In this day and age, it wouldn’t necessarily be uncommon to have that lingering fear that there is a terrorist waiting to pop out at the next corner with his car, or machete, or homemade explosives to end our lives or end the life as we know it.
We as a generalized group of people, fear the next attack. We fear tourist areas. We fear crowded areas. We fear walking along side cars. We’re always looking for that one person who doesn’t fit in. Who in our judgmental minds fits that stereotype of what we believe a terrorist is and looks like. Society and the news has brought upon these feelings and will continue to negatively nurture them every possible moment.
We sit and read the news from around the world. We read about car bombings, stadium bombings and terrorists driving into people. These attacks are done by people who have been brought up to believe in hate. Or they’ve been converted to see darkness.
There are many of them. There always will be. Humans weren’t designed to always agree with each other unfortunately, and with that comes animosity- hostility- and in the extreme – terrorism.
Now while we all dwell on these individuals, or groups, we fail to acknowledge an even larger threat. The threat of “gun control”. The threat of our neighbour. The threat of the person bagging your groceries. The threat of the person you just passed on the street. This “normal” person that doesn’t raise any of your red flags.
They tick the boxes. They have a house, a job, a family, a seemingly normal life. In some cases as an afterthought we may think they’re quiet or they don’t seem to like people too much. Is that wrong? Do we all have to talk to every person we see and always be sociable? We all have days where we need our space, some more then others.
Now this person has no links to any terrorist organization. They may have a personal vendetta against someone or some group of people. They may simply have their own agenda. Regardless – this passerby is now the perpetrator of a mass shooting.
The recent shootings in Las Vegas that left over 50 dead is currently the US worst mass shooting in modern times, while Canada’s worst mass shooting was 14 in Montreal in December 1989.
According to the US Centers for Disease control and prevention, between 2001-2014, more then 400,000 people died by firearms. These deaths are by either homicide, accident, or suicide. In that same time frame, according to Statistics Canada, there were 977 firearm homicides in Canada.
Now let’s keep those numbers in mind while we look at the number of people killed due to terrorism. In the US between 2001-2014, 3412 US citizens were killed due to terrorist action in the US and abroad. In Canada statistics indicate 8 have died due to terrorism in Canada, while an unknown number abroad.
From a security stand point there really isn’t a whole lot an individual can do. Unless you’re able to rewrite laws and convince governments that there should be a total ban on firearms.
Some people take action to protect themselves by joining the club, fight fire with fire and arm yourself. Right or wrong it’s a hot topic especially to our southern neighbours. For those of us who remain unarmed due to personal belief, preference, or State and Provincial laws, maybe we acknowledge that the person or persons we’re keeping an eye out for, may not be so different from you or I.
In the meantime, we should all remain more vigilant. Focus on the things we do have control over. Where we may not ever have total control over guns and gun violence, we can sometimes help to prevent or minimize actions as we see them occurring. Or better yet – use countries with less violence as a model for our own methods of gun control.
Security companies in Canada for example – are unable to carry firearms. In the UK – the police force are only recently starting to all carry firearms.
In the US – anyone that is licensed (and a lot that aren’t…) carry a gun. If the US followed the example of their friends and neighbours, this may reduce the amount of carnage that occurs on a shockingly regular basis.
Guest Blogger Rayna Davies
Rayna Davies is a graduate and practitioner of Business Management. She has developed an expertise in blogging, covering subjects like travel, world events and security. Having grown up with a father who has developed an expertise in Physical Security and Executive Protection in the RCMP and two major corporations, she has personally observed and experienced many security details. These experiences have included personally meeting HM Queen Elizabeth, Prime Minister Jean Chretien and many celebrities. She presently assists Sentinel Security in Executive Protection workshops and guest blogging and also assists Gloprosec Preventative Services in Intelligence gathering and Business Administration. Her passions include World travel, having visited every continent. She currently is on maternity leave and providing daily close protection for a baby and a toddler and spending time with her husband who is a Police Officer.