April 8, 2011

Safer Streets 2011: Dodger Stadium to Be Safer?

Dodger Stadium has summoned past LAPD Chief William Bratton to supervise Security for Dodger Stadium in the wake of the beating of Paramedic Bryan Stow and others.

But there are some elements which need to be examined in expectations. Not to cause trouble, but reasonable is reasonable.

When it comes to violence, police have no duty to protect individuals from the criminal acts of others. Also, the mission of Security is not to protect guests, but to act as the Loss Prevention Wing of the corporation. Not guests.

I have two words for you: Citizen Involvement. I also have other words for you: Carlsbad, and Tucson, not to mention another two more words, Todd Beamer.

Todd Beamer of United Flight 93 applied a concept which was developed by the Los Angeles Police Department during the administration of Chief Daryl Gates, the less-than-lethal concept of the Swarm. A lot of SWAT teams adopted the swarm tactic.

As a technique of dynamic entry of SWAT teams, it was most dramatic in the experience of Flight 93 for the very same purpose: to dominate the site before the assailants can operate firepower or other weapon. It was also found in Carlsbad, California when bystanders dog-piled on an active shooter at a children’s school, and, of course, it was a dog-pile of Joe Zamudio and others who stopped and apprehended shooter Jared Loughner.

(I still want to know if gun owners were admonished beforehand not to wear their sidearms at the get-together in Arizona. Loaded sidearm is commonplace in Arizona, and I was wondering if they were asked not to come armed.)

In this case of Dodger Stadium, it wasn’t a rifle, handgun, or box cutters; it was bare fists of two men.

For Dodger Stadium this week, there is a great deal of talk about family environment. A lot of talk about law enforcement consultation and solution. A great deal of talk about profiling guests, and talk about the difference between security in seats and security in the parking lot. The American people are getting tired of reasons why it can’t be safe and sacrifices to trade rights for safety only to see that it still isn’t getting done.

How about affirming a civil right as the solution? When California lifted the civil right of being armed, it made the guests subject to both thugs and the system. That’s not a solution, that’s a social engineering blueprint America is beginning to resent as it is cloned to other issues.

The swarm tactic of civilians can be summoned by an outcry for assistance, especially when witnesses are already familiar with the incident. “Let’s roll!” has proven to be a lifesaver when activated on very short notice.

Of course, every citizen has the authority to stop a crime in progress, and such actions are praised by police as Good Samaritans. Citizens may get a scraped knee or a loose tooth from the experience, but two things could happen as they did in Carlsbad and in Tucson: the aggressor can be stopped and the aggressor can be apprehended and held for police. How many other cases of the dog-pile or bystander swarm are there this month around the country?

Smart or foolish? Well, things get a lot worse while waiting for police. It’s bad advice to turn your back on your attacker, and the swarm tactic is proven. Outside California, armed citizens throughout nearly any right-to-carry state just don’t seem to present the problems outlined by the anti-gun crowd. Gun ownership and carry are not a matter of having a weapon, it is more; it is an aggregate of knowledge, training, good judgment, the spirit of refusing to be a victim, a legal right and authority to act in the absence of police, and the general fact that the right-to-carry states have not been given a reason to regret their affirmation of the armed citizen. Might be best to consult them.

Reports have it that one hundred witnesses saw the thugs beating Paramedic Stow and others that day. One calling out ‘SWARM’ or even a “Let’s roll!” might have helped. What has happened to that spirit? Seems to be alive and well everywhere but L.A.

Maybe a lock-down would have been a great idea, too, in support of the ‘Rollers’ who apprehend the bad guys. How long did it take for security even to be notified?

Being in touch with the guests and listening to the idea of repealing gun laws as a matter of affirming a civil right would be in the right direction. Ignoring the lesson of forty-eight other states will keep guests on their own.

John Longenecker is author of Even Safer Streets 2011 – The Second Amendment as a Mainstream value.

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