of weapon development because guns wouldn't be so special then.

    What would be next? Targeted radiation? Oooh, maybe those cool rail guns from "Eraser."
    I will be recording the names of those who don't get that this post is sarcastic.


    Bascially they're saying "We give up, we have no way of stopping the whackos with the guns from getting to the school so lets try and stop them before they kill too many of the kids."

    From what I can tell it's like the school shooting version of The Brisbane Line.
     
  11. zimv20 thread starter macrumors 601

    zimv20

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    #11
    just one of several reasons i elected to not go to architect school :)
     
  12. jsw Moderator emeritus

    jsw

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    #12
    Excellent idea. ;)

    I'm not sure what the proper response is either, and the problem is that the kids - and the overwhelming majority of adults, for that matter - won't know how to assess the situation. If someone comes in with rope and a bunch of guns, I think in that case rushing them is likely to kill fewer people than, say, letting him tie you all up. If it's one slightly off person with a single handgun, then, well, it's likely better to stay calm, but you never know until it's over.

    I do think making the kids confident and empowered isn't a bad thing, but I'm not sure how to do so without making them take too many risks.

    As far as fear goes: these kids know about these attacks. Not discussing them isn't going to make them less afraid. The only kids who don't know about them are some of the younger ones you'd not want to fight back anyway. The 8th graders all know.

    I'm more in favor of the Burleson plan than against it, but I don't know the details.
     
  13. Desertrat macrumors newbie

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    #13
    A teacher who posts at a gun forum told of the plan at his school: If this sort of violence begins, the PA system announces it. All classroom doors are locked. All electricity is turned off. The teachers and students move from any view through a window in a classroom door. At worst, this minimizes the number of targets.

    While I favor voluntary "toting" by teachers who are competent with handguns, I don't think that "fight back" is really practical or wise for the little guys. However, if a guy comes in shooting, what's the alternative to fighting but to lie down and die?

    But instilling fear in the students of 100,000 schools over 12 to 20 incidents per year doesn't come across as a Good Thing.

    'Rat
     
  14. mactastic macrumors 68040

    mactastic

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    #14
    Just out of curiousity, where would teachers who "tote" keep their guns?
     
  15. Chundles macrumors G4

    Chundles

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    #15
    Does it worry anybody else that we are calmly discussing the issue of teachers and students having to be trained to prevent school shootings?

    Shouldn't there be some sort of outrage? Something, anything, to suggest we aren't so desensitised to the current state of affairs that we would just sit down and accept the notion of some lunatic wandering into a school with a gun.

    It's a gun for god's sake! Not some kid with a slingshot or chucking rocks, it's a f***ing gun! :eek: Guns are big bloody deals, they're not some idea to be bandied about. When did guns stop being something to be really scared of to the point where people would say "oh it's just a gun."

    Guns = awesome, extreme power, they're not something to be handed out on corners like lemonade yet somehow total fruit loops can get a hold of a gun and go play god with the school kids.

    How the F*** did this happen?!?! When in history did we lose total respect for the gun and let them become so widely available that you can just pop out and buy a gun at a department store?

    I know you americans have it on your Bill of Rights that it's OK to bear arms but honestly, against who?! The people around you? Because I'm buggered if I can name a nation who could even think of waging a ground war inside the US border. And if it takes a gun to protect yourself from your neighbours then maybe it's a good idea to get the f*** out of there.

    Well, it's nearly 3am and my rant has gone on too long again. I'm here all week, try the veal.
     
  16. pseudobrit macrumors 68040

    pseudobrit

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    #16
    Much like Bush has interpreted the Constitution liberally wrt to every other Amendment in the BoR ("it says you have the right to free speech and protest but doesn't say we can't corral you in this pen over here out of sight"), I could foresee a future administration liberally interpreting the 2nd Amendment.

    And the gun nuts will have Bush to thank.
     
  17. Killyp macrumors 68040

    Killyp

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    #17
    The number of incidents don't seem that low for someone over here in the UK. I don't think we've ever had a school shooting. America has had like 3 shootings in the past few months...
     
  18. pseudobrit macrumors 68040

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    #18
    We also have liberal gun control laws and, thanks to the NRA and other weapons manufacturer lobbies, nonexistant enforcement of what laws there are.
     
  19. thedude110 macrumors 68020

    thedude110

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    #19
    From my experience in some pretty tough schools, the last thing you ever want to do is give kids any sense that's it's ok to attack anyone in the classroom space. "Keep your hands to yourself" is a hard enough fight to fight on a day in, day out basis.

    More fundamentally: If you trained my students to attack an intruder (and gave them that inch that "attacking adults, in some circumstances, is acceptable classroom behavior") it would greatly raise the chances of my being attacked with books and pencils within the year. Let's not presume that adolescents have the most developed sense of right and wrong or highly developed capacities for managing their anger ...
     
  20. toontra macrumors 6502

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    #20
    This is one that springs to mind.
     
  21. mactastic macrumors 68040

    mactastic

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    #21
    Oh the brutalism. ;)
     
  22. mactastic macrumors 68040

    mactastic

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    #22
    Even those situations are not necessarily black and white. In the Amish shooting, we saw a situation where rushing the guy probably wouldn't have been a bad idea, but in Colorado just previously we saw a situation where hostages were molested but not killed. Only one person died when she tried to run.

    You have to remember that the police are not far off in most of these situations, and the SWAT teams have different tactics for school hostage situations than they did prior to Columbine. You need to get the kids to survive for the half hour it's going to take to get the SWAT team on site. Once that happens, they are now very aggressive about dealing with school hostage situations. Obviously, the Amish situation, with SWAT response probably much longer, is different. But for most kids, surviving that first half hour is key. And obviously no one solution will fit all situations.

    No one is suggesting not discussing school shootings with students as the only alternative to telling them to attack anyone they see with a gun. There's plenty of middle ground.
     
  23. CanadaRAM macrumors G5

    CanadaRAM

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    #23
    Good plan: Allow teachers to carry in the classroom. In order to work as a "first response", this would have to be a weapon loaded at all times.

    Then for each crazed gunman plugged through the heart by an alert and heroic teacher, we'd shoot: two pizza delivery persons, three Video Arts students who were pranking with stunt guns, four mentally ill students who had 'episodes' and made threatning moves, five teachers by suicide, fourteen students and eight family members of teachers who themselves had psychotic episodes and a handgun within easy reach, and about eighty seven children by other children who gained access to the teacher's gun.

    Not to mention the crazies with the automatic weapons WHO ARE INTENT ON SUICIDE ANYWAY and will get a bunch of extra excitement out of a real live Wild West shootout in the class. They'll just order up that Second Chance vest along with the AK and then they can rock this joint for real, starting with Miss McElfresh who cracked off the first round (even if she missed him and hit Johnny in the next classroom instead).

    It escalates the situation to deadly instantaneously, rather than allowing some, any leeway.

    Abso^%$*inlootly brilliant solution.

    :rolleyes: (In case ANYbody is unclear, the symbol on the left is the SARCASM smiley)
     
  24. Desertrat macrumors newbie

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    #24
    CanadaRAM, have you ever had any firearms training? Ever watched an IPSC or IDPA match? Are you judging teachers' skills and common sense by a your own?

    Sure, not everybody is competent to deal with the issues involved in deadly force. But nobody is suggesting that all teachers should carry, much less that any at all be required to. Bad idea.

    There are numerous ways to carry a concealed handgun and have it remain concealed. That's no big deal. Many people, school teachers included, already have licenses for concealed carry, although the amount of training varies from state to state and person to person. However, numerous training schools exist. You might browse at some of the links at http://www.thefiringline.com/Misc/links.html

    By and large, few in either the military or in the police can be competitive with civilian shooters.

    'Rat
     
  25. Dont Hurt Me macrumors 603

    Dont Hurt Me

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    #25
    Arming School teachers for a extremely rare threat is idiotic. Its like checking everyone's shoes because 1 stupid idiotic Muslim fanatic out of Billions of flights who wants to kill himself and people with him so please take off your shoes. How many Shoebombers have been caught since this guy? Same thing lets sell fear and build another beauracratic BS layer for everyone to pay for. The govt cant protect everyone from the next suicidal freak.
     

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