In Detroit recently, a Detroit News reporter spent a day going through some of the same "Shoot/Don't Shoot" training that police officers get courtesy of a MILO simulator that puts the trainee in the middle of countless realistic scenarios where deadly force might--or might not--be necessary, often giving him or her just seconds to make a life-or-death decision based upon when he or she is seeing. It turned out to be a real eye-opener for the reporter.
Read the rest of the story here: Shoot or don't shoot: Police reporter takes test.
I've been through this sort of training, and it's realistic, stressful and educational. Not only do the scenarios happen fast, but the computers know which weapons you have in your hand and the scenerios instantly change based on how effectively you use tham. Many people come out of the room with their voices hoarse from shouting at the people on the screen, and even those who are crack shots on a static pistol range find out that their accuracy goes right out the window when the adrenaline is flowing and the "target" is a moving, talking and sometimes rapidly attacking person. "How did you miss four times?" "Did you even see that weapon in her hands?" "When did you see the second person with the weapon off to the side...the one that killed you?" This training is dynamic and realistic, and it shows you what it's like to have to make split-second decisions in cases where it's often not even clear what's going on. In short, it's just like real life, only no one actually dies for real. I'm glad that this reporter got to try this. I just wish that more people, particularly those vocal critics of the police, could have a go at it. It might just give them a new appreciation for the people that they spend so much time criticizing. If you recall my earlier post on this subject, this guy went through it, and it gave him a new outlook on policing. It's a pity that we don't have more chances to run people through these machines. Personally, I'm thinking that most every legislator and lawyer should have to do it, but that's just me.