Don’t Expect Your Government to save You

Do not trust in princes, in mortal man, in whom there is no salvation (Ps.146:3).

There have been a number of terrorism events in the western democracies in the last few years in Britain, France and Australia, which have been marked by specific characteristics.

Firstly, they have been all carried out in nations where the general population is prevented by law from carrying firearms in public. This always gives the criminals an immediate and significant advantage over the law abiding population, for they can shoot, knife and otherwise attack the innocent, and few people can or will effectively resist them.

Secondly, if the police have responded quickly, their subsequent actions have been marred by either confusion, ineptitude or over-reaction.

The Lindt café event in Sydney, Australia in 2014, was the most disturbing example of this. The Coroner’s report (delivered in May this year), chronicled an astonishing number of bungles that took place within different ranks of the police agencies. Firstly, the criminal who subsequently died on the scene, Man Haron Monis, was on bail for being an accessory to the murder of his wife, and also for a number of sexual assaults of children. Why was he out on the street?

Secondly, the state’s only negotiation truck that was equipped with everything police negotiators needed to operate, was unavailable during the siege. The inquest heard it was never replaced after it fell into disrepair in 2011.[1]

Thirdly, the police strategy to “contain and negotiate” clearly failed. While this strategy to negotiate was in place, the police bungled their communications with the hostage-taker, so that four times his attempts to communicate by phone went unanswered.

Fourth, the police were consistently ill-advised by a psychologist who misread the nature of the terrorist’s demands, believing he was merely “grandstanding.” Thus they were prepared to wait out a crisis, which actually required their urgent intervention.

Fifth, when the Police finally intervened, the two officers who fired their weapons clearly overreacted, inexplicably firing between 17 and 22 rifle rounds at short range at Monis, who was hit 13 times and died instantly. This was despite the fact that the Police knew there were hostages close by, who would clearly be in danger from bullets ricocheting in the concrete building. Unfortunately, at least one of these rounds (in fragment form) struck and killed the hostage, Katrina Dawson at the scene, and three other hostages were wounded, but survived. Monis had earlier murdered the Café manager, Tori Johnson, with a shotgun.

And you thought that the police were there to protect the public from criminals?

After the siege, Australia’s Prime Minister, Malcolm Turnbull indicated that

Australians should be reassured by the way our law enforcement and security agencies responded to this brush with terrorism.

Well Malcolm, what should we be reassured about?

In the hours after the recent London attack, Londoners were encouraged to “keep calm.” But keeping calm is no solution, if you are afraid of what terrorists may accomplish, and you have no means of resisting them.

Governments retain a deep prejudice against law-abiding people of the community, being armed. That is really a bridge too far, for them. It means they lose the monopoly of force, and they hate that idea.

 The people? On the same level as us? Don’t think so!

So, it’s one law for us, and one for them.

Political leaders have the privilege of armed body-guards, if they want them. But you and I? Get used to taking your chances with the crowd, and if you find yourself in a crisis, call upon Jesus Christ to save you. Your government doesn’t care about individuals. Political leaders after a crisis only engage in more hand-wringing, and promise to bolster the security.

How do I know this is true?

When there is a terrorist atrocity, nothing changes. The innocent are not permitted to arm  themselves, so they remain unprotected.

So, the old saying applies:

A gun in the hand is better than a cop on the phone.




[1], “Lindt Cafe siege: Why it all went Wrong,” August 18, 2016.