Monday, February 12, 2007

Gunman Opens Fire At Utah Mall

A Gunman Enters A Utah Mall and Begins Shooting Patrons at Random
At Least 5 Killed, Several Others Injured

This highlights the need for better security at Shopping Malls and other major public places. The current private security situation in this country is a complete joke, especially at venues like major Shopping Malls. Private security workers at such places have no equipment, no authority, and poor training to deal with these kinds of situations. One of the biggest factors is the lack of protective gear, such as body armor.

Incidents like these are just hints of much worse events that could happen. Americas private security industry is ill-prepared for dealing with threats such as terrorism, random shooters, gang crime, etc. But especially terrorism.

This case just raises the questions... if this Mall was attacked by Terrorists, how much worse could it have been? And how many more attacks and deaths will have to take place in this country before something is done about the situation?

Just a month ago there was a shooting in a Mall in Florida. At around the same time there was also a shooting at a Mall in the Carolinas. 2 or 3 weeks ago, there was a shooting and hostage situation at a Law Firm in Chicago. Not to mention some of the workplace related shootings by disgruntled ex-workers, or the school shootings that have become an almost normal part of our culture now. There must be a national standard for dealing with these security vulnerabilities. These are vulnerabilities or holes in our security that must be filled. I am sure that Terrorist groups are taking note of these weaknesses everytime one of these stories hits CNN. And even without the threat of Terrorism, these holes should still be filled because of the domestic threat and because it is the right thing to do. But it will take Federal government policy to fix it (or State Governors putting their heads together and crafting some sort of legislation that would be recognized by all the States....essentially creating a National Policy if the Feds fail to act). The private sector will not deal with this problem on its own. The government will have to require the private sector to act.

The private security industry and the corporations that control it represents one of the biggest holes in Homeland Security. The dreaded private sector does not want to deal with questions like these because it would cost money to resolve or aleviate the problem of inadequate security. The private sector will only do something about the problem if they are forced to do so through government regulation. In most cases, the private sector does not give a damn about the safety of the public. Private industry is only concerned with providing the perception of security, so that consumers will feel safe enough to spend their money. It's all about perception as opposed to measures that will actually provide more security.

Additional Report from AP via NPR

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