When I first read the reports about the bowman attacking and
killing several people in Kongsberg, Norway, a pile of things came to mind.
First and foremost, anytime a situation yields the loss of life, there is no
cause for celebration. This event was a tragic and senseless act from all
current accounts. What we know and what we don’t know, though, are two
different things. What we don’t know certainly outweighs what we do.
From a Reuters article:
“A man armed with a
bow and arrow killed five people and wounded two others in a series of attacks
in the Norwegian town of Kongsberg on Wednesday, local police said.
The suspect was in
custody, police added.
‘The man used a bow
and arrow … for some of the attacks,’ police chief Oeyvind Aas told
reporters. The police were investigating whether other weapons had also been
used, he said.”
The first meaningful lesson we can take away from this is
that people intent on committing acts of violence or harm will do so. The
bowman used this weapon in his rampage of murdering five and injuring others.
Potentially other weapons were used too. However, that is not currently known.
Does this mean that “bow control” is coming to Norway? I think we went through
similar discussions when a man was taking out an attacker in the UK using a
narwhal tusk. Anything can be turned into a weapon, and the intent does not
matter, evil or pure.
The second meaningful lesson is that of remaining constantly
vigilant. A man using a bow to inflict this kind of damage needs to call into
question the matter of situational awareness. Do you see someone with a bow
doing bowman stuff? We need to have that register in our brains that that is potentially
bad. The problem we have is if we’re not vigilant and are stuck in condition
white, we might have normalcy bias. No, a person walking down the street with a
bow is not normal and should raise your awareness level. Could it be normal?
Yes. But we’re better off fighting off any normalcy biases and assuming this is
a bowman getting ready to do bowman things.
The third meaningful lesson is one for our politicians. Five
people were murdered and two injured. Was this a high-capacity bow? Pretty much
this level of carnage really throws to the wind any notion that so-called “high
capacity” magazines are a threat to public safety. If a man can take out seven
people with a bow in any amount of time, this clearly debunks the exchange time
of detachable box magazines. We already know this, but the politicians that
push for this kind of agenda need to be re-told this concept over and over
again. Point them to the bowman.
More from the article:
“The government said
police had launched a large investigation.
‘The reports coming
from Kongsberg tonight are horrifying,’ Prime Minister Erna Solberg told a news
‘I understand that
many people are afraid, but it’s important to emphasize that the police are now
in control,’ she said.
Following the attacks,
the police directorate said it had ordered officers nationwide to carry
firearms. Norwegian police are normally unarmed, but officers have access to
guns and rifles when needed.”
Thank you, Prime Minister Solberg. The police “are now in
control.” The “police will protect you” argument can go right out the window.
No, the police are not in control; they are the clean-up crew. So sure, that
location may have been secure for that time while the disarmed police were
there, but no, they will not protect you. And if there were police there, would
they have the tools needed to stop this individual? At least they had the mental
wherewithal to rearm their police. To each his own, we can suppose, but eh,
maybe leave those guys armed just in case. The following was noted in the piece:
” One of the wounded
people was an off-duty police officer.”
Even in the communist totalitarian state of New Jersey,
where I hail from, the off-duty police officers can carry firearms. This
officer, had they been armed, maybe they could have stopped the bowman? How
many lives could have been saved? Perhaps all of them if the officer was the
As we gain more details from this event, there’s probably
going to be more to learn. This situation is a prime example of why it’s so essential
to stay ever so vigilant all the time. The case also illustrates the importance
of training to be prepared for when you need to force yourself to break your
own normalcy bias.
Also be sure to check out JM4 Tactical for your holster needs!
Stay safe out there, and think before you do!
John Petrolino is a US Merchant Marine Officer,
writer, author of “Decoding
Firearms: An Easy to Read Guide on General Gun Safety & Use” and USCCA
certified instructor, NRA certified pistol, rifle, and shotgun instructor
living under and working to change New Jersey’s draconian and unconstitutional
gun laws. You can find him on the web at www.johnpetrolino.com
on Twitter at @johnpetrolino,
and on Instagram @jpetrolinoiii