Armed Robbers Murder Compliant Victims

If you comply with armed robbers as part of a bigger strategy to protect yourself and your family, that is okay. But if you are compliant because you think that armed robbers think about your safety or well-being, you’re fooling yourself. This is why we continue to encourage people to practice Active Self Protection to use compliance as a tool in self-defense rather than as a complete strategy. 


Original video 1: get-asp.com/pnve

Original video 2: get-asp.com/5uyi

What does these incidents teach us about protecting ourselves against armed robbers?

1. Compliance does not at all guarantee your safety in the face of an armed robber or other attacker. We know, for instance, that rape victims who fight back are no more likely to be harmed than if they don’t fight back, and they are less likely to be raped. (study here:get-asp.com/601c if you need proof on that) Compliance does not guarantee safety, as placing your safety in the hands of someone willing to commit a felony is a terrible idea.

2. Evil exists in our world, and no amount of wishing it away does so. Evil people do evil things, and good people must be ready and willing to stand between them and innocent people and do enough violence to stop them definitively. No amount of negotiation will make truly evil people change their ways; only those willing and able to stop them who use attitude, skills, and plan effectively can.

3. In any territorial or predatorial violence, the attacker gets to set the time and circumstances of the attack. They will almost always launch that attack from ambush, or as we like to call it in Umas, from “obscurity.” Surviving that ambush is one of the most important keys to successfully defending yourself.

4. As well-meaning as police officers are, they cannot protect you from danger. As the old adage says, “When seconds count, the police are only minutes away!” You—and ONLY you—can protect yourself from danger when it comes upon you. A police response time of 5 minutes is considered perfectly acceptable in most suburban departments, and times upwards of 30 minutes can be the norm in rural areas! You need to have the attitude, skills, and plan to protect yourself from harm because the police simply can’t.

5. Successful self-defense against many attacks involves a counter-ambush, where the victim finds the right opportunity to seize the initiative from the attacker and launch an ambush of their own. That involves thinking and knowing your own strengths and skill set, and being ready to strike the attacker when your opportunity for counter-ambush comes.

6. We must never settle for being able to protect ourselves against a lone attacker because of how common multiple attacker engagements are. Rats travel in packs, so we must always be prepared to face multiple attackers!

7. Never leave your life-saving tools at home. Having attitude and skills to protect yourself with your firearm will not help you if you do not have it on your person when you need it. Leaving your gun in the glove compartment, on the night stand, or in your safe could be a fatal mistake. Keep your tools on your person whenever you legally can so that if (God forbid) you need them, you have them. This is the same reason you wear your seatbelt every trip in the car, and keep a fire extinguisher in the kitchen. You need to have it ready before you need it.

8. Spiritual fitness is an important part of Active Self Protection. You don’t often get any advance notice of the last day of your life, but we see over and over that self-defense isn’t a guarantee of winning every fight you might be placed in. You want to be at peace with your loved ones and with God, because you’ll need that peace on the day that you meet Him. Since you can’t guarantee advanced notice, make peace today.

Attitude. Skills. Plan.

(music in the intro and outro courtesy of Bensound at bensound.com)

Officer’s Deadly Gunfight Caught On Body Camera

A real gunfight is almost nothing like what you see in the movies or on television. Instead, they go like this. Fast, brutal, deadly, and over in a heartbeat. This is why we focus at Active Self Protection on winning quickly, because quickly is all you have!

Original video and news story: https://get-asp.com/2adb

 

News stories with more details of the attack: https://get-asp.com/1v7t and https://get-asp.com/0097

 

What does this gunfight teach us about protecting ourselves against an attack?

 

  1. The eyes may be the windows to the soul, but the hands are the windows to the intent of a person. If you’re in a potential conflict, ALWAYS pay attention to what the aggressor is doing with their hands. They might have a force multiplier in their hand, or they might be hiding their hand so that you can’t see what is in it or using their hand to conceal something. If their hands are empty, there is a difference between someone with fists and someone whose hands are open and relaxed. As a self-defender your situational awareness must include seeing the hands of any potential threat in your vicinity, so watch the hands! Officer Hodge did a great job here of knowing that Reynolds’ hands were the problem he had to solve, and it may have saved his life.

 

  1. In a deadly force encounter, decisions of life and death will be made in the blink of an eye. On the range and in class we have time to consider and to think and to reset and to make multiple attempts, but when the balloon goes up in real life you’ve got fractions of seconds to decide what the best course of action is to protect yourself. The way to be better at decision making in the heat of the moment is training, specifically scenario training and force-on-force training that is designed to work on decision-making skills under stress. It’s offered all over the country, so get training!

 

  1. Using your verbal judo to de-escalate and redirect a conflict is always the best choice if it is available, so make sure that your verbal game is strong. Knowing how to redirect, how to persuade, how to empathize, and how to talk someone down from a confrontation is critical to avoiding some fights. That said, we must also know that some people will not be dissuaded from a fight, so knowing when to talk and when to act is critical as well.

 

  1. Even if you’re injured, you must stay in the fight and not stop as long as you have consciousness. The human body is designed to take a ridiculous amount of injury and still function, so never stop fighting just because you’re injured! Even if you’re shot or stabbed, you have a 67-95% chance of surviving! (https://get-asp.com/ew3l and https://get-asp.com/p0hn give the details) So practice emotional fitness by knowing that even if the bad guy gets the jump and you’re injured, you’re still in the fight and still likely to survive if you take definitive action to protect yourself.

 

  1. First aid skills are important. If you’re going to train and prepare to take a life to defend yourself, you should also have skills, training, and equipment to save life should you need to. (I carry an individual first aid kit at a minimum: http://amzn.to/1Or4yVz ) Often that will not involve defensive encounters, and in a defensive encounter your primary responsibility is to yourself and your loved ones.

 

  1. Marksmanship matters! The old saying is quite true: you can’t miss fast enough to win a gunfight. As a self-defender you need to practice and train to put your first shot on target as fast as you can, but the key is to put as many shots on target as possible.

 

  1. In most instances that we see on surveillance video, the first person to put shots on target wins the gunfight. That’s not 100% because injured people can stay in the fight a long time, but it is a good “rule of thumb” because once someone gets shot they usually stop thinking about whatever it is they were doing and start thinking about the pain they’re in and how not to get shot again. The lesson in that is clear: be the first to put shots on target. (this is the corollary to Joe Frick’s Rules for a Gunfight #3, “Only hits count. The only thing worse than a miss is a slow miss.”)

 

  1. It’s dark for half the day, and bad guys of all kinds love to launch ambushes from the dark. That means, as a self defender, that part of having good situational awareness involves keeping a flashlight on your person. That flashlight doesn’t have to be crazy tacticool and shouldn’t be firearm-mounted, because its purpose is to help you see at night to give you better awareness of any potential threats far before they can hurt you. A VERY compact option that runs on AAs is this Streamlight: http://amzn.to/1U9S39H and I carry this 1000 lumen Fenix: http://amzn.to/1S73jjb which is rechargeable and has multiple modes of brightness. I highly recommend a flashlight for everyone, simply as an awareness tool at night.

 

  1. What we saw in this gunfight was a need for a pistol mounted light to be able to see the target more effectively, especially in the follow-up phase. Having a light mounted on your pistol is not for everyone, but for those who can make it work it does give you another tool in the toolbox. I carry the TLR-1 HL on my pistol and it works wonderfully. It does not replace a handheld light for general lighting needs, but for illuminating a known threat it is very helpful. The key, as always, is to train with it regularly and seriously.

 

Attitude. Skills. Plan.

 

(music in the intro and outro courtesy of Bensound at http://www.bensound.com)

 

 

Stupid Armed Robber Shows Why You Stay Aware During an Armed Robbery

To be an armed robber, by definition you have to have something wrong with your brain. To protect yourself against an armed robbery, you have to practice Active Self Protection and keep your wits about you, so you know what kind of armed robber you’re up against.

Original video and news story: https://get-asp.com/2byc

 

What does this armed robber teach us about protecting ourselves against armed robbery?

 

  1. Situational awareness is useful for more than seeing the attack coming, but also for knowing what is happening during the attack. In particular, if your awareness is strong you might get to see an armed robber put their gun away to use both hands, or you might see that the robber’s gun malfunctions or is empty. That information can give you the cue to act definitively to defend yourself by running or by counter-attacking the armed robber. This is not only why awareness is important, but knowledge of firearms and tools is as well!

 

  1. In any territorial or predatorial violence, the attacker gets to set the time and circumstances of the attack. They will almost always launch that attack from ambush, or as we like to call it in Umas, from “obscurity.” Surviving that ambush is one of the most important keys to successfully defending yourself.

 

  1. Do not stay in the danger zone if you can possibly help it. So many times people get decision paralysis and freeze, but you cannot stay in a place where a deadly threat exists! Either act to leave the area, or act to protect yourself. Every second you give an attacker is another opportunity they have to do you and yours harm, so don’t allow that. If you can, get out of there immediately. If you can’t, then look for your opportunity to ensure your own safety by whatever means necessary. Before your Kung Fu, and before your Gun Fu, you should consider whether your best defense is Run Fu! This armed robber wasn’t keeping everyone stationary, so running away might have been the best solution!

 

  1. In a deadly force encounter, decisions of life and death will be made in the blink of an eye. On the range and in class we have time to consider and to think and to reset and to make multiple attempts, but when the balloon goes up in real life you’ve got fractions of seconds to decide what the best course of action is to protect yourself. The way to be better at decision making in the heat of the moment is training, specifically scenario training and force-on-force training that is designed to work on decision-making skills under stress. It’s offered all over the country, so get training!

 

  1. As well-meaning as police officers are, they cannot protect you from danger. As the old adage says, “When seconds count, the police are only minutes away!” You—and ONLY you—can protect yourself from danger when it comes upon you. A police response time of 5 minutes is considered perfectly acceptable in most suburban departments, and times upwards of 30 minutes can be the norm in rural areas! You need to have the attitude, skills, and plan to protect yourself from harm because the police simply can’t. This armed robbery was over long before any police could have responded. You must be the primary agent in your own rescue!

 

  1. If you do not have the attitude, skills, and plan to protect yourself from an attacker, then your only option is to submit to their demands and hope it works out for the best. I would never suggest that a helpless person try to defend themselves against a carjacking or armed robbery, though of course if it’s a matter of life and death you must do whatever you can. The point, though, is not to be a helpless victim! This is the heart of Active Self Protection, to motivate you to train and help you develop the attitude, skills, and plan so that you can choose to protect yourself if it makes sense in the moment rather than being forced into compliance with a violent felon.

 

Attitude. Skills. Plan.

 

(music in the intro and outro courtesy of Bensound at http://www.bensound.com)

 

 

 

 

Knife Attack Against Officer Caught on His Body Cam

I think that Officer Joshua Hilling did a pretty phenomenal job here of both stopping the threat (and protecting himself from a deadly force knife attack) AND showing remarkable restraint in how he gave the perp (who is facing murder charges in another attack) every chance in the world to comply. This is great Active Self Protection.

Original video: https://get-asp.com/45g3

 

News story with more details of the attack: https://get-asp.com/d5tq

 

What does this knife attack teach us about protecting ourselves against deadly force?

 

  1. You must know the range of your force multiplier and the range of various force multipliers that might be used against you. Knives are short-range, fast moving force multipliers. Firearms are extremely long-range, fast moving force multipliers. One of the best things that Officer Hilling did here is gain distance and keep himself out of range of another knife attack!

 

  1. If you have a partner with you when you’re attacked (be it a LEO partner if you work on a team, or your spouse or martial artist buddy), you want to do everything you can to work as a team. Knowing each other well and communicating clearly will help you protect yourself from danger. This takes training and practice and commitment, but two partners working together present a formidable challenge to any attacker. Officer Hilling communicated with the other officers on scene and with the perp very well, and that was a big part of him being successful at stopping the threat.

 

  1. In the moment of need, the old saying goes that you will not rise to the occasion but fall to the level of your training. Usually, you’ll fall to the level of your WORST DAY in training. That means you want to train hard, train regularly, and make no excuses (to paraphrase one of my martial arts mentors, Skip Hancock) so that your worst day is good enough for the fight you’re in.

 

  1. The rules of firearm safety apply in a gunfight, just like they do on the range or in your home. Whether you prefer to articulate them as Colonel Cooper’s four rules or the NRA’s three rules (I have a discussion of my preference here: https://get-asp.com/cfgf if you want to read it), you must have the presence of mind to keep your firearm pointed in the appropriate direction and only fire when you will not hit an innocent. You are morally and legally responsible for the rounds that leave your gun, so make sure to train and practice so that you take responsible shots in the moment of need.

 

  1. While we know that shooting with both hands on the gun is best for recoil control and putting fast, accurate shots on target, we also know that it’s not always possible to do. We must train and prepare to use our firearm with both our gun hand and our guard hand in case of injury or incapacitation.

 

  1. In a gunfight, movement is your friend. You must be ready not only to draw and fire, but to draw and fire while moving laterally, back, and diagonally. You simply will not stand still in a gunfight because it is against every instinct you have when in mortal danger! People who focus too much on stance or isosceles vs. Weaver forget this fact, but as self-defenders we must know that we will be moving. So practice and train movement on the draw and fire. This is a great reason to have airsoft trainers and practice draw and move in your dry-fire regimen as well.

 

  1. The human body is designed to take a ridiculous amount of punishment and still function. You can shoot someone multiple times and they can still pose a deadly threat! Even mortally wounded people can continue to pose a threat for several seconds to even minutes after being shot, so don’t think for a moment that shooting someone will necessarily immediately incapacitate them. That is Hollywood myth.

 

Attitude. Skills. Plan.

 

(music in the intro and outro courtesy of Bensound at http://www.bensound.com)

 

 

Security Guard Has Deadly Gunfight with Two Armed Robbers

What would you have done in his shoes? Though you can’t win every fight, you train and prepare to give yourself the best chance possible and hone your Active Self Protection so that if the balloon ever goes up, you’re ready!

Original video and some details of the events: https://get-asp.com/2ewo

 

More details of the event and several pics (graphic) (Google translate required): https://get-asp.com/pfzq

 

What does this gunfight teach us about protecting ourselves against an armed robbery?

 

  1. Situational awareness is your best friend. It doesn’t mean that you always are paranoid or living in “condition orange,” but it does mean that you know Col. Cooper’s color code of awareness and you live by it. Pay attention to your surroundings, and recognize that when you’re in public places you need to be more aware of your surroundings than when you’re in private.

 

  1. In any territorial or predatorial violence, the attacker gets to set the time and circumstances of the attack. They will almost always launch that attack from ambush, or as we like to call it in Umas, from “obscurity.” Surviving that ambush is one of the most important keys to successfully defending yourself.

 

  1. In a deadly force encounter, decisions of life and death will be made in the blink of an eye. On the range and in class we have time to consider and to think and to reset and to make multiple attempts, but when the balloon goes up in real life you’ve got fractions of seconds to decide what the best course of action is to protect yourself. The way to be better at decision making in the heat of the moment is training, specifically scenario training and force-on-force training that is designed to work on decision-making skills under stress. It’s offered all over the country, so get training!

 

  1. In the moment an armed robber attacks you, you must look for your opportunity to protect yourself. It is strongly possible that the moment of the attack is not that moment. You want to wait for the time that the armed robber is not focusing on you to act with decisiveness to protect yourself. Here the guard didn’t wait for an opportunity but drew when he was at a disadvantage. It was a costly mistake.

 

  1. We must never settle for being able to protect ourselves against a lone attacker because of how common multiple attacker engagements are. Rats travel in packs, so we must always be prepared to face multiple attackers!

 

  1. The human body is designed to take a ridiculous amount of punishment and still function. You can shoot someone multiple times and they can still pose a deadly threat! Even mortally wounded people can continue to pose a threat for several seconds to even minutes after being shot, so don’t think for a moment that shooting someone will necessarily immediately incapacitate them. That is Hollywood myth.

 

  1. Spiritual fitness is an important part of Active Self Protection. You don’t often get any advance notice of the last day of your life, but we see over and over that self-defense isn’t a guarantee of winning every fight you might be placed in. You want to be at peace with your loved ones and with God, because you’ll need that peace on the day that you meet Him. Since you can’t guarantee advanced notice, make peace today.

 

Attitude. Skills. Plan.

 

(music in the intro and outro courtesy of Bensound at http://www.bensound.com)

 

 

Random Knife Attacks Caught on Video

How do you honestly think you would have responded to these attacks? If you read the news story of the emotional and psychological impact of these attacks on the victims, you’ll really see why having your Active Self Protection sharp to protect yourself from stuff like this is important.

Original video significant details of the events: https://get-asp.com/j8i6

 

What does this video teach us about protecting ourselves against a knife attack?

 

  1. You must accept that danger exists and that it can happen to you. This is the foundational core of spiritual fitness and the first step in taking proactive steps to protect yourself and your loved ones. If you live in a fantasyland that nothing bad can happen because nothing bad has happened in the past, you’re setting yourself up for a terrible letdown.

 

  1. Situational awareness is your best friend. It doesn’t mean that you always are paranoid or living in “condition orange,” but it does mean that you know Col. Cooper’s color code of awareness and you live by it. Pay attention to your surroundings, and recognize that when you’re in public places you need to be more aware of your surroundings than when you’re in private.

 

  1. If your awareness is solid, you should get plenty of pre-attack cues from a robber or other attacker. If you’re paying attention to your surroundings and the people in your vicinity it becomes a lot easier to see who is out of place! Look for people lurking and not doing what everyone else is doing, or covering their face or head when that’s not necessary (like inside or when it’s warm out). Watch for furtive glances which are an indicator that they are looking for potential witnesses to their actions. Check hands as well to see if they have anything in them or are hiding unnaturally in pockets. If you see a pattern that makes you uncomfortable, move from condition yellow to condition orange and take action to investigate or move to safety.

 

  1. Regular people really battle Normalcy Bias. Normalcy Bias is a mental state that causes people not to react to disaster, or to underestimate the ability of that disaster to affect them personally. In defensive encounters, Normalcy Bias makes people stand around in the danger zone and not take defensive action.

 

  1. As well-meaning as police officers are, they cannot protect you from danger. As the old adage says, “When seconds count, the police are only minutes away!” You—and ONLY you—can protect yourself from danger when it comes upon you. A police response time of 5 minutes is considered perfectly acceptable in most suburban departments, and times upwards of 30 minutes can be the norm in rural areas! You need to have the attitude, skills, and plan to protect yourself from harm because the police simply can’t.

 

  1. It’s important to be trained and ready to protect yourself against a knife attack as it is against an attack with a firearm. FBI homicide data says that about 4 times the number of people are killed with handguns as with knives, but since gunshots are about four times more fatal than knife wounds, it means the number of attacks are probably similar! (if you look at the FBI data, hands and feet kill a lot of people, too!) This leads us to the principle that we must be ready for knife attacks that begin at close distance, and have the empty-handed skills to defend ourselves.

 

  1. First aid skills are important. If you’re going to train and prepare to take a life to defend yourself, you should also have skills, training, and equipment to save life should you need to. (I carry an individual first aid kit at a minimum: http://amzn.to/1Or4yVz ) Often that will not involve defensive encounters, and in a defensive encounter your primary responsibility is to yourself and your loved ones.

 

Attitude. Skills. Plan.

 

(music in the intro and outro courtesy of Bensound at http://www.bensound.com)

 

 

 

 

Clerk Fights Armed Robber

Would you have fought back in this instance, or just hoped for the best? Practicing Active Self Protection gives you the option of either; if you have no attitude, skill, or plan for what to do with an armed robber like this, you have no options.

Original video with a few details of the event: https://get-asp.com/g7oj

 

What does this clerk teach us about protecting ourselves against an armed robber?

 

  1. In any territorial or predatorial violence, the attacker gets to set the time and circumstances of the attack. They will almost always launch that attack from ambush, or as we like to call it in Umas, from “obscurity.” Surviving that ambush is one of the most important keys to successfully defending yourself.

 

  1. If you do not have the attitude, skills, and plan to protect yourself from an attacker, then your only option is to submit to their demands and hope it works out for the best. I would never suggest that a helpless person try to defend themselves against a carjacking or armed robbery, though of course if it’s a matter of life and death you must do whatever you can. The point, though, is not to be a helpless victim! This is the heart of Active Self Protection, to motivate you to train and help you develop the attitude, skills, and plan so that you can choose to protect yourself if it makes sense in the moment rather than being forced into compliance with a violent felon.

 

  1. In the moment an armed robber attacks you, you must look for your opportunity to protect yourself. It is strongly possible that the moment of the attack is not that moment. You want to wait for the time that the armed robber is not focusing on you to act with decisiveness to protect yourself.

 

  1. The root word of gunfight is “fight,” not “gun.” Whether you carry a firearm or not, recognize that you need to know how to fight and protect yourself against an attacker! Even if you do carry a firearm, you need empty-handed skills to be able to fight your way to your gun or defend yourself before you get the opportunity to draw. To think otherwise is madness.

 

  1. We must learn that our environment is everything in us, on us, and around us. When we get into a fight, we must use not only what is on US, but what is on our attacker as well as what is in our environment! If we have to go hands on with an armed robber or mugger or other attacker, using what is in our environment is a wise strategy many times.

 

Attitude. Skills. Plan.

 

(music in the intro and outro courtesy of Bensound at http://www.bensound.com)

 

 

 

 

Teen Tries to Rob Convenience Store with Airsoft Pistol

Could you tell it was an airsoft pistol? I certainly couldn’t, and this clerk certainly had reason to believe he was being threatened with a real firearm. Your Active Self Protection better be ready to defend yourself in the moment from this kind of threat.

Original video with news story of the event: https://get-asp.com/av3n

 

What does this attempted armed robbery teach us about protecting ourselves against an attack?

 

  1. Remember, at the end of a defensive encounter your goal is to get to safety and end the threat against you and your loved ones. Pursuing a fleeing bad guy for whatever reason is unwise because they very well may counter-ambush you or hurt you to make their escape. Once the threat ends, let the threat go and take action to make yourself safer.

 

  1. In a deadly force encounter, decisions of life and death will be made in the blink of an eye. On the range and in class we have time to consider and to think and to reset and to make multiple attempts, but when the balloon goes up in real life you’ve got fractions of seconds to decide what the best course of action is to protect yourself. The way to be better at decision making in the heat of the moment is training, specifically scenario training and force-on-force training that is designed to work on decision-making skills under stress. It’s offered all over the country, so get training!

 

  1. You must know your firearm, how it functions, and how you’ll respond with it in the moment of need. Pressure testing your firearms manipulations in force on force and other training classes is critical because you need to know that you can get your firearm in the fight and keep it in the fight! If your habits will inadvertently drop the magazine or your grip will cause the slide not to lock back on empty or other induce other malfunctions, you do NOT want to find that out when the balloon goes up.

 

  1. Keep your firearm on your person! Plenty of people keep a firearm stationed near them under the counter or on a desk, but in the moment of need you can’t ever be sure that you can get to it if it’s not on your person.

 

  1. The goal in any defensive firearms use is to stop the threat. Never draw a firearm if you’re not willing to use it, but if the presence of the firearm stops the threat, don’t pull the trigger! If the bad guy flees or surrenders, that’s a very successful defensive firearm use and you’ve met the goal.

 

  1. One of the five pillars of lawful, moral self-defense is “imminence,” (get a nutshell here: http://get-asp.com/wbbp or the whole concept here: http://get-asp.com/1fqe ). Imminence means the threat is happening RIGHT NOW, that it’s neither too late nor too early for you to defend yourself! The standard of imminence is seen as a triad of ability, opportunity, and jeopardy (also known as the AOJ triad, which is explained here: http://get-asp.com/pm3k in some detail).

 

Attitude. Skills. Plan.

 

(music in the intro and outro courtesy of Bensound at http://www.bensound.com)

 

 

Stabbing Attack Caught on Camera

Could you have honestly protected yourself from this attack? You win every fight you can avoid, but as this video shows, some you simply can’t avoid. That’s why your Active Self Protection must include more than Run Fu!

Original video: https://get-asp.com/uc60

 

News story with more details: https://get-asp.com/351f

 

What does this stabbing teach us about protecting ourselves against an attack?

 

  1. It’s dark for half the day, and bad guys of all kinds love to launch ambushes from the dark. That means, as a self-defender, that part of having good situational awareness involves keeping a flashlight on your person. That flashlight doesn’t have to be crazy tacticool and shouldn’t be firearm-mounted, because its purpose is to help you see at night to give you better awareness of any potential threats far before they can hurt you. A VERY compact option that runs on AAs is this Streamlight: http://amzn.to/1U9S39H and I carry this 1000 lumen Fenix: http://amzn.to/1S73jjb which is rechargeable and has multiple modes of brightness. I highly recommend a flashlight for everyone, simply as an awareness tool at night.

 

  1. There is a significant difference between territorial and predatorial violence. (I learned these terms from Marc MacYoung) Territorial violence occurs when an aggressor wants something from you; they put a line in the sand and tell you that you will give it to them, or they will hurt you. Muggings and rapes fall in this category among others. Predatorial violence occurs when the attacker wants you dead and there is no ability to comply with demands to live. In territorial violence compliance might get you out alive, but a predatory attacker will not be stopped short of your death or you having the attitude, skills, and plan to stop them.

 

  1. If you do not have the attitude, skills, and plan to protect yourself from an attacker, then your only option is to submit to their demands and hope it works out for the best. I would never suggest that a helpless person try to defend themselves against a carjacking or armed robbery, though of course if it’s a matter of life and death you must do whatever you can. The point, though, is not to be a helpless victim! This is the heart of Active Self Protection, to motivate you to train and help you develop the attitude, skills, and plan so that you can choose to protect yourself if it makes sense in the moment rather than being forced into compliance with a violent felon.

 

  1. The Bystander Effect is real. There were lots of people around here, but no one stepped in. You cannot count on anyone breaking the Bystander Effect to help you, especially if the attacker is armed and any help would be at a force deficit from it. Usually the best way to break the Bystander Effect is to have a force multiplication advantage, which is a great reason to keep your force multiplier on you at all times.

 

  1. If you run from an attack, don’t just run AWAY from danger. Run TO something. Run TO the corner where you can fight one at a time. Run TO a store where a guard can help you. Run TO your house where you can lock the door. Run TO a place where you can better defend yourself from attack. Running FROM danger is great, but running TO safety is better!

 

  1. It’s important to be trained and ready to protect yourself against a knife attack as it is against an attack with a firearm. FBI homicide data says that about 4 times the number of people are killed with handguns as with knives, but since gunshots are about four times more fatal than knife wounds, it means the number of attacks are probably similar! (if you look at the FBI data, hands and feet kill a lot of people, too!) This leads us to the principle that we must be ready for knife attacks that begin at close distance, and have the empty-handed skills to defend ourselves.

 

  1. As one of my martial arts mentors, Skip Hancock, is fond of saying, the ground must be your friend and not your enemy. You must know how to fight on the ground and not panic if the fight goes to the ground! You must have skills from bottom position, from top position, and in the scramble. You must be able to regain your feet and fight from wherever you find yourself. Too many fights require this skill to ignore it!

 

  1. Spiritual fitness is an important part of Active Self Protection. You don’t often get any advance notice of the last day of your life, but we see over and over that self-defense isn’t a guarantee of winning every fight you might be placed in. You want to be at peace with your loved ones and with God, because you’ll need that peace on the day that you meet Him. Since you can’t guarantee advanced notice, make peace today.

 

Attitude. Skills. Plan.

 

(music in the intro and outro courtesy of Bensound at http://www.bensound.com)

 

 

Friends Work Together to Stop Knife-Wielding Armed Robber

How would you have responded to this guy putting a knife to your throat? We get to see an armed robber get the drop on people like this pretty often, which is why we work on our Active Self Protection to be ready to protect ourselves!

Original video with news story of the attack: https://get-asp.com/g58j

 

What does this intended victim teach us about protecting ourselves from an armed robber?

 

  1. In any territorial or predatorial violence, the attacker gets to set the time and circumstances of the attack. This armed robber certainly did! They will almost always launch that attack from ambush, or as we like to call it in Umas, from “obscurity.” Surviving that ambush is one of the most important keys to successfully defending yourself.

 

  1. In the moment an armed robber attacks you, you must look for your opportunity to protect yourself. It is strongly possible that the moment of the attack is not that moment. You want to wait for the time that the armed robber is not focusing on you to act with decisiveness to protect yourself.

 

  1. If you have spiritual fitness by knowing what you’re willing to fight for and that you’re willing and ready to win the fight no matter what, you place yourself way ahead of most attackers. Attackers are looking for victims and not looking for fights, so many times when an intended victim puts up a significant fight they will disengage and find other prey. This makes sense even in the animal kingdom where we often see an apex predator disengage from feisty prey for fear of injury. Being ready to defend yourself is a key in self-defense because that defense will often cause the bad guy to run. This is part of why spiritual fitness is so important to self-defense.

 

  1. In a deadly force encounter, decisions of life and death will be made in the blink of an eye. On the range and in class we have time to consider and to think and to reset and to make multiple attempts, but when the balloon goes up in real life you’ve got fractions of seconds to decide what the best course of action is to protect yourself. The way to be better at decision making in the heat of the moment is training, specifically scenario training and force-on-force training that is designed to work on decision-making skills under stress. It’s offered all over the country, so get training!

 

  1. The root word of gunfight is “fight,” not “gun.” Whether you carry a firearm or not, recognize that you need to know how to fight and protect yourself against an attacker! Even if you do carry a firearm, you need empty-handed skills to be able to fight your way to your gun or defend yourself before you get the opportunity to draw. To think otherwise is madness.

 

  1. If you have a partner with you when you’re attacked (be it a LEO partner if you work on a team, or your spouse or martial artist buddy), you want to do everything you can to work as a team. Knowing each other well and communicating clearly will help you protect yourself from danger. This takes training and practice and commitment, but two partners working together present a formidable challenge to any attacker.

 

  1. You must be able to fight and defend yourself from all different stages of action. One of my martial arts mentors, Skip Hancock, likes to say that we must be able to fight wherever the fight happens to be! So whether we are at contact stage (just able to come in physical contact with our attacker), penetration stage (where attacks can contact and penetrate significantly), or manipulation stage (a clinch or similar where joint and body manipulations are possible), we must be able to use effective technique to protect ourselves.

 

Attitude. Skills. Plan.

 

(music in the intro and outro courtesy of Bensound at http://www.bensound.com)