As far as we're concerned, there's only one appropriate way to respond to a tragedy like the Charlie Hedbo massacre, and that's to re-enact it with paintguns in a nondescript Plano business park.
Most people might think that's weird, but fortunately, the reasonable folks at The Truth About Guns were on the same page -- which is why they staged a simulation Tuesday of the shooting that claimed 12 lives at a firearm training facility called Patriot Protection.
The idea was to see if things would've happened differently if one of the Charlie Hedbo staffers were armed. So TTAG founder Robert Farago put out the casting call January 12, writing on the wildly popular site, "We Need 40 Warm Bodies" for the exercise. (Farago advised that "All you need to bring is...friends!" After all, there's no reason why re-enacting a horrifying bloodbath shouldn't be fun).
According to the Dallas Morning News, "Volunteers sat in makeshift offices separated by partitions that outlined a long hallway leading to a conference table, where other people were gathered. One person at a time was placed in the conference room with a nonlethal pistol as two masked men barged into the office."
KXAN was also there to cover the
fetishistic playtime serious socio-political experiment, and reported that, "Time and time again, that armed civilian dies -- shot by a round that marks him or her with paint. In only two cases, they were able to take out one of two gunmen in the process."
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Dan Zimmerman, TTAG's CEO and managing editor, wrote afterwards that "given the circumstances -- two terrorists armed with rifles -- more than just one good guy with a gun would likely have been needed to save lives. But we'll leave the final analysis to the analyst. Stay tuned."
The group staged a similar simulation after the Newtown, Connecticut massacre (Actually, they'd "been planning for some time prior to the December shooting to conduct a school shooting simulation," according to the group's report. Apparently, Sandy Hook was just serendipity.)
Farago wrote Wednesday that he missed the Charlie Hedbo simulation because of "an errant nail in my tire," but he shared some thoughts: "Suffice it to say, things did not go well for the fauxvictims when a single armed defender faced a two-person terrorist team armed with rifles. So the question is...How should the Hedbo folk have been equipped to handle the attack?"
That's a tough one. But we're confident that, if anyone can answer it, it's a bunch of dudes running around Plano with paintguns.