Beyond watching “Taken,” have you thought about how you’d respond to a kidnapping attempt? This is an important part of your Active Self Protection plan, to know what your boundaries are in advance and what you will do to protect yourself and when.
Original video of the kidnapping: https://get-asp.com/owdp
What does this victim teach us about protecting ourselves against kidnapping?
- Evil exists in our world, and no amount of wishing it away does so. Kidnapping is simply evil, and good people must be ready and willing to stand between kidnappers 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.
- Transitional spaces are places where we MUST be more careful of potential attack. A transitional space is any location that (1) allows attackers to prey on potential victims with an element of surprise and (2) provides ready escape for the attackers. The bad guys used the loading of groceries as a way to launch their kidnapping. When you’re in a transitional space, recognize the increased threat and prepare accordingly.
- 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. Knowing what the signs are of kidnapping and of attackers gathering around their intended victim might have saved this woman.
- Since criminals are looking for victims and not fights, they tend to look for vulnerable people to target (doubly so with a kidnapping). Think about a pride of lions chasing wildebeest in Africa and you get the picture. They target the elderly, the young, and the sick for easier attack and greater success. Likewise, criminals pick victims who they think will not effectively resist them, or that the criminal can quickly overwhelm. This includes the elderly, the young (kids and early teens), the sick, and the distracted. Men (the overwhelming majority of attackers) also target women because women tend to be physically weaker than men. If you’re in a vulnerable population take extra precaution and train!
- Compliance does not at all guarantee your safety in the face of a kidnapping or other attack. 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: https://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.
- 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 kidnapping victim puts up a significant fight they will likely 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.
- We must never settle for being able to protect ourselves against a lone attacker because of how common multiple attacker engagements are. Kidnappers travel in packs, so we must always be prepared to face multiple attackers in a kidnapping!
- You must establish some “bright lines” of when you’ll fight for your life, no matter the odds. Sometimes it might be best to give in, but there are some situations that are so dire that any odds are better than none. For me, being tied up is one of those bright lines. The second is being taken to a second location i.e. a kidnapping. In those situations, I will fight to the death right where I am. You must establish your own “bright lines” of defense that you know it’s time to go right now.
Attitude. Skills. Plan.
Copyright Disclaimer. Under Section 107 of the Copyright Act 1976, allowance is made for “fair use” for purposes such as criticism, comment, news reporting, teaching, scholarship, and research. Fair use is a use permitted by copyright statute that might otherwise be infringing. Non-profit, educational or personal use tips the balance in favor of fair use.