Mass shootings, murders, and general assholery is a major problem these days. I’m not going to get into the reasons why (because as I mentioned above, I don’t want to go down that road of ridiculousness). I want to give you some tools that you can use to help survive certain situations should they arise around you. In the Air Force, we’re trained to respond to active shooters with Run, Hide, Fight. I’ve seen a similar mantra tossed around in different circles, but they all seem to use the same concept.
First, if an active shooter is around you, run. Plain and simple Try and get as far away from the douchebag as fast as you can. Help others around you, but get away. Don’t get cornered in an office or another part of the building if you can help it. This isn’t the time to be a hero; it’s the time to save your skin and others if possible. Run. Run fast. Your life depends on it.
Second, if you can’t run, then hide. Barricade yourself in a room, lock the doors and be as quiet as possible. Do everything you can to separate yourself from the shooter or shooters. Be aware that bullets go through drywall and doors easily, so know the difference between cover vs. concealment. A shooter can spray a room from the outside and it can be deadly. Also, silence any electronic devices you may have on you. Nothing will ruin a hiding spot quicker than a phone ringing or vibrating. It’s a very distinct sound and can draw the shooter’s attention.
Finally, if all else fails, and there are no other options, you must fight. Find anything you can to use as a weapon and be as violent as possible when you attack. If you’re in the final part of this Run, Hide, Fight process, there are no other options, so you must give it your all. A pen can make an effective weapon or a fire extinguisher. Use numbers in your favor and attack en masse. You might be saying, well if I go to attack and expose myself, I might get hurt or killed. True. You might get killed. But if you do nothing, you might get killed anyway. As I said, fight is the last option. Below I’ve linked an interesting article on using a tactical pen. I've also linked a video that explains these steps in a little more depth.
Everyone is different and reacts differently to high-stress, life-threatening situations. You never truly know how you will react until you find yourself in said situation. Reading a blog post on the subject isn’t going to be the end-all-be-all of surviving a bad situation. However, you can perhaps increase your odds if you think about it, make a mental game-plan, and train. Train for self-defense. Train for disarming attackers. I’m not a fan of using violence to solve problems; however, I do truly believe that sometimes violence is the only answer.