Letter Protectors inflict the most damage
Thursday, September 6, 2012
The Aug. 24 Columbian online story reported: "Update: 2 killed, 9 wounded outside Empire State Building." Ah, whether we should fear our police force or the madmen of the world with guns — that is the question. When, in a single incident, nine out of 10 innocent people struck by bullets sustained their wounds from their protectors, one may be justified to pause and ponder.
There is nothing friendly about friendly fire; it kills and injures just as much as if it's coming from the enemy. Excuses won't do. Yes, they had only seconds to react, but they had their man in sight, they knew their target, and he was in close proximity. These officers are professionals; they are specifically trained to effectively respond to such a situation, have practiced the use of their guns, and are expected to remain reasonably calm. As it happens, any video game enthusiast could have done better shooting the gunman without mowing down the surrounding involuntary audience with enough lead to drop King Kong from his favorite perch nearby.
It might be time to re-evaluate candidate selection standards, police academy approaches, and fashion means to ensure their graduates have not a tendency to panic under pressure.
Michael E. White