Soft Targets | Planet Ryan

Two weeks ago, 24-year-old Mohammad Abulazeez, armed with heavy weaponry, fired at least 50 shots into a military recruiting center and Naval Reserve center in Chattanooga, Tenn., that left four Marines and one Navy sailor dead.

Even worse, these brave U.S. servicemen never stood a chance. They lacked the ability to defend themselves thanks to decades-old laws that disarmed our troops serving on active duty in the United States.

That’s absolutely inexcusable given the fact that we live in a day and age when domestic terrorism is on the rise and I’m willing to bet that their family, relatives and friends would agree.

Terrorists value the death of a soldier or police officer much more than that of a regular civilian.

Think about this: Why aren’t terrorists shooting up police stations? An attack would mean near-instant death from a shower of hot lead. That’s why.

But our troops, the very people who defend us abroad, are left unarmed. The most highly valued target by radical Islamic terrorists – the U.S. soldier, Marine, airman and sailor — are defenseless in the face of danger while serving at home.

And guess what? Terrorists are quite aware of this. They know that the thousands of recruiting stations and other domestic military installations around the country are β€œgun free zones,” a policy that bad guys don’t take into account.

When was the last time a criminal or a terrorist came upon a β€œgun free zone” sticker and changed his or her mind? The answer is never.

It’s difficult to understand how so many people aren’t able to grasp that, but I suppose that’s a subject for another day.

In the wake of the shooting, a growing number of governors authorized their National Guard commanders to allow more of their troops to carry sidearms or otherwise implement measures to give their recruiters and full-time staff the ability to protect themselves from these type of threats.

Additionally, armed citizens in a number of states used their free time to stand guard outside of their local recruiting centers in order to protect the troops inside who are left completely defenseless.

While I think that’s amazing, I also think it underscores how truly important this issue is to those of us who don’t want to see more dead service members.

Chattanooga isn’t the first incident. Remember Ft. Hood? How about the Washington Navy Yard shooting? These incidents are on the rise. It’s time to act.

Thankfully, there are lawmakers attempting to rectify this problem, but it will take time and will mean that most American military offices will remain prime, soft targets for the next Mohammad Abdulazeez to attack.

It’s truly more important than ever that we contact our lawmakers and make them aware of the fact that we’re not interested in seeing more unarmed troops dying because they couldn’t fight back.

Unless action is taken soon, sadly, it’s bound to happen again.

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