Monday, March 19, 2018

A Call to Resistance

From Fatale Abstraction comes a post everyone should read.  The topic is the idea that young people have been trained to be so passive that they will not resist even when their lives are at stake. By the end of it I could hear John Williams playing in the background.

Here's a quote:
My mind keeps going back to the eternal question about the Jews and the Nazi death camps: “Why did no one resist? Why did no one fight?” The answers to these questions would probably be as baffling and heartbreaking as anything else about the story itself. In his superb book Ordinary Men, Christopher R. Browning tells of how during the Nazi terror in Poland, 8,000 Jews were loaded onto a train that was overseen by only 20 guards. Can you imagine this? That crowd of humans--even if only a quarter of them were of hearty health to resist--could have CRUSHED the guards, but they did not. Why do American students not rat-pile active shooters? Because they are told to be passive, to hide, to run, to hope for mercy or the dumb luck of the numbers that they will be missed by the shooter. When the subject comes up on campus, I ALWAYS tell my peers that if something like that happens near me, if I am a student or a teacher, I will do my damnedest to get to the shooter from behind and claw their eyeballs out.


Old NFO said...

'Some' of us will NOT go quietly into the night...

phlegmfatale said...

What Old NFO said, plus "kicking and screaming."

Thank you for the link. I am baffled that this is not a larger topic and said more often. If I had children, I would drum into their skulls to never simply rely on dumb luck or on the mercy of someone who has already decided that life is cheap and they want to kill as many people as possible. As painful as it is that there should be occasion to need to discuss such a thing, active resistance needs to be part of the conversation.

Divemedic said...

The saddest part of all this, at least from my point of view, is the conversation I had with my students. When I told them that my plan for an active shooter was to arm ourselves with whatever we could find in my classroom (it IS a chemistry and physics lab, after all), lock the door, and attack the shooter if he came in.

More than one student asked me if they would get in trouble for fighting. I teach 10th, 11th, and 12th grade.

waepnedmann said...

All is not lost.
Two years ago the highschool age great-grandkid and I were discussing the active shooter possibility at school and the respones to such an incident.
He told me that one of his teachers, an ancient crone in her 60s, had canned food strategically placed in the classroom and instructions were given that should a shooter enter the classroom the kids were to throw the cans of food at the attacker.
We do live in rural Northern California.

Roy said...

A can of corn or peas or even a chair leg can be lethal. If everyone, or even just a few, were to attack at once from as many angles as possible, the shooter wouldn't stand much of a chance. Just one person, not so much unless you could sneak up from behind cover.

I would love to join the rest of you and say I would definitely go on the attack, but until you have faced that situation, you really just don't know.

Right after the Florida shooting happened, I saw a reporter interview one of the high schoolers. The reporter called him "a hero" yet he was one of the kids that ran and hid. I don't blame the kid, but that's not my definition of a hero. The heroes, in my opinion, were people like that coach who placed himself between the shooter and the students, and the JROTC cadet that stood blocking the door to the study hall as the shooter came down the hall.