On Sheep, Wolves And Sheepdogs
by Lt. Col. Dave Grossman
two punks as they strolled along the aisle making comments to female passengers, and banging
shoulders with men as they passed.
As they approached the officer, he lowered his novel and made eye contact with them. You got a
problem, man?" one of the IQ-challenged punks asked. "You think you're tough, or somethin'?" the
other asked, obviously offended that this one was not shirking away from them.
"As a matter of fact, I am tough," the officer said, calmly and with a steady gaze.
The two looked at him for a long moment, and then without saying a word, turned and moved back
down the aisle to continue their taunting of the other passengers, the sheep.
Some people may be destined to be sheep and others might be genetically primed to be wolves or
sheepdogs. But I believe that most people can choose which one they want to be, and I'm proud to say
that more and more Americans are choosing to become sheepdogs.
Cranbury, New Jersey. Todd, as you recall, was the man on Flight 93 over-Pennsylvania who called on
his cell phone to alert an operator from United Airlines about the hijacking. When he learned of the
Seven months after the attack on September 11, 2001, Todd Reamer was honored in his hometown of
other three passenger planes that had been used as weapons, Todd dropped his phone and uttered
the words, "Let's roll," which authorities believe was a signal to the other passengers to confront the
Seven months after the attack on September 11, 2001, Todd Reamer was honored in his hometown of
terrorist hijackers. In one hour, a transformation occurred among the passengers--athletes, business
people and parents-- from sheep to sheepdogs and together they fought the wolves, ultimately saving
an unknown number of lives on the ground.
"Do you have any idea how hard it would be to live with yourself after that?"
"here is no safety for honest men except by believing all possible evil of evil men."
Edmund Burke
Reflections on the Revolution in France
Here is the point I like to emphasize, especially to the thousands of police officers and soldiers I speak
to each year. In nature the sheep, real sheep, are born as sheep. Sheepdogs are born that way, and
so are wolves. They didn't have a choice. But you are not a critter. As a human being, you can be
whatever you want to be. It is a conscious, moral decision.
If you want to be a sheep, then you can be a sheep and that is okay, but you must understand the price
you pay. When the wolf comes, you and your loved ones are going to die if there is not a sheepdog
there to protect you. If you want to be a vvolf, you can be one, but the sheepdogs are going to hunt you
down and you will never have rest, safety, trust or love. But if you want to be a sheepdog and walk the
warrior's path, then you must make a conscious and moral decision every day to dedicate, equip and
prepare yourself to thrive in that toxic, corrosive moment when the wolf comes knocking at the door.
For example, many officers carry their weapons in church. They are well concealed in ankle holsters,
shoulder holsters or inside-the-belt holsters tucked into the small of their backs. Anytime you go to
some form of religious service, there is a very good chance that a police officer in your congregation is
carrying. You will never know if there is such an individual in your place of worship, until the wolf
appears to slaughter you and your loved ones.
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