So, I’ve thought long and hard about my “Champ and Chump of the Week” thing. Thought better of it. Thought further about it not really fitting my personna as well, nor what I wanted published on the blog. I’m very opinionated, and have my thoughts on just about everything – qualified or not! But, it’s just perhaps some stuff I don’t want to publish here – figure that I can do without the negativity, and instead can just focus on other thoughts when and where something comes up that fits my other categories and themes on here.
With that in mind…
How crazy was your workplace this past week? Not as crazy as at Vaughan Foods I bet:
My hat off to Mark Vaughan in this incident. Whatever the suspect’s motivations were, Mr. Vaughan, being a reserve sheriff’s deputy, off-duty and at his main workplace as the company’s Chief Operating Officer, was called to action and “put some in him” to stop Alton Nolen’s attack. Friggen awesome.
As is currently being reported but is still under investigation by the FBI as well, the suspect had apparent extremist Islamic ties, and was trying to convert workplace employees in an aggressive nature recently, part of which apparently led to his firing on the day of the attacks. Whether it was these supposed extremist / fundamental ties and/or beliefs, or his anger over the firing that day, he then left the main / HR building, drove across the street, and walked into the main processing building and attacked and severed the head of the first employee that he saw, and then attacked another before Mark Vaughan fired his weapon at him to stop the attack before another beheading could take place. We’ll find out in due course (as he’s recovering in hospital from his injuries, so he’ll likely be interviewed / interrogated soon) what caused him actually to do this, whether it was the extremist religion things or just an angry act due to losing his job.
Of course, the unfortunate debates from all sides of the political spectrum and viewpoints will begin to rage anew in the U.S. and other countries. Pro-gun groups will applaud the off-duty reserve deputy for having and using his weapon to stop the attack. Hell, the local police praised him for doing so, saying the attack could and would have been much much worse. (I wholeheartedly agree with this, based on the information that’s out there right now.) Others on the far-right will also say, “too bad he didn’t kill the terrorist dead”, wanting an eye for an eye. On the other side, people will ask for more security. Saying this is different, as he was an off-duty reserve cop, and not a crazy civilian carrying-concealed at work. Also, whether this has a direct link to the recent ISIS beheadings, and much scarier, perhaps to the recent ISIS video demand for supporters in western countries to attack and behead people (specifically police and military personnel – so I’m on the docket twice I guess!), we’ll have to wait and see what the FBI investigation reveals.
But for the now, good on Mr. Vaughan. Seeing and/or hearing what Alton Nolen had just done to the first victim in stabbing and then beheading her, and then with him attacking another woman, Mr. Vaughan fired two or three rounds (reporting varies, but looks to be three shots), and put two rounds on target, stopping Nolen’s heinous and violent attack. Local reports are saying that Vaughan wasn’t actually armed at the time of attack, but that he retrieved an assault rifle and vest from his vehicle (as a tactical team member), and then returned back into the building to stop Nolen.
The online debates are already raging. I’m not gonna link anything further here – Google it and look around if you want proof and/or are interested. People are saying the usual tripe. “Everyone needs to carry concealed to protect themselves.” “Morons are going to end up with their heads separated from their bodies because the cops can’t get there fast enough and everyone else complies with the no gun at work rule.” “Shoot first, ask questions later.” “Everyone needs to carry everywhere.” “First confirmed domestic kill of an Islamist extremist.” [Duh, no.] “How long will it be before Sharpton and Jackson start the wailing and gnashing of teeth over a black man shot by a white cop for simply exercising his freedom of religion? Wait for it, in 5, 4, 3, 2…” [Ouch.] “Better to be judged by 12 than carried by 6 or beheaded by 1.”
It’s equally extremist verbal filth, from the far right, and doesn’t help any side heal and move forward.
Yet equally, others from the left are saying how it’s another example of workplace violence in America. Another reason to ban guns / weapons (ummm, the dude cut off the lady’s head with a giant vegetable knife, in a food processing plant.) Others are saying why didn’t the reserve cop shoot him in the leg or arm instead. Etc., etc., etc. Muslim groups in America are also rightly condemning the actions of Nolen, saying what he did is the “antithesis of every teaching of the Islamic faith”.
I for one believe that Mr. Vaughan is a hero. He heard about what was happening, retrieved his weapon (with his police training kicking in), and donned his vest (with him saying in a statement that he did so, due to wanting to ensure that any responding police would identify him as not being the actual suspect), and then took out Nolen. To those saying he shoulda killed him, or shoulda shot him in the leg, etc., etc…
Police shoot to stop the threat. Period.
It’s not about shooting to kill, as some gun haters call it. It’s about using hydrodynamic shock (from the bullets going through the body’s tissues) to impart enough damage on the subject’s central nervous system and/or cardiovascular system to cause them to lose bodily strength and control, so that they no longer present an imminent threat of serious bodily harm or death to someone, be it the police officer or a separate subject / civilian. Yes, there’s actually all this theory and science behind it. Yes, it can cause someone to die obviously. But, that’s not the main intent (unless you’re a sniper, and/or that’s the only shot to go for is a “kill shot”.) It’s all about stopping the threat. Double-tap into center mass. That doesn’t work immediately, more rounds downrange in double taps, and/or aim for the noggin’. It’s called the “fail to stop drill”, or what Hollywood and old-school thinking calls “two in the chest, one in the head”. And this is all happening during the oodles of tactical considerations and decisions being made in nano seconds. Mr. Vaughan’s training kicked in, put at least two rounds into Nolen, dropped him.
Kudos. Time will tell if this is an extension of the ISIS beheadings and/or the ISIS demands for supporters to act, or just simply a heinous act by a copycat. But for now, what remains is that Mr. Vaughan stopped things from potentially getting much much worse.