We are seeing intellectual dishonesty stretched to the absolute limits of remotely possible credulity after the Greenwood Mall shooting. People claiming that Eli Dicken can’t possibly be a Good Samaritan if he was in violation of the malls standing policy against armed patrons.
A “good” person, they summize, would have blindly followed the request of the mall, despite the very real increased risk the mall is asking shoppers to assume and the lack of other provisions for shopper security they provided.
I am hazarding a guess that these intellectual gymnasts don’t know the parable of the Good Samaritan very well, because Samaritans despised Jews and vice-versa, and not a rule in existence would stop them killing each other. They were actively warring at many instances. So if the Samaritan would have acted as culture dictated (mall rules) he would have been well within ‘his right’ to leave the Jewish traveler of that parable to a gruesome death. He didn’t. He acted righteously and counter to culture and saved a life.
So, when two individuals, the shooter and our hero Eli Dicken, violated the no shoes, no shirt, no service, and please bring no firearms signage, a policy that carries about as much force as a quiet fart, and then the one of those individuals who was intent on carnage was stopped within 15 seconds by the other… we are to decry the actions of the decisive and effective hero?
We cannot control someone’s actions through posted policy, no matter the force of law behind it. They either agree or they do not, and it is entirely up to them. Two people, confirmed, didn’t follow the mall’s rule that day. One of them bent on destruction, the other to protect himself as the law declares to be his enshrined right.
Self defense won.
Meanwhile, we have Uvalde…
Uvalde, which keeps getting worse, and worse, and worse…
Nearly 400 officers were involved, one of which had a shot on the shooter outside the building, others of which were behind the shooter quickly into the school, with armor and rifles, able to pressure and stop the shooter if they had accepted the mortal risks involved in pressing the gunfight…
Nobody decided. Nobody pressed through despite the risks, such as the police outside taking a shot on him while he was still outside, or officers pushing through the incoming fire to kill the shooter even if they might take a round in the process.
That second bit was a fundamental law of our USMC CQB training. 1. First Marine is going to get shot. Oh well, you have plates. 2. Push through, your team has your back. 3. Be the first Marine. Every other tactic and procedure we spun up about best and safest practices for clearing a room was shaped by those first three concepts of our mindsets.
Now, these two situations are far from parallel in any number of ways, to include the fact that the shooter in Uvalde knew he was being pursued. But that does not change the fact the some violent initiative on the part of the responding officers, instead of CYA calls to higher authority and dicking around in the hallway, had very good odds of ending the situation sooner, up to possibly making the shooter the sole casualty. We don’t know. We can’t know.
But we do know what did happen as the numerous armed officers, who live everyday in a CYA bureaucratic world, failed to stop the killer for 77 minutes. We also know what happened when a 22 year old man, armed to protect himself, kith, and kin in his day-to-day, did just that in 15 seconds against an equivalent threat, arguably a greater threat since Eli Dicken didn’t have a patrol carbine and buddy cops with carbines.
So given that almost 400 cops couldn’t protect a school, not the first example and sadly probably not the final example of security failures, but a 22 year old man, righteously armed, could end a similar situation in well under a minute, what conclusion should we draw about who is best placed to protect us?