Does Your Skill Match Your Will: Choosing The Right Defense Method
Everyone wants safety and security but not everyone is comfortable getting it in the same ways. For example, one person may decide to get a permit to carry a firearm, while another may not be willing to use a firearm for self-defense. In that case, the second person would need a different method of self-protection. This is why I approach safety in layers.
Almost everyone can agree that the first step, or layer to keep yourself and your family safe is awareness. You must know what is going on around you and who is in your immediate and intermediate environment. When we become oblivious to this is when we get into trouble. Being able to see a problem or a potential threat before we put ourselves in proximity to it is key. If we recognize something or someone as a potential threat or danger, we can remove ourselves from the area in some cases. That is always the best way to avoid being a victim, simply don’t be where the danger is.
The next layer would be a physical ability and skill-set in order to fend off an assailant. You can have all the will in the world, but without knowledge of what to do or how to use the weapons you possess, your will is going to cost you valuable energy.
By learning how to physically create pain to someone, to fight off someone in order to free yourself from their grasp or restraint is crucial in defending yourself. You cannot get to a weapon if your hands or arms are being held by another. You must first physically get into a position where you can deploy such weapons. Therefore, knowing how to use your “built-in” weapons like your hands, elbows, knees, feet, eyes, brain, voice, etc. is very important to your safety.
For those who are willing to carry a weapon for self-defense in order to avoid having to fight someone, there are important things to ask yourself before doing it.
- Do I have the will to use this weapon against another human being? Depending on the weapon you choose, it could cause serious injury or death to another. That is the point, but do you honestly have the will and emotional ability to use it?
- Do I have the skills and training to use this weapon against another human being? You may carry a taser, but if you don’t know how to use it, it is useless and possibly more dangerous for you. Before carrying any weapon, get the proper training on how to use it most effectively and safely.
- Do I have the legal authority to carry and use this weapon? Firearms require a permit in most states. Other weapons such as stun guns, pepper sprays and Tasers do not require a permit, but may require a certificate of training in order to carry them. Other weapons are flat out illegal to possess. Know your state laws about your weapon of choice before you spend money one.
- Do I know my state’s Use of Force laws? All states have laws, but most only get taught to the people taking a course for a firearms permit. So everyone else is left to learn them on their own. Find an instructor who teaches that course and see if they will teach you the laws portion of the class if you are not interested in the permit.
Taking a pro-active approach to your safety is the best thing you can do. Learn your laws, know the difference between Force and Deadly Force, know what you will use to protect yourself, know how to use it properly, and TRAIN! Practice builds up muscle memory which helps you do things in emergencies that your brain may not otherwise automatically think to do. The more layers of defense you have at your disposal, the better.
Having these skills makes you more confident, and confidence is a deterrent to assailants.