20/20 Segment – How Would You Do?

Here’s the segment 20/20 ran on the shooting incident:


Raise you hand if you carry a retention holster concealed at 1:00?  No takers?  But even with a good holster, from an active shooter point of view, that lecture hall is a death trap.

Guns aren’t magic devices that allow you to prevail against another armed person 100% of the time. Even a well trained police officer would have a difficult time drawing from concealment and firing in this situation, without taking a hit himself.  I don’t feel too confident I would do all that much better than these kids.  It’s a small, intimate lecture hall, some concealment but no good cover, and no way to easily move.  20/20s implication is that because there are some situations where a gun isn’t going to do you any good that there are no situations where a gun will do you any good.  Let’s look back at the event that 20/20 exploited for this piece of journalistic garbage:

About halfway through class we heard the noises. Someone said something like, “It’s probably just construction.” The noises didn’t stop. The teacher stiffened up and said “That’s not what I think it is, is it?” That’s when I remember going into panic. I pointed at the teacher and said, “put that desk in front of the door, now.” She did it, and then said “someone call 911.” Colin to my right stood up and called 911.

At that point, the door was nudged open aggressively, and I saw a gun emerge into view. It was surreal. Following the gun was a man. He was Asian and had a lot of ammunition and gun gear on — like a big utility belt or something for ammo. That was the only glimpse I got. I quickly dove under a desk — that was the desk I chose to die under. He then began methodically and calmly shooting people down. It sounded rhythmic — like he took his time in between each shot and kept up the pace, moving from person to person. After every shot I thought, “OK, the next one is me.” Shot after shot went off and I never felt anything. I played dead and tried to look as lifeless as possible. Sometimes after a shot, I would hear a quick moan, or a slow one, or a grunt, or a quiet, reserved yell from one of the girls.

Let me ask you this, if you were in this situation, would you rather have a gun, or would you rather imagine yourself too stupid to use one, like 20/20 says you are?  Would you rather be under a desk waiting to die?  Would you feel safe with a cell phone in your hand, as 20/20 recommends, rather than a Glock?

I can’t help anyone who says they would rather be a sheep waiting for the slaughter, though I have no doubt some would, but I suspect most sensible people can see 20/20s assertion for the bullshit that is, and would see the utility of a gun in this situation.

UPDATE: Brillianter has more.

23 thoughts on “20/20 Segment – How Would You Do?”

  1. First thing I would have done was hit the ground and get into concealment. I’d draw my gun and then scurry to a different location than the one I was just sitting at. Then I’d pop up from a totally different location and shoot back.

    That “test” had the deck so blatantly stacked against the armed “student” that any idiot could see that the armed “intruder” (who was actually a cop and knew exactly who had the gun in the classroom) went straight to shooting the armed student, instead of the people scrambling to get out.

    Now if the intruder had no clue who was armed, the outcome would have most likely been different.

    That “test” was designed to fail.

  2. Not only is the retention holster a bad idea, but did anyone notice the belt ~3:15 in?! He could barely draw after the “simulation” because the flimsy dress belt wouldn’t support the holster. They may as well given them one of those TSA padlock holsters.

    I didn’t watch this before so they wouldn’t get ratings or internet points from me. Probably should have skipped it altogether to prevent the brain damage from the facedesking it provoked.

  3. Guys,

    This is what to expect. This is how these people roll. I like their admission of how their training is more comprehensive than state training. How funny they think that the state is supposed to train you how to shoot, and not to see if you are capable of handling the weapon.

    There are so many bad points in this. The plants in the room from ABC to “replicate the chaos,” The kid with the gun NOT seeking cover and having clothing that is not conducive for concealment. This was hit job plain and simple. Put Massad Ayoob in the room with some Master level IDPA guys and see what happens. LOL!

  4. You know after watching this whole thing again (Don’t worry I won’t do that anymore). ABC is actually coming out in support of IDPA/IPSC. Their adage of “training” or practicing under stress as “they” do. I would say that my practice (IDPA) which gives me a chance to utilize my training under stress fulfills all the requirements for which ABC thinks I need in order for me to carry a gun and use it proficiently. Actually from what I have seen from the majority of law enforcement when they do come to matches I would say that I am more than proficient considering their ability under the same circumstances.

    Now when is that objective piece on IDPA going to come out?


  5. i want to see the whole scenario run again with an active shooter who wasn’t the Bethlehem, PA ERT (SWAT) shooting instructor and didn’t know that there was a defender. i’m not going to outshoot this guy any day of the week, but then again, none of the active shooters in history had anything like his skills. when you add in the fact that the “defenders” were always located in the same seat, front and center, it was like shooting fish in a barrel.

  6. IWB wouldn’t be a retention holster would it? I think you’d have a fighting chance with an IWB at 1:00. I’d hate to try to break retention on a holster at 1:00 from concealment.

  7. I want to see this senario run through with no guns in the classroom. How many get out alive? How many get out of the next class?

  8. Pingback: SayUncle » Rigged
  9. It seems the only thing 20/2000 (legally blind) is comfortable with seeing slaughtered is journalistic integrity.

    Here’s what I saw:
    1. Inappropriate attire for concealed carry. Those shirts hung down to their thighs, who wears stuff like that? I’ve seen mini-skirts that came up higher than the bottom of those shirts.
    2. Improper equipment. Cheap “dress” belts instead of proper gunbelts. RETENTION HOLSTERS for concealed carry? I saw at least one student had a thumb snap holster, and possibly a police retention holster, which are difficult to draw from BY DESIGN.
    3. Rigged test. The shooter KNEW there was an armed student. The shooter KNEW where that student was sitting. The shooter KNEW there was only one armed student. The shooter gave no indication of attack before the test I.E. shooting helpless victims in another class room first. The shooter DID NOT try to kill anyone who was escaping, only the armed student he knew was present. The shooter DID NOT waste ammo, since his only real target was the mark… uhh, I mean, the armed student.

    I would say that even an experienced gun owner would fail this “test”, and that if it was conducted again fairly, and the above observations did not apply, someone with less than 10 hours of training would have been successful in taking out the active shooter before they themselves would be killed. ANY amount of resistance offered by armed students WILL SAVE LIVES regardless of whether or not they kill the shooter, as 20/2000 implies. That shooter would not be walking around with a bullet in his thigh. Massacre over.

  10. Sounds like they’re saying, since you can’t be 100%, don’t even bother trying. that’s defeatism for you, let the police take care of you. That’s a good straw man…

  11. Wait, they forgot to shout out the line “you shouldn’t have a gun because it might be taken from you and used against you”. But what about a group of 20 students rushing a shooter at once? Somehow the shooter is immune from such disarmament?
    Then again, news agencies cannot tell the truth for fear of lawsuit. We all know the best defense is to fight back, and fight back with EVERYTHING: books, bags, shoes, chairs, etc. A mass charge at a single shooter would bring him down. Not without casualty, however, and for the “news” to give out this advice is legally dangerous. After the heroic death of a few students hell bent on either living, or keeping their fellow students alive, said news will be sued and taken for all they have.
    It is this fear of legal reprisal that helps keep the truth silent on major media, and from police. They too know the first and best defense is a trained, armed citizen- but they cannot hand that out as advice as it may backfire from Freddie FUBU getting a gun & only a gun- then being killed with it, or being an idiot with it.

  12. I can’t watch the video here at work, but can someone tell me if the cop shot the “armed” student(s) in the head or spine? I only ask because a student with a gun and a heart that’s been ripped apart by a bullet in his chest can still very easily shoot his assailant several times before losing his motor functions. Humans are remarkably resilient targets…

  13. Worth considering in this light:

    Pocket carry. Simple sheath pocket holster.

    You can draw a J-frame (or Kahr PM9) from concealment as quickly as you can take out your car keys.

    Looks like the first thing to do in an incident might be to DROP DOWN to concealment with the other panic-stricken folks. Draw from there. Don’t visually flag yourself as a CCWer until absolutely necessary.

    Just my tentative thoughts.

  14. I’d like to see this scenario played out with more realistic circumstances. Somebody should make a rebuttal video to this.

    I suggest a scenario with two or more classrooms getting attacked in an active shooter scenario. The shooter doesn’t know which room contains an armed student, or if maybe both(or even three/four) classrooms have one or more armed students inside. Oh, and the shooter would be randomly selected from the group of participants to avoid stacking the deck with a SWAT guy. This would most accurately mimic the VA Tech scenario, where there would have been plenty of time for an armed student to wait beside the door with a gun drawn.

  15. It was rigged.
    The ‘safety’ gear included cumbersome gloves.
    The ‘concealment’ shirt was designed to make it difficult to draw.
    The shooter knew exactly who to target & where they were.

  16. This was a political “hit piece”, pure propaganda and nothing more. It’s intent is to take one of the more compelling arguments for gun ownership and concealed carry off the table for most people.

    It’s one step towards stricter gun control without the cost paid in 1994 with the assault weapons ban (loss of control of the both the House and the Senate).

    Question is – how many of these lecture hall scenarios did they run where the the shooter was stopped by the student but was never show on TV? How many scenarios did they run so that they would know how to properly impede the student 100% of the time?

    I would like to see Front Site recreate this scenario exactly as 20/20 staged it with students from their 2-day and 4-day defensive handgun courses. And then a realistic recreation without the student being setup for failure.

    Nothing would make a bigger statement than to show this 20/20 segment for the propaganda that it is!

  17. it was rig! the shooters automatically target the person in the midle on the front row. every single time look at and pay attention to details.

Comments are closed.