This is a good reminder of the dangers of getting involved when you don’t have to; armed robbers don’t respect anyone.
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What does this video teach us about defending ourselves against an armed robbery?
- The “master key” to situational awareness, as taught to me by my teacher Lawrence Robinson and his teacher Skip Hancock, is simple curiosity. You don’t have to be paranoid! Instead, simply be curious of your world like a small child is curious of their world. Look around you and really SEE. Look for what makes sense in your surroundings, but most importantly look for what’s out of place and doesn’t belong. I like to think back to the Sesame Street song “Three of These Things” and remember to look for the thing that doesn’t belong. As self-defenders, you’re looking for someone who doesn’t belong in their environment. A person standing still while everyone else moves. A person in a hoodie with the hood up when everyone else is in shorts and flip flops on a hot day. A person loitering where people come and go quickly. If you are curious and looking for what doesn’t belong, you’re 99% of the way there to being aware of your surroundings!
- As each of us considers whether to be a Good Samaritan and step into encounters that do not directly involve us, we must consider the implications on our lives and families. Does your desire to step in override your duty to your spouse and children and loved ones? Or is it part of your care for your family to protect others wherever you can? We must also all realize that when we come across an incident in progress that it can be VERY difficult to determine who is the aggressor and who is the defender, who are the good guys and who are the bad guys, and that must give us pause as well.
- We must each be ready to face the cost of defending ourselves or others, as well as the cost of not defending. If you defend yourself, especially with a firearm, you might well face significant costs financially, socially, spiritually, emotionally, and relationally. You must be ready for those costs! The same holds true of defending others, and you must decide if the costs are worth paying for your family. You can expect to hire an attorney, spend time in jail perhaps, face social pressure from the media or family or your church, etc. That doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t step in, but it does mean that you have to count the cost and accept it. Certainly, to defend your life or the life of a family member, any cost is bearable. But whether you’re willing to pay that cost for a stranger is a matter for personal reflection and consideration.
- One of the challenges that is more and more common with multiple attackers is the concept of a “trailing accomplice.” What we see fairly often is a point man/gun man who launches the attack, and a trailing accomplice who observes from a distance and comes in when it’s time to secure what they’re after or after they identify any resistance. Just because you don’t see multiple attackers at the beginning of an encounter doesn’t mean they’re not there, so if you’re in a defensive encounter expect there to be multiple attackers.
- 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.
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