Both Robert and I thought some sort of blog post concerning the events in Paris was needed, but I have struggled with what I wanted to say… Partly because many other commentators have already said it better, and partly because the events happened in France rather than in the United States. The point that France differs from the United States in significant ways regarding gun control and gun ownership goes without saying, but even the most casual observer must take note that the terrorists used “assault rifles” in a country that ostensibly bans virtually all civilian gun ownership. No doubt an armed citizen would have faced extremely adverse odds in such a situation, but better to die fighting rather than cowering in fear. To borrow a phrase from Robert, “Carrying a gun doesn’t guarantee that I’ll live, it guarantees that I will NOT die begging for my life!” I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again, gun free zones don’t work!
So with our deepest sympathy to the people of Paris following the attacks on 13 November 2015, let’s look at the increasingly predictable lessons and insights to be gained from this attack…
- Carry your gun everywhere you go and be prepared to use it if necessary. This is not only a mindset issue, but also a training issue. We live in a golden age of training opportunities, and anyone that carries a gun on a daily basis would be remiss to not take advantage of the widespread availability of relevant training.
- Early reports posit that the Paris attackers may have worked in teams and appear to have launched a coordinated attack. This alone suggests that we should encourage our own family members to carry and train with us. Just as the terrorist’s teamwork and tactics made them a more formidable threat, so too should we train to respond with the force multiplier of competent team tactics.
- Accept that you may by default be the first responder at a mass casualty event. Consider carrying a blow out kit and learn how to use the contents. Even without medical supplies immediately available, medical knowledge is always valuable and much can be improvised temporarily.
- Fight back. Always fight back.
- If you’re not physically fit to fight, get to where you need to be! In one video from the Paris attacks, a man can be seen dragging a body along the street, presumably towards safety. He lags behind the others fleeing the shooting and explosions. Imagine how much faster his egress might have been had he employed a fireman’s carry to move the wounded individual! Mobility is survival.
- Consider your surroundings on a daily basis and maintain an appropriate level of situational awareness. Know your exits from crowded and confined areas, know the surrounding area, have link up procedures in place with friends and family members, and be prepared to fight your way to safety (team tactics, anyone?).
- There is strong evidence suggesting that at least one of the Paris terrorists was a recent refugee from Syria. Just as in Europe, we have a large immigrant and Muslim population in this country and the government plans to welcome 10,000 new refugees from the current crisis in Syria. Only a fool would decry the possibility that ISIS is already in place here in America. We are almost into the holiday season, and soon poorly defended shopping malls filled with inattentive throngs of people are going to become potential terrorist targets. Westgate Mall in Nairobi, Kenya comes to mind…
- We MUST elect political leadership that will secure our borders AND honor our natural right to self-defense with the best tools available.
What follows is not directly related to the Paris attacks, but is an additional tangent that I want to discuss, one that applies to almost any group, one that I think is particularly relevant to how we deal with the fact that the Paris perpetrators were without question Muslim.
Readers who are active on social media may have noticed the new #FuckParis hashtag introduced by the Mizzou protesters… I cannot even summon the words to express my disgust with this development, but apparently the group feels as though their “plight” has been minimized in the media by the recent events in Paris. Stay with me here…
Just as #BlackLivesMatter does not represent most law abiding and responsible blacks, radical Islam doesn’t necessarily represent a majority of the world’s supposedly peaceful Muslim population. The bad cops that make the news aren’t representative of the majority of honest and good cops that put their lives on the line every day. And the active shooters that the mass media and gun grabbers covet and celebrate certainly don’t represent the majority of law abiding and responsible gun owners.
All of the above demographics have an image and public relations problem, and all must fix it from within. Rather than be defined by their problems, these demographics should instead identify and define their problems internally and self police their ranks. The alternative has unpleasant consequences. Turn on the nightly news if you doubt this. No matter what demographic you fall into or identify with, make it better, not worse. A rebuttal from a peer has far more gravity than a rebuke from an enemy.
Some final thoughts… I have seen it posted a couple of places, and it’s true. Hope is not a course of action… You may hope for the best, but you should prepare for the worst. I fear we face a long and bitter battle to preserve our way of life against those that seek to destroy it. Train accordingly. Don’t become paralyzed by fear. Never give up.
In the aftermath of the Paris attacks, I wish the French military and police good hunting… Vive la France!