Training Away Emotion


As a law enforcement trainer, I found that your article "Not War but Close Enough" [March 24-31] had relevance to law enforcement as well as the military.

What we in law enforcement have also learned through realistic force-on-force training and reviews of actual critical incidents is that very frequently officers experience perceptual distortions during these events. Further studies show that officers act on the emotional centers of their brains during these events and not the thinking centers in the neocortex. The only way to overcome the hijacking by these emotional centers is frequent realistic scenarios that replicate similar future events that the soldier or officer may face. This training provides them with markers to follow based on past training experience that gives them the guidepost to act appropriately and not react to the emotions of fear and anger when an actual similar event occurs. I applaud the Marines for conducting this type of training for all their personnel, and not just the special operations troops.

Mike Sadauskis

Sergeant, Staff Development
Rochester Police Department
Rochester, Minn.