Does Lock Down and Wait for the Cavalry Make Sense?

The Fort Hood Shooting, and the knifing incident in Pennsylvania caught my attention and the attention of the nation of course.

I hate the words lock down–I would prefer the words “take a defensive position.” Patrick Cook Complained that as a former MP he was demoralized to be lying on the floor with 14 others at Fort Hood in an office with Lopez trying to kick the door down, waiting for armed assistance from either MPs or Fort Hood Police.

His point is that Bill Clinton and W and now Obama should never have disarmed the soldiers at a high visibility target like Fort Hood, with the Armored III Corps and the largest number of troops of any base in the world. More than 50,000 active duty troops are on a base of more than 75 square miles, home of the 1st Cavalry Division.

I have a friend, Dr. Tom Stein, Colonel in the Army Reserves from Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. He had a career as an active duty officer and physician trained in Emergency Medicine, now is in private practice. 2 years ago Tom was at Fort Hood for a long reserve duty assignment and I talked to him at length about his interest in active shooter situations.

He was scheduled to give a visiting lecture on Fort Hood the day of the Luby’s shooting so he was the first physician on the scene of the slaughter. 50 were shot, 23 killed.

From that time to the present Tom has researched mass casualty incidents, including reviewing all the old FBI files going back decades. Fascinating guy. He has designed and puts on instructional programs for law enforcement and other security people on active shooter incidents. He believes that certain strategies will reduce the carnage.

My interest in shooter incidents is as an emergency physician, but I had a heightened interest since I was at the back door of the Emergency Department on the day of the Hasan massacre, Nov 5, 2009. I wrote about it here.

Stein says the best strategy on a knife attacker is move out-of-the-way and put up a defensive block, followed by action to disable. The best strategy on an active shooter is duck and cover then swarm and attack using defensive protection.

The Pennsylvania School knifing incident with 20 victims is what made me decide to write here, because the author made good sense–no reason to be knifed if you can defend yourself with a chair and if you organize your defense with other like-minded individuals, but it depends on what’s in between your ears. It’s about attitude. Lock down is the reaction of weaklings and sheep. More has to be done than hide when people are in danger. That’s why we need sheepdogs for intervention and sometimes we have to be our own sheepdogs to help our weaker friends.

Lock Down and hide can result in more people killed or injured. Most of these big public incidents are put on by lone fanatics who can be neutralized in many cases. Hasan got off almost 100 rounds, Lopez loaded and fired his 45 and moved from one place to another.

No simple answers, but Lock Down and Hide?

Thanks Tom, for your advice–might be good to put you on tour.

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13 responses to “Does Lock Down and Wait for the Cavalry Make Sense?

  1. If you are unwilling or unable to to face force with force you will be a victim. It even worst when people expect the willing to be victims. Disarmed people are sheep. There are never enough sheep dogs unless you give the sheep weapons. Unfortunately unarmed people is what the left wants if further their agendi of control, total control, Present we have a executive branch acting unlawful in so many ways it mind boggling yet nothing being do. I guess were all sheepeople.

  2. The school officials were overjoyed that he did not use a gun! My question is this, if someone is killed with a knife, are they somehow “less dead” than if they are shot with a gun”

  3. lock down, take cover, with trained, ARMED, people in overwatch/security.

  4. I understand the point of lock down, shelter in place, whatever you want to call it, namely that you don’t have all these people running around while law enforcement is trying to get a handle on the situation. But, on the other hand, it can easily leave people as potential victims.

    Recently they had a bomb threat at UConn. They put the campus on lockdown. Yeah. Instead of evacuating, they left people in place to be potentially blown up.

    • Good point that lock-down and shelter is the response that law enforcement wants so that they have less problem identifying the perpetrator, especially is they intend to storm the premises. However, a somewhat worrying development is the reluctance of law enforcement commanders to commit to entering buildings where there are even potentially hostages in place.

      In most recent cases, the perpetrator has had some kind of psychotic episode and cannot be reasoned with, thus the best way to preserve life is to resist with maximum force as early as possible. Hesitating and locking down areas just give the perpetrator longer to keep killing.

  5. I would suggest that if you are a soldier, you are trained in firearms and security and defense and offense. Patrick Cook was previously an MP and he was lying on the floor in any unlocked room with 14 others of unknown background, but no doubt a number of them were soldiers.

  6. Be reasonable, I mean, how many of the 50,000 people at Ft Hood are trained in firearms use? We can’t have armed *amateurs* running around, people might get killed…

  7. Hey Shawn are you dumb or really dumb? I said 50,000 soldiers and every soldier has to qualify in firearms. Every one. Male or female, old or young, short or tall. It’s their business to kill people and defend themselves.

    That’s why they are called soldiers. There are plenty of civilians on the post, They are often retired military, and the majority are trained, and experienced in firearms use. Plus, in Texas a reasonable and responsible citizen is expected to know how to handle a firearm except for the ones that are worthless and scared and need to be protected from bad guys.

    Hey Shawn, I work on the post and am trained and experienced in guns and I don’t even hunt. Hunters in every state of the United States are damn good at handling firearms–trust me, they are also able to shoot properly and accurately or they wouldn’t be going out hunting.

    Does that cover it for your information.? You are exhibit one for the level of ignorance in the gun control scaredy cat crowd. You must be a big city liberal who considers dominos or chess a contact sport. .

  8. Wow, John1282, you are REALLY slow on the uptake, aren’t you? It was *sarcasm*. It is a military bases ALL of the soldiers there have firearms training as a matter of course.

    I this kind of thing because I am a veteran myself. Infantryman even.

  9. You don’t have my experience with idiots. There are people who think that giving firearms to soldiers on base will create chaos. Imagine that.

    In fact there is a jerk radio guy in Dallas who said just that.

    Why do you think Clinton disarmed the uniformed services? Well maybe for the same reason a guy who is 6-4 played saxophone in the band instead of playing football.

    I played football and played trumpet in the band, but I went to an all boys boarding school.

    As for missing your humor–give me a pass, since what you said is the mind set of the jackasses on the left–you just never imagined you would be taken seriously.

    Thanks for your service–you are a fine American on that basis alone. .

    • “Why do you think Clinton disarmed the uniformed services?”

      At the time, I felt like he did it because he was personally afraid of them. I still think that. W’s not fixing it in 2001 can be added to the list of Disappointments of W.

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