The Brett Kimberlin Saga:

Follow this link to my BLOCKBUSTER STORY of how Brett Kimberlin, a convicted terrorist and perjurer, attempted to frame me for a crime, and then got me arrested for blogging when I exposed that misconduct to the world. That sounds like an incredible claim, but I provide primary documents and video evidence proving that he did this. And if you are moved by this story to provide a little help to myself and other victims of Mr. Kimberlin’s intimidation, such as Robert Stacy McCain, you can donate at the PayPal buttons on the right. And I thank everyone who has done so, and will do so.

Thursday, January 31, 2013

DHS Supports the Right of (Ridiculously Ineffective) Self-Defense

Via Jordan Rushie on Twitter we get this stunning video from DHS on how to survive a particular kind of deadly event...


Okay, no, that is a bit of a head fake.  That is a classic bit from South Park where they mocked those famous government training videos.  If you can’t watch, this is what you see in the video.  The residents of South Park are getting ready go up a volcano to search for some missing campers as it erupts and so the buffoonish Officer Barbrady shows them a government-created “training video” on how to survive an encounter with lava.  In it, people are told to “duck and cover” and the movie depicts the lava harmlessly going over a smiling family as they hide beneath a blanket.  In other words, it is ridiculously bad advice.

This next video is not quite as ridiculous and in all frankness a lot of the information sounds really good, but there is a problem with it.  It deals with what they call an “active shooter” situation, i.e. a gun massacre in progress:


But as the NY Post correctly points out there is one part that sticks out like a sore thumb.  The narrator argues that the best thing you can do in that situation is to flee if you can, or hide if you can’t.  And then the narrator says: “If you are caught out in the open and cannot conceal yourself or take cover, you might consider trying to overpower the shooter with whatever means are available.”  And accompanying those words are the image of a man rummaging through a drawer and finding a weapon...

DUCK AND CUTTER: A Homeland Security video shows these scenes as helpful advice to workers on what to do if a mass killer strikes their office — grab any weapon at hand, and hide under a desk.

Yes, the weapon they depict is... scissors. Let Princess Peach show you, with a picture, how that makes me feel:



Obviously in that situation the best possible defense against a gunman is a gun.  I have seen anti-gun liberals ridiculously argue that the victims in the Aurora theater shooting would have been worse off if they had a gun, because gosh someone might be hurt in the crossfire.  Of course you should be careful when using a gun in self-defense so that you only shoot who you are aiming at, but it is almost impossible to imagine how a “good guy with a gun” could have made the Aurora massacre worse.  If you read the news accounts you know that he literally shot everyone he could, and then went back to his car and only then the police stopped him and he surrendered without further incident.

Of course if you don’t have a gun for any reason, yeah, I guess a pair of scissors might be a good idea.  I mean at Ft. Hood, which was ridiculously a gun-free zone, they used anything they could:

Amid the carnage [at Ft. Hood] described Friday were moments of heroism. Spc. Logan Burnett said he saw Capt. John Gaffaney try to attack Hasan with a chair before he was shot and killed. Burnett said he also tried to throw a folding table at Hasan, but was shot in the hip before he could throw it. Burnett was shot another two times as he crawled to safety.

CW2 Christopher Royal testified that he saw Hasan chase another soldier, Sgt. Alonzo Lunsford, out of the building and shoot him before going back inside. Royal said that Hasan left the building again shortly after and began shooting at him, hitting him in the back. Royal said he saw Hasan move toward a crowded theater hosting a graduation ceremony.

“I ran to try to get there before he got there,” he said. Royal was able to tell soldiers at the theater to lock up the building.

In one of my first posts at Patterico’s Pontifications, I wrote the following in response to that story:

[T]he depressing thing in reading all of that is it also makes it clear how unnecessary these deaths were.  Reading of these soldiers having to hide behind locked doors, having to resort to throwing chairs in the hope of stopping him, it reminds you of an absolutely insane fact: this military base was a gun-free zone.  It illustrates exactly how easily this whole thing would have been stopped if only everyone was allowed to carry a gun.  And no, I am not the first person to notice.

From the missed warning signs to this gun-free idiocy, it is clear that our military bureaucracy failed those soldiers in Ft. Hood, not only failing to protect them but positively impairing their ability to protect themselves.  Their heroism is an indictment on that bureaucracy.

I mean what exactly is the logic of making a military base a gun free zone?  That you can’t trust our soldiers with guns?  I thought the entire idea of a military was to teach young men and women to be exactly the kinds of people you can trust with guns.  Oy vey!

And to return to this instructional video it’s not merely a case of saying, “okay just imagine he has a gun instead of a pair of scissors.”  For one thing, because the DHS doesn’t want to tell you to get a gun, they also don’t tell you what to do with if you have a gun.  What if, for instance, you have a gun out in preparation for self-defense and a bunch of cops come in?  Does DHS have any suggestions so that you don’t, you know, get shot?

I mean, I am not any kind of professional, but my lay answer would be something like this.  If your gun is holstered, keep it holstered and keep your hands high in the air.  If you have a gun, point it in a safe direction and in all cases, do whatever the hell the cops tell you to.  The police are surely trained to handle this kind of situation so listen to them.  And at all times try not to do anything that might make the cops afraid of you.

But the other problem is that what pervades this video is that it seems to be trying to teach people learned helplessness.  I have used that term before, but it is useful to understand it, to grasp the sheer patheticness of the concept.  This seems to be a reasonable thumbnail summary of the concept:

Learned helplessness occurs when an animal is repeatedly subjected to an aversive stimulus that it cannot escape. Eventually, the animal will stop trying to avoid the stimulus and behave as if it is utterly helpless to change the situation. Even when opportunities to escape are presented, this learned helplessness will prevent any action.

While the concept is strongly tied to animal psychology and behavior, it can also apply to many situations involving human beings. When people feel that they have no control over their situation, they may also begin to behave in a helpless manner. This inaction can lead people to overlook opportunities for relief or change.

Now watch the video again.  At every point in the video they tell you the best option you have is to flee, to hide, either behind cover or to completely disappear, make sure your cell phone is not even set to vibrate because that might give you away.  There is even a point, where it says, “help others escape if possible, but do not attempt to move wounded people.  Evacuate regardless of whether other people follow.”  Yeah, translation, “run away.  If you see someone bleeding and dying screw them.  Leave them behind.  And if your friends and loved ones won’t run when you run, screw them too.”  Live at all costs.  Don’t be a Good Samaritan and risk your life to save a wounded person, or someone too scared (or too possessed of honor) to run.  Just save yourself at all costs.

Similarly in these stills from the video you see a woman getting under her desk and pulling in her chair and trash can so no one would realize she was there unless they specifically look under the desk (a second later, you can’t even see her hands in the darkness under her desk).





I suppose they should even teach you to wear dark clothing since a neon yellow or pink is more easily spotted while hiding under a desk.  In fact, maybe you should just dress like this:



Or this:



That way the dark colors will more easily blend with the shadows.  Sure you will look strange walking down the street like that, but it beats dying, right?

Look, joking aside, if you do those things—hiding, running, leaving people behind—in that kind of situation, I won’t judge you too harshly.  There but the grace of God go I and all that, so I won't pretend to be sure of how I would approach that situation.  But if I found myself in that kind of situation, I would like to think I would do better than just surviving at all costs.  If a see a man dying, I would like to believe I would try to save his or her life.  And if I had a gun, I would like to think I would try to put a stop to the killing instead of just fleeing or hiding.

Like this man did.  From a piece discussing the massacre that didn’t happen in Aurora:

No doubt the president was unaware of the other, less-publicized lethal shooting that took place earlier in the year in Aurora, when there was only one victim, thanks to the quick thinking and action of a responsibly armed individual. Aurora police spokesman Frank Fania asked rhetorically: “Who knows what would’ve happened if the [church member, an off-duty police officer] had not been there? It certainly could have been a lot worse.”

How much worse? Could the killing spree have been as bad as the shooting at the movie theater, where a dozen victims lost their lives? Thankfully, we'll never know.

The killer in the April shooting was 29-year-old Kiarron Parker, who had just been released from prison. He had been convicted for assaulting two police officers, drug abuse, and breaking and entering.... But the point is clear: Because the perpetrator was able to claim only one life before being killed himself by someone carrying a gun and acting in self-defense, it garnered relatively little publicity.

That description frankly sells the situation a little short.  From local news coverage of the incident:

Investigators said Parker had been upset about something before the Colorado shooting Sunday. Parker had been parked somewhere with a friend when he became agitated, hopped in his vehicle and sped away, leaving the friend behind, Aurora police spokesman Frank Fania said Tuesday.

Parker sped into the parking lot of New Destiny Center church in Aurora, crashed into a car, then fired at people who came to his aid. The shooting killed Josephine Echols, 67, the mother of a pastor at the church, police said. An off-duty Denver police officer who was attending a church service then shot and killed Parker, authorities said. Denver police identified the officer as Echols’ nephew Antonio Milow, a six-year veteran of the Denver Police Department.

You can watch a video segment on the incident, here:


So Parker gets upset for some reason, drives off, crashes his car, and then starts shooting at people at random as they approach to help him and kills one woman.  That sounds like potentially the start of a massacre.  But in this case, the victim’s nephew shoots him and puts an end to it.  So it gets some local coverage, but the rest of the country generally doesn’t hear about it.

And it isn’t lost on me that the hero of that story is an off-duty cop, but there really is no reason why an ordinary citizen couldn’t do the exact same thing (unless they were prohibited by law from carrying their gun there, as often is the case with churches).  The police are not sprinkled with any magic fairy dust.  All you do is buy a gun, learn to shoot accurately, and keep it with you in case (God forbid) you need it.  It’s not rocket science.

But the liberals in charge want you to believe that you are helpless, that the best thing you can do is to survive and hope big daddy government saves you in time.  That is what all of this is really about: for you to depend on the government for everything.

But you can’t depend on the government.  Not 100% of the time.  And in all frankness, even if you could, you shouldn’t want to be able to depend on them.  Nothing less than a complete totalitarian police state with cops literally in every house, all the time, has any hope of saving you from every dangerous situation, and none of that will help you if the police themselves are the bad guys.  The reality is that if you value your freedom and privacy at all, people will find themselves in situations where their lives are in danger and they cannot wait for the police to save them.  They have to save themselves.

And in that situation, a pair of scissors won’t cut it.

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* In my mind feminist is not a dirty word and it is high time conservatives took back the word from radical feminists who have hijacked it.  At the minimum a feminist is a person who believes in equality of opportunity between men and women and reasonable legal equality.  (By reasonable, I mean that there are some very obvious biological differences that justify some distinctions.  For instance, the government can offer women, and not men, free pre-natal care.)  It does not have to be being pro-choice on abortion—although obviously many feminists are.  Rather it is being pro-choice on pretty much every subject, saying women can be doctors, lawyers, police officers and so on.  I suspect I part ways with many of my fellow conservatives when I say that I also favor allowing women to serve in combat roles on a voluntary basis, but so be it.  I hate all forms of discrimination and therefore I will not say to a woman who is fit for combat and wants to go into combat that she may not.

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My wife and I have lost our jobs due to the harassment of convicted terrorist Brett Kimberlin, including an attempt to get us killed and to frame me for a crime carrying a sentence of up to ten years.  I know that claim sounds fantastic, but if you read starting here, you will see absolute proof of these claims using documentary and video evidence.  If you would like to help in the fight to hold Mr. Kimberlin accountable, please hit the Blogger’s Defense Team button on the right.  And thank you.

Follow me at Twitter @aaronworthing, mostly for snark and site updates.  And you can purchase my book (or borrow it for free if you have Amazon Prime), Archangel: A Novel of Alternate, Recent History here.  And you can read a little more about my novel, here.

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Disclaimer:

I have accused some people, particularly Brett Kimberlin, of reprehensible conduct.  In some cases, the conduct is even criminal.  In all cases, the only justice I want is through the appropriate legal process—such as the criminal justice system.  I do not want to see vigilante violence against any person or any threat of such violence.  This kind of conduct is not only morally wrong, but it is counter-productive.

In the particular case of Brett Kimberlin, I do not want you to even contact him.  Do not call him.  Do not write him a letter.  Do not write him an email.  Do not text-message him.  Do not engage in any kind of directed communication.  I say this in part because under Maryland law, that can quickly become harassment and I don’t want that to happen to him.

And for that matter, don’t go on his property.  Don’t sneak around and try to photograph him.  Frankly try not to even be within his field of vision.  Your behavior could quickly cross the line into harassment in that way too (not to mention trespass and other concerns).

And do not contact his organizations, either.  And most of all, leave his family alone.

The only exception to all that is that if you are reporting on this, there is of course nothing wrong with contacting him for things like his official response to any stories you might report.  And even then if he tells you to stop contacting him, obey that request.  That this is a key element in making out a harassment claim under Maryland law—that a person asks you to stop and you refuse.

And let me say something else.  In my heart of hearts, I don’t believe that any person supporting me has done any of the above.  But if any of you have, stop it, and if you haven’t don’t start.

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