RUSH: Here’s Barb in Fonda, Iowa. Fonda, Iowa? Who in the world would want to live in a place named ‘Fonda’ anything?
CALLER: Oh, it’s beautiful.
RUSH: I’m just kidding. I’m sure it is. I’m sure it is.
CALLER: I know it wasn’t named after Jane. It’s been around a little longer than that.
RUSH: Yeah, well, it’s hard to say.
CALLER: I hope not, anyway.
CALLER: Hey, I’m a big fan of yours. I’m calling about the Virginia Tech shooting, and — I’m sorry, I’m really nervous, but I guess… I know you don’t want to compare this to 9/11. But I remember flying commercial, of course, not long — not less than a month — after 9/11.
CALLER: The attitude in the airplane was, ‘Nobody’s going to take over the plane. We’re going to stop ’em, no matter what, and maybe end up being a Flight 93, but there’s no way that they will reach their goal,’ and I think the students, college students and the high schools have to take the same attitude. The government is not going to protect them. It’s not going to save them, especially if it’s one of their own — and definitely the institution won’t be able to — can’t afford to — keep them safe. So I guess I intend to write a letter to my alma mater encouraging the students to take a stand and be brave about it.
RUSH: This came up yesterday toward the end of the program before we joined the convocation ceremony yesterday afternoon, and we had a couple callers say, ‘Where were the students? Where were the students running in and grabbing this guy after he ran through his first clip? Where were they trying to stop this guy?’ and I made the point, ‘Look, he’s the only guy there with a loaded gun and he’s reloading these clips real fast. I think a lot of people in that circumstance would panic.’ A school classroom or dormitory is not the same as being on an airline’s plane now after 9/11. I guarantee you, if somebody else were to try this at Virginia Tech, now that this has happened, there would be a different behavioral pattern by people. If the circumstances were identical, I think the student would get rushed just like potential terrorists on airplanes do and will get rushed now, and try to be overwhelmed and this sort of thing. You have abject panic and fear. Those two things are paralyzing, but I was remiss yesterday in not passing on a story of heroism because there was someone who did behave in just the fashion you are describing.
His name was Professor Liviu Librescu. He was 76 years old. ‘It was an act of heroism amid the horror.’ He threw himself in front of the shooter when the shooter attempted to enter his classroom. ‘The Israeli mechanics and engineering lecturer,’ that would be the professor, ‘was shot to death, but all the students in his classroom lived because of him. Several of his other students sent e-mails to his wife telling of how he had blocked the gunman’s way and saved their lives, this according to his son Joe, who said, ‘My father blocked the doorway with his body. He asked the students to run the hell out of there.” This is all in the Jerusalem Post, by the way. His son, Joe Librescu, said this in a telephone interview from his home outside Tel Aviv. ‘Students started opening windows and jumping out.’ So there was an act of heroism, but in a circumstance like this… You know, we had calls yesterday from people, ‘Where is the toughness of America? Why, we’re all going soft! Why, where are these people joining together and rushing this guy and overpowering him and disarming him in this?’
I don’t know, but when it’s the last thing you expect to happen as it was… Why didn’t anybody ask this about the three or four planes on 9/11? ‘Why didn’t anybody…?’ Because they were stunned. They were in panic, and even being on an airplane on 9/11, you had a little bit more awareness that there might be a hijacking even though there hadn’t been one in years. There still wasn’t that same behavior by the passengers on 9/11 itself that there has been since and that there will be on other college campi should something like this happen again. It’s all about expectations. If you go to a classroom now from this day forward with just the vaguest thought in your mind that this could happen, when it does if it were to happen you’re not just going to be rendered completely paralyzed by virtue of your fear and shock. But there was this act of heroism, and I was remiss in not pointing this out.