Monday, August 13, 2007

Bulletproof Junk

A pair of New England fathers have created backpacks with bullet-resistant materials in them, as a sort of impromptu shield for children who have the incredible misfortune to be caught in a schoolhouse shooting. Personally, I suspect that if the things catch on, it's going to be in applications other than grade schools.

"'I want to keep my kid safe. I don't care what you do -- if you want to fight the good fight or fix the world's hurts, I can't help you, but my kids are going to be safe because of these backpacks,' [Joe] Curran [of My Child's Pack] said."
The idea that these backpacks are going to guarantee safety in a shooting situation is nearly too laughable to be taken seriously. If a child is going to get out of a school shooting alive, it's going to take more than a "bulletproof" backpack to do the trick. For all the packs seem to give Mr. Curran an ironclad confidence in his children's safety, they would have done little good in an attack like the one in Paradise, Pennsylvania in October of 2006, where the gunman lined up children and shot them "execution-style." And even in a "walk down the hall and shoot people randomly" sort of situation, the presence of mind to actively shield oneself isn't going to come from the backpack - it's going to come from some sort of practice or drills.

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