I regret that I never found the time or inclination to write “Fischer’s Law.” I should have written it and publicized it and made it as popular as ”Chicken Soup for the Soul,” etc. Fischer’s Law states, “When a person is in a position where they think they can’t win, they become unpredictable and potentially violent.” Fischer’s Law may have explained 9/11. It may have explained the Bush administration’s reaction to it. It explains the people who get fired and go back to work and shoot people. It explains many cases of domestic violence. I first discovered it one evening when I was trying to have a quiet time in the kitchen at Vine St.. Nancy, who was about ten at the time, wanted to dance around the kitchen and argued with me when I asked her to stop or leave. I wanted quiet and all Nancy was allowing me was dancing or argument. With those two choices, I couldn’t win. I found myself wanting to hit her. I didn’t hit her. But let her know that she was to leave, period! When I analyzed the incident I discovered that even a peace-loving person could be moved toward violence. It was then that I discovered “Fischer’s Law.”
So what? Knowing the law of gravity doesn’t stop you from getting hurt when you fall. Can knowing Fischer’s Law keep you out of trouble? Yes!
First, if you catch yourself in a Fischer’s Law situation you can stop and think. You do not have to explode. If you can’t win, you can’t win. You don’t have to make matters worse by over-reacting. Killing coworkers doesn’t get your job back. Hitting your spouse doesn’t make the marriage work. Shouting nasty things you can’t take back won’t make the situation any better. Just stop and think. “Count to ten,” was the advice I got when I was young. It’s time to stop long enough to think of what we want. What do we want to accomplish? What will accomplish it? Hitting someone or shooting them probably won’t accomplish your goals. It will definitely interfere with other goals.
Second, recognize when someone else thinks that they can’t win. Help them find a way to win, or, at least, not to lose. Or if you can’t do that, get away from them. When I listen and remember my love for my honey, there is peace in my home and my heart. When I can do that, I can help her to find a way not to lose. Parents can distract or redirect the kid having a melt-down.
What could have been done to stop Timothy McVey, or the Fort Hood Psychiatrist? Would knowledge of Fischer’s Law helped that guy I read about in the paper this morning who shot his wife and then himself when she went to see a divorce lawyer?