Friday, January 13, 2023

Training away reflexes?

This is something I've thought about, related to yesterday's post.

This is kind of psychological, but obviously, I am not a psychologist so take it for what it's worth.

Most people who aren't career scumbags resist shooting someone. Sometimes until it's too late; this internal resistance is so strong. They'll go right up against that wall, and then discover it's really hard to push through any further to the point of pulling the trigger. 

Until something so extreme happens that it flips a switch in their head and in their muscles. 

Once you get to the point where that switch gets flipped, it doesn’t turn off again easily. You've gone from conscious decisions to reflexes.

That's why people will empty a magazine into a thug when the first couple of shots did the job. It's why they'll fire the final coup de grace into an "obviously" incapacitated bad guy. The switch has been flipped and there's nothing to flip it back. Not seeing that the threat is over and not the threat of government punishment or social condemnation. It's out of the intended victim's hands at that point.

And, again, the bad guy made the choice to put someone in the position where this can happen. 

If I'm one of those being protected from the bad guy, I'm going to be grateful to the defender for making sure the threat has been completely neutralized. I'm not going to care what those who weren't present have to say about it afterward.

It may be "too much", but I'm not going to burn someone at the stake for reflex behavior they didn't choose to initiate.

I can tell myself I would never let this kind of "overreaction" happen to me, but if I unexpectedly touch a hot coal, no amount of telling myself I won't jerk my hand away can change what happens next. The brain is shut out of the loop-- that's what a reflex is.

I couldn't do this without your support.