Wednesday, December 04, 2013

Looking for Lessons Learned, Not Proof of What I Already Believe

It's amazing how quickly a national tragedy can be swallowed up into a political narrative. For example, within hours of a shooting, the pro-gun and pro-gun-control-control folks have *both* appropriated the event as proof that their point of view is right. And to some degree, I appreciate this rush to judgement. We Americans have amazingly short memories. Waiting a few weeks or even days to gather all the facts feels like an impossibly long time. But of course, it isn't. And it sure would be nice if we could step back and assess both the good and bad of national events, rather than making them fit into some predefined storyline.

With this in mind, you can appreciate my fondness for ITS Tactical's After-Action-Report on the LAX Airport Shooting:

There are several lessons learned from the LAX shooting on November 1, 2013 in California, but first, I want to be real clear on some things.

1. This is not an attempt to bash or hark on the police/fire/EMS agencies that responded to this tragic event. There were mistakes made by the leadership on all parts. (From my military background I’ve learned there are no such things as bad troops, just bad leaders. I hold my community’s public safety officials to that same standard. At the same time, I learned that if you can’t offer a solution to a problem then keep your mouth shut.) This is an attempt to learn from those mistakes, not assign blame.

2. Learn what worked and what didn’t work that day. I’ll touch on how we can help be more prepared for such events at both the layperson’s level and at the public safety level.

I may not agree or like everything I read in the report, but I'm impressed with the thoroughness of it. And it's exactly the kind of calculated response that I think we need to see more of.

Go read the report

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