Dr. Carson should be praised for saying he would fight back

Dr. Carson should be praised for saying he would fight back

Dr. Carson should be praised for saying he would fight back

Presidential candidate Ben Carson is being criticized for being insensitive:

And on Tuesday, Mr. Carson’s suggestion that he would have fought back in the face of an attack like the one in Roseburg, Ore., went viral, drawing widespread rebuke from his critics and reviving questions about his candidacy.

“I would not just stand there and let him shoot me,” Mr. Carson, who has been surging in recent polls, said on Fox News. “I would say: ‘Hey, guys, everybody attack him! He may shoot me, but he can’t get us all.’ ”

ben carson

There are three things to say about this:

First, he is a doctor who has operated on very ill children who had very little chance of surviving with or without the surgery. He took on that challenge in the face of unfavorable circumstances and was overwhelmingly successful in enabling a productive life for his patients. It is entirely consistent with that attitude to make the remark that he would fight in the face of other dire circumstances. At first blush, we expect doctors to say peaceful things, but if you think about what some doctors actually do in their individual practices – this statement is simply an extension of how he has approached helping others – move forward despite the circumstances. Death may come but it will not come without a fight.

Second, this sentiment of fighting in the face of death is exactly the sentiment we exalt when we see everyday heroes do this. First example – Todd Beamer over Pennsylvania in 2001: “Let’s roll.” Second, very recent, example – three Americans on a Paris train take down an armed terrorist; they’ve just received France’s highest civilian honor. Is anyone going to criticize them for taking action when presented with terrible circumstances because it highlights how many other people did not act? I hope not. They simply lived out what Dr. Carson said he would do in those circumstances.

Third, it’s hard to fault choices people make when faced with these situations, but doing nothing usually does not end well. There have been recent incidents of people doing nothing, even when they see a person being beaten to death on a train in D.C. – the assailant there had only a knife too, not a gun. They were afraid for their own safety, which is perfectly understandable, but if everyone (or at least a few) decided to do something to stop the attack, that young man would probably be alive today. If our culture was one where it would be assumed that others would come to our aid, much of this violence could be curtailed – it’s an automatic deterrent and that’s all Second Amendment supporters are saying: Come to the aid of others, and if you feel like you need to arm yourself to do it, well, you have the right to make it a fair fight. If criminals have the expectation that they will meet mass, armed, resistance, they will probably make some different choices.

Dr. Carson didn’t say he wouldn’t be fearful for his own life, he meant that for him facing that fear and trying to do something about the outcome of the situation was the path he would choose. I pray that if I were faced with those circumstances that I would do exactly the same thing.

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5 Comments
  • Appalled By The World says:

    The problem in the Obaman People’s Republic is that people are fearful of taking action because they could be called “racist”. Or they could be sued. And heaven forbid someone shoots some crazed animal to save people-the hero is then dragged into the gulag on some nutty charge. Besides, lunatics have feelings too so stopping one would offend him and this is tantamount to a crime these days. Decades of PC conditioning have brought us to this point, making all of us potential prey for psychos stirred up by the antics of the regime in DC.

  • Wfjag says:

    People do what they’ve been trained to do. The Army vet in the room followed his training – basically, charge a gun; back away from a knife. Untrained people freeze while they try to think of and through a response. They also obey the orders of someone who appears to hold authority, even when that is suicidal.

    The vet charged the door and tried to block it. The others in the class froze. If they’d all charged, they would have overwhelmed the shooter (who was probably enough of a coward he either have given up or run away). However, he got in the room; waived around a pistol (showing apparent authority); ordered the students to stand in a circle; began asking each student if s/he was a Christian, to determine which to kill vs which to wound. Standing there and answering was suicidal, but, they obeyed.

    Other than the vet (now seriously wounded), it is likely none of them had ever been told that self-defense is acceptable. Today, a student who fights back against bullying is severely punished – sometimes more severely than the aggressor (bully). In the recent NYT articles on 25 modern manly attributes, there is no hint of self-defense being acceptable behavior.

    Dr. Carson just gave permission to millions of Americans to defend themselves. Progressives need sheeple to passively obey their orders. They call themselves “elites” and so assert authority. However, when people learn they can decide to take action to run their own lives, they begin the transformation into independent adults. Dr. Carson’s statement threatens the core of Progressives’ authority and the passive obedience they enjoy. Accordingly, he must be destroyed before others follow his lead.

    • Jenny North says:

      Great comment. It’s true that people will follow if someone asserts authority. A cultural shift is necessary – no more of this victim culture. In order to figure out how to act in these situations you have to think through it beforehand. Create rules for what you will do and you will not have think about what to do – when the time comes there is no time to think.

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