Thursday, October 10, 2013

Condition White

I never thought I’d have to say this:  Be tactical.  Be aware of your surroundings. 

San Francisco rail commuters on phones didn't notice gun before killing, police say

Published October 09, 2013
The man drew the gun several times on the crowded San Francisco commuter train, with surveillance video showing him pointing it across the aisle without anyone noticing and then putting it back against his side, according to authorities.
The other passengers were so absorbed in their phones and tablets they didn't notice the gunman until he randomly shot and killed a university student, authorities said.

Before that moment, footage showed the man pull out the .45-caliber pistol and once wipe his nose with the hand holding the weapon, "These weren't concealed movements -- the gun is very clear," District Attorney George Gascon said. "These people are in very close proximity with him, and nobody sees this. They're just so engrossed, texting and reading and whatnot. They're completely oblivious of their surroundings."  My emphasis.

Even if you’re not carrying you are always armed.  You need to be aware of your surroundings so you can take action to protect yourself.

Huh?  I’m armed even when I’m without gun or knife?  Even when soaping up in the shower?

Let’s slow down here.  Your mind is your weapon.  Everything else is a tool, including your body.  So yes, you’re armed even when soaping up in the shower.

Let’s review the levels of awareness.  I prefer the five-color escalation because I think you need to separate the last two.

Condition White:  You’re like the people on the train.  Life blurs by you and you are so tightly wrapped in your own micro-comic world that you blunder into every dog pile life has.

Condition Yellow:  You’re aware of your surroundings.  That’s all.  No ninja breathing, no twitchy movements waiting for the attack.  You watch life and the people around you.  You hear interesting stories meant for others, you see things that would amaze the condition white zombies who stumble through life wondering “Where did it all go?”  You have the opportunity to see the dog piles and step around them.

Condition Orange:  Something seems out of place.  Something is different and you want/need to find out more about it.  You may be getting ready; you may be pre-planning your next move and are thinking about routes of access and egress.  It may not be clobbering time, as Mr. Grimm used to say, but you’re thinking about it.  Weapons are being made ready.

Condition Red:  Weapons are ready.  The police have been called if there’s time.  You have moved to a position of strength while attempting to place your adversary in a position of weakness.  You are about to challenge the situation.  Such challenges include: 
            Drop the weapon.
            Don’t move.
            Someone call the police.
All hesitation is past.  You are ready to escalate to lethal force if required to protect yourself.

Condition Black:  The time for talk is past.  You are fighting for your life.  There is no holding back, no doubt. You must win to protect your life.  

These colors describe your condition even if you don’t want them to.  You may not want to play, but you’re on the stage and the curtain is up.  When you’re not in the safe confines of your home you must be in condition yellow.

I’m not saying anyone on the train should have attacked Nikhom Thephakaysone.  I wasn’t there.  I would not fault anyone who observed the gun and left the car or exited at the next station.  You may be armed, but successfully engaging a second armed person in a crowded, moving transit car takes a high degree of skill.  I do fault anyone who observed the situation and did not call the police or alert the authorities. 

Did you catch it in the above article? 

Transit authorities refer to reviewing the situation on video tape from the security system.  Apparently nobody was watching the feed in live time or they were unable to get the professionals there in time.

Both point out the futility of depending on others to protect you. 

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