Useless Security Theater Gesture of the Day: Active Shooter Cards

2014-02-19 11.30.06

A reader who prefers to remain anonymous writes that his employer, the Defense Logistics Agency, just distributed these handy-dandy active shooter response luggage tags yesterday. If you’re not familiar with this particular branch of the .gov, he writes that they’re “responsible for contracting, acquisition, and support activities for all of the DoD. It is primarily composed of a civilian workforce and has their own law enforcement agency, all civilian as well. I am active duty and I hate this place with a passion. It represents everything that is wrong with the mismanagement of taxpayer money.” Do tell. There’s even more useful info on the back of the card, after the jump . . .

2014-02-19 09.52.39


  1. avatar bill says:

    Basically Run and hide, throw shit at him like a girl if ya have to.

    If your an CCW, aim and shoot.

    1. avatar Tom of Toms says:

      As for throwing objects at baddies: I’ve longed for the instance when an unwitting robber holds up the convenience store while I man the baby food aisle…

      THINK FAST!!!

      1. avatar uncommon_sense says:

        When I read, “… throw items at the active shooter”, I interpreted that to mean that I should throw small, copper covered lead “rocks” at the active shooter … and to throw them at something like 1000 fps to be effective.

        1. avatar Delmarva Chip says:

          Sounds good to me.

        2. avatar NWGlocker says:

          Yes, that’s a proper fastball

      2. avatar Jandrews says:

        “Longed” for it? No thanks. You’re talking about satisfying some hero complex neuroses – might want to see a professional about that. No sane human being *wants* to be put in a situation of mortal danger.

        We respond with deadly force because we must, not because we’ve been itching to blast someone. This is the type of thing that gives idiot lawyers ammo when defending perps and tilts fence sitters away from supporting gun rights.

        1. avatar WRH says:

          I think you should see a professional for your reading-comprehension problem. Tom of Toms is clearly being facetious. I doubt he really wants to be in an active shooter scenario with nothing but a fist full of Gerber baby food jars.

        2. avatar Jandrews says:

          Yes, because tone, body language, and other non-verbal, non-lingual portions of communication translate so incredibly well in text. If he’s being facetious, good for him. Let’s not pretend that half the camo commandos you run into at the range don’t think this way. You know the people I’m talking about.

        3. avatar Matt in FL says:

          Three words: baby. food. jars.

          Don’t take everything so seriously.

        4. avatar Accur81 says:

          No sane human being wants to be in a position of mortal danger?!

          I’m maybe just a little guilty of that, and was still able to pass psyche eval. When I was in the USMC infantry 2/24, I was surrounded by a whole bunch of young men who wanted to be heroes. I think many still do. We certainly have lots movies about heroes, and they make a grip of cash, so I don’t think I’m alone in wanting to save the day.

        5. avatar Adub says:

          Quite right. Lots of people join the military to do something heroic, not crawl under a desk and cry at the first sound of gunfire.

        6. Crack open a box of blocks. Throw halfway opened jars of baby food.

    2. avatar Russ Bixby says:

      Don’t disrespect girls or throwing shit.

      Many gals got some serious balls, and knives work.

    3. avatar bgreenea3 says:

      All the instructions are valid good things to do…. and common sense. since common sense isn’t common we have to print emergency instructions.

      I remember doing “Emergency Preparedness” merit badge in Boy Scouts years ago, my buddy was posed the question “what should you do in case of a nuculear attack or fallout”.
      His response was classic, “repent sins”

      1. avatar Russ Bixby says:

        I LOVE it!

      2. avatar int19h says:

        Is it the classic answer in the US? In Soviet schools, they taught us differently. On the lessons of “basic military preparedness”, specifically (that’s where they teach you how to field strip an AK).

        The Soviet version goes like this:

        – In the event of a nearby nuclear strike, a soldier should should hold his AK out in front of him on outstretched hands.
        – Why?
        – So that, when the steel melts, it does not drip down and spoil the government-issue boots.

    4. avatar Larry says:

      Conversely, if you have had no use for licenses to exercise your Constitutional rights, Draw, fire, walk away.

  2. avatar Matt in FL says:

    I love this. Just about the most meaningless “See? We’re doing something!” gesture I’ve ever seen.

    I used to have a job where we wore nametags, and they’d give us stupid stuff like this to put on it. Safety instructions, lockout/tagout procedures, “safe lifting procedures,” you name it. We were required to have the specified pieces of “flair” on our badges, a dozen or so, and God help you if you were found to be without them.

    I don’t think I ever looked at a single one of them after the day I clipped them into the stack.

    1. avatar NDS says:

      You know the Nazis had pieces of flair, they made the Jews wear.

      1. avatar Accur81 says:

        Well some people want to do more than the bare minimum, ‘mkay? And we encourage that.

    2. avatar Daily Beatings says:

      Did you have at least 37 pieces of flair?

    3. avatar ThomasR says:

      Nah, this is a perfect example of what government is best at; a lot of our money spent for useless instructions that depend on a helpless and disarmed subjects to blindly follow that in the end will just them killed faster.
      Government; the parasite that ends up killing the host.

    4. avatar Vhyrus says:

      Tagout is a fairly common industry standard, and is required by OSHA, but to make you wear it on your badge? That’s just silly.

      1. avatar Defens says:

        I thought that lockout/tagout involved placing a tag on an under-repair or unsafe piece of equipment, indicating its non-functional status. So what does putting these tags on actual government employees signify? Oh, I see.

        1. avatar Matt in FL says:

          I see what you did there.

      2. avatar Matt in FL says:

        I understand that. I’m just saying that I never had to look at the card (that I had to have with me) that told me how to do it.

    5. avatar Greg says:

      Sounds like Walmart. Or Amazon. I’ve worked at both.

  3. avatar Daniel S. says:

    “attempting to hold on to them for safety”? Wow this is exactly what is wrong with the sheep.

    1. avatar William Burke says:

      The better term is “sheeple”. Baaaah. Baaaah. Hope you don’t have to kill me.

      1. avatar Cliff H says:

        “And the lamb shall lie down with the lion – so long as you have an ample supply of lambs.”

    2. avatar Roscoe says:

      “Sheep” conjures up a different thought pattern than “sheeple”.

      ‘Course, even the sheeple are getting screwed, they just don’t realize it until too late.

  4. avatar ropingdown says:

    Soon to come? “Active Contractor Fraud Card’

    Never mind. It would be wasteful to print an entire card simply to say “1. Look the Other Way 2. Apply for Post-Retirement Job.

    1. avatar Grumpy F'er says:

      Quote: Soon to come? “Active Contractor Fraud Card’

      Years ago I faked a press pass because, why not? Company name up top (made up), a bar code on it (literally copied from a chicken noodle soup can) for added “credibility,” put my name and photo on it, laminate, add a lanyard and WOO HOO! full access behind police-line barricades. I’m sure it would take me about a tenth of the time today.

  5. avatar USMC Janitor says:

    How to deal with Active Shooters. Step one, print up and distribute these stupid little cards….

    only government

  6. avatar Daily Beatings says:

    The items I would like to “throw” at the active shooter weigh 124 grains and travel at 1100 feet per second. Is that asking too much?

    1. avatar Swarf says:

      Wow. How big is a 1,913 grain bullet, anyway?

      1. avatar Daily Beatings says:

        Oops, my mistake. Already changed.

      2. avatar William Burke says:

        That’s called a cannonball.

      3. avatar Marcus Aurelius says:

        0.27 lbs. A bit disappointing really.

      4. avatar Marc says:

        Its called a 4-bore.
        And they actually made them.
        (Well, its close, a 4-bore round ball is 1750 grains, so let’s say its slightly elliptical 🙂 )

    2. avatar Bob Wall says:

      Sounds like a quarter-pounder with cheese. In France, they call that a “Royale”.

      Honest mistake…

      1. avatar William Burke says:

        The French, they like to frilly everything up. Merde Royale.

        1. avatar William Burke says:

          Comment editor STILL blank and non-functional, where I am.

          HEY! It worked this time. Only the X worked before.

        2. avatar Matt in FL says:

          Guess you’ll have to not make any mistakes, then.

        3. avatar Mr. Pierogie says:

          No kidding. I think they tricked me into paying 8 euros for something that looked suspiciously like a grilled cheese sandwich at a cafe next to the Notre Dame de Paris. Shame on me…

          BTW we couldn’t go in on the first try because this happened:

          The next day was fine, as if nothing had happened.

    3. avatar LJM says:

      How about.

      1. Get the f#&k out of dodge.
      2. Keep weapon ready and willing to deploy against shooter as you get the f#&k out of dodge. (but not readily visible to not be mistaken as the shooter by LEO in case they see you)
      3. Go home safely.

      I like that plan much better than hiding in a conference room or under my desk waiting to get shot.

      1. avatar styrgwillidar says:

        You can abbreviate the ‘Get the f#&k out of dodge’ as the GOOD. maneuver (Get Out Of Dodge).

      2. avatar Russ Bixby says:

        Um, if I have a gun and there’s an active shooter, I’m shooting.

        If I don’t, I’m doing what I can.

        I’ve never shot someone with a gun, but I have employed lethal force against a personal threat, and some serious potentially lethal force in defence of others – sometimes at considerable personal risk.

        Sleep deprivation is bad – Mengele loved to use it. If I ran and cowered or escaped, I’d not sleep at night. Ipso facto, I choose to act.


        1. avatar Larry says:

          And, (watch this, guys) if I am on your jury, you will not be convicted.

    4. avatar Gov. William J. Le Petomane says:

      Beat me to it. I was going to say the only thing I’d be ‘throwing’ is about 5 ounces of lead in 124gr. increments. Mine will be doing about 1250fps. though – +P.

      1. avatar Larry says:

        What a BEAST!

  7. avatar Jonathan - Houston says:

    With exception that step #1 should read “Since we don’t infringe on your RKBA, even at work, even in a federal building, and we welcome lawful carry of private self-defense firearms, go ahead and stop the active shooter threat if you believe you have a reasonable opportunity to do so”, I really don’t have a problem with this advice overall.

  8. avatar Bill says:

    Should have added: Raise your hands above your head to make yourself appear bigger and make loud, threatening noises.

    1. avatar uncommon_sense says:

      Outstanding … for the win!!!!!!

      (still laughing out loud)

  9. avatar William Burke says:

    LOL. This reminds me of the nuclear bomb drills back in the sixties: “Crawl under desk or a table; curl up in a ball. And kiss your ass goodbye.”

    1. avatar JebNY says:

      My first thought was they should post these instruction beside every no guns allowed sign. But then decided it was to long and no one would read them. I like Burke’s idea better, Post a sign that says “In case of Active Shooter, bend over and put your head between your knees and Kiss Your Ass Goodbye”.

      Maybe a few people would choose not to enter and we all know if we can save just one….

    2. avatar Avid Reader says:

      They liked to tell us to put our coats over our heads first. Fat lot of good that was going to do.

      1. avatar Chris. says:

        That was so that the responders wouldn’t have to look at eyeballs that had been boiled out of your face by the flash.

  10. avatar ensitue says:

    This is why Amerika will fall, Control Nazis and Do Nothing TruthSpeakers, if only they were on the front lines

  11. avatar bontai Joe says:

    This card reminds me of the instructions in case of nuclear attack. “Hide under your desk, put your head between your knees and kiss your ass good-bye.” I especially like the instruction to NOT ask the police responder where to evacuate to. Sorry, but I’m asking, because I want to know where his partner is to avoid being shot by him when he decides I’m evacuating to quickly.

    1. avatar Jonathan - Houston says:

      By the time the cops are within reach, it’ll probably be over, anyway. A lot of these guys kill themselves once they hear the sirens or see the cruisers swarming in. Or sooner, if confronted by an armed defender.

  12. avatar Marc says:

    We had similar training at my work (big DOD contractor that doesn’t allow firearms at work).
    I told them it was stupid, and they should just rescind the no weapons policy so we could throw lead, not a freakin stapler.

  13. avatar Rokurota says:

    Sharpen the edges of that card. Throw or slash as needed.

    1. avatar Accur81 says:

      That’s damn funny right there.

    2. avatar Jus Bill says:

      It was made by the lowest bidder. If you try to sharpen it, it will dissolve.

  14. avatar Michael B. says:

    Hiding, unless he’s heavily armed and you’re planning to ambush him with your own pistol, is just about the worst advice ever.

    Running is better.

    Fighting back with a gun of your own is best.

  15. avatar dwb says:

    Where are the checkboxes? How am I supposed to remember where I am in the process during a situation? Needs more checkboxes.

    Seriously, on a positive note, this is based on this report referenced here:

    “This tells us that citizens and bystanders have a very real and active role in stopping these events,” Nichols said. “If we can properly prepare and educate civilians, maybe we can get to where 90 percent are stopped by civilians long before the police arrive.”

    And the associated FBI report/video (“Video: Run. Hide. Fight. Surviving an Active Shooter Event”).

    I realize there is always the Not Far Enough crowd, but I see positive baby steps here: First the concession that they’d like to get to the point where most are stopped by civilians; Two, the implicit concession that 911 is not a response to a threat – its only a response “when its safe to do so” – and most of the action happens before the police arrive.

    Even people who carry (I hope) will be doing some form of getting away and hiding out to assess the situation before jumping in and shooting. Would you point your gun at someone in a store without some assessment of why they were pointing their gun at someone else? And even in places where carry is permissive, most people do not carry. So from a 30,000 foot view I think the advice is A Good Start.

  16. avatar Loaded Diaper says:

    They forgot to add…

    1. Vomit
    2. Urinate
    3. Defecate and if necessary throw the feces at the shooter!

    1. avatar Avid Reader says:

      They forgot to talk to some of the Dems in the Colorado legislature first, or they would have included those instructions.

    2. avatar Daily Beatings says:

      4. Assume the fetal position

  17. avatar Marcus Aurelius says:

    Step two should be keep running to another location. The families of everyone who’s been shot while ‘sheltering in place’ should be able to sue the policy makers.

  18. avatar Jared-Tampa says:

    In total agreement with the OP, as someone who works in defense/aerospace I concur that DLA is quite possibly the most useless group of taxpayer teat suckling morons to have ever plagued the earth.

  19. avatar ilkhan says:

    How to deal with an active shooter:
    1) return fire

    1. avatar Accur81 says:

      That’s my plan.

  20. avatar Ralph says:

    They left out “bend over backwards and kiss your @ss goodbye.”

  21. avatar neiowa says:

    Unfortunately (or not) DLA is a model of efficiency for the fed gov’t. Spend some time with the postal service.

  22. avatar Hannibal says:

    Luckily, since they’ve distributed these cards, they need to take no more action whatsoever.

    Good luck everyone!

    1. avatar Defens says:

      And may the odds be ever in your favor!

  23. avatar martin says:

    I wonder if you can take a bunch of these cards and make a shiv to attack the shooter with.

  24. avatar Jus Bill says:

    I’ve been to HQ DLA once, for a day. It was all I could stand. Ever. It was like being in a kindergarten, but instead of the little chairs they had cube farms to do the busy work in. I’m convinced that if they ever had an active shooter situation, the shooter would commit suicide out of frustration because the zombies wouldn’t realize they were shot until it was time to go home.

    BTW, the silliness on the card was brought to you by DHS, the home of useless security theater. Good advice? Only if you like dying.

  25. avatar RockOnHellChild says:

    We have a run, hide, fight awareness thing at work… Basically run away, cower, or throw a coffee mug, or stapler, or whatever, at him.

    It’s a huge joke amongst a few of us, give you three guesses why?

  26. avatar Chris says:

    Nice and I’m sure it only cost the government $100,000,000 for these helpful little cards!

  27. avatar Jay Williams says:

    People still use pagers?

  28. avatar Ampoule says:

    We’ve had “Active Shooter” training at our workplace recently, too. When you boil it all down, the message is: Employees are not allowed to bring weapons to work, and if a shooter enters hide under your desk.

    The only valuable information they passed on to non-firearms persons was that the sound of real gunfire differs dramatically from what you hear on TV shows or movies.

  29. avatar Maineuh says:

    Vacate bowels, lose control of bladder, wish you’d jumped onboard the CCW train when you had a chance.

  30. avatar Colby says:

    Might as well say “when in doubt, chicken out.”

  31. avatar S.CROCK says:

    that fact that they didn’t make it paper is very insensitive. if it was paper it could at least be used as toilet paper.

  32. avatar Bobiojimbo says:

    There are posters with similar information posted in the TPU barracks in Norfolk, VA. While I do not personally recall seeing these posters anywhere else, active shooter training has become more prevalent since the Washington Yards shooting. I won’t be surprised if cards like this become standard issue, just like glow belts.

  33. avatar GS650G says:

    How come crawl into a fetal position and cry like a baby while begging for your life isn’t listed as an option?

  34. avatar PavePusher says:

    This is exactly the same “training” the entire DoD gets for “workplace violence/active shooter” response. When I voice the fact that the instructions should be “return fire”, my chain-of-command gets slightly cross-eyed…..

  35. avatar Mercutio says:

    “Act with physical aggression…..??”


  36. avatar J Star says:

    …throw items at active shooter.”

    The only thing that came into my mind was Raylan.

    *Throws ejected round on top of Duffy*
    “Next one’s comin’ faster.”

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