Why do some people choose to go into a school seeking to kill as many people as possible? What is the reason behind this? How do we stop them? When and where will the next massacre be? Easy questions to ask but very hard questions to answer. One thing is for certain. There is a cause. There is a thing that causes these murderers to commit these heinous atrocities. What is that thing?
"It's not about what's in their hand, it's about what's in their head." - Lt. Col. Dave Grossman.
Without question, the tool these people hold in their hands is of little consequence. Firearms cannot be the cause. China has experienced several massacres with knives and axes. In December of 2012, a man in China stabbed 23 children and an elderly woman in a primary school. Weapons used in Chinese mass attacks include cleavers, box-cutters, knives and even an axe.
The largest mass murdering in history took place in Norway. The man killed 69 people and injured 110 more. He impersonated a police officer and was the only man on the island with a gun. Norway's gun laws didn't save them.
A brief browsing of the FBI statistics on weapons used in murders in the US from 2007-2011 include firearms of all sorts. However, I discovered that in each year listed, knives and cutting instruments killed more people than rifles. In fact, rifles and shotguns killed a combined 3918 people from 2007-2011 while knives and cutting instruments killed 8967 people in the same time frame. That's more than double those killed by rifles and shotguns combined.
The point here is this: Human beings will kill with incredible ingenuity. They don't need firearms. If one isn't present, we will make due with something else. 4,055 people were murdered from 2007-2011 with what the FBI calls "Personal Weapons" i.e.: hands, fists, feet, etc. and this doesn't count death by asphyxiation (that was listed as a separate category).
The tool is not why people murder. The tool is not the motivation behind a man deciding to kill 69 people at a youth camp in Norway. Nor is a knife the motivation behind why 24 people were stabbed at a Chinese primary school. The motivation is in the sick head's of the murderers. The common denominator all these incidents have is this: people.
People choose how to use the tools. A firearm used for hunting a deer suddenly becomes a life-giving tool to provide food with. A knife used as a scalpel in an operating room becomes a life saving tool. An axe used to chop firewood helps to give you fuel for a fire which gives you heat which can save your life if you are outdoors in the cold. All of these tools do as the person wielding them commands. They have no capacity to do anything of their own accord. They need a master.
Do not be fooled when someone says "Guns kill x number of people per year" or "knives kill ...". Those tools kill no one. Human beings kill human beings. Period. We desire to focus on the tool because it shields us from the reality that another human being chose to end the life of another person. We don't want to and can't think about that. It scares us too much. However, if we are to protect ourselves and our loved ones, we must face reality. The reality is that some people choose to kill other people. They willingly take up a tool (knife, gun, axe, poison, etc.) and kill with it. We must admit this if we are to protect ourselves.
Always remember that people kill due to sick mind's and souls. The tool is not the cause. The tool carries out the will of its master. A hammer can be used to build a home or crush someone's skull. Whether the hammer is building a house or smashing a skull, it is doing the same thing. It is being swung in the air and made to impact a target. That's it. The only thing that changes is the target. The person has chosen to hit another person instead of hitting the nail. The tool hasn't changed, but the target and the intention of the person wielding it has.
"It's not about what is in their hand, it's about what is in their head." - Lt. Col. Dave Grossman.
The Warrior Speaker Blog is a collection of warrior lessons Alexander has learned in addition to practical information about protecting yourself and all that you deem most personal.