At Active Self Protection we talk about disabled self defense with some regularity. You’ve got to be your own self-defender, and this guy certainly was!
The interview with the good guy is awesome: https://get-asp.com/wl7m What a stud!
More on the story here: https://get-asp.com/q9kh
What does disabled self defense look like?
1. All self-defense starts with attitude. I love the interview with Larry, the Good Samaritan. I love that he says he is just doing what he was raised to do, which is help people. The baseline of all self-defense, let alone disabled self defense, is an attitude that says that you are worth protecting and that everyone has value, worth, and dignity. Attitude First!
2. I love that the defender did not consider his disability (which he got from an ATV accident a decade before) a detriment. He had the ability to protect himself and the clerk who was being assaulted by the robber, and he did. Self-defense is about what you CAN do, not about what you CAN’T do. So work with what you have! Paraplegic? Learn to use your arms effectively. Missing a hand? Use your other, your legs, and whatever you have. It’s all about what you have, not about what you might not.
3. The good guy had some skills here. Some might think that his skills were lacking because the guy got out of his holds, but any jiu jitsu practitioner can tell you that holds and locks are much tougher against a non-compliant opponent. He did what he needed to do to get the robber off the woman, and his skills were good! He had a rear naked and a guillotine in there at one point.
4. The other shoppers didn’t fall victim to the Bystander Effect, and that’s tremendous. Because the first person stepped in, the others were spurred to action. Frankly, if you see a guy in a wheelchair stepping in and you don’t help him, shame on you! These other people stepped in and lent a hand as well, which is fantastic. Perhaps they could use some work on their swarm tactics, but that’s forgivable at this point.
5. Convenience stores are transitional spaces. Be extra careful in transitional spaces because they are frequent places of danger. When you’re in transitional spaces, be careful!
Attitude. Skills. Plan.