The Seattle Shooting & Concealed Weapons

By now the only people who are unfamiliar with the terror attack at the Jewish Federation of Greater Seattle have spent the last few days in a coma.

In the coming weeks there are going to be many discussions about this incident and how to prevent it from ever happening again. One of the ideas that I have seen promoted in various places is issuing concealed weapons.

One of the advocates of this position is a commenter at Treppenwitz who had the following to say on this post.

“The lesson here is that the Federation building is one of the highest security buildings in the city, and this still happenned — without mutiple attackers, without inside knowledge of security procedure, without detailed planning. The only thing that would have stopped him is if one of the victims or bystanders was armed. American Jews should be clammoring for concealed carry permits, but the vast majority will instead delude themselves into believing that there was some way for the gov’t to disarm this evil man before he struck.”

I very much disagree with this comment. If you read the reports of the incident you will see that the terrorist forced his way into the building because he was holding a gun to the head of a young girl. He had his own human shield.

Concealed weapons would have been virtually useless at this point and if someone had decided to take one out and confront the gunman what would have happened. Here are a few of scenarios.

  1. Gunman sees said gun being trained upon him and surrenders.
  2. Gunman refuses to surrender because he has a hostage.
  3. Gunman and potential hero exchange fire potentially killing/injuring the hostage and or others nearby.

A concealed weapon is really good for deterrent purposes. Beyond that you hit a grey area that concerns me. The OK Corral makes for a good story, but life has a way of changing your plans.

If you want to have a gun in your house to defend yourself, that is fine by me. But outside of that I get a little antsy about it. Perhaps I’ll blog more about this later.

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