Sunday, December 15

Carl Chinn - Think About It - The Thing About Tunnel Vision

The Thing About Tunnel Vision…

You all know we have now had another school shooting in Colorado. An 18-year-old Senior from Arapahoe High School took a shotgun, 3 Molotov cocktails and a machete into his school.

Arapahoe County Sheriff Grayson Robinson said the kid wanted to shoot many. Even though his anger stemmed from an incident with one specific teacher, beyond his initial vendetta he just wanted to kill a bunch more.

The key comment from Sheriff Robinson was that when the gunman encountered the armed school resource officer, he killed himself. So his planned mass-casualty carnage only had one victim (a girl remaining in critical condition from a head wound) aside from himself. 80 seconds after he entered the school he was dead and the attack was over.

It has now been 6 years since our attack at New Life Church. As soon as our gunman entered our church the first thing he saw was me coming at him with a gun. As he and I took cover positions, our focus was entirely on each other. An excerpt from my book on the subject tells a bit about the tunnel vision of those moments;

It is possible there were others in the hallway in those opening moments, but adrenalin sets tunnel vision on the primary concern. That reaction works for both the attacker and defender. An attacker’s focus (and aim) goes to the armed defender even before shots are exchanged, thus providing one more element of protection for the innocent. [i]

Once our shooter entered the building, the random shots were over. As soon as Jeanne Assam (our armed private citizen security team member) surprised him from his left, he shot himself as she shot at him. He – like so many coward killers – was determined to control his own fate. His only bullet fired in that stage of the attack went into his own head.

The best tool for defending against a killer with a gun is a defender with a gun. A large reason for this is that tunnel vision does work both ways. As soon as a killer sees an armed defender, you can count on it that their tunnel vision has just locked in. Among all other reasons I promote an armed defense, this is key among them.

Think About it:

Ø Training is important for defenders. We have all been trained on the adrenalin aspect, including tunnel vision. These killer kids pick up a gun and envision their attack as if it is a video game, and their gun is the joystick. Their training has come primarily through X-Box. But when they meet an armed and trained defender, their adrenalin hits in a way they were unprepared for.

Ø These coward killers may have been to a range (most have not), and they may be able to shoot targets (most cannot), but they have not been through any tactical training and they have no noble honor in their DNA. They cannot continue in the face of nobility. Our shooter in 2007 had just tried to kill many in a YWAM facility 77 miles to our north. As he began shooting at that YWAM, he clumsily fell out a door which locked behind him and he couldn’t get back in. Do you want to see the actual demonstrated skill level of an active shooter? Click on the video from the Bay School District board meeting shooting in Florida. You will see the shooter miss every target from 8 feet away. You will see him accidently fire off his second round into the floor (finger tightening issue per your training). What you won’t see is the killer shooting himself as soon as he is hit with defensive rounds from trained and prepared school security officer Mike Jones (I will be doing a full TAI on this event soon).

Ø These unstable coward killers can’t handle a confident and capable defender. Train, drill and practice your protection skills. You will not “rise to the occasion” as these killers with a gun think they will – you will “default to your training”. If called into it, answer with the confidence of your capacity and end it. You may even have the help of the attacker in ending it, but end it quickly and decisively.

We can’t prevent them all. Murder was the first violent act in the bible, and will continue as long as there is life. But every attack will end, and we can do our part to end them quickly and thus mitigating their effect – sometimes just as the school resource officer did at Arapahoe High School this week without ever firing a shot.

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