Do you leave your garage door open like this? Many of us do, but practicing Active Self Protection means thinking about what that means for our personal protection and perhaps making different choices!
Original video of the attack: https://get-asp.com/roki
News story with all the details: https://get-asp.com/c0vj
What does this attack teach us about protecting ourselves from harm in our home?
- Your car is not a private space, and you must continue to think of yourself like you’re in public. If ever you wonder if people don’t think of themselves as in public in the car, pay attention to drivers in their cars and see how often they are picking their nose or singing along at high volume. Don’t let your smartphone take all your attention when you’re in the car, either! Think of yourself as walking down the street and pay attention accordingly. Even when you hit your own garage, you’re still in a public place until the garage door is closed. Pay attention!
- 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.
- 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.
- Since criminals are looking for victims and not fights, they tend to look for vulnerable people to target. 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!
- 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. Thankfully this attacker didn’t really want to hurt anyone and so he ran off when he faced resistance. You won’t always get that lucky.
Attitude. Skills. Plan.