I was at UMD last night with my son's cub scout pack.  We visited the planetarium, and it was a fun time.  On the way out, I noticed there was a poster describing steps to take in an active shooter situation.  It's from the Department of Homeland Security.  While the tips point out some common sense things, in my eyes it shows you how helpless you really are.  Let me explain.

First off, most of this is common sense.  If a shooter is on campus it advises you to evacuate the area as fast as possible.  If that isn't possible, you're suppose to hide out.  And finally, if neither of those options exist and you are in close proximity, you're suppose to take action against the shooter.

How do you take action against a shooter?  Here is an actual quote from Homeland Security:

As a last resort, and only when your life is in imminent danger, attempt to
disrupt and/or incapacitate the active shooter by:
• Acting as aggressively as possible against him/her
• Throwing items and improvising weapons
• Yelling
• Committing to your actions
What the heck are you going to throw at a gunman to incapacitate him?  A shoe?  A book?  A backpack?   I guess it's possible, but I don't like my odds in that situation.
Now, I don't consider myself a crazy gun nut.  However after hours of thought on the issue, it's hard to argue against the fact that more lives would be saved if properly trained people had a firearm with them.
It's really simple, and I can't understand how some people get this wrong.  A "gun free zone" only prevents good guys from being armed.  If someone is planning on murdering innocent people, a sign isn't going to stop them.   Campuses should allow anyone who is properly trained to 'conceal and carry' to do so on campus.  If even one life is saved, it's worth it.
It's sad that this is the world that we live in, but the reality is that people need to be vigilant against terrorism, domestic or abroad.

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