Politics & Policy

You Can Be Jason Falconer

Target practice at a shooting range in Marlboro, Md. (Reuters photo: Yuri Gripas)
You have control over whether you’re trained to protect yourself and those around you.

The silver lining — the only silver lining — of the modern season of jihadist violence is the fact that each and every jihadist attack reveals that there are Americans of unusual courage. Sometimes, when they don’t have the means to protect themselves, even the most extreme acts of bravery don’t stop an attack. In San Bernardino, for example, three unnamed, unarmed men rushed the two heavily armed attackers but were cut down.

But in St. Cloud, Minn., the tables were turned. A jihadist on a knife rampage encountered a part-time, off-duty police officer, and the outcome was very, very different. The officer killed the terrorist and saved lives. But to call Jason Falconer a mere “part-time cop” is to do him a grave injustice. To use the proper sociological phrase, let’s just say that the dude is a boss.

Falconer is a former police chief and the current owner of Tactical Advantage, a gun range, gun shop, gunsmith, and training facility. He’s a personal-security trainer, an award-winning competitive shooter, and a three-gun shooter. To get a sense of three-gun, this Keanu Reeves video (yes, Keanu Reeves) is a fair representation:

Just before she left for her class, Nancy said: “This is the first terrorist attack when I didn’t say to myself, ‘I should be doing more to protect myself and our family.’ I’m doing what I should do.” This has nothing to do with fear or panic. It has everything to do with responsibility and vigilance. It’s about living with humble confidence. None of us knows how we’ll react until the moment of crisis, but we can certainly prepare to react the right way.

Years ago, Jason Falconer made his decision — to protect. I don’t know how he feels today. Taking a human life is an act of extraordinary weight. Even when justified, some men struggle mightily with the aftermath. Others can drive forward, firm in the conviction that they fulfilled their purpose and grateful that they had the courage to rise to the moment. I pray that Falconer can be at peace, that he knows he did what he had to do.

Of course we can’t all be just like Falconer. After all, he shoots and trains shooters for a living. But we can make the same fundamental choice. We can choose to protect.

Most Popular

White House

The Damning Inspector General’s Report

It is hard to believe that the run-up to the presidential-election year has plumbed such a depth of farcical degradation. It must be that Trump’s influence has contributed to unserious responses, but he can’t be blamed for the unutterable nonsense of his opponents and the straight men of the political class ... Read More
White House

The Damning Inspector General’s Report

It is hard to believe that the run-up to the presidential-election year has plumbed such a depth of farcical degradation. It must be that Trump’s influence has contributed to unserious responses, but he can’t be blamed for the unutterable nonsense of his opponents and the straight men of the political class ... Read More
Elections

Diversity Panic Hits the Democratic Field

Stop me if you’ve heard this one before. An Asian guy, two black guys, three white women (one of whom spent much of her life claiming to be Native American), a Pacific Islander woman, a gay guy, a Hispanic guy, two elderly Caucasian Jews (one a billionaire, the other a socialist), a self-styled Irishman, and a ... Read More
Elections

Diversity Panic Hits the Democratic Field

Stop me if you’ve heard this one before. An Asian guy, two black guys, three white women (one of whom spent much of her life claiming to be Native American), a Pacific Islander woman, a gay guy, a Hispanic guy, two elderly Caucasian Jews (one a billionaire, the other a socialist), a self-styled Irishman, and a ... Read More
Law & the Courts

The FBI’s Corrupt Cops

White-collar criminals should hope for one thing this Christmas: that they get to live under the Horowitz rules. Michael Horowitz has testified that he found no evidence of political bias on the part of the decision makers who, under the Obama administration, relied on hilariously implausible “evidence” ... Read More
Law & the Courts

The FBI’s Corrupt Cops

White-collar criminals should hope for one thing this Christmas: that they get to live under the Horowitz rules. Michael Horowitz has testified that he found no evidence of political bias on the part of the decision makers who, under the Obama administration, relied on hilariously implausible “evidence” ... Read More
White House

Is Trump the Only Adult in the Room?

Donald Trump certainly is mercurial at times. He can be uncouth. But then again, no president in modern memory has been on the receiving end of such overwhelmingly negative media coverage and a three-year effort to abort his presidency, beginning the day after his election. Do we remember the effort to ... Read More
White House

Is Trump the Only Adult in the Room?

Donald Trump certainly is mercurial at times. He can be uncouth. But then again, no president in modern memory has been on the receiving end of such overwhelmingly negative media coverage and a three-year effort to abort his presidency, beginning the day after his election. Do we remember the effort to ... Read More
World

The U.K. Elections Were the Real Second Referendum

In the end, it wasn’t close at all. Jeremy Corbyn’s Labour party met a fate to which it has been accustomed for most of the last half-century. Once again, the British roundly rejected socialism. Boris Johnson and his conservatives will form the next British government. This was no slight rejection. Labour ... Read More
World

The U.K. Elections Were the Real Second Referendum

In the end, it wasn’t close at all. Jeremy Corbyn’s Labour party met a fate to which it has been accustomed for most of the last half-century. Once again, the British roundly rejected socialism. Boris Johnson and his conservatives will form the next British government. This was no slight rejection. Labour ... Read More