By Abner Miranda
For today’s article I want to ask for your participation in a cautionary tale. Imagine it’s sometime in the distant future. Technology has helped us immensely in every walk of life, except for one…criminals are still criminals. In this story, I’ve mixed in some Sci-Fi technology to help prove a very modern day point. The tech is Teleportation, as in “Beam me up Scotty!” Teleportation is now a thing of reality and makes it possible for police to respond to a 911 alert by beaming into your home. The 911 system is known as ETU. ETU stands for Emergency Teleportation Unit, a name shared by not only the system but also the specially trained police units that respond to these emergencies. The ETU panel is a biometric palm scanner that’s installed in all homes and businesses across the nation. Here's the catch about that fancy little panel. You are required to keep your hand on that panel for no less than five seconds so as to rule out accidental activation of the system. Five seconds is a veritable eternity when the bad guys are already inside of your home.
As is the case with most things in life, everything has an upside, and downside. The upside is obvious, the downside is that just like in present day life, the cops have all kinds of legal restrictions on what they can and can’t do in their fight against crime. These legal restrictions most often seem completely counterproductive to the role of the police officer who is trying to help you. This story is born out of multiple conversations I’ve had with, well-meaning, but very naïve people who would seek to engage me on “gun control” conversations. I guess they thought that because I was a cop I would be for gun control measures. Nope!
Imagine that your awakened from a deep sleep by the sound of someone working at defeating your front door deadbolt. You pause for what seems an eternity as your heart rate instantly triples. You roll out of bed, reach under it, and bring up your AR-15. You lock your bedroom door and move to the closet. You place your hand on the ETU panel. That five second activation sequence feels like an eternity as you try to control your fear.
Finally, you hear the ETU softly signal in the affirmative that it has gone active. At the same moment a signal sounds at the local Metro ETU station.
The ETU guys receive the alert and start their pre-teleportation procedures. In the time it takes them to stand up, walk across the room to grab their gear and weapons, and step onto the transport pad, the home invaders have gotten into your home.
Before we move on I want you to consider something. A criminal who breaks into your home during the day is after your belongings. He is known as a thief. A criminal who breaks into your home at night, when you're obviously there, isn’t after your belongings…he’s after your blood. These criminals are known as home invaders. Home invasions are a big deal and the initial attack phase is usually over in mere seconds.
From Bad to Worse
Let's get back to you hunkered down in your closet with your hand on the ETU panel. You know that the system is now active so you take down your hand. You hear the invaders coming up the stairs. You're not sure how many there are, but, you're fairly certain there are at least two. Just then you receive a signal on the panel that the ETU officers have transported into your home…but you don’t see them. The problem is, for some reason, they’ve been transported into the kitchen downstairs, and you’re upstairs in your bedroom. Maybe the bio-matter triangulation system in the home is off by a few feet and it registered you in the kitchen as opposed to nine feet above that position in your bedroom.
The home invaders reach your bedroom door, they bash it once, bash it twice, and it caves in. You bring your rifle up and fire six hastily aimed rounds into the first man. He continues forward under his own momentum and then spills out onto the floor at your feet. You’ve never seen such a thing and instinctually stare at what you've just been forced to do. You‘ve had extensive training with your weapons and know how to use them safely. However, until now, all you've been doing is boring holes in paper and knocking down steel targets. This is a real flesh and blood human being and…”oh my Lord, look at all that blood!”
Just then his buddy gets his hands on you and rocks your world with an elbow to the face as he goes for your rifle. The sling holds it in place, but, now the invader is on you. He knocks you onto the bed and claws at the rifle while swinging savagely at your face. You manage to get a lucky elbow in his throat and he loses his focus momentarily. You get out from under him, and level your rifle on him as he whirls around and comes at you. You cycle the safety and work the trigger as fast as you can. He crumples to the floor in a twisted heap just as he’s bringing his pistol up. Your ears are ringing and your eyes are burning from the acid sweat pouring down your brow.
Suddenly you realize that another attacker is coming up the steps after you. You’re gasping for air as your blood oxygen levels are thrown off from the exertion of the fight. You see the third man entering your room in a low crouch. His rifle is coming up on you and you begin to level yours on him when you suddenly realize it’s a…cop! You open your hands and let the rifle go onto the sling as you squeeze out the words “don’t sh…
…oot, I’m a cop” screams the ETU officer as he rams himself hard to one side fully expecting to catch one in his plate carrier for his efforts.
An eternity passes between you and the officer as you lock eyes, but you can’t seem to see him clearly. All you hear is your own breath sounds scraping through your ears. You not only hear, but see your heart pounding in your distorted vision. He lowers his rifle just as his partner rushes into the room. He looks at the mess in the room and calls for medical assistance.
Let’s stop there and look at what we have.
This is a scenario that I've played out for people many times over the years. I've lost track of how many times I've had this discussion with family, friends, and acquaintances alike regarding the 911 system and the need for the law abiding citizen to maintain a ready stock of weapons that are easily accessible. A lot of well meaning, highly educated people have "reasoned" with me about how quickly the cops get there in the small town where they live and why this translates to not really needing personally owned firearms. Really!
Don’t drink that Kool-Aid! As this short story shows, even if the cops have the ability to materialize in your home and help you, somehow, someway, some restrictive law will be devised to stop them. Even if everything is perfectly aligned and they’ve actually managed to get there in time, something will…go…wrong. Something always goes wrong! Gen. Helmuth von Moltke put it best by saying “no plan ever survives first contact with the enemy.”
In the last police department where I worked we had an average response time of three minutes. Even with such a short response time I never got on scene in time to really stop much of anything from happening. The fact is, you are responsible for your own protection. Buy a firearm, get trained on it, and remain current on how to use it.
As always, God bless you all, get those guns out and practice. Have a good one!
~Abner Miranda is a former Police Officer, an FBI trained Hostage Negotiator, a First Responder, and Spanish Interpreter. He is currently a Firearms Instructor, an Armorer, and a regular contributor to our industry of both written and digital media. You can see more of Abner’s work on his YouTube channel: https://www.youtube.com/user/daddycop3