Gun Control in Action: Amtrak Safety Video Suggests Throwing Duffel Bag at Gunman for Protection

Posted: Aug 06, 2014 11:00 AM

I was waiting in line for my train to New York at Washington, DC's Union Station. While enjoying my usual hobby of people watching and glancing at my phone, for once I decided to be an alert traveler and watch the safety videos that were playing on the screens propped on the station walls.

On the TVs was this safety initative released last year, which describes what to do if confronted by a gunman in the train station.

The video’s three suggestions were as follows:

Take Flight

Take Cover

Take Action

It was the third option that caught my attention. As opposed to fleeing the scene or hiding, “Take Action” suggested you take matters into your own hands to try and “disrupt” or "incapacitate" the intruder. In the video clip associated with "Take Action," a woman and a gentleman are talking, when they suddenly realize a gunman is in the building. That's when the male bystander jumps into "action." What does he do to try and "incapacitate" the intruder? He throws his duffel bag.

In case you weren't familiar with DC's gun laws, up until a few weeks ago, residents were banned from carrying handguns in public. Hence why no one at Union Station was prepared for such a crisis.

In what world does one think a duffel bag would be more effective than a gun? I know if I was facing the threat of a gunman, I'd be much happier to see a fellow traveler take out his Smith & Wesson than a 100 percent cotton Adidas duffel bag.

D.C.’s recent ruling to allow concealed open carry of firearms in the district, even with the 90-day stay, is a step in the right direction for safety. The initial decision suggests the judge realized that the threat of a bullet is much more likely to stop a criminal than the threat of...luggage: