The Department of Homeland Security, headed by Janet Napolitano, has instructed armed Border Patrol professionals to run or hide if they encounter an "active shooter."
The Obama administration recently won parts of a lawsuit after suing Arizona over the state's immigration policies. Arizona claims the federal government is not enforcing illegal immigration laws in the border state and won't allow the state to protect its citizens.
Meanwhile, the DHS pamphlet instructions apply to Arizona Border Patrol and all other DHS employees, according to a Fox News report. Napolitano’s office has also issued a mandatory computer tutorial that tells armed law enforcement professionals to “evacuate” the premises or “hide out” while an “active shooter” is assaulting their office or location.
The FEMA-administered computer course, entitled “IS-907- Active Shooter: What You Can Do,” is a 45-minute tutorial that teaches employees how to recognize and deal with workplace violence should their office be assaulted by gunmen. What has law enforcement officers perplexed, is instructions telling them to “evacuate or hide out” during an armed assault. Border Patrol agents and supervisors argue the instructions are foolish because the lives of fellow armed and unarmed employees could depend on a gunman being taken down as quickly as possible.
No employee, including armed law enforcement officers, should take “disruptive” action against an “active shooter” unless his or her life is in eminent danger, according to the DHS pamphlet.
“It's one thing to tell civilian employees to cower under a desk if a gunman starts spraying fire in a confined area, say members of Tucson Local 2544/National Border Patrol Council, but to give armed law enforcement professionals the same advice is downright insulting.”
“We are now taught in an ‘Active Shooter’ course that if we encounter a shooter in a public place we are to ‘run away’ and ‘hide’" union leader Brandon Judd wrote on the website of 3,300-member union local. “If we are cornered by such a shooter we are to (only as a last resort) become ‘aggressive’ and ‘throw things’ at him or her. We are then advised to ‘call law enforcement’ and wait for their arrival (presumably, while more innocent victims are slaughtered)."
According to the DHS pamphlet and tutorial, the first two priorities of armed law enforcement officers during an assault by an "active shooter" (where civilian and unarmed employees’ lives might be at risk) is to run away or hide. The pamphlet instructs armed Border Patrol officers to attempt to disrupt and/or incapacitate the active shooter only if ‘your life’ is in imminent danger.
“The Department of Homeland Security takes very seriously its responsibility to protect all of its employees from threats that may surface in the workplace,” U.S. Customs and Border Protection spokesman Michael Friel said in a written statement to FoxNews.com, after the pamphlet was shown to reporters.
However, law enforcement officials say being told by their bosses to run away or hide out while an “active shooter” is engaging innocents is “insulting.”
Members of Local 2544 told Fox News that “they are obligated to protect the public in such a situation, whether they are on duty or not.” Now, along with putting their lives on the line every day, armed Border Patrol agents and other DHS officers fear they would be disciplined for taking a gunman out in a situation like the Fort Hood shooting or the January, 2011 case in Casa Adobes, in which a deranged gunmen shot 19 people, including Democratic Rep. Gabrielle Giffords. Six people died when an “active shooter” went on a rampage in that incident.