More Wednesday Wonderfulness! Massad Ayoob and Gail Pepin talking with Joshua Gideon; what happened at an airport when an active shooter alarm went out; doctors need protection too; defending against rioters with a rifle; Greg Ellifritz talks about defending against the surprise attack; the ways to use a defensive flashlight; being a survivalist doesn’t have to involve camouflage underwear; and understanding crying at the range. Another great collection of articles to help you and your family stay safe in this crazy world!
Massad Ayoob and Gail Pepin talk about senior defense
We’re all getting older, and as we age protecting ourselves becomes less about strength and more about intelligence. Joshua Gideon of No Soft Targets Radio recently interviewed Massad Ayoob and Gail Pepin about the threats baby boomers are facing and how to deal with them. Great episode!
An active shooter alert causes panic
At the John F. Kennedy airport in NYC recently, there was a report of an active shooter incident. It turned out to be completely false, panic ensued amongst both the passengers in the terminal AND the authorities charged with keeping them safe. Brandon Webb of sofrep.com happened to be in the terminal when it happened and posted a superb narrative of the event and the chaos it caused. He also has some great lessons learned and ideas in case you’re caught in that type of event. His comments on traveling light are spot-on, and I personally travel very light whenever I’m forced to fly. (My only criticism is where he talks about flashlights; the brand he recommends used to be the ‘best’, but after witnessing numerous failures I no longer trust them. If money is no object, Elzetta is currently the very best I personally know of; if money is a concern, I’ve been carrying a number of FourSevens lights in my pockets for years and have yet to break one. This is the one I take with me on every flight. These are not affiliate links, and I make no money should you buy either company’s products.)
Doctors and nurses need self defense skills, too
One of the most dangerous places to be, from a self defense standpoint, is the emergency room on a busy night. If you’re a health care professional you’re exposed to not just blood borne pathogens and various diseases, but unstable people. As a result doctors, nurses and other health workers need to know how to protect themselves — and usually without the benefit of firearms. This news report from WTHI in Indiana looks at the growing trend of health care self defense courses.
Civil unrest and the defensive rifle
You may have noticed the number of riots, lootings and other civil unrest events in the news recently. We like to think of those things as being confined to the downtown areas of large cities, but they’ve been known to spill out to the suburbs as well. In most cases I teach students that lethal force is not to be used just to protect property, but arson of an occupied building is no longer a property crime; it is a lethal attack, and in many states (including mine) is often listed as a specific self-defense justification. Protecting yourself and your family in those events may involve the projection of force at a distance beyond handgun range, and that’s where the rifle or carbine comes into its own. Bob Owens posted this article about the use of the AR-15 as a tool for defense against civil unrest; just remember that in those cases, you don’t necessarily need a modern sporting rifle. A shotgun (with the right ammunition) or even a lever action rifle (and the skills to use it well) will certainly work better than yelling!
Can you handle a lethal surprise?
There are still a whole lot of people out there who think that they don’t need to have counter-ambush defense skills because their perfect situational awareness will keep them safe. As I’ve been preaching for years, anyone can be caught off guard — and savvy attackers often use that moment to pounce. You need to be prepared not for the attack you see coming in advance, but for the one you DIDN’T see coming until it actually hits you in the face. Greg Ellifritz penned this great article about the silliness of expecting to always be ‘on guard’. Highly recommended reading.
So you’ve got a flashlight. How do you use it to stay safe?
Well, you need to get with Julie Loeffler at Mid-Ohio IMB and take her “Light Then Fight!” class. Before that, though, you should read this article where Mike Seeklander gives some superb advice about “tactical” flashlight use. It’s almost exactly what I recommend (though once again ignore the first ‘recommended’ flashlight in his list.) The flashlight is, as I’ve said before, the most useful self defense tool you can carry — whether or not you carry a firearm. Read and learn why!
Are you a survivalist? You may be. Embrace it.
We think of survivalists as those bug-eyed nervous wrecks anxiously storing MREs and bottled water in their fortified basements, but anyone who intelligently prepares for unforeseen circumstances is a survivalist: someone who wants to ride out disruption events as safely and comfortably as possible. In this article Tiger McKee has some advice for those who want to get started, but don’t want to be seen as “that guy”.
Don’t cry!! (Why not?)
I’ve seen women burst into tears on the firing line, and too many men thing that it’s a show of weakness. They urge the sobbing woman to “suck it up”, telling her “there’s no crying in self defense!” and similar poorly considered phrases. There are many reasons a woman might become emotional when shooting, and not all of them are out of fear — some women have been known to cry simply because they’re excited or happy. Beth Alcazar wrote an absolutely wonderful article listing some of the emotional triggers that might cause a woman to shed tears, and more importantly why they do. Men, you need to read this.
– Grant Cunningham
Opening photo: “Camelus dromedarius at Tierpark Berlin” by Agadez – Own work. Licensed under CC BY 2.5 via Wikimedia Commons