I call your attention to the third module in today’s Cipher Daily Brief: “Arming Troops on Base after Parkland? Not so fast.” The author, LTG Swan, seems to support the concept and references a study by the Pentagon after the 2015 Chattanooga recruiting station shooting.

There are all kinds of reasons why this, like the idea to arm teachers, in my view is a bad idea. I, and many of you, carried weapons for most of our professional lives. And I, and many of you, were required to regularly train in their use in demanding, stress filled, as real life situations as our firearms instructors could make it. The idea of of allowing/recommending that all our troops (most of whom are not combat troops with regular training and experience with firearms) carry individual firearms, perhaps concealed, on military basis makes little sense unless they too are required to take similar, regular, professional firearms training and achieve passing scores (which will be very costly in time, ammunition, instructors and facilities).

As those of us who been in the military or carried weapons as law enforcement officers know, many things can happen when you pull a gun in a “life and death situation” and most of them are bad. Even with training there are weapons malfunction, you can and often will miss, there can be friendly casualties, or as in the Walmart domestic terror shootings in Las Vegas in June, 2014, in the heat of the moment, you may fail to notice there was more than one terrorist with a gun. I have similar but greater reservations about arming school teachers.

All this reminds me of a recently quoted, overly simple solution to mass shootings,  “The only way to stop a bad guy with a gun is with a good guy with a gun.” This could be true if the good guy was well trained in reacting appropriately under stress with his gun, if the gun worked properly, if he had correctly assessed the complete threat and if he was faster, a better shot and had a little luck on his side. My point is there are no simple solutions or quick fixes to life’s/America’s complex problems like the tragic, mass shooting in Parkland, Florida. And it is unfortunate that the ideas of some of the less thoughtful among us get more attention from the Media than they deserved.



The Cipher Daily Brief 2018_02_28
The Cipher Daily Brief