Happy 240th Birthday Marines

USMC 240th Birthday

Enjoy Marines; You deserve it! Semper Fi

Here are my favorite Questions:

Answers To the Top Marine Corps Questions

Company C Marines training in San Diego

Questions on Joining the Marines

Questions About Basic Training

Questions on Becoming an Officer

Questions on Joining the Reserves

Marine Corps Aviation

Next Steps

What is the U.S. Marine Corps?

The Marine Corps is one of the most elite fighting forces in the world. The Marines are a part of the Department of the Navy and operate in close cooperation with U.S. Naval forces at sea. The Marine Corps’ mission is unique among the services. Marines serve on U.S. Navy ships, protect naval bases, guard U.S. embassies, and provide an ever-ready quick strike force to protect U.S. interests anywhere in the world.

To perform the many duties of the Marine Corps, approximately 174,000 officers and enlisted Marines fly planes and helicopters; operate radar equipment; drive armored vehicles; gather intelligence; survey and map territory; maintain and repair radios, computers, jeeps, trucks, tanks, and aircraft; and perform hundreds of other challenging jobs

How are the Marines different from the Army?

The Marine Corps is the nation’s 911 force. Thousands of Marines are always deployed aboard naval amphibious ships ready to respond to an international crises. This ability to mobilize quickly has allowed the Marines to become the United States’ ready-reaction force.

The Army on the other hand is a much larger force and is used in larger and longer conflicts. At times, the Army will relieve the Marines after a period of time, much like what happened in Somalia.

The Marines also consider themselves to be a self-sustaining force bringing with it to battle its own air power, artillery and logistics support. Of course, Marines have to travel on Navy vessels in order to to get to its destination.

Marines also are proud to say that ‘every Marine is a rifleman.’ In other words, regardless if you are in the infantry, the air wing or a computer technician, you will given the proper training so that, if need be, you can perform as an infantryman if called upon. It is fair to say that this mentality does not exist in all of the aU.S. Army’s support units.

What are the qualifications to join the Marine Corps?

The following are the basic requirements for joining. You must:

  • To enlist, you must be a U.S. citizen or a resident alien.
  • Meet exacting physical, mental, and moral standards.
  • Be between the ages of 17-29. Seventeen-year olds need parental consent.
  • Have a high school diploma.
  • Take and pass the Armed Services Vocational Aptitude Battery (ASVAB) test.
  • Pass a Military Entrance Processing Station medical exam.
  • Women are eligible to enlist in all occupational fields, with the exception of combat arms specialties: infantry, artillery, and tank and amphibian tractor crew members.
What’s the ASVAB?

The ASVAB is a test that measures your aptitudes. It consists of ten short individual tests covering word knowledge, paragraph comprehension, arithmetic reasoning, mathematics knowledge, general science, auto and shop information, mechanical comprehension, electronics information, numerical operations and coding speed. When you take the ASVAB prior to enlisting, not only do you receive scores on each of these individual tests, but several individual test results are combined to yield three academic composite scores: verbal, math and academic ability.

Officer candidates who did not receive a minimum score on the SAT or the ACT must take the ASVAB and score a minimum of 115 on the Electronics Repair composite.

What are some benefits of joining?

  • Steady Income:  You are paid twice a month, on the 1st and 15th, every month, based on your pay grade and service requirements.
  • Advancement:  You are promoted based on job knowledge, your performance, time in pay grade and service requirements.
  • Paid Vacation:  You earn 2.5 days paid vacation per month for a total of 30 days each year up to 60 days.
  • Training:  You choose your career path based on your aptitude, physical abilities, security clearance, motivation and determination.
  • Health Care:  While on active duty, you will receive complete medical and dental care at no cost.
  • Life Insurance:  Active duty members select up to $200,000 in term life insurance for $18 per month.
  • Allowances:  You may also receive additional tax-free money for Basic Allowance for Housing (BAH) if government housing is not available; Basic Allowance for Subsistence (BAS), if government food facilities are not available in the area you are stationed; and a uniform allowance (for enlisted personnel only) to help maintain your uniform.
  • Tax Advantage:  Only your basic monthly pay is subject to Federal or State income tax.
  • GI Bill:  The Montgomery GI Bill will help pay for college education or vocational training.
  • Tuition Assistance:  While on active duty, you may continue your education, and may be helped in defraying the cost of college-accredited courses.
  • Additional Benefits:  There are exchange and commissary privileges, moving allowances, temporary lodging expenses, travel, survivor benefits, Veterans Administration home loans and more.

Is infantry the only job in the Marine Corps?

Although the Marine Corps says that “every Marine is a rifleman,” infantry units comprise no more then 15% of the service’s total force. You will be able to work in one of 35 career fields which offer over 300 different jobs.

Some specialty fields available to you:

  • Aircraft Defense
  • Aircraft Maintenance
  • Armor
  • Broadcasting
  • Combat Engineer
  • Communications
  • Computer Operator/Technician
  • Electronics
  • Intelligence
  • Supply

Use our job matcher to explore careers that match your interest.

Can certain training schools or duty stations be guaranteed to me upon enlistment?

Yes. It will depend on your term of commitment or specialty. Ask your recruiter for details.

Does the Marine Corps take people with prior service?

Yes. The Marine Corps accepts prior-service people.

What if I am not a U.S. Citizen?

Only U.S. citizens or foreign nationals legally residing in the United States with an Immigration and Naturalization Service Alien Registration Card (“Green Card” — INS Form I-151/551) may apply. Applicants must speak, write and read English fluently.

Can the Marine Corps help me obtain U.S. citizenship?

No. The U.S. military cannot assist foreign nationals in obtaining admittance into the United States.

What if I live overseas?

Regulations prohibit the forwarding of recruiting information through international mail, even to U.S. citizens living in foreign countries. Use our online form to reach a recruiter electronically.

How long is boot camp?

Boot camp is 13 weeks, followed by three weeks of either the School of the Infantry or Marine Combat Training.

Where is boot camp?

Boot camp is located at Parris Island Recruit Depot, SC on the east coast and San Diego Recruit Depot, CA for those on the west coast. All women will attend recruit training at Parris Island.

What is boot camp like?

Recruit training is rigorous, demanding, and challenging. The overall goal of recruit training is to instill in the recruits the military skills, knowledge, discipline, pride and self-confidence necessary to be a United States Marine.

In the first several days at the recruit depot, a recruit is assigned to a platoon, receives a basic issue of uniforms and equipment, is given an additional physical, and takes further assignment classification tests. Each platoon is led by a team of three Marine drill instructors. A typical training day for recruits begins with reveille at 0500 (5:00 a.m.), continues with drill, physical training, and several classes in weapons and conduct, and ends with taps at 2100 (9:00 p.m.).

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Admiral Ace Lyons at National Press Club

Admiral Ace Lyons at National Press Club

Admiral Ace Lyons at National Press Club

Admiral Ace Lyons at National Press Club

Retired 4-Star U.S. Navy Admiral James A. “Ace” Lyons was recently at the National Press Club. And his claims are shocking.

It appears that the Obama Regime has been FULLY infiltrated by the Muslim Brotherhood terrorism front group on every level. And that pro-radical Islam group is also in every level of U.S. security agencies. Lyons went on to say that “the transformation of America has been in full swing ever since 2008.” And when Obama campaigned on a platform to “fundamentally transform America,” Obama has done exactly that!

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In addition Lyons made the important point that there is no meaningful line between Islam and radical Islam. “Islam is Islam,” he said.

Speaking about Obama’s refusal to attend the recent march in France, reportedly attended by more than 50 world leaders to condemn Islamic terrorism following the gruesome murders of cartoonists who had the audacity to lampoon Islam, Admiral Lyons said that act was a “signal to Islamic Jihadis,” and is “one of many signals he sent over the years while in office.”

“There’s no question we got a hell of a job ahead of us,” Admiral Lyons said. “With the Muslim Brotherhood penetration in every one of our national security agencies, including all our intelligence agencies,” he proclaimed.

Admiral Lyons said that our “lead intelligence agency” is “headed by a Muslim convert,” a reference to Obama CIA head John Brennan.

The new GOP majority in both houses of Congress were elected to “stop the transformation of America, not to see how they could work with the president.”

There has never been a more important time to support the military, as it’s clear that they have a Commander-in-Chief who doesn’t have their best interests in mind. Please share this important message from Admiral Lyons!

Admiral Ace Lyons at National Press Club

During a private brief in Washington, Admiral Ace Lyons discusses what happens when the hands of mercer are tied against the actual threats this country faces. If you disagree, watch the video from someone who everyone in the room fell silent to when he was speaking until toward the end when they were forced to shut him down.

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News Reporter in Middle of Drive-By Shooting

News Reporter in Middle of Drive-By Shooting

Chris Grollnek, Active Shooter Expert discussing drive-by active shooter as reporter files story on the same topic. This reporter gives validity of what Chris has been part of twice and learning the actions of reacting to the threat and getting out as fast as possible.  A temporary stop can turn to freezing instead if temporary status and the reporter, Kara did outstanding.

A reporter in Washington state was about to do a live shot about a drive-by shooting, when she witnessed a drive-by shooting.

KOMO reporter Kara Kostanich was reporting from Mount Vernon Saturday, when two cars sped by, and then shortly after, you hear the gun shots.

Kostanich told KOMO, “Of course my immediate reaction was just to get down. … I ran around the front of the Explorer, got in the passenger seat and ducked under the dashboard.”

Around the time of that incident, Kostanich retweeted the breaking news story and said it happened steps away from their live shot and that they were trying to get a police escort out of the area.

Nobody was reported injured, but this is just one of a recent string of drive-by shootings in Mount Vernon within the past month.

There have been multiple incidents of gunshots damaging homes.

“I just don’t know why. It’s been really hard to sleep since then,” said Amanda Carreon, as she stands in front of the bullet holes in her house.

Last week, two people lost their lives in another drive-by shooting.

The shootings have even left local officers on edge.

Chris Cammock of the Mount Vernon Police Department told KIRO, “We don’t usually experience something like this, and that’s what’s a little bit troubling about it.”

Detectives on the case are checking to see if these incidents are connected. The local police department has received quite a few tips about this most recent drive-by but are still looking for the drivers.

News Reporter in Middle of Drive-By Shooting

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Theater Shooting Interview by Chris Grollnek

Theater Shooting Interview by Chris Grollnek

Expert: Training, not laws, needed after theater shooting

VISIT our home page: www.activeshooterexpert.com

Theater Shooting Interview by Chris Grollnek

In the wake of the fatal shooting at a Louisiana movie theater Thursday night, one expert advised that the key to avoiding mass shooting casualties is training and preparation, not new laws and regulations.

“If laws were able to stop these things, we wouldn’t need police,” said Chris Grollnek, a former Marine and police SWAT team member.

Police said Friday that 59-year-old John Russel Houser, who they described as a “drifter” from Alabama, stood up 20 minutes into a screening of the Amy Schumer comedy “Trainwreck” at the Grand 16 theater in Lafayette and opened fire, wounding nine people and killing two before killing himself as police arrived.

Theater Shooting News Chris Grollnek Interview

Theater Shooting News Chris Grollnek Interview

Police have not determined a motive for the attack.

Grollnek, whose company specializes in active shooter prevention, said there is no consistent profile of a mass shooting suspect, making it difficult to predict their actions.

“It would be crazy for us to dismiss these people as crazy,” he cautioned, however, noting that shooters are often calculated and intelligent and they are trying to outdo each other.

He suggested it is not a coincidence that the shooting occurred just days after the three-year anniversary of James Holmes killing 12 people and wounding 70 others at a theater in Aurora, Colorado. The penalty phase of Holmes’ trial, in which he is facing a possible death sentence, has gotten extensive media coverage this week.

Grollnek said people’s response to tragedies like this is often either to call for more restrictive gun laws or to arm themselves.

“Weapons are not going to solve the problem and gun laws are not going to solve the problem,” he said.

Realistically, there is also only so much security that can be put in place at soft targets like movie theaters.

“We don’t want to turn theaters into the TSA…turning them into some type of fortress that you have to go through checkpoints to see a movie,” he said.

The public also should not cower in their homes in fear, though.

“We cannot fall victim to allowing these people to dictate that we shouldn’t go to the movies,” he said.

Grollnek said movie theaters have a responsibility to train their staffs in threat detection, surveillance, and prevention. He suggested that similar training—even just free training available online—would be beneficial for families as well.

“We as a society just need to be more prepared. We live in a different world now than yesterday” with the constant threat of terrorism and lone wolf attacks.

In the absence of professional training, however, he advised that families talk about and plan for what to do in emergencies like this—know where the exits are, know how to get out, and where to meet when you get to safety.

“Train your mind, train your family,” he said. See list of Strategic Partners “Our Nations Problem Solvers; “when t three letter agency responds to a crisis, they call one or more of These Professionals to augment their response.”

Grollnek praised the quick response of Lafayette police, noting that the average police response time to an active shooter situation is often closer to 17 minutes—and the shootings are typically over in less than seven.

Theater Shooting Interview by Chris Grollnek

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KLIF 570 Two Show on Movie Shooting

Know how to keep yourself safe in a movie theater

KLIF 570 Two Show on Movie Shooting

0550 hours: NORTH TEXAS (WBAP/KLIF 24/7 News) – If you’re ever in a movie theater and someone starts shooting a gun, stay calm and find the nearest exit.

Staying where you are in the theater during a shooting could get you hurt, Chris Grollnek is an active shooter expert. He says it’s not being overly paranoid if you know where the exit is.

“If there was a fire, you would know how to orderly get out. So get low, move fast, get your family and have a plan. Have a rally point, have a place that you’re going to meet when you get out.”

He goes on to say that we can’t let the threat of a shooting keep us from going to a mall or a movie theater.

0820 hours:


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The National Police Spring

The National Police Spring 

Chris Grollnek

Active Shooter Prevention Expert on Domestic Terrorism 

Policy Strategies

May 7, 2015


Incidents continue to evolve around the world with terrorism. Threats of violence in the forms of car bombings, hostage-taking, active shooter events, and global political and rebellious coups demonstrate the “voice of people.” The National Police Spring stemming from Ferguson and the Baltimore “Communities Against Police” is just the beginning of the shift within our own country and we need solutions, not people rallying with empty demands. Centering arguments on race instead of the core issue which few admit is that of socioeconomic community status. By diminishing the actuality of the facts reduces the value of actual racism to near zero. The race is “A” factor, not “THE” factor. At no time does this paper imply race is not a key issue – in actuality, it’s a good portion of the core. Incidents within this essay describe basic principles and facts of the same that few knew due to irresponsible reporting, but they are indisputable. Each incident has often demonstrated the rush to judgment against police with zero facts and then assumes to be a race issue. Enter Baltimore, the population is more than represented in every Governmental agency but economically, deprived of jobs and solid occupations. The poor economic conditions leave many residents with little opportunities to earn a living. When crime on the streets provides that opportunity and the first to address each incident is a police officer, there will be no one else to blame no matter the issue. Solving the communication problem will result in 95% of the solution. Knowing what’s wrong is key to fixing what lies within each mind, body, and spirit.

After Action Report

This After Action Report (AAR) from the City of Baltimore is written for the leadership of not just the city but also the state. This is similar to an essay regarding the civil disorder and restoring the peace from both sides. Instead, this white paper deals with the majority of issues causing unrest, distrust, and the political oversight that is lacking.   Attempting to write a white paper for a national agenda to create order is not impracticable, it is unrealistic.

Staring with the initial incident creating the catalyst for the “breakout of unrest” was the arrest and wrongful portrayal of facts by two separate parties. The police department did not have the forward vision to release a basic statement of facts of any information and with the history, created doubt. The community (family attorney with their agenda on national race relations) went on to allow leaks of non-material ideas. This is not an indictment of the family or victim, rather the fact that some would seize the opportunity to advance their own personal agendas using Freddie Gray post mortem. Local community politics went on to rush a misleading synopsis of the tragedy. Filling the media with untrue information ahead of the police was the spark found earlier in this AAR. Following the events of the past two weeks, we can pause and evaluate what actually continues within this torn community.

Trayvon Martin

A look to the past to predict the future is in order. Many use Trayvon Martin as the starting point portraying police as targeting young black men. This in itself marks the falsehood of the argument as this young man’s death, although tragic, was not done at the hands of police.

Result: Mr. Martin was shot and killed by a “wannabe” police officer, George Zimmerman because according to the Department of Justice report, a struggle ensued and the man responsible for his death felt “threatened.” It is the author’s opinion this did have something to do with race because Mr. Martin was a young black male where his killer did not think he should be. The letter of the law served Justice, but the spirit of the law was clearly violated because of the same laws that gave Mr. Martin freedom of movement provided an alibi for Mr. Zimmerman’s freedom of self-defense.

Michael Brown

Michael Brown was killed in Ferguson, MO by a white police officer. The fact of this case did not meet the criteria of the “race agenda.” Instead, misstated facts would continue to follow in propaganda form. The misstated facts cost the officer his career, in addition to threats to cause harm to his family. It was not a store robbery or even a crosswalk violation that led to the death of Mr. Brown. Read the entire report and the discovery is clear, tearing of one and a half inches of leather on the officer’s belt around the gun created the fact that Mr. Brown was trying to disarm the officer who went on to shoot him to stop the threat. This is an important fact; we cannot see into the heart of the officer but what we know is the police train to stop the threat, not kill. There is no trick shooting so it is impossible with adrenaline to shoot the gun out of a hand or shoot them in the arm or leg. Only in movies do people fall over when hit. Mr. Brown apparently took several rounds to stop the forward movement. While society does not see that as reasonable, I doubt those criticizing would have reacted differently in a fearful life and death situation.

Result: Mr. Brown was shot and killed by police because of the actions he created to cause Officer Darren Wilson to defend himself. Police are responsible for their firearms not being used against others by others. This was the only outcome from the series of events that occurred according to The Department of Justice report. Mr. Brown went beyond simply resisting and began continuous fighting. The fact that Mr. Brown was an African American and the officer a White male had zero bearings on this specific case.

Eric Garner

New York police were enforcing a sales tax on cigarettes law when they came into contact with Mr. Garner. Following a struggle, not only did police use what many believe to be an unreasonable force to affect the arrest, the contact was unnecessary to enforce a substandard law. There is little doubt the man died because of a tragic series of unfortunate events, but it was not because he was black. The police did what they could to stop a man who was resisting all commands. At this point what should the police do? Walk away and try again later when Mr. Garner was more reasonable? That would be more irresponsible than the narrative being brought forward at the expense of Mr. Garner. The choke was indisputably not in the policy but the size of the suspect and the officer trying to affect the arrest were not equipped to deal with the struggle as they were thinking hand force is much better than lethal or ECD force to stop sales tax crimes. The end result was Mr. Garner DID say I can’t breathe so many times it has become a motto for communities to rally against police. Again, police messaging went awry here and the damage continues to be self-inflicted on police because of messaging errors. This is not justifying the death of Mr. Garner, in fact just the opposite; we do not know what would have transpired if mutual cooperation was in order at that moment.

Result: Mr. Garner died of what many consider the acts of the officers “choking him out.” The fact is Mr. Garner died of a phenomenon police regard and medical examiners reveal as; “Sudden In-Custody Death Syndrome.” This is no excuse as the loss of life against Mr. Garner but shows that police did not set out to kill a cigarette salesman, rather a series of incidents lead to the death of Mr. Garner including the actions of police by not immediately responding to the “I can’t breathe” statement. In my experience, people say everything to keep from being arrested and 99% go to jail without incident. Mr. Garner was the one-off with an actual medical issue and this is one of the biggest fears for police, an actual medical problem. The non-indictment of the officers was an excuse for race-baiters to use this death in their favor. The end result is a tragedy that really should not have occurred but its doubtful race had anything to do with this incident. The number of whites arrested for this crime far exceeds those of African Americans in the same area.

Freddie Gray

By far this is the most important of all the listed cases, not because the life of Mr. Gray is more valuable, but the causation of the incident is telling. The movement that we are watching in prime time is just the beginning and as police, we need to be ready to adjust our own focus and as citizens, we need to be ready to adjust our tolerance to facts, not agendas.

This incident is very different in several forms that the above four chosen by the author. Freddie Gray was a known drug dealer in the streets of Baltimore with over a dozen arrests for dealing illicit narcotics to include heroin. Instead of police trying to create the correct opportunity to catch a drug dealer, they created an incident that directly leads to his death. Mr. Gray was contacted for literally looking at police wrong. In the Baltimore Police Department, there is a policy against the chase of people absent probable cause that a crime was or was being committed. After catching Mr. Gray, police used a knife he was carrying to arrest him under the guise of an illegal weapon, which as it turns out, was not illegal at all. Problem number two and the incident would not end with these two issues.

Mr. Gray is arrested for what most consider; “pissing off the police” (POP). As the false arrest continues, everything that could go wrong continues to deteriorate. Mr. Gray is continuously struck with police using the excuse “resisting arrest” by police of the same race and others considered being minorities in the profiles. Most would argue at this point race cannot have anything to do with this arrest because police were minorities arresting a young black man who they thought to be dealing with heroin. Again, instead of waiting for a proper arrest, the police created an issue directly contributing to the death of Mr. Gray.

Loading Mr. Gray into the police transport van the video shows his lower body less than active with the movement of his legs. This does not mean his spine was severed, it means police possibly used an unreasonable amount of force to affect his arrest. With a damaged windpipe or swollen airway, at least according to a leaked report from the medical examiner, Mr. Gray had damage inflicted during his police contact. With the refusal of the police and the District Attorney to release details of the autopsy, leaves doubt speculation among the community in America watching. There is a direct correlation leading to the unrest across major cities with Baltimore as the centerpiece. The new narrative, that’s not so new, is that police “target” black men in an effort to capture and or kill (whichever is expedient). This narrative is carried from the bottom up and out through the media with examples such as the ones within this AAR.

As of today, May 3, 2015, we do not know what the result of Baltimore will be. We do know however that there is a national movement to change the narrative and conversation of how police do their job. The only issue the author sees with this is that police will feel resented and set aside and relent to do their job as once trained. This is cause-and-effect at its finest. One solution is that we look to what the people want and that is quality police to protect them and lesson actions to enforce. There are several problems with this that this AAR will not address. Instead is the author’s intent to show that race has very little to do with this problematic series of events. Tragic as though they may be, the professionalization of Police departments across America can be a starting point to fixing or at least curbing the actions of rogue officers.

The South Carolina officer gunned down the African-American man who fled without cause is simply a murderer with a badge. His actions of a cover-up following the discharge of his firearm eight times are not only inexcusable it’s flat out illegal. People complain about police actions often say police should be better or better trained. The fact of the matter is police are simply human and do their best with what they have and no amount of training can instill the principles of a fight or flight. Fight, Flight, or Freeze is inherent inside all of us how we do not know how we will act until under that type of duress. These actions sometimes cause failure to act or excessive fighting both of which we have seen. Unfortunately, many officers hide under the guise a fight or flight to enforce rather than to protect.

Police need to adjust to the public’s new calling and quit taking their position personally. So many officers here the “calling” that they want to protect and serve and they fall into enforcing thinking they are protecting. While this type of policing method does need to be carried out in certain portions of different communities, it does not mean police should have [that] zero-tolerance attitude et al. Instead of thinking what the police need, the police should start thinking what citizens need. This of course is the reason for police in the first place, to serve community needs while maintaining good order and discipline. This profession is one police chose and it begins with protecting the public in keeping their trust. Maintaining their trust is something entirely different. Just a few thoughts that could be incorporated into earning the public’s trust and police adjusting their methods of operation.

Reasons Protestors are Correct for Marching and Wrong for Looting

The protesters have rights and have a good frame of mind for wanting to change the impact on the communities. Of course, the issue is that several out-of-town protesters come in and exchange their good ideas for criminal actions. Many so-called civic leaders come in and call for the burning of minority-owned (non-African-American) businesses. Instead of the impact understood and recognized by the community at large these people get to leave the city once their objective is complete. Several inside the community are so desperate to get their voice heard they follow these people under ill advice because there’s no one truly looking out for them. Their elected officials have let them down, refused to communicate, and forgot the representation for which they’ve been elected. If they had the true community’s heart in mind communication would be at the forefront of each and every conversation.

Police act as the first line between the citizens and the criminals in the court systems. Typically, there are several years of pent up aggression or issues that then boil over when a person calls the police. It is up to these officers to solve the problems in five-minute increments because that is the approximate time police service calls last. Police have training in community relations, dealing with special needs people, dealing with crowd control, and dealing with the court systems. The problem is few officers understand that this job is not personal.

By professionalizing the system of policing there would be a higher standard of training with education as a focus for development. At the time of this writing, it’s an occupation like a trade, not a professional career like a doctor or lawyer. Some politicians commit egregious acts while in office and retain that office although it is a minute sample. Police: 1/10th of 1% of officers do criminal acts and it not only reflects poorly on the officers but on the entire badge-wearing community. This talk that comes out of all the major cities into the media following these tragic incidents generally has a common theme that police are the problem. The true problem of course is not the lack of training or the lack of weapons or over resources; it is the lack of quality officers available for the position. Who would want to enter an occupation where everyone hates you just because of the job you would perform? Who would want to enter an occupation that pays approximately $50-$70,000 a year that you would ultimately have to give your life up for citizen is sworn to protect. That same citizen appears on the nightly news writing and protesting of your very existence. Elected officials hide behind their stands and say it’s the police fault and when the cards fall it’s the police left the clean it up. Where’s the solution for success in this? Here are four items that I propose will help police move forward into helping their communities again and in turn, the communities will help the police. I defer back to the watch and ward method of policing when our country was first founded.

The National Police Spring

The National Police Spring; “Police Lives Matter Too”

The National Police Spring Threats of Violence and Rioting
The National Police Spring by:
Chris Grollnek Bio
Active Shooter Prevention Expert
Policy Strategist 
May 7, 2015
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Freddie Gray and Baltimore Burning

Freddie Gray and Baltimore Burning

Baltimore, Maryland: There are no winners and it does not look like there will be!

Baltimore, Maryland: There are no winners this past week!

Police are protecting the “shield” while citizens lose faith in police (no matter what the actual facts of the incident end up being surrounding the death of Freddie Gray), the indisputable fact is that this young man senselessly lost his life. Ask why; poor decisions, worse actions, police policy regarding public action, and now lost confidence from the citizenry.

In our society today, more than any other time in recent history – we have seen a response to call for NO POLICE action. No matter your profession, realize each is like its own system with inner workings and personalities, some “JUST,” others not so much.

This past Friday I was asked to immediately fly to Baltimore to help plan a “no firing zone” to ensure as many people as possible understand the mitigation process of active-shooter prevention. Ferguson taught us that badge and guns do not automatically protect you from [an] active shooter incident(s). The Ferguson police officer shot during the riot example was a “non-traditional” active shooter but one nonetheless.

There is no need for me to explain my decision to not travel to Baltimore but it seems prudent because my opinion is so engrained within this subject. I do not remember a time in my past that I refused anyone’s call for assistance or as in this matter, “help” (I use this term loosely) to protect others. The fact is, as an active shooter expert with experience inside two actual events with multiple shots fired, I have a unique perspective few others could fathom. Domestically speaking, its such an anomaly, my chances of winning the lottery were higher than finding myself in these incidents.

At the government’s request, I was summoned to participate in a tabletop exercise to produce calculated route planning for the security and safety of citizens and police alike. The goal was to teach the basics to the masses and plan for the unthinkable. What skewed my opinion to not go was just that, the unthinkable already took place (Freddie Gray), and reacting instead of planning makes it near impossible to be “right” in all areas. One misstep or missed the event and there would be detrimental scars left inside me similar to others I have from my police career.

Choosing winners and losers cannot determine safety – which means the city is choosing a path to mitigate an unforgivable tragedy, in this case, the loss of life of a young man. No matter the history of this person or what went wrong or by whom, both sides have polar opposite opinions. Trying to save face in light of exceptional rioting from out-sourced protestors, the city would see my role as a “would-be” appearance in RAW clips discussing a slanted view. Editing out the true opinions would not be worth the time away because both sides have stakes to smear the others in this incident.

The news stories coming out are already slanted to the family of the deceased youth and slightly misrepresented. This does not mean I believe the police are in the right because I do not in this case (with what details are known up to this time). My opinion of this incident and the outcome that would be prudent is the safety of the public, not blind public safety backing. As professionals, we need to align and write as far-reaching as possible. Spreading this narrative that we back professional mitigation and planning with solid community policies that support and back communities and police alike. We need to push this beyond print and media journalism with overlapping social media resources and followers of each.

Explaining the situation, politics aside, the police in Baltimore have a voice as their personal voices are muted by the policy. This is the same policy manual that seems to be at the heart of the matter at hand. Attempting to represent the community and people who feel they’ve been unjustly wronged will slight the police. Any attempt to explain the truisms here and there is nearly impossible.

Instead of sensationalizing the matters ongoing, we should get to the root of the issue, not create new problems.   By setting fires, vandalizing local businesses (like we see at the CVS) and thievery will not solve nor deter the next bad decision by one or two officers. Out of over one million law enforcement professionals, even if the ones and twos who erode the personal trust we work so hard to covet, the messaging is being lost.

The majority of police professionals are here for the purpose of helping and others get slighted and erode attitudes because society expects its officers to correct problems in five-minute increments that took well over 20 years to create. Calls do not stop, while not one is the same, the narrative is similar, and eventually, all faces begin to look familiar. There are split-second decisions made by officers that will be second-guessed for days, weeks, and sometimes months or years. If your job had a standard of a “hiccup” as a private citizen (say DWI) would cost you your career, you may be enlightened a little more. But that trust cannot be restored by excuses of stress when the erosion begins one incident at a time.

The vast majority of incidents go unfettered with no major issues and then there’s the perception of impropriety. Once that is there, even if wrong, the “stink” does not come off. Think of Michael Brown in Ferguson, the narrative is, was and continues to not be true but that does not stop the people trying to remove civilized law enforcement. We need to work as a whole society to restore it by starting the conversation and keeping it moving forward and creating a more “community policing model” that works with the community.

This will not bring back bad deeds of the few truly bad policy decisions nor will Freeedie Gray return to the community, but it could stop the “next” Freddie Gray incident from happening. This should shed light form the inside that police are a microcosm of our own society. In each, that same society has bad actors. No excuses though for psychologically challenged badge wearers, but a call for communities to become stronger. Socially neutral as a retired law enforcement officer but that does not mean I am in “blind” support just because the people in question are the police. I stand with the communities for peaceful protests and a real transparent scenario.

I ask we continue this conversation as the months and years pass because if we fail here, we will see a “state-run police force” that will not be able to be “taken back.”

Very Respectfully,

Chris Grollnek

Active Shooter Prevention Expert and Community Policing Policy Strategies

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The President and Criminal Justice Reform

The President and Criminal Justice Reform

I decided to post the article titled; “The President and Criminal Justice Reform” because it coincides with my series being rolled out on policy and reform.  Excellent points are made here and validate my writing in the area of America’s understanding of policy changes and development.  I am not an expert on policy but this was a heavy focus of my Master’s Degree program and I want to share as much as I can about the subject.  The video below is right on time. This is written around the President’s Criminal Justice Reform policies (Obama administration).

A reporter who covered the police beat in Baltimore did this interview at the President’s request (exceptionally done I may add) on the topic of criminal justice reform and policy review. I thought it was extremely relevant as the topic of policy in the United States (Foreign and Domestic) and why it is so complicated.  The ideas are similar but the paths to get to each destination or end road are usually filled with many opinions, complications, lobbyists, and a few answers that make sense at the end of the day. Although I may not agree with everything said in the interview, it is broken down into terms of the thought and then the feedback that would go into changing America’s policy on the criminal justice system.  I am an advocate for this subject as I believe it is far from “just” and the President has great forethought to bring this out for us to begin the discussion so good for him.

By no means am I defending Congress, the Senate, or even the most powerful office in the world, but it is more complex than just jotting down words and hoping people will follow the new “policy.” So we as a society need to take the time and understand why this is such a complex issue to put together.  In my series found at; Chris Grollnek’s home page, I explore thoughts starting with crime control initiatives from the 1960s on and relevant news articles that transcend through the decades as the names and tactics may have changed or even evolved but the problems remain similar. Sometimes better, sometimes worse, but the policy is always at the center of the answer to the riddle of “what to do to make things better.” So when we see people screaming, crying, or evening debating on the news about tactics or procedures, few take the time to understand a certain policy in place that quite possibly brought them to that moment in time.  Once discovered, they may find this is where these issue(s) stemmed from.

Read what this writer put together and keep in mind, he was an instrumental cog in the creation and sustainment of the popular show, “The Wire.” In fact, (in my humble opinion) I think it was so prolific, it was egged out of Emmy Awards (as well as many others) because it hit so close to the truth. Few wanted to examine the problem and issues the show brought to light and still many scream for more reform.  Snapshot this; how can we develop a policy for everyone to comprehend and support when we cannot award the deserving fictional TV show because the truth is too hard to face?

This is food for thought and I am writing a series of essays breaking down why the policy is more than words on paper and instructions for people to follow.  Many times, I write policies for companies on workplace violence prevention or the topic I am most known for which is Active Shooter Prevention. Having survived two separate incidents domestically, I have a unique perspective from the inside of these types of events. I watch people train on these subjects and struggle to keep quiet as they are teaching from training the only experience with zero real-life experiences to bring with them. They are teaching from their own perception of policy on the subject. A policy cannot be implemented based on training experience only, it takes so many levels on an input to be successful.

FROM THE INTERVIEWER: Today, I make television shows. And last Friday, my phone rang. Someone on the other end told me that the President of the United States wants to have a conversation about criminal justice policy in America.

In his effort to try to reconsider some of the sentencing excesses and the levels of incarceration that have become so problematic in America, the President wanted to discuss these issues with me — particularly because a lot of them were rooted in a television show that we did several years ago called “The Wire.” In that show, we were trying to explore what the drug war has become in America and what it was costing us as a society.

So I went to Washington earlier this week and sat down with the President. We shared our experiences, our perspectives on the drug war, and the changes we hope to see. Check out the youtube video above!

Chris Grollnek, MS

Active Shooter Prevention Expert and School Shooting Lecturer for Staff and Students

Filed under:

The President and Criminal Justice Reform – Series from www.chrisgrollnek.com on policy essays by Chris Grollnek – Nationally Recognized and Award-Winning Active Shooter Prevention Expert / Policy Writer and Author / Work Place Violence Evaluator and Risk Mitigation Specialist

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Keeping Our Democracy Free from Hypocrisy

Keeping Our Democracy Free from Hypocrisy

Chris Grollnek

Bill of Rights – Keeping Our Democracy Free from Hypocrisy

Consider this statement: It is necessary for the rights of offenders to be considered and protected to a significant degree if the principles of a free, constitutional democracy are to be upheld.

Keeping Our Democracy Free from Hypocrisy: This question took me a while to respond to years ago in a legal class while working on my Masters.  It goes against most I was taught through practical application police work in “field training” but straight in line with the theory of police work in the academy. No matter your opinion, one could look to recent police protests and events and see there is no right answer.

The police (for the most part and majority of) see things one way as to up-hold the law as a noble calling while the people who “breach the peace” see things totally different.  That is until they are arrested. These protesters of all races, religions, upbringing and socialy economic backgrounds bring their own view of “Democracy” right up until it personally affects them.

On the other hand, too often news cycles show us police have their own agenda.  Below are some quick thoughts that I hope will spark a quality debate, not begin an emotionally charged name calling session. My academic answer follows:

What a thought provoking first question for a class on legal issues.  At first glance, I would discuss the need of understanding the Constitutional Amendments, known as The Bill of Rights.  Treating all people equal no matter their accused or convicted crimes is paramount to the upholding of equal justice.  Allowing Constitutional rights to be reduced to a “one off” or “one situation at a time” would simply remove the possibility of “fair and equal treatment under the law.”

The slide of equality from one case may gradually move and begin the deterioration of freedoms enjoyed by all.  So just because one person commits an act no matter how heinous, there will always be one worse.  This allows emotions to come into play within the rule of law.  Emotional responses make it impossible for a standard to be upheld because one person may have a different emotional reaction to a crime than another.

Taking this response in another direction yet online with the discussion, what if the offender were innocent.  The 8th Amendment establishes laws to prohibit cruel and unusual punishment.  Treating everyone in the justice system equally (theoretically anyway) ensures our faith in a mature society to do the right thing and uphold our own laws keeping the “Democracy” free from hypocrisy.

There is a saying that has been translated several ways and used over and over.  Although its origin is from the Supreme Court 1895, the opinion of the same court in 1959 established the basis for this very argument; “it is better, so the Fourth Amendment teaches, that the guilty sometimes go free than that citizens be subject to easy arrest.”   http://www2.law.ucla.edu/volokh/guilty.htm 

The point of this reference is protection for all citizens instead of arbitrarily made up laws to suit one persons needs of justice against another’s based on accusations and even criminal acts.

Keeping Our Democracy Free from Hypocrisy

Chris Grollnek

CJA560 DQ1 2012

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PSA on Active Shooter Prevention

PSA on Active Shooter Prevention

PSA on Active Shooter Prevention

Chris Grollnek Gives Away Active Shooter Training Video for Free

In 2009 Active Shooter Events began to be the centerpiece for media broadcast regarding mass murder in the workplace and schools. A brief reprieve was enjoyed in the nightly news until Fort Hood regained the attention of these types of events with a higher profile elementary school shooting shortly thereafter.

Chris Grollnek recognized that few companies actually taught the first on scene (the people inside the events) of active shooters/workplace homicidal incidents, how to survive without physical altercations. Instead, Chris took his experience of being involved in two domestic active shooter events (only one of three people in the nation to experience two) and reverse engineered them for an inside out understanding. These events re-focused his Masters Degree studies to research this phenomenon.

Following the advancement of the company, Chris recruited several partners with unique backgrounds. This dynamic group of individuals became the National Authority on Active Shooters. Following the vision and mission development that Chris outlined, CCG began to work with corporations, schools and enigmatic agencies. With the success came numerous media opportunities ultimately making the phrase active shooter expert synonymous with Chris Grollnek.

As demand dictated, (CCG) began recruiting more Subject Matter Experts (SME’s) in the industry on a variety of topics and grew to a force no other company could replicate. During this time, Chris worked with Colonel Morgan Banks of Operational Psychology to develop a new strategy of “Behavioral Modification Messaging” for a PSA project. In 2013 CCG released their PSA on Active Shooter Prevention in conjunction with Parroco TV.

In January 2014, Chris Grollnek sold his shares to pursue his work at a higher level that can be shared. Chris wrapped up his endeavor in early 2015. CCG continues to do business with a focus on assessments with a steep departure from the initial vision set forth in the founding company charter.

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