John Farnam: “The problem is not that we’re shooting too many people. The problem is that we’re not shooting nearly enough!”

Screen Shot 2015-02-06 at 7.46.26 AM

by John Farnam

Ft Collins, CO –(Ammoland.com)- “Delay in the use of force, and hesitation to accept responsibility for its employment when the situation clearly demands it, will always be interpreted as weakness. Such indecision will encourage further disorder, and will eventually necessitate measures more severe than those which would have sufficed in the first instance.” ~ United States Marine Corps Small Wars Manual, (1940) From a good friend and Chief of Police of a medium-sized department . . .

“One of our officers, along with officers from a nearby department, plus two county deputies, responded recently to a desperate call from a frightened wife.”

She indicated that her estranged husband was at home alone and had just shot all the family’s pets (dogs, cats, at least one horse). She said he had talked of suicide for some time. She had fled the house in a panic!

When officers converged on the rural location, they were greeted by a single male strutting about his front lawn, dressed in a T-shirt and jeans, and waving a Kalashnikov rifle in the air. The rifle had a thirty-round magazine, inserted. In his other hand the suspect was holding an large, autoloading pistol. A second pistol was clearly visible, stuffed into his waistband.

Upon seeing our police officers, the suspect shouted, repeatedly, that he was going to kill them all. His verbal threats continued for nearly five minutes! At one point, dash-cam video from a beat-car clearly showed the suspect within arm’s reach of at least one of our officers.

Our officers responded by (correctly) producing rifles and pistols, taking cover behind vehicles, and thus confronting the suspect at gunpoint. Yet, not one took further action, save endlessly commanding the suspect to drop his weapons. All such commands were contemptuously ignored.

Finally, one officer deployed his Taser. It took three ‘rides’ on the Taser before officers were able to get control of the suspect’s known weapons.

No shots fired. No one hurt. No headlines.

The suspect was eventually transported to a local hospital, but died (cause unknown) eleven hours later.

When I subsequently asked my officer why he didn’t shoot when threatened at close range by this heavily-armed suspect who clearly told our officer of his intent to murder him, my officer said:

‘I wasn’t sure he was an imminent threat.’

I then reminded him of his intense training with regard to action/reaction. He replied,

“Oh, I forgot about that…’

He then went on to say that he, and his colleagues, were all reluctant to shoot, because of all the negative publicity lately with regard to police use of deadly force.

I then nearly lost it, saying,

‘Son, that suspect may have been suicidal, but you were too- by choice! You were in the process of committing suicide by continually exposing yourself to an extreme, deadly threat while taking no action, save politely asking him to drop his gun(s)!’ When you’re unwilling to defend yourself with gunfire, when gunfire is clearly indicated, then you never should have been hired in the first place, and you need to get out of this business now!’

I continued,

‘You’re alive and unhurt this moment, through no fault of your own! You allowed that suspect to have complete control of a lethal situation for five long minutes. He could have casually murdered you any moment he wished, and you would have died in simultaneous amazement and denial. Then, imagine me having to tell all this to your widow and your parents!’

… and you thought being chief was an easy job!”

Comment: The foregoing represents a pernicious disease infecting all of the American law-enforcement community. The problem is not that we’re shooting too many people. The problem is that we’re not shooting nearly enough!

The result is dead cops. Cops who hesitated too long. Cops who gave the suspect too much of an edge. Cops who were hired, educated, trained, and equipped, all at great expense, but who never once “thought it through,” until it was too late!

Most of all, cops who are terrorized by the prospect of a shooting aftermath in which they will enjoy neither support nor backing from their department, nor from the community they serve, being “thrown to the wolves” by a cynical administration who knows they can “always hire more.”

“No amount nor type of training can substitute for personal experience, but training can provide a level of ability that will allow you to live through your first ‘experience.’

Yet, you must bring your own courage, determination, and audacity, which you either have or you don’t.” ~ Newman

About John Farnam & Defense Training International, Inc

As a defensive weapons and tactics instructor John Farnam will urge you, based on your own beliefs, to make up your mind in advance as to what you would do when faced with an imminent and unlawful lethal threat. You should, of course, also decide what preparations you should make in advance, if any. Defense Training International wants to make sure that their students fully understand the physical, legal, psychological, and societal consequences of their actions or inactions.

It is our duty to make you aware of certain unpleasant physical realities intrinsic to the Planet Earth. Mr Farnam is happy to be your counselor and advisor. Visit: www.defense-training.com

comments

  1. avatar DJ9 says:

    John is right, as usual.

    1. avatar DJ9 says:

      And there are multiple misspellings of Mr Farnam’s name throughout the article and headline. Plz correct?

      1. avatar DJ9 says:

        Thank you.

  2. avatar Marcus (Aurelius) Payne says:

    Isn’t law enforcement one of the safest professions in America? I think the cop here did the right thing. The article has no mention of the suspects weapons being pointed at officers. Don’t get me wrong, shooting the suspect was clearly justified, but the restraint shown by the officers was clearly based in superior knowledge of the situation.

    1. avatar DJ9 says:

      No, they got lucky. You are using 20-20 hindsight to arrive at that conclusion.

      The point Mr Farnam was making, is if the perp had decided to shoot one of the cops, there was simply nothing they would be able to do to stop him, at that distance. One of them would probably have died from a close-range rifle shot which would have zipped through their pistol-rated vests, and the danger was completely self-inflicted because they didn’t follow through on their initial command: “Drop the weapon”, with the always-present or-else-we’re-gonna-shoot clause being the one that was ignored.

      1. avatar LarryinTX says:

        They also should have taken into account that he wasn’t just waving guns around and threatening, he had actually been SHOOTING, albeit killing domestic animals, he was still firing, telling me he was ready to shoot some more. He needed killing.

    2. avatar Another Robert says:

      I’ll just jump in and say I think you are on to something there, M (A) P. It’s certainly a nice thought, anyway–that the officers’ reactions would be guided by their intimate knowledge of the immediate situation and not by collateral thoughts about “how is this gonna look to other people”–or, on the other side of the coin, “I don’t care about anything else other than making it home tonight”.

    3. avatar JasonM says:

      Agreed.
      They should have kept their own guns pointed at his head and torso, and fired the instant he brought his muzzle towards them, but, assuming the gun wasn’t pointed in their general direction, restraint was the correct choice. The onsite officer even admitted he wasn’t sure the guy was an imminent threat.

      Cops are supposed to take dangerous risks to protect the people of their communities from danger. In this case, they were protecting a person from his own mental illness. If they kill everybody holding a gun, what does that mean for those of us who carry for self defense? If I’m focused on an ongoing lethal threat and the cops come up, I’d hope I get an order to drop the firearm and get on the ground, rather than a bullet to the brain.

    4. avatar BlueBronco says:

      Farn-ham is confused on the difference of military operations in a war zone and police work in the U.S.A. They are 2 different things.

  3. avatar preston says:

    i would agree in this instance with the police chief. but this shoot first ask questions later thing does not translate to civilians so articles like this are inherently dangerous to propagate to the public.

    1. avatar Defens says:

      Actually, it applies even more to civilians than to cops. If you find yourself in a situation where a Intent, Ability, and Opportunity have been established and you find yourself in Jeopardy of lethal attack, you are under no obligation whatsoever to take the aggressor into custody, direct him to drop his weapon, or any of the other things that cops are tasked with.

      There have been several documented cases where armed citizens have tried to defuse a situation and have been shot for their efforts. In a mall shooting in Tacoma, WA a few years ago, an armed civilian (not a cop) with a handgun verbally accosted an active shooter with an AK. The good Samaritan got a shot off IIRC, but ended up in a wheelchair for life.

      If you do find yourself in a situation where an armed response to a lethal threat is necessary, it would be wise to follow Jeff Cooper’s Principles of Self Defense.

      1. avatar styrgwillidar says:

        Cops are civilians.

        1. avatar Tim T. says:

          Thank you, indeed they are. People (especially LEO’s) tend to forget this.

        2. avatar BlueBronco says:

          True, but Farnam seems to forget this and seems to thing the U.S.A. is a war zone and the police are on military operations.

  4. avatar TTACer says:

    Taking “cover” behind their vehicles? I assume everyone was crowded behind the engines and wheels. That must have been comical.

    1. avatar Another Robert says:

      Just a question, I don’t know–but are police cars ever reinforced, like the doors maybe?

      1. avatar Geoff PR says:

        Some are.

        I recall seeing Kevlar door inserts in a cop magazine years back.

      2. avatar Accur81 says:

        Our doors have a Kevlar IIIA ballistic shielding material in them. Those doors are significantly heavier than standard doors. Rifle rounds such as .223 / 5.56 / 7.69 x 39mm, etc. will still penetrate them. Handgun rounds will, too, if a hit was made in one of the small areas within the door not covered by Kevlar. The windows and windshields are standard stuff. Heavy duty windshields are heavy and expensive. The windows need to go up and down whereas a fixed plexiglass window would be needed to stop handgun rounds.

      3. avatar uncommon_sense says:

        I don’t believe anyone reinforces the doors of normal police cars. Reinforcement adds significant weight which, over the course of thousands of officers driving millions of miles, impacts overall fuel consumption.

        Very few handgun rounds will go through an entire car door with any significant amount of residual velocity/energy. And they certainly will not go through two entire car doors. Rifle rounds, however, I believe would punch through both doors with plenty of residual velocity/energy.

        1. avatar JasonM says:

          According to the Box O’ Truth guys, a car door does very little against a handgun round. And I vaguely remember seeing similar results from Mythbusters.

        2. avatar TTACer says:

          boxotruth ftw. A car door won’t stop a .22, let alone the wimpiest of rifle rounds. With the exception of a couple of spots a car is concealment at best.

      4. avatar DJ says:

        Up armored vehicles typically have an operational lifespan of 2 years before the suspension is degraded (from the extra weight) and the glass treatment (mylar or whatever coating the glass) starts to separate. In high temperature environments the glass separation happens faster. Other than kevlar or equivalent placed inside body panels to act as a light armor (level 2) it wouldn’t be cost effective. High threat up armored vehicles have a very short operational life compared to the family sedan.

        1. avatar LarryinTX says:

          And resale value is zero.

      5. avatar Hannibal says:

        Rarely. Some departments are known to stick a soft armor panel from an old vest (or two) in the doors and hope for the best… but the engine block is where you want to be if you need to have real cover.

  5. avatar Dustin Eward says:

    So many cops ARE that crazy guy, tho… They took the job becasue they knew that was the only way they could act as they wish and not end up in prison themselves… The State has no problem with voioplent psychopaths, as long as they are in the employ of said State…

  6. avatar GS650G says:

    The police aren’t there to confront, fight or defend. They are there to contain, document, and provide after actions such as taking people to jail. For engagement you need different kinds of actors. I think we have some idea of who that would be including citizens in the middle of the activity.

    1. avatar uncommon_sense says:

      “The police aren’t there to confront, fight or defend. They are there to contain, document, and provide after actions such as taking people to jail.”

      This is spot on. If police manage to show up on-scene while the situation is still tense, they have no way of knowing who is the criminal attacker and who is the righteous defender. Any police who come to the party with a “shoot first, ask questions later” mentality is going to harm innocent people.

  7. avatar styrgwillidar says:

    Seems like the cops on the scene may have picked up from the suspect’s talk and behavior that it was bravado, they followed their instinct and judgment based on first hand observation. Love it when the staff folks back at HQ start over-riding the decisions of the guys at the front.

    Something none of us can do in the aftermath. It’s a case of damned if you do, damned if you don’t.

  8. avatar uncommon_sense says:

    To some extent, I understand and agree: we would best serve ourselves and society if we promptly incapacitate evil, violent, nasty criminals when they present an imminent threat of death or great bodily harm.

    At the same time I condemn a “shoot first, ask questions later” mentality among police. Sure, police officers want to go home after every shift and have just as much of a right to defend themselves as anyone else. I cannot state loudly enough, however, that a police officer’s desire to “come home safe” is not justification to preemptively violate the rights of everyone they meet. I sure get the sense from reading Mr. Farnham’s article that he espouses “better safe than sorry” posture at the expense of our rights.

    There are risks in every line of work. Those risks do not authorize workers to violate other people’s rights. Police officers are no different.

  9. avatar Geoff PR says:

    Yikes.

    LE has a choice, potential state prison if they shoot, potential death if they don’t.

    Talk about a sh!t sandwich to have to take a bite out of.

    1. avatar JasonM says:

      I see two flaws with that false dichotomy.
      1. You’re ignoring the precursor decision to become a cop or take another career path.
      2. Cops rarely, if ever, go to prison for shooting a guy with a gun. Hell, they rarely get into more trouble than two months of paid “administrative leave” for shooting unarmed people.

      1. avatar LarryinTX says:

        Even after kicking in the door of the wrong address. At 3 AM.

        1. avatar LarryinTX says:

          Edit is not working.

          EDIT. And now, it is!

    2. avatar Cuteandfuzzybunnies says:

      Seams like the smart thing would be to fall back and wait until he calmed down or shot himself. He was only joking pets. Just keep the humans at a safe distance and nobody need get hurt.

  10. avatar Wade says:

    If we the average person on the street and treat people the same way, cops included,that threaten us. Sure, I`ll agree. More cops get shot for threatening people, they will suddenly start behaving better.Guy on the street gets one for threatening someone..he will also think twice.
    Did you guys red the bit about the Saint Louis police threatening to quit if they get a civilian oversight board ? So tired of this double standard in this country. And seeing an article like this,attempting to give the police the green light to kill even more… detestable. ( Despite this story`s example being one that clearly seemed to allow use of deadly force.) Our tainted blue line has nearly zero accountability,when that changes,and they are held to a higher standard,then I`ll shamelessly support them again.

  11. avatar Gunr says:

    I know we can’t all just go around shooting folks, but just think how nice the world would be if all the bad guys were permanently horizontal!
    Oh well, I can dream can’t I

  12. avatar Grindstone says:

    Sure, there’s never ever any room for flexibility, especially when it comes to the armed agents of the state shooting at civilians. USMC doctrine should TOTALLY be applied to police. That could never result in any problems at all…

    1. avatar styrgwillidar says:

      Yep. It’s another example of ignoring the fact that cops are civilians too, not military.

  13. avatar Accur81 says:

    Based upon a number of questionable police shootings throughout the nation, it would appear that many cops are in fact too quick to pull the trigger on the wrong truck or the wrong person. I will take that fraction of a second to make damn sure my target does constitute a lethal threat before pulling the trigger. This one was a lethal threat, so I would have probably shot him almost immediately.

    1. avatar Publius S says:

      Looks like the bad guy has chosen an obvious “suicide by cop” scenario, here?

      That must really suck to have to be the one to pull the trigger, when you know there are other ways out for the guy that he could have taken.

      1. avatar Accur81 says:

        Maybe the guys on the force need to get out into the woods with their duty pistols and ARs and shoot some pigs or deer. It’s certainly not the same as armed combat, but training and evaluation to address the inability of the ability to shoot when justified is essential to being an effective police officer. Unfortunately, not all cops are the effective ones. We had a guy at our office who accidentally activated the safety on his gun during a combat shooting. In the few seconds it took him to figure out his error, his partner had fatally shot the armed suspect who had just robbed a Subway restaurant at gunpoint. That’s one of the reasons I don’t want safeties on carry guns.

        Fortunately, not every tactical error is fatal.

        1. avatar Publius S says:

          That makes a lot of sense – knowing the effect of rounds on a large mammal is useful, and hard to comprehend in just talking about it.

          I notice the new generation of law enforcement level game wardens and federal land managers dont have many hunters among them, at least in So Cal.

          So there is a built in lack of appreciation for what good hunters do in the game and habitat management area, and for what can good can be learned from that segment of the safe and law-abiding gun culture too.

          Ignorance kills.

        2. avatar DJ says:

          I’ve seen that happen on ranges. In the few IRL situations I was involved in there was enough going on that I wouldn’t have notices. Still – yikes.

          When we were going through the qualification course, if someone drew and left the safety engaged (and I’ll admit, one time it was me) the instructors would all yell “DEAD MAN! DEAD MAN!” as loud as they could. Got the point across.

  14. avatar Roymond says:

    We already have too many cops who shoot when they shouldn’t, because they can, and too many who won’t call their colleagues on it — they don’t need encouragement.

    So long as the madman continued to hold his weapon in one hand, withholding fire was quite right. The moment two hands were on it, if that happened, it becomes the judgment call of the officers present.

    My question is, since they had tasers, why they didn’t use those a lot earlier. If you can take down an armed madman with non-lethal means, I can’t see any reasons for not doing so.

  15. avatar DickDanger says:

    The leftist media would probably having nothing but good things to say about it if an officers had gunned this guy down. After all, one of their beloved employees of the state would have killed a private gun owner.

  16. avatar danthemann5 says:

    I don’t think I could get on board with anyone advocating that cops need to shoot more people.

  17. avatar Publius S says:

    Farnham is bombastic in making his points boldly. The lesson is the same for all ‘civilians’, cops and everyone else.

    There is a clear bright line when deadly force is justified, and that is defined by your state law, and local prosecutorial discretion in how its applied. LEOs have perhaps a higher standard, in use of less deadly force in a continuum, but in extremis, they need to make the decision quickly to protect themselves and the public.

    For a non-LEO civilian, knowing it and reminding yourself, where and when the threat has crossed that line, and what you are legally permitted to do, is just as important as time at the range, if you want to be there when its all over, for your family’s sake.

    When seconds count, the police are only minutes away.

    1. avatar Mark N. says:

      Perspective:
      Line of Duty Deaths: 121
      Assault: 2
      Automobile accident: 26
      Drowned: 1
      Duty related illness: 1
      Fire: 1
      Gunfire: 47
      Gunfire (Accidental): 2
      Heart attack: 17
      Motorcycle accident: 4
      Struck by vehicle: 5
      Vehicle pursuit: 5
      Vehicular assault: 10

      List of Killings by Police Officers, 2014

      January (52)
      February (13)
      March (16)
      April (11)
      May (20)24+105+78+56+92+86+
      June (40)
      July (24)
      August (105)
      September (78)
      October (56)
      November (92)
      December (86)
      Total: 593

      1. avatar LarryinTX says:

        Say what? Was your department transferred to Afghanistan for the month of May?

        Where the hell is this, that a police dept killed 593 people in a year?

  18. avatar Bob102 says:

    Let’s be clear: There is no way to know if a bad guy with a gun will shoot a good guy or not. Life is not a Hollywood movie. The good guy usually loses when he gambles his own life on the charity and sanity of a bad guy. I know, we weren’t there, so it is difficult to judge; however, if a person is unwilling or unprepared to use a firearm to protect himself/herself from a bad guy, please, I am begging, do not carry a gun.

    1. avatar Jack says:

      Whenever someone starts by saying, “Let’s be clear…” my liberal-o-meter goes way up. Case in point.

  19. avatar Blaine Cooper says:

    So, an article which starts with a cop quoting from a military manual then quotes the actions of an incompetent cop to argue tossing out decades of legal jurisprudence on justifiable lethal force by law enforcement, then ends with a garbage quote about “dead cops” while ignoring the fact that cops kill far more civilians per year than the other way around.

    This is vile pig propaganda.

    1. avatar LarryinTX says:

      “cops kill far more civilians per year than the other way around.”

      Which is as it should be!

      1. avatar Blaine Cooper says:

        No, the cops shouldn’t kill anyone unless absolutely necessary.

        You are a depraved person.

  20. avatar nynemillameetuh says:

    Before we start issuing Marine Corps training to police officers, how about we train them to drive a little more safely?

  21. avatar Gary Pope says:

    I am reminded of the Cleveland cop who jumped out of his patrol car and immediately shot a kid with a toy gun, within 2 seconds of arrival, and without any attempt to engage him verbally from a position of safety.

    I thought the cop in the case above showed good judgement. As noted, if the perp had started to aim a gun towards one of the cops, he would have been shot, possibly by every cop on the scene.

    1. avatar twency says:

      Or John Crawford III, gunned down in Walmart within a couple seconds of the police making contact, with virtually no chance to understand what was happening and demonstrate compliance with police orders.

  22. avatar Ralph says:

    The result is dead cops? Hardly.

    50 cops were shot and killed in the line of duty in 2014, after 32 were killed in 2013.

    In that same period of two years, how many people did the police shoot and kill? Actually, nobody knows. Conveniently, there is no national database. But of those police departments who choose to announce the number of killings by police, the number exceeds 800.

    Bloodthirsty Farnam wants cops to kill more people. Me too. I want the police to go on killing and killing and killing until the stench of of all that death can no longer be overlooked, alibied or denied.

  23. avatar JohnF says:

    So you have a good outcome to a dangerous situation and yet the “experts” think it’s a failure? I’m starting to worry that the experts are the problem. I am starting to lose my respect for these “gunslinger” shooting instructors, and I have encountered a few. I think that mentality might be good for Spec Ops, but not for most LEOs and not for the average gun carrier.

    How many Fergusons do you want? Do you think that is good for the gun community? Add to that, cops can’t seem to hit much that they aim at anyway…

  24. avatar Stinkeye says:

    “…cops who are terrorized by the prospect of a shooting aftermath in which they will enjoy neither support nor backing from their department…”

    Because that happens all the time, right? We hear about it every day – a cop shoots someone, and immediately all the other officers in his department disown him and refuse to defend him, regardless of the circumstances and evidence of the shoot…

    The fact is, it’s safer to be a cop than a truck driver, construction worker, or farmer in America, so let’s just dial back a bit on the myth of the “deadly streets”, shall we?

  25. avatar Jake Tallman says:

    Wow. This police chief pretty clearly represents everything wrong with modern day cops. The officers did the right thing, taking cover with ther weapons trained in the man. The second he brought his gun I bear in anyone, he would have been ventilated before he could fire a shot.

    And yet this chief thinks they should have rolled up and opened fire imidiately. And then he has the audacity to bitch about how the community won’t stand behind such cops? “I want my officers to be able to murder indiscriminately, and the communities they terrorize had damn well better back them!” Somebody should execute this man. Someone like this has no business being a police chief.

    For the record, I do agree that there have been some good shoots recently that dumbass citizens have second-guessed, and race baiters have taken issue with (and that the MSM have had a field day with), and that it’s an unfortunate climate indeed where any armed citizen (cop or otherwise) is CLEARLY in the right, but they have to contend with the second-guessers.

  26. avatar Mack Bolan says:

    Attitudes like this asshat’s are exactly why armed citizens need to be more concerned with interactions with LE than with actual criminals.

    Of course that distinction is becoming harder to make.

    The fact that his attitude is “See a gun, shoot to kill” pretty much puts him on the wrong side of law.

  27. avatar BDub says:

    That kind of considered response is exactly what i want from the police officers in my community. If they are unwilling to put themselves at risk in order to do minimal harm in the execution of their duty, they should look to other kinds of work.

  28. avatar int19h says:

    >> The foregoing represents a pernicious disease infecting all of the American law-enforcement community. The problem is not that we’re shooting too many people. The problem is that we’re not shooting nearly enough! The result is dead cops. Cops who hesitated too long. Cops who gave the suspect too much of an edge. Cops who were hired, educated, trained, and equipped, all at great expense, but who never once “thought it through,” until it was too late!

    The alternative result is dead innocent citizens – because cops didn’t hesitate at all, didn’t try to evaluate the situation and consider all possibilities, but rather went in trigger happy and afraid that everyone is after them, interpreting any movement as a threat (“oh, he reached for his pocket! must be a gun” – turns out to be a wallet, oops).

    Yes, if you’re a cop, the whole point of your job is to make life safer for the rest of us, by increasing the risk to your own life if need be. Any time you are on duty and have make a decision between your own safety or that of everyone else, you have to pick the latter, every time, or get out of this profession. This means, among other things, stopping and thinking before you shoot someone, if there is any non-negligible possibility that their presence and actions may be perfectly reasonable for an innocent person who’s not trying to shoot you – even if it increases the risk for you should that possibility not be realized.

    Cop safety is not a thing in and of itself, and it doesn’t trump everything else. Where measures can be taken to increase it without detriment to the safety of everyone else, yes, we absolutely should do it (e.g. issue more and better ballistic protection). But where there is a conflict, general public safety trumps it.

    1. avatar vadvaro says:

      Nicely said int19h. Police officers are supposed to be the cooler heads in heated situations. And I don’t buy the knee-jerk tone Mr. Farnam seems to be using (whatever the correct spelling of his name might be); a military manual isn’t always the appropriate source of information for force on civilians off the battlefield (when we’re not in a state of conventional war).

  29. avatar Stacy says:

    I’m glad to see some sanity show up in the last dozen comments.

    I think the chief is mistaking judgment for luck, and it’s pretty clear he doesn’t have much judgment if his view is that it’s best to automatically shoot an agitated person with a gun. His officers luckily had cooler heads. They should be the ones writing this post.

  30. avatar Hannibal says:

    I will not second-guess someone’s decision not to take a life… unless it goes bad.

    Hindsight? Yeah. But the alternative is also troubling.

  31. avatar twency says:

    Justice Oliver Wendell Holmes famously wrote “Detached reflection cannot be demanded in the presence of an uplifted knife” in Brown v. United States (1921).

    I suggest a sort of corollary for situations like this: “Hindsight criticism must not demand an alternative to the outcome which saved everyone’s life and health.”

    1. avatar DJ9 says:

      Outstanding quote, and right on point.

      *golf clap*

    2. avatar Blaine Cooper says:

      Except the usual outcome with modern police procedure is a dead civilian, as opposed to saving “everyone’s life and health”.

      1. avatar DJ9 says:

        You say that like it is ALWAYS a bad thing. I disagree. To avoid getting shot/killed, the civilian just needs to know that “…strutting about his front lawn, dressed in a T-shirt and jeans, and waving a Kalashnikov rifle in the air. The rifle had a thirty-round magazine, inserted. In his other hand the suspect was holding an large, autoloading pistol. A second pistol was clearly visible, stuffed into his waistband. Upon seeing our police officers, the suspect shouted, repeatedly, that he was going to kill them all.” (all this right after shooting and killing several domestic animals), is not aceptable behavior in a civilized society.

        And if, through inaction of the police, it BECOMES a de facto acceptable behavior in a society, then the society in question is no longer civilized, and the police can be disbanded. Because at that point, the burden for personal defense will have clearly shifted to the individual/family.

        And once that has happened, do you think the seemingly irrational/crazy folks acting out with firearms in public will be treated more, or less gently, by the armed folks they are threatening? If this guy hadn’t got the attention he was seeking from the cops, do you think he would have said “Screw it, I’m going to bed”, or “Screw it, I’m going to look for the attention I couldn’t get here”, whether it was at the neighbors’ house or the nearest city’s shopping center?

        Sorry to be the one to break the news to you, but “Act crazy with a gun in public, get shot by cops” is NOT a bad thing, in most cases.

        1. avatar Blaine Cooper says:

          Go look up the shootings committed by the Albuquerque PD before you spread your lies about how people who get shot by cops deserve it.

          In the atmosphere of “officer safety” fanaticism, everything and anything is construed as a “threat” by the trigger-happy piggies.

        2. avatar DJ9 says:

          More and more, when someone responds with a totally off-base response like the one above, I wonder if they are someday planning on being the one waving the guns around and yelling that they are gonna kill some cops.

          I spread no lies, because SOME of these folks DO need shootin’, both morally and legally. Some don’t/didn’t, and in some cases it was a close call. When you falsely accuse me of implying that ALL people who are shot by cops deserve it, I hear the whiny voice of someone who thinks that NO ONE should ever be shot be cops, no matter WHAT they are doing, or have done, to ANYONE. THAT is the real danger to the law-abiding citizens of this nation, not the (mostly) media- and activist-manufactured epidemic of cops shooting poor widdle kiddies that were just starting to turn their life around.

          You find a trigger-happy cop, convict and fry him; I’m cool with that. But when these folks are putting their lives on the line, don’t whine and second-guess their every decision from the comfort of your easy chair, with info in-hand that they did not have in the few seconds they had to decide whether or not to shoot.

        3. avatar Blaine Cooper says:

          Haha, you swing your d*** around talking about people who “need shooting” while ignoring the fact that plenty of people who don’t “need shooting” do get killed by cops, almost all of whom walk with a paid holiday.

          Cops don’t put their lives on the line, any more so than people in the 30 or more jobs in the US which are more dangerous than being a pig. It’s the job, deal with it. Don’t want to get killed working for politicians? Quit.

        4. avatar DJ9 says:

          *sigh*

          There’s no use in trying to reason with the unreasonable.

          As has been said before, our system is the worst system on the planet, except for … every other system.

          And you think you have a problem with cops now? Wait until you drive all the good ones away with this PC/can’t-ever-shoot crap; THEN you’ll see what bad cops look like on duty.

        5. avatar Blaine Cooper says:

          Heh, worst cop-out ever. “It’s supposedly worse elsewhere”. But it isn’t.

          Countries that actually have academic and intellectual requirements for police candidates don’t have problems with murderous cops. Switzerland, Holland, Germany and Scandinavia come to mind. But alas, American politicians actually want to hire thugs to become cops to enforce their ridiculous drug laws.

  32. avatar judg724 says:

    Cops shoot kids with toy guns all the time, so NO we don’t need cops being more reactive and shooting more. The problem is, it’s not just the criminal thugs who get the overreaction by the cops, it’s EVERYONE, including kids playing with toy guns, shot by cops. A few years ago, the cops shot a guy with a garden hose nozzle because some liberal-do-gooder called cops on him. I believe they shot and killed the guy. FOR SITTING DOWN WITH A GARDEN HOSE NOZZLE!!!! No, if the cops get any more trigger happy, it will make them LESS safe on the streets, NOT more safe. What a moron who wrote this article.

  33. avatar BlueBronco says:

    Conduct of war in a war zone is a completely different thing than police work in the U.S.A. Farnham isn’t fit to be training police officers. I would have to assume my life was in danger when encountering him.

  34. avatar Aaron says:

    But hey, if Mr. t-shirt had a rock in his hand instead of an AK and two pistolas, would the cops have ventilated him like they did to the Mexican guy in WA? This is all so confusing…

  35. I wouldn’t believe a word John Farnham says.

    Semper Fi

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