All the following is to be heavily documented for CYA:
“When necessary, communicate your suspicions to the safety team as quickly as possible.
“Never hesitate to contact law enforcement if you have suspicions.
“Part of your training should focus on individuals capable of identifying the signs of any potential threat and suspicious behavior such as:
“During Mass or large gatherings at your parish, conduct a minimum of one walk-around of the parking areas and exterior of building(s). Look for people inside vehicles as you may need to approach them to inquire their purpose on the property. If uncomfortable in doing so, never place yourself in harm’s way and never hesitate to contact law enforcement to be on the safe side of your decision making.”
MY COMMENT: It is this kind of fear, an unreasonable paranoia really, which risks getting you killed, for two reasons:
You’ll be pegged as the boy who cried wolf and no one will help when there’s a real emergency:
If you communicate suspicions to a security team such as “there’s a guy who’s got a confused look” they’re going to get tired of you right quick and will quit being on on the security team.
If you communicate suspicions to law enforcement, you know, calling 911, stating the location of the emergency, at a church, it is already at that point that all law available law enforcement in the region are going to risk their lives in speeding crazily to the church even before they hear the rest of the story, that it’s just a guy with a confused look, but even when they hear that, someone is still going to be dispatched, but everyone else will show up because of that. Really. But do that a couple more times and you’ll be fined and/or put in jail for wasting resources. And then no one’s going to come after that.
If you bother someone in a car in a parking lot around in WNC, you might be asking for trouble that you don’t want, someone who didn’t want someone accosting them in their car when they were just checking their phone, whatever. This is extremely imprudent, dangerous. Don’t do this.
Jane’s Revenge, a violent Marxist revolutionary group already being investigated for terrorist activities and for their plans already being enacted for terrorist activities, has stated that it wants to make the insurance risk-retention companies of their victims tired of backing institutions which are pro-life, like those who peacefully and joyfully provide diapers and baby formula[!] to (expectant) mothers (and fathers!), as well as those who provide peaceful and joyful instruction on God’s desire that we respect life from natural conception to natural death. Wait… What…? Making risk retention and insurance companies give up on clients? That’s some very serious forethought.
The reaction of the Catholic bishops is to provide their own security programs of their own risk retention insurance self-funded companies.
Programs are extremely top heavy, with emphasis on the ongoing documentation of synod of synodality style blah-blah, with so many levels of admitted CYA paper-trail oversight of oversight of oversight (literally), that the stated outcome, security, is a goal to which one never arrives, for one has made an esoteric perfection of bureaucracy into the avowed, determined, archenemy of the good. The program could literally generate thousands of pages of CYA documentation every week. Every week.
It’s so bad that the only people who would sign up to effect church security under such conditions would be the same ones who would say that any security whatsoever is an unfair affront to the entitled feelings of mass shooters, which effrontery is only what ol’ meanies do.
The programs are seemingly so purposed in their malice that they read like a manual of a secular North-East Virginia school board on how to destroy education while shooting down concerns of parents by using Merrick Garland over at the Department of Justice to call parents terrorists, parents who only want that their children are not super-sexualized by aggressive pedophilic groomers as soon as the kids are signed up for Kindergarten. In other words, the security team will be made up of Marxists ready at any second to protect the activity of mass shooters as they wipe out everyone in church, you know, by asking the mass shooters if they would like to dialogue over coffee and donuts even before the Mass is over.
What these programs hold up as the most effective structuring of the conversation is Critical Race Theory, CRT social-engineering, which in and of itself helps to promote the creation of mass shooters, and this time with authority of a respected security team which has a divine mandate, coming from a church as it does.
It’s not that the bishops are stupid. This really seems to be cynical malice on steroids and cocaine. It’s like the (Cardinal) (arch)bishops giving Holy Communion to Joey Biden and Nancy Pelosi while they come up to receive Holy Communion even while busy picking their teeth with the ribs of aborted babies. We’re not supposed to judge the interior souls of others; I’m just judging what’s presented on the outside. What the pro-abortion politicians do necessitates that they be barred from Holy Communion. The (Cardinal) (arch)bishops say otherwise. That seems like full-on anti-Christ malice. Why should a church security program from these (Cardinal) (arch)bishops be devoid of such seeming malice from hell?
Let’s go through a list of hazards that is said might well indicate a level of concern regarding mass shooters, hazards which the security team is to use for their ongoing training and readiness and mind-set. Here’s a screen shot, which will be followed by my own analysis:
Sorry for technical terms, but this list is a perfect example of “values clarification”, a pedagogical technique meant to deceive those already self-subjected to media-induced availability bias. For example, people think that legal tools of self-defense legally acquired by citizens in good standing are the reason why criminals should not be penalized for criminal usage of the same tools illegally obtained for violent purposes. That’s how powerful availability bias and “values clarification” is.
Let’s analyze that list of the bishops’ fears. Risk retention insurance policies, by definition, are marketed by fear. Let’s get into this:
High crime area: I’d like to see real stats on that. Do purposed mass shooters come from high crime areas so that mass shooters are just your normal criminals doing up some recreational shooting above and beyond their day-to-day criminality? Have we ever seen that even once? Or is it that mass shooters, wherever they are from, can go to whatever place for which they have some kind of emotional connection, or the place that is the softest target, the most ideologic target for whatever sociopathy weirdness swirls in their heads? Was the Fort Hood guy living in a high crime area? Was the Las Vegas guy living in a high crime area? Some, of course, like the Uvalde shooter, do have difficult backgrounds and are deeply troubled individuals, highly conflicted. But are such people only to be found in high crime areas? This is misleading, a distraction and, just my opinion, it is an attempt NOT to solve the problem because of purposely analyzing the problem incorrectly. Fear is not rational, and the creators of the program know this, right? They do it for money, right? Try out this statement (which is the attitude which will come across):
“We’re afraid that you’re a potential mass shooter because you live in a high crime area!”
I think we can call this a self-fulfilling prophesy, a license to kill by proxy, and getting paid for it, because with a program like this you’re creating fear, which is, again, always the most successful marketing strategy for risk-retention programs. They gotta love the death and destruction. $$$
But here’s the truth: by far the vast majority of people in high crime areas are super-decent people, kind and caring, real believers, who are suffering in their circumstances, sick of the aggression created by lenient district attorneys and liberal mayors. Most people in high crime areas simply want those in the church to be in solidarity with them. If some thug’s mom is going to church it’s not likely that he’s going to be shooting up the church. If the priest is giving Last Rites to some gangbanger’s mom at his own house, do you think he’s going to go and shoot up the church. No. But some idiots at church saying that all those living in high crime areas are potential mass shooters because of living in a high crime area is counterproductive. More programs are sold, more $$$ pocketed.
Demographics: Seriously? This is left generalized so that the security team has to read into “demographics” whatever they want. But whatever they read into “demographics” its going to be wrong. Demographics include consideration of age, gender, race, marital status, number of children, occupation, annual income, education level, homeowner or renter or homeless, political affiliation, religious affiliation, nationality, disability status, etc. We’ll get to poverty in just a bit, as it’s specifically named further down on the list. But I guess it has to be said: making a risk assessment about relative dangers of any of these or other categories that the security team has pulled out of it’s own prejudice is the kind of attitude that is going to create active shooters in the first place:
“You have been put on the most-possibly-a-mass-shooter-list because you’re black!”
This is, by definition, absolutely unapologetically in-your-face racist, Marxist CRT on steroids, and with a divine mandate, and with the adjunct authority of a security group. Outside of abortion especially targeting one particular race, this is about the most racist and disruptive thing one can do:
“We have a lot of black people in this neighborhood, so we have to be extra cautious. We need a one-to-one ratio of spotters for those dangerous black people.”
That this attitude would issue from a church, with a security team led by the pastor is either insane or very cynical, and greedy, creating fear and racism for money in selling the program. $$$
Also, just to say, we know that so very many of the heavy hitting terrorists are well educated, perhaps have families, and are likely at the top of their game in whatever it is they do, like gambling, or as university professors. Remember that guy in Las Vegas? Remember the September 11, 2001 terrorists? Sociopaths are not suffering from low IQs. They are quite consistently very high on quotient scales of intelligence. It’s just that there are currents which run deep regardless of demographics. The “demographics” thing is missing the point. After all these years, blaming demographics seems to be about as malicious as it gets in purposely missing just who it is that is going to commit a mass shooting. As it is, and just to state what is ironic and should be obvious: the guy most likely to do a mass shooting is the guy who judges that because of certain demographics it’s gotta be those other people who are a danger to existence, surely – it’s them! not me! – you know, like the Buffalo mass shooter. It makes any buyer of this risk retention program feel good about being the hero and pointing the finger at others. Then there are more mass shooters and “we haven’t been able to figure out any motive.” That’s social-engineering demographics for you. Murder by the proxy you created.
Let’s just say it: this isn’t about demographics; this is about behavior.
It’s about stopping the threat of the guy walking up to the church with a stick of dynamite lit up and wildly sparking and smoking in the one hand, and is already shooting at you with his gun in the other hand.
It’s about keeping an eye on the guy in the massive winter coat looking like he’s hiding a rifle while it’s 110 degrees outside and there’s a Biden-caused power outage that has shut down the air-conditioning on the inside. Forget the demographics.
Events after normal hours of operation: Just about every important event at church is accomplished “after normal hours of operation.” That’s how churches operate. Thus, the logic here inescapably equates office hours with “normal hours of operation,” you know, “bank hours”, nine to five, minus lunch breaks. We are therefore to assume that safety is all good on campus when the secretary is working on say, budgeting risk retention insurance company payments. Just a little overconfidence there, methinks.
Are we to risk assess late evening or super-early hours of Adoration because those are not held within “normal hours of operation”? Those are supererogatory, right? How many liberal pastors are there who even have Holy Hours at all? None? Let’s risk-assess those Holy Hours unto “normal hours of operation.” And then they won’t exist at all. No risk there.
How about risk assessing varying hours of funerals and weddings and baptisms, usually on Saturdays, not during normal hours of operation? Should we just refuse to do such things unless done during “normal hours of operation”?
How about risk assessing the always dangerous fish fry? All those non-Catholics fellowshipping with Catholics during non-office hours. DANGEROUS!
How about risk assessing the Saturday Vigil Mass, which happens to be the “Spanish Mass” filled with Mexicans. Oooo! Mexicans! Be afraid! Be very afraid! And, in the Winter, it’s night! Ooo! Night! Let’s reschedule that Mass to normal hours of operation, say, Monday at 10:00 AM, when most of our Spanish speakers, men and women, are hard at work. Mass shooter probability is therefore lowered to non-existent, right? No risk in that risk retention. Problem solved. Money raked in. $$$
And how about that early “English Mass” up across the mountain at Prince of Peace, on a Sunday morning, when all good risk retention insurance company desk-jockeys are sound asleep, not office hours? It’s Graham County. That’s already too dangerous even during normal hours of operation. We don’t even have an office on campus. Guess we’ll have to get rid of that.
And how about that ever so Traditional Mass at Holy Redeemer on a Sunday Morning? Same thing, right? All good risk retention vendors are still asleep, because it’s safest just not to get out of bed ever, except to do risk retention manipulations during banking hours, right? $$$
To be scared is to be without love. And that’s the attitude that creates active shooters. If anyone knew that events were being cancelled so as to avoid mass shooters, that’s precisely what will create a mass shooter who’s upset that the entire church and parish wasn’t cancelled from the get-go. He knows, because of this, that such a church is the softest target ever.
I’m trying to think how a pastor paying for a program that actually makes people more afraid could actually be a selling point of the program… think… think… think… I know. This is about pastors who are scared to get out from behind their office-hours desks, those who are surrounded by a series of offices with other people in the way of any shooter first, you know, so that they can hide under their desks.
Shutting down everything outside of office hours will make them feel like they’ve “done something.” This is the shut-it-all-down-because-of-Covid mentality that so many congratulate themselves for having. They are tough. They are the heroes.
Food pantries and homeless shelters: Here we go: the poor. So, the poor are singled out apart from the demographics as having to be assessed for especially being a danger as mass shooters just because they are poor? Really? Who are the freakoid monsters who wrote such things for church security? This is hateful. This has to be some elite, filthy rich, entitled Marxist college kid writing this for a church risk retention group with full satire directed against the church. Does some (arch)diocese actually use this execration? For shame. This is exactly the kind of attitude which very directly and very immediately right now creates mass shooters on behalf of, say, the Marxist Jane’s Revenge in the first place:
“You have to be dangerous as a probable mass shooter and we have proof because, like, you’re poor! We have a whole sub-team watching you! We’re scared of you! Really scared! You’re like bad and evil. You know it! We know it! STOP MAKING US AFRAID!”
What kind of person, what kind of priest, what kind of (Cardinal) (arch)bishop would take this statement on board without even blinking? And anyway, just because someone is hungry or needs a place to stay doesn’t mean that they are likely to be mass shooters; it just means they are hungry or need a place to stay. Jesus, Mary and Joseph, anyone? This is about the risk retention crowd thinking that their customers are filled with fear of people who are hungry and who need a place to stay, poor people, so that their instruction is: “Those who are hungry and need a place to stay are likely mass shooters.”
I’ll tell you what, the guy in the parish whom I most trust with my life is the most dirt poor guy in the parish. This is literally true. But the risk retention crowd capitalize on fear devoid of love. What does that say about the state of our (Cardinal) (arch)bishops and priests and those effecting this type of program?
Large amounts of cash or offerings:That‘s clever to slip in a push for having electronic collections, that is, people giving by a credit card app. No cash at all. But we have visitors. Lots of them. None of them will be signed up for any credit card app. Some want to be anonymous. Cash only. And anyway, money, I don’t care how much, is not the draw of any mass shooter. That’s the last thing they are concerned about. They figure they are going to die anyway. So why is money brought up for this program? It’s about not naming the real problem, which is the attitude with which the rest of these assessment of danger categories are presented. It’s that lying fear mongering attitude which creates active shooters in the first place. I mean, if it were actually the case that mass shooters were interested in money (never), you’d meet them at the door with a bucket of money and they would go away. But no. They’re going shoot you, then throw your money to the winds, and then they’re going to go in and shoot up the rest of the church. And then they’re going to get shot or shoot themselves. They don’t care about money. Why’s that? Because you’ve also just proven to them that they are worth nothing themselves, just a bucket of money, and that God doesn’t want them at all. They are trash, for eternity. They are only good for buying their own removal from the property.
Counseling that could be confrontational: This is surely a comment about the risk retention group thinking that priests are bad and evil, say, in the Confessional, if they do not accept as repentant those who say that they know better than God and they fully intend to keep “sinning” so as to lead the church into the niceness of continuous “sin.” If the priest doesn’t acquiesce, he’s being confrontational, and such controversy needs to be assessed. In other words, the Church is not to be a sign of contradiction with Jesus’ Cross, and the Church is instead to dumb-down doctrine and morality and instruction on the spiritual life and the Liturgy because dumbing down all that is good and holy will somehow cut down on mass shootings…. um… I’ll tell you what, it is when the church does not take people deadly seriously as Christ took us all deadly seriously that creates mass shooters in the first place. People actually want to hear “Repent and do not sin again.” If the Church were to say, “Go ahead and sin and then go to hell because I don’t care and you shouldn’t care either,” that’s when mass shooters are created in the first place.
Again, this church security team program was sent out to pastors everywhere after a spate of mass shootings and right when the FBI and then DHS upped the threat assessment for terrorism in churches and right before the cause of that threat assessment, which is reaction to the SCOTUS decision on abortion. No time to analyze the program. Just put it into action, doing something! But the program causes the problem, which sells more programs. RICO, anyone?
Television or web-based ministry where a person is frequently monitoring your safety/security teams’ position and activities:
There’s no talk of monitoring the congregants. This sounds likes it’s a public broadcast so common after idiot Covid-lockdowns of churches. Everyone is proud to be able to continue to use their tech savvy salvation beyond Covid era lockdowns. Pastors who locked everyone out of the sacraments can congratulate themselves that were right to do this from the beginning.
If it is public, that means that the position and activities of safety/security teams are also being monitored by mass shooters, who are thus being provided with up-to-the-second tactical information right up until the moment of catastrophe.
If this is closed circuit, and envisioned, as stated, to be utilized with merely frequent monitoring, this seems to refer not to anyone on any security team actively directing team members concerning possible threats, but rather to a secretary in the office with a wall monitor with a dozen camera shots opened on screen, overlapping each other, and who is busy with other things in the office, like googling cartoons to put in the next parish bulletin. That secretary will look up every hour or two, after going to the bathroom, getting another cup of coffee, maybe a donut.
Everything in this program favors the viability of mass shooters being successful in killing as many as possible. I mean, think of it. Cameras for, say, televising a Mass are going to give a good view of the altar, a good view of the pulpit. That’s it, except for the occasional panning of the congregation by Cathedral sized media operations, but not of any place in the church where security personnel would be, such as under a choir loft, or merely next to a camera in the choir loft, or behind a corner to the far sides of the sanctuary, manning the side-doors.
Just to say, if it’s on the internet, it’s wide open to the ubiquitous hackers. Easy peasy. Really. The security cameras of our own police station were hacked and being controlled from off campus, including the saved files being looped, even as officers, surprised, watched the monitor. What is it that’s being watched? Is it real time or a loop?
When it comes to actual real-time security, know this: complex=death; simple=life.
But this isn’t about saving peoples’ lives. This is about proving in court by saved footage that security teams were doing their best to be at the ready. Such proof means that it will be extremely unlikely that those suing the church for lack of care because a loved-one got shot up will be successful. The risk retention company is saved, meaning $$$ have been saved.
The reality is that risk retention groups are rarely going to pay one thin dime to anyone.
The reality is that the family of anyone getting shot up by some mass shooter is instantaneously going to get all the help they need on all levels from everyone in the parish and far beyond.
The reality is that we have the second amendment, and people need to use it. That’s the duty of care: respect and use the second amendment.
Do we have a security team? Yes. Do we instruct the congregation how things are likely to go down and what they are to do in our little tiny church, in our own unrepeatable circumstances? Frequently. Do we consult with law enforcement and have guys on hand who know what they are doing. Yep.
But the massive program of the bishops? No.
Again, no one who is competent will want anything whatsoever to do with such a program. It is made for bureaucrats who are scared of themselves, who want to congratulate themselves with more bureaucracy, that they’ve “done something.”
Doing something also includes prayer, the Rosary, the Guardian Angel prayer, a Saint Joseph prayer…
In my Diocese the official policy, regardless of any recommendations by any risk retention insurance group, is brief and to the point in the context of applicable Natural Law and State, Federal and Constitutional laws: Don’t actively encourage but don’t necessarily forbid.
Our Diocese respects the unalienable God-given right to stop any being-delivered-mortal-threat of unjust aggressors against non-aggressors.
Our Diocese respects the Second Amendment of the U.S. Constitution.
Our Diocese respects open carry laws of the State of North Carolina, which do not forbid open carrying in churches, though this can be legally blocked and that blockage legally enforced if accompanied by proper, visible signage. In my parish, I’ll expressly forbid any rifles or shotguns. I’ll also forbid open carry of any kind of weapon to those I don’t know. Sorry. I know that’ll offend some people, but that’s just the world we live in today. If they don’t depart willingly, immediately, they’ll be trespassed and it will immediately turn into a big deal. Having said that, I do not at all forbid certain individuals to open carry, who, for instance, have become well practiced in law enforcement and in the military and who are personal friends, well known to me.
Our Diocese respects concealed carry laws. I don’t forbid any legal concealed carry (but no rifles or shotguns) to all those assisting at Holy Mass. I even put up stickers at entrances to the church and social hall stating that attitude of non-forbidding, as depicted up top of this post. If someone is legally carrying concealed here in North Carolina, it means they’ve been trained up and tested and have shot their weapon of choice dozens of times and have gone through the entire spectrum of local, state and federal background checks which now includes the databases for all State mental health agencies / hospitals and all of our Federal Intelligence Agencies and Bureaus. We’re pretty thorough in North Carolina. I’m not going to command people to carry, but if they’re legally doing this, I’m not going to stop them. It’ll make me smile. :-)
Our Diocese is insisting churches have security teams. As to whether anyone who is a member of such a security team carries a weapon in whatever way is not something any pastor can require, but neither is anyone necessarily to be forbidden their Constitutional rights. It’s about walking the fine line of liability on both sides. Clever. Effective.
The CIA operator in the LifeSite video above is certain that there will be grave violence in churches during services, particularly in Catholic churches during Holy Mass, a lot of violence. Shootings. Bombings.
So, there’s a problem. A Catholic risk retention / insurance group of mid-West American bishops (Does that mean Cupich as well?) has sent out advice to pastors of parishes in America on creating church security teams that – surprise surprise – seems geared to get you killed out of respect for the tender feelings of Marxist funded terrorists. I’ll present what they say and make some comments. They begin with sarcasm and condescension:
“Remember, the goal is not to develop a church SWAT team, but to be ready and able to take action until help arrives.”
Mind you, that’s specifically about dealing with an active shooter gunning down everyone in church in real time. The idea of the program is “to be ready and able to take action until help arrives”, which literally means that such readiness and action that they have in mind has already rendered you helpless until help arrives, right? And while you wait, what happens? Everyone dies.
As a local Sheriff told me, these kinds of programs simply pave the way for a clean-up operation, the removal of corpses, the washing down of blood. These programs are not at all about actually protecting anyone.
The following is put in a shaded paragraph with red-capitalized letters and all in bold, the emphasis added by the creators of the security program. I guess they really mean it:
In case you didn’t quite get what they’re on about, so annoying is it, let’s see what they mean specifically by the actual addressing of “an active shooter”:
“A distractive weapon could be a fire extinguisher, while blunt force weapons could be objects such as heavy candle sticks or lamps which could be thrown at the intruder.”
That’s just sad. So many people will die unnecessarily.
This has to be satire, right? Are they serious about the effectiveness of throwing an entitled tantrum in front of a shooter who is pulling the trigger as fast as he can?
Anyway, it’s even worse. Zero churches are lit by electric reading lamps. Right? So…Did you just see what happened? It’s true that quite a lot of churches don’t have candle sticks on the altar, but rather have oil lamps, which, if you throw them at those nice people blowing you apart with bullets, are now Molotov cocktails setting your own parishioners and your own church on fire. You will have burned down your own church, burned your own parishioners to death. The bishops have prepared this; you will have done that:
That’s the advice. Throwing those lamps will really help, right? And since the bishops can’t imagine anyone being “mean,” they’re envisioning that these lamps be lobbed like a soft-ball. I can just see people’s hair-sprayed hair catching on fire. That will ensure absolute mayhem. Are these people stupid or malicious or both? Just satirical? Hey, Cardinal Blase, do you have an answer for us?
But, wait… are they really saying no to guns? They’re going to be careful about this. They think that not having armed security is a viable option, but let’s say you’re belligerent and do have armed security:
“If you decide that armed security is needed at your parish, it is highly recommended that you use either current law enforcement agencies/personnel or a qualified and licensed security firm, each of which, carry professional liability insurance. Before any agreement is reached or signed by the parish representative, it must be reviewed by the designated representative at the Chancery and/or […] to ensure the language and coverage is providing adequate protection to the parish/diocese. A benefit to utilizing these professions is they are required to receive regular and current methods of training to handle emergency situations. They are conditioned to make split-second decisions and can diffuse a stressful situation from escalating into a tragic outcome.”
We can’t afford that. We have no paid staff in our parish. We’re so tiny! Hired armed security, individuals whom we don’t know, is going to scare our parishioners. That’s a non-starter.
“Whereas non-professional persons engaging an attacker, are most likely not qualified to do so and could cause increased risk to themselves and others.”
Well, well. That’s an outright lie. Anyone with a weapon here in North Carolina is instructed, tested, practiced. That’s the law for concealed carry. Those on our security team are willing to take the risk of being a target, to lay down their lives for others. They won’t be a risk to anyone but mass shooters. They know what they’re doing after a lifetime of service, more than any rookie cop, or “security firm.” And I do know some of those who have worked in the security industry. I would never entrust them with protection of a church during Holy Mass. Never.
But let me be clear: in this parish pretty much every single person carries who can do so legally. And again, that means that they are instructed, tested, practiced and willing.
Our CIA friend in the video above correctly understands the threats in the last screed of Jane’s Revenge, that they are promising to move on quickly from spray paint and broken windows and arson to real violence against innocent church goers. That means mass shootings, and that means bombs. The FBI has warned the U.S. bishops that there is much credible evidence that Catholic churches, Catholic bishops, Catholic priests will be attacked the night of any SCOTUS decision reversing Roe v Wade.
And then do you know what the bishops will do? Here’s my prophesy. If it get’s real bad…
The bishops will close down the churches just like they did for Covid. “Being on Calvary with Jesus is too dangerous”, they’ll say. “Let’s run away!” they’ll say. “Catholics DO run away!” they’ll shriek. Running away from Calvary was the first collegial decision of the Apostles,” they’ll rationalize. “No more Mass anywhere at all,” they’ll insist.
But that won’t happen if we just have proper church security teams from the get-go. One of the best ways is NOT to use woke programs which insist on respecting the feelings of terrorists, letting them kill everyone “until help arrives.”
And if you think I’m exaggerating, wait until the next installment on church security on this blog providing a critique of the bishops’ wokeness on church security, playing into the hands of the terrorists all the more. Not only do the bishops create an atmosphere of welcome for active shooters, but they community-organize the creation of mass shooters using Critical Race Theory. Yep. Stay tuned.
I have much to say about this kind of thing given that DHS has trashed pretty much everything they did have for encouragement of self-protection and training (which was a lot at the time) in favor of ripping everything from their own FEMA and giving it over to a brand new agency that is still in its infancy and still sporting its first Director: CISA. The incredible magnitude of CISA’s effort in so short a time is nothing short of amazing. I’ll get to that in future. For myself, for my parish, for churches and synagogues, I have some practical suggestions at least for this locale. I’ll get to that in future as well, I hope.
For now, I would like to repeat some advice from a previous post on the old FEMA out-of-date and broken-linked effort of more than two years ago, which post has been seen by pretty much every justice department and law enforcement agency from local to state to federal, and has been visited by pretty much every educational institution, private, city, county, or state, from podunk to the ivy league, also internationally, making it one of the most visited posts ever on this blog. That post is now out of date, except for the added advice:
I would like to see among first responders to an active shooter critical incident on a church campus my own parishioners who are already on campus, and who are LEOs, military operators, or otherwise highly trained individuals who can instantly respond to and neutralize any threat, that is, those who don’t rest on their laurels, but who are frosty, always and instantly at the ready.
I would NOT like to see parishioners participating in this program who have a concealed carry permit but who, other than their first qualification just to sit in the course have never fired their stop-the-threat-tool, or have only rarely done so. I can see it now: fumbling around in a purse or ultra-complicated safety holster (with all sorts of unnecessary safeties employed on the gun itself), trying to figure out how to use for the first time red-dot sights or lasers with all their switches or not (depending), with batteries being useful or dead, with zero scenario training, zero indicator awareness, zero situational awareness, and therefore little possibility of recognizing and isolating a target and therefore being caught off guard with a lack of confidence and therefore way too much hesitation and liability to foggy confusion, and therefore with an increased possibility of causing friendly fire casualties.
I would like to see the very same parishioners and others help to get those around them out of the building or, if that’s impossible, to the floor, even while getting out their phones and calling 911 and/or (depending on the circumstances and logistics) fighting with anything at hand: hymn books, loose chairs, music stands, instruments… oneself…
But here’s where the importance of a plan comes in, when everyone should know their part to play, so that flight or dropping to the floor is important so as to give clear access to defenders who have the proper tools to stop to a threat (regardless of policy on firearms), therefore reducing the possibility of a friendly fire causality. The placement of defenders in good positions of situational awareness and the possibility of responding is key.
Flight-hide-fight. This is about love.
But in viewing that church shooting video above, one more point needs to be added. I praise the church for having a security team and for allowing firearms in church for self-defense. That team might have been trained up well. But…
There were four fellows who drew their weapons – a couple of them moving from left to right in the foreground aisle – and I don’t know if those latter two were on the security team or not. They could just be visitors trying to help out. They might have been well trained, even military or police, but lost it when the adrenaline hit, perhaps falling back on house clearing training for SWAT or military. But even then – sorry – they’re not doing that well. Those two don’t have a target as the perp is already on the ground behind the pews. Those two are super dangerous to all around them. They’re continuously flagging their fellow parishioners with the muzzles of their own weapons. If that’s just because of adrenaline and they have their fingers on their triggers, they might have extremely easily pulled the trigger in the chaos. If they were that controlled by the adrenaline (and there are ways to control it, and use it), they might just as well have pulled down the muzzle had they had to pull the trigger, again risking hitting not the perp but another parishioner. In this kind of a situation – with no target in sight and lots of people in between – they should have had their weapons high entry, so to speak, not low entry and certainly not aimed right at other parishioners the entire time. It’s high because if you draw up, in this situation, you’re directly flagging the very ones you want to protect.
No one gets out of training. Churches present a different situation from SWAT or military house clearing, as the above video makes evident. Military and Law Enforcement exceptions are not to be made in scenario based training with the exact incident in the video above as evidence of this. Everyone dismisses the soft target as that which is easy to protect. The opposite is true, especially because of this attitude. “I got this!” is the typical exclamation based on truly heroic careers of those who have been highly decorated for their bravery in violent incidents. I get that. It’s the temptation of any and all to rest on their laurels when it comes to soft targets. It is what it is. Unless there is scenario based training also for the differences of high entry and low entry, even the greatest of heroes isn’t to be on the security team. We don’t need anyone thinking “they have this”. Watch those two guys in the foreground of the video above again. That’s as scary as the active shooter guy.
Just because you own a tool doesn’t mean you know how to use it. Even if you have your drills down, that doesn’t mean you have your scenario practice in. And that certainly doesn’t mean you have situational awareness skills or deescalation skills. I’m NOT claiming I’m great at any of those, but I do some study. I try to keep up. I think that’s an obligation for everyone who carries. It’s a service to society to carry. Just make sure you have at least some competence.
Let’s look at some stills:
In the picture above the defender in the top middle circle has already taken down the perp and has his weapon pointed at him with clear line of sight. Great!
The defender in the white shirt and black vest at the top left has his weapon drawn low entry. Not great for the circumstances. If he does have to draw up, he will have to flag his own parishioners. Not good. He should be high entry. But he’s clearly scanning and taking in the situation as it really is. Perfect. I like this guy.
Meanwhile, the guy in the dark maroon shirt has his weapon pointed directly at our defender up top as he moves along flagging everyone in front of him. NOT good at all. I’m guessing he’s a visitor. But even then he should see that the guy up top has dropped the perp and is simply keeping a bead on him, and not shooting others. The defender guy up top is NOT the perp.
Let’s move on a nanosecond:
In the picture above we see the defender guy up top still with a bead on the perp, and the guy in the upper left still at low entry – we’ll let that go – but he’s still scanning and evaluating. Great!
But the guy in the maroon shirt in the lower center of the above picture is still aiming directly at his security team guy who took down the perp. What the heck? This guy has gotta be a visitor. But even so, he should be noticing the guy to the upper left, where he is instead looking, and note that he’s low entry. But, not at all. This guy in the maroon shirt, in my opinion, is dangerous. Look, I wasn’t there. I wasn’t in the scene. I wasn’t filled with adrenaline. I didn’t suffer tunnel vision. I’m sure the guy means well, but, the point is, he needs some training or retraining for how to do up things in a church.
Let’s move on a nanosecond:
The hero defender guy – unmoving – still has a bead on the perp. Great!
You would think the guy in the maroon now all the way to the right, would have figured things out by now, but he’s still flagging everyone and still has a bead on the hero defender. Dang. Who the heck is he?
The guy in white shirt and black vest in the upper middle left circle, still really low entry now, has already figured out the outcome, light years ahead of the guy in the maroon shirt. Great.
Now we see another guy in black to the far left. He’s also flagging everyone, but really seems to be aiming right at the two defender guys in the middle top. Dang. These guys might have plenty of laurels to rest on and be great heroes for whatever they’ve done in the past – even both have Congressional Medals of Honor for that matter – and I’m not denigrating them… it’s just that, seriously, any training has gone out the door and they have no clue as to what they are doing, flagging everyone and not noticing the two defenders are looking somewhere else and NOT shooting anymore. Those three should all be high entry…
What I’m saying is this: Scenario based training in the environment in which you are going to be a defender is important. Churches and synagogues are much different than “kill house” training, you know, house-clearing training. It’s not enough to carry. It’s not enough to know your drills. You have to know how to approach a situation. You have to know how to read a situation.
Again, I’m the armchair pundit here. I’m a zillion miles away from that church. I wasn’t there. I didn’t have the adrenaline pumping. I didn’t suffer from myopic vision because of adrenaline. All I’m saying is that there is a world of difference – easily between life and death – between the two defenders up top and the two to either side. It’s not enough to have a security team even made up of war heroes and law enforcement. This is a different situation. It’s a soft target that’s actually more difficult to defend.
I have a number of FFL friends, that is, those who are Federally Licensed to sell Firearms. They tell me stuff. I heard something just now that provided an obvious next step to be brain-stormed and implemented as a Federal program – so that’s it’s consistent throughout the nation – but whose input is especially from local law enforcement vetting “if you see something, say something” information.
The idea would be to have a dedicated web-page with a color coded threat scale for a particular region. People would take a regional threat scale much more seriously than something as generic as North America or the contiguous United States. With the color coding for a local region, no one could game the system and have any certainty of results for any desired fame and notoriety: they said something and the coding changed, but they don’t know why.
What happened is that a guy showed up at an FFL and creeped out my friends so badly that they called law enforcement to listen in ever so nonchalantly to the lengthy conversation. Mind you, these FFL guys had been sworn law enforcement themselves and they’ve seen about everything and don’t get creeped out over nothing. The on-duty guys couldn’t catch out the guy in conversation and so left. But the guy was so creepy, going into the finest detail of the recent shootings, and into the finest detail of what he wanted to be able to do with the most damaging ammo in the most damaging way to the human body that the FFL guys called the on-duty law enforcement guys again.
I’m NOT talking about red-flag laws here. I’m talking about warnings to those who could alert security teams of churches and schools that there is a possible risk in the local region, you know, by color coded levels of threat. Again, just for, say, regions of a state.
Rule One: When a shooter appears, everyone in church, if they cannot immediately escape, hits the deck. The shooter will remain standing, but now he’s the obvious target for those tasked with security; he is “acquired” and “isolated” with no one to hide behind. Those tasked with neutralizing the threat will know what to do depending on the policies of the church, either rushing him until he is immobilized (with possibly lots of people needlessly being killed in this scenario) or by – on their own authority in this diocese – using the proper tools to deal with him (with possibly much fewer people being gravely wounded, maimed or killed).
Rule Two: When a shooter appears, everyone in church, if they cannot immediately escape, hits the deck.