Last year, I wrote an article exploring some practical lessons from the initial attack on Israel from the Gaza strip. The biggest thing was that, as usual, a country had slid into anti-gun complacency. Everyone thought that it was somebody else’s job to protect people, so targets of all kinds were left vulnerable.

But, this time, the tables have turned. An Israeli operation at a hospital in the West Bank managed to drive the point home yet again. Instead of Hamas proving that gun control is worthless, Israel waltzed right into a hospital and proved it again.

I don’t bring this raid up because I want to comment on whether it was wrong or right to do this. Some people are saying they violated international law. Others are saying this was just a police action within their own borders to take out a threat that was using the hospital as a human shield. Everyone is entitled to either of those opinions or any other.

Instead, I want to take a look at the security situation in that hospital and compare it to most any hospital in the United States. Are there metal detectors at the doors? No. Are there armed guards who would stop people from simply walking right in with a rifle? Nope. Are there police there? Also, a big no in most places. The only thing stopping people from simply walking right in and doing whatever they want with a rifle is them choosing not to.

Sure, in many places, hospitals are off-limits to guns by some legal means or other. In this case, there may be some international agreement or something prohibiting soldiers from going in. In the case of U.S. hospitals, it’s often a sign that any private property owner can post prohibiting guns. In some jurisdictions, there’s a law on the books specifically banning guns from all hospitals.

But, do those signs have some magical quality that zaps guns into oblivion as the person carrying them crosses the threshold? Definitely not. The only thing that can stop people from hiding a rifle under a coat or in a violin case is someone who both physically checks everyone for guns and has the means to stop people should they reveal a gun and use it. Clearly this hospital (like almost all others) doesn’t have either of those things.

At the end of the day, a mixture of people’s goodness and people prepared to deal with those devoid of goodness is what keeps people safe. There are very few people who would enter a hospital with a gun and the intent to harm people. The rest of us either don’t carry a gun in or don’t do anything evil with it. For the rare person who isn’t good, there needs to be a good person (or multiple good people) ready to step in and stop bad things from happening.

In this particular hospital, the opposite was true. Instead of having good guys with guns, they were hiding bad people with guns. The Israelis, like this or not, went in there and took care of the problem before these guys could hurt any more innocent people.

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