Unarmed & vulnerable: School board shooting in FL could have been much worse

I know I’m not the only one this morning who has read and watched in shock and amazement about the shooting that took place yesterday afternoon during a Panama City school board meeting in which the husband of a fired (former) school employee opened fire on school board members, missing his targets before being shot himself by a security chief – before killing himself.  Mike Jones, the school district’s chief of safety, is rightly being hailed as a hero but if it weren’t for bad aim on the part of the shooter, Clay Duke, the outcome could have been much much worse.  The video tells the story.

One of the most interesting stories to emerge from what happened yesterday is that of the female school board member who Clay Duke excused from the room initially, who later came back and tried to divert Duke with her pocketbook.  She was unsuccessful – and could have been killed – but he spared her life:

After a man pulled a gun at a Florida school board meeting Tuesday, one of the board members had a chance to escape. But instead of fleeing, Ginger Littleton said she thought of her fellow board members, turned back and put her life on the line, attacking the gunman with her purse.

“I had the choice of leaving,” Littleton told “Good Morning America” today. “When I turned back around he was up on the level with my guys and they were all sitting there lined up like ducks in a pond … completely defenseless.

“So I could either walk away, thinking something bad was going to happen and try to live with myself, or I could try to do something to divert or delay. So my bag was what I had and so that’s what I did,” Littleton said.

In a video that was recording the board meeting, Littleton is seen sneaking up behind the gunman, later identified as 56-year-old Clay Duke, before smacking his arm with her purse. Duke overpowered Littleton but let her go again.

God bless this brave woman for her courage, and thank God no one was seriously hurt, but it needs to be stated (and I’m sure I’m not the only one who has mentioned this) that had someone at that board meeting been armed to begin with, Duke probably wouldn’t have been able to fire off the first shot.  From the reports I’ve read, nothing has been mentioned about anyone outside of Jones (and Duke, of course) being armed.   Had security been better at the meeting facility (not sure if it was a government building or not?) perhaps Duke would not have even gotten in – or maybe in the state of mind he was in he would have shot his way in? Who knows? I just know that being armed is the best defense in situations like that. It can’t be said enough that had Duke’s aim been better, he wouldn’t have been the only casualty as a result of the hostage situation he put the school board members in.

As a side note, Duke’s Facebook page ranted against “rich” Republicans and Democrats, so no worries that the “unbiased” mainstream media will try to get a glimpse of his bookshelf to find out whether or not he was an avid reader of Glenn Beck’s or Sean Hannity’s ….

Just sayin’.

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