What’s in the Hump Day Reading List this week? A variety of articles on self defense, preparedness, safety, and responsibility — all aimed at helping you live a more resilient and happy life!
The unseen danger of blunt force injuries
There is a perception, particularly among those who have little exposure to actual violence, that empty hands aren’t really dangerous — at least, “not like a knife or a gun.” In reality blunt force, from a punch or a fall, is often deadly. In this superb article from Doctors for Responsible Gun Ownership, Dr. Robert Margulies explains what blunt force is, how it can occur, and how dangerous it really is. Read the article thoroughly and consider keeping it for reference.
More on securing your smartphone
I’ve been sharing articles on how to lock down your smartphone because the ubiquitous devices present a major risk to your information security. In this article, Justin looks at iOS security settings and encryption options. If you have an iPhone you should definitely read this article!
Prepper or survivalist?
Does it even matter? Tiger McKee takes a look at just what survivalism or prepping entails and why it should be an everyday activity.
“…you’re not a responsible gun owner of any kind if a child can access your weapon or weapons.”
Frankly, I agree with that statement. As responsible gun owners it’s our job to keep our firearms out of the hands of unauthorized users — which most definitely includes children. “Hiding” guns, keeping them under a pillow or in a nightstand or in a purse, will never foil even the youngest of children. If the gun isn’t on your person, it should be locked up.
This article also illustrates a major problem with purse (or “off body”) carry: the purse must be treated just like a gun. If it’s not on your shoulder or in your hand, it has to be locked up. So many new gun carriers opt for this method of carry because it’s easy and requires the least change to a person’s wardrobe. The problem is that it’s the carry method which requires the most change in one’s HABITS and ATTENTION. People are used to leaving their purses (or briefcases or backpacks) in all kinds of places they’d never put a gun, but when the gun is in that container they don’t alter that behavior. There are too many of these types of accidents, very often with fatalities, to ignore. If you’re an instructor, make sure your students understand the risks; if you’re considering off-body carry, think carefully about how you’ll secure that gun. (Frankly, I think it’s irresponsible for the holster purse makers out there to continue to pitch their wares to inexperienced or untrained carriers without thoroughly educating them about the risks.)
Not every intrusion justifies shooting. Here are some examples.
I’ve lost track of the number of times people have told me that anyone they find in their house is “obviously a threat” and will be shot. The problem, of course, is that there are all kinds of reasons for a stranger to be in your home without your permission, and not all of them are reasons to start shooting. This is a sobering article from Greg Ellifritz, who gives several instances from his police career where shooting the intruder wouldn’t have been justified. This is one of the reasons I emphasize grabbing your flashlight before the gun when you hear that “bump in the night”!
Women, don’t let other women shame you away from self defense
I found this guest post on Anna Valdiserri’s blog. It takes on the issue of women not learning to defend themselves because it would “just put other women at risk”. This is the same argument about making your home more burglar resistant: you’re sending them to a less-prepared neighbor. Neither makes much sense.
“It worked” and “is suboptimal” are often the same thing
This is one of those articles I wish I’d written! Cecil Burch, martial artist extraodinaire, takes on the notion that just because something “worked” means it should be taught — or learned. It’s a dangerous concept that keeps outdated and ineffectual techniques in the curricula of too many self defense instructors. It’s one of Cecil’s better articles and definitely worth sharing.
Double-barrel shotguns for home defense?
The double-barrel shotgun is a staple of old westerns and gritty detective novels, but is it a viable choice for home defense? While it’s not necessarily optimal, with a little forethought and practice it will likely suffice for most defensive scenarios. This is a fairly good article about the pros and cons of the double barrel shotgun, including some tips on its use. (I don’t, however, agree with the author’s suggestion of loading birdshot in one barrel and buckshot in the other; whatever you decide to load, make sure both barrels are the same.)
P.S.: Time is running out to sign up for my Threat-Centered Revolver class in Phoenix this November — because we’re almost full! If you want to attend, now’s the time to get your reservation in!
Opening photo by Backpacker – pixabay.com (CC0 public domain)