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  1. #11
    Join Date
    May 2000
    Location
    Beyond The Wall
    Posts
    45,663
    My comments -

    Quote Originally Posted by LawDog View Post
    The biggest problem I see is a problem that crops up everywhere these days: They are focused only upon a nuclear event, and have no thoughts or plans for anything less.

    Yes...I agree with that but the other side of the coin is minimizing everything into a complacent routine. A drunk with a messianic complex may be more likely than a squad of ISIS tangoes...but not that much more common.

    I know that we live in a world where there is the possibility of a nut-job with a shotgun walking into the auditorium and trying to slaughter everyone. But I also know that the statistical odds of facing that threat are on par with the odds of winning the lottery without purchasing a ticket. Furthermore, that threat is actually among the easiest to respond to. It's purely an exercise in marksmanship.

    I disagree. Some quick facts from my research...which may not be as accurate as i would like...meaning there may be more


    • Studies indicate that the rate at which public mass active shooter incidents occur has tripled since 2011.
    • In 2017 there was a total of 30 active shooter incidents in the United States.
    • Between 1982 and 2011, a mass active shooter incident occurred roughly once every 200 days.
    • Between 2011 and 2014 that rate has accelerated greatly with at least one mass shooting occurring every 64 days in the United States.


    Moreover, statistics are a cold comfort when it happens to you



    The situations that are far more likely, and far more difficult to address, will involve domestic disputes between fellow members that spill over into the Church; homeless inebriates that sneak in seeking shelter; violent schizophrenics that come in with questions about God (and maybe a knife); teenage delinquents checking for unlocked cars during the service; and other dangers that cannot be addressed by simply shooting them in the face.

    No, agreed...that requires a degree of hands on physicality, tasers, etc. While tasers may be the easy button, I doubt the Texas event so publicized recently would have been as easy to handle by the retired community if it had been a big muscular pissed off satanic drunk.


    Every Church will have different needs. A small, rural congregation on a large plot of land shouldn't have many shelter-seeking bums. A Church that is packed into a city block in a metropolitan area may face a continuous battle to prevent the urban outdoorsmen from filtering in to use the toilets and sleep on the pews. While we should seek to help the poor, we should not be unmindful about the hazards they pose. These are the dangers that a security team should focus on. Before you develop a plan for how to deal with a bomb-vest-wearing hadji, first develop a plan for how to deal with a drug-addicted dad without legal custody of his child trying to forcibly kidnap his own daughter from Sunday School.

    I think the biggest weakness in the church culture is their desire to be nicer than God Himself.
    Gabriel Suarez

    Turning Lambs into Lions Since 1995

    Suarez International USA Headquarters

  2. #12
    Join Date
    Apr 2005
    Location
    Exiled in Texas
    Posts
    7,077
    Quote Originally Posted by Gabriel Suarez View Post
    Statistics are a cold comfort when it happens to you.
    That one line explains so much of what we do. Statistically, I'll never need a gun. Statistically, 99% of the people in the world are good, honest people and will help you in an emergency. But we lock our doors, alarm our houses, arm ourselves, train for violence, and remain vigilant because of the 1%. I have no problem with training for the black swan event. My use of statistics hopefully will not deter anyone from preparing for an active shooter. But I would suggest to people that they not lose sight of the much more common crimes that might befall them.

    My wife teases me for occasionally missing obvious things because I am distracted by "looking for ninjas up in the trees." I'm not actually looking up into the trees, and I'm not expecting to be attacked by ninjas. But I have almost fallen on my face because I am scanning a crowd for threats rather than looking at the broken sidewalk in front of me.

    We would both laugh at the 300-pound prepper with a full plate carrier and $5k AR, because we know that diabetes will kill him before ISIS will. While that analogy doesn't fit this discussion perfectly, it still illustrates that some people ignore the more likely danger and instead focus on their dream danger.

    Even if the odds of facing an active shooter have tripled, it's still a black swan event. If my odds of winning the lottery were three times better than yesterday, I still wouldn't waste the money on a ticket.

    I'm all for being prepared for an active shooter. I know that my own skills bias is coloring my view of the situation, but I personally don't see the active shooter scenario to be all that difficult to prepare for. I suppose for some people, though, it's a different scenario. The J-frame guy who never trains beyond five yards might die of a heart attack if he had to face an AK-shooter at 50 yards. I feel pretty confident taking long shots, and the skills don't seem all that hard to master. I worry a lot more about wrestling with a guy who has needles in his pocket and hepatitis. If I pull myself out of my own body for a minute, and try to evaluate it from more of an "average person's" position, then I can see your point. The average shooter would be well served by developing more surgical precision at longer ranges.

    I keep rewriting this because I don't want it to be obnoxiously long. I get your point. My worry is that people will spend time training for a one-in-a-million event and as a consequence be unprepared for the one-in-a-thousand event.
    Virtute et Armis

  3. #13
    Join Date
    Oct 2003
    Posts
    15,677
    Also, check with your insurance provider. See what they might have to help you. See what they will cover. See what they won't cover.
    I rather you hated me for who I am than love me for who I ain't!
    This Ain't the Movies, and You Ain't John Wayne!

    Sometimes it is entirely appropriate to kill a fly with a 12 pound sledgehammer!
    TRAIN HARD= SOONER OR LATER YOU"LL NEED IT!

  4. #14
    Join Date
    Mar 2013
    Posts
    1,290
    This discussion exposes an important part of deciding what we do and what we choose to prepare for:

    Risk.

    I think most people don't think in terms of risk. They think in terms of probability.

    "this is unlikely to ever happen to me, therefore I won't take actions to be prepared for it".

    But in reality, probability shouldn't be the only factor in determining what we choose to prepare for.

    What should instead drive our preparations and thinking is risk: probability of an event + cost if it happens.

    We prepare for low-cost, high-probability events - we keep bandaids and ibuprofen in the house, a flashlight on our person, that sort of thing, because there is a relatively high probability that we will need to use them, but really the cost for not having them is not high.

    We prepare for high-cost, low-probability events - some emergency food, fire extinguishers, a blow out kit, a shotgun next to the bed, and a pistol in our belt - because even though the likelihood of needing those items is relatively low, the cost for not having them in an incident is very high.

    If you have any high-cost, high-probability events, think about changing your lifestyle. :)

    And we probably need not concern ourselves with low-cost, low-probability event - things unlikely to happen, and which are uncostly to us. Or at least they should concern us last.

    Now, That is obviously a spectrum (well, really a matrix) and events can fall all over, and depending on location and other specifics some events may fall higher on the cost/probability spectrum for one person or organization than for another.

    Crazy homeless person walking into urban church during services? Absolutely possible. Happened to me as a missionary during a baptism. The stinky old hag started going on about being the incarnation of Jesus Christ, and grabbed a missionary's ass before we carried her out of the chapel (that was a lesson on locking our doors). medium probability, potentially medium / high cost. Definitely worth preparing for.

    Active shooter? Maybe lower on the probability spectrum, sure. But very high cost.

    Domestic at church? I'd throw it up as more probable than a crazy homeless person walking into church. Also high cost.

  5. #15
    Join Date
    Jan 2005
    Posts
    577
    Quote Originally Posted by toolman View Post
    Good advice above. To the original question, put radios with the remote staff. Get some that can monitor two channels, like the BTech MURS or GMRS models. Put the team on one channel and the remote staff on the other. Next, lock the doors after services and classes start. That greatly reduces risk all by itself. Then develop the ability to conduct scenario based, force on force exercises. Train monthly. You will soon learn what works and what doesn't. Not everyone has to be armed but you make that call yourself based on what you see in training.

    Thank you for your helpful input, toolman. Good thoughts on the two channel radios.

    We do lock the doors to reduce down to a single point of access.

  6. #16
    Join Date
    Jan 2005
    Posts
    577
    Quote Originally Posted by LawDog View Post
    My Church is likewise in the process of trying to implement some kind of training. We have decent video overview, well-rehearsed lockdown procedures, and an abundance of pistol-packing grandmas. They have radios (Wal-Mart-special GMRS radios) but they never use them. The biggest problem I see is a problem that crops up everywhere these days: They are focused only upon a nuclear event, and have no thoughts or plans for anything less.

    I know that we live in a world where there is the possibility of a nut-job with a shotgun walking into the auditorium and trying to slaughter everyone. But I also know that the statistical odds of facing that threat are on par with the odds of winning the lottery without purchasing a ticket. Furthermore, that threat is actually among the easiest to respond to. It's purely an exercise in marksmanship.

    The situations that are far more likely, and far more difficult to address, will involve domestic disputes between fellow members that spill over into the Church; homeless inebriates that sneak in seeking shelter; violent schizophrenics that come in with questions about God (and maybe a knife); teenage delinquents checking for unlocked cars during the service; and other dangers that cannot be addressed by simply shooting them in the face.

    Every Church will have different needs. A small, rural congregation on a large plot of land shouldn't have many shelter-seeking bums. A Church that is packed into a city block in a metropolitan area may face a continuous battle to prevent the urban outdoorsmen from filtering in to use the toilets and sleep on the pews. While we should seek to help the poor, we should not be unmindful about the hazards they pose. These are the dangers that a security team should focus on. Before you develop a plan for how to deal with a bomb-vest-wearing hadji, first develop a plan for how to deal with a drug-addicted dad without legal custody of his child trying to forcibly kidnap his own daughter from Sunday School.
    Thanks, LawDog. We're definitely thinking broader than just an active shooter scenario, although you've raised a couple I hadn't considered.

  7. #17
    Join Date
    Aug 2005
    Posts
    2,768
    One other point... don't neglect to include the local police or sheriff's department in your planning and operation. At least try to schedule a meeting to talk to someone. If they are rolling hot to your location, they should at least be aware that the church has a security team and have as much information as possible before hand.
    "No plan survives contact with the 82nd Airborne Division."
    "Zen? Meh! Who needs it? All that effort to achieve nothingness and what do you got? Bupkis!"

  8. #18
    Join Date
    Oct 2003
    Posts
    15,677
    Most of our thoughts here go to the security end of the spectrum= which is to be expected seeing who we are. At our church we call it a safety team which also incorporates medical, fire etc. The likely hood of you having some kind of medical emergency is greater than a security one in most areas. AEDs, CPR trained folks and other medical supplies and training should be part of the set up. AND again those things do cost money and a commitment from both the leadership and the people doing the job- both in financial and time. For what it is worth, leadership and general congregation will understand the need and support "safety" a lot easier and quicker than "security". You can piggy back security related items and training on the medical side (radios can be used for both, medical supplies for mass causalities, lock down/evacuation drills for both).

    As suggested above, involve the local fire department/EMS folks in your plans and training (as well the LLEA)
    I rather you hated me for who I am than love me for who I ain't!
    This Ain't the Movies, and You Ain't John Wayne!

    Sometimes it is entirely appropriate to kill a fly with a 12 pound sledgehammer!
    TRAIN HARD= SOONER OR LATER YOU"LL NEED IT!

  9. #19
    Join Date
    Jan 2005
    Posts
    577
    Quote Originally Posted by Ragsbo View Post
    Most of our thoughts here go to the security end of the spectrum= which is to be expected seeing who we are. At our church we call it a safety team which also incorporates medical, fire etc. The likely hood of you having some kind of medical emergency is greater than a security one in most areas. AEDs, CPR trained folks and other medical supplies and training should be part of the set up. AND again those things do cost money and a commitment from both the leadership and the people doing the job- both in financial and time. For what it is worth, leadership and general congregation will understand the need and support "safety" a lot easier and quicker than "security". You can piggy back security related items and training on the medical side (radios can be used for both, medical supplies for mass causalities, lock down/evacuation drills for both).

    As suggested above, involve the local fire department/EMS folks in your plans and training (as well the LLEA)
    Thanks, Ragsbo and Kabar. This is the path we're going. It's being called a safety team and we're planning to train for medical, fire, etc. We have an AED on site already. Our local PD is very supportive and I will push for us to involve them.

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