Rocked with wave after wave of
Methodist Presbyterian Huguenot youth of indeterminate origin violence, the French Interior Minister is appealing to the people of France to help prevent more attacks on French soil by becoming reserve police officers.
French Interior Minister Bernard Cazeneuve on Saturday called on young citizens to become reservists and help boost security forces in the wake of the country’s latest terror attack.
France’s “operational reservists” include French citizens with or without military experience as well as former soldiers.
“I want to call on all French patriots who wish to do so, to join this operational reserve,” said Cazeneuve.
If only France had some organization out there to train civilians in the marksmanship needed to defend their country, and if only French citizens had to keep and bear arms in their own defence as well as the defence of their country.
If only… if only.
You are, and always have been, your own first responder. The cops don’t get there first, you do.
If your movement is filled with people who are willing to march on the streets shouting “Pigs In A Blanket, Fry Them Like Bacon!”, don’t be too shocked when someone decides to make that happen.
The 70’s had better music than we have now, but fashions and cars were much, much worse. The terrorists of the 70’s may have been more effective at planting bombs, but the terrorist of 2016 are better at getting their message out. A bomb can go off and change the lives of a couple of hundred people. Ideas, however, can change nations. Sometimes for the better, sometimes for the worse.
We don’t live in the 70’s. Our era is much more dangerous.
As Alcoholics Anonymous says, the first step is acknowledging you have a problem, and that’s true of personal safety as well. Like some of my colleagues, I became aware at an early age that there were predators in the jungle, so I never really lived in what some call “Condition White” for any great length of time. Some may see that as living in fear, I call it living in reality, because we’re only fearful of the unknown.
With that overly-long introduction out of the way, here’s three good articles on staying aware of what’s going on around you and what you should do about it. Stuff like this isn’t as sexy as dressing up like The Punisher, a six second El Presidenté or a $3000 1911, but its more important.
Grant Cunningham on finding out what the real threats are in your life:
Consider the threat of a job loss or severe economic downturn; what would happen if there were a drought in your part of the country? How about an accident that closes the only road into your town for a couple of weeks? A monthlong power outage? These are all things that have happened somewhere in this country just in the last year! How about having your gas main, electrical service, or water cut off during a major storm? (My wife and I had to deal with a widespread week-long power outage, in the middle of winter, twice in our lifetimes — once when we were living in one of the most affluent cities in our state!) Finally, a big risk might be unresolved health issues that are under your control.
Don’t make the usual mistakes: Take context, clusters, baseline, and biases into consideration.
First impressions are often accurate: With a number of traits you can trust your gut. But know which ones.
Trust mimicry and emotional expression: But they have to be sustained and consistent.
Awful people have tells: Pay attention to notice them. And look for narcissists in flashy clothing.
… here is what I feel should constitute the undergraduate education of the civilian defender:
Criminology/Street Smarts/Physical Preparedness
Legal Preparation, Aftermath and Rules of Engagement
Less Lethal skills
Handgun Carry Course
Handgun Skills and Tactics Course
Note: Dressing up like Batman is NOT listed there.
The KEY to surviving any event in a crowded venue will depend almost entirely on your ability to control personal panic, to assess the situation, and to take immediate action. If you panic, you drastically increase your odds of injury or death.
My wife and I were walking up and down the Strip in Vegas a few years ago, and we took one of the escalators up to one of the crosswalks they have there over the busy intersections. The escalator was packed with fellow tourists enjoying a night out on the town, and unfortunately, at the top was another large group of tourists packed shoulder-to-shoulder on the walkway. The overpass was packed to capacity, and yet more people were about to be dumped on it thanks to the crowded escalator behind us.
Fortunately, I saw what we were about to run into, and immediately moved to the edge of the overpass and edged our way out of the crowd and away from any potential crush.
Knowing, as they say, is half the battle.
A really great run down of what a well-prepared, well-protected civilian would need in training, mindset and equipment, over at Revolver Science. I like this list because rather than concentrating on “The Seventeen Ways YOU Can Stop Terrorism With Your AR-15 (And #12 Will Blow His Mind!)!!!”, it lays out, pretty clearly, what our threats are and what can be done to stop them. I really like that “defensive driving” is on the list. Want to avoid a road rage incident? Try not to be a jerk on behind the wheel, and never escalate the situation when someone cuts you off.
Gee, maybe those same principles of heightened awareness, conspicuous politeness and de-escalation might also work when he have a firearm on our waist and well as when we’re behind wheel.
Now that my family’s moved, “Getting into shape in order to help me live longer and with less creaking joints” needs to be on my version of this list.
You would think that if there was a particular type of crime that was up 1000% percent since 2005, it’d get some airplay on the news programs, right?
Well, in the case of attacks inside and out of the sanctuary, that’s not the case.
Lately we’ve seen a large increase in church security teams coming for firearms and tactics training. (I use the word “church” for any house of worship.) This is a good thing. According to one study violence at religious centers has increased over one thousand percent between the years 2005 to 2010.
Let’s face it: A church should (SHOULD!) be a place where people who are wounded emotionally and spiritually find solace and support to overcome their inner demons. This means that people who engage in questionable, if not outfight illegal and stupid things show up on our doorstep, and that means dealing with people who they associate with. I’ve seen it for myself: I was waiting in the narthex before service one Sunday when a rousing knock-down fight started between a woman and her divorced spouse. Both of them attended the church prior to their divorce, and neither was willing to find a new spiritual home now that they were no longer a couple. Fortunately, cooler (and stronger) heads prevailed, and the fight was quickly broken up and taken to a quieter place for the authorities to handle, but that was my wake-up call that bad things can happen inside a house of God.
Now that we have to deal with the threat of Islamic terrorism on our shores, what are the odds of ISIS doing over here what they’ve committed to doing in Iraq, namely, ridding the world of any and all competing faiths? How soon until we see a terrorist attack on a sanctuary or a synagogue?
It’s coming, and if you church isn’t willing to have a plan for man-made or natural disasters, make one for yourself.
On the November 28 episode of The American Warrior Show, William Aprill talks with Mike Seeklander about the criminal mindset, weapon disarms and a bunch of other topics. Interspersed with all of that information is a casual mention of two people getting assaulted and robbed of their open-carry pistols. Aprill points out, quite rightly, that guns along with drugs, are two of the items worth more to a criminal than cold, hard cash is. Therefore, to a crook, the benefits of stealing your gun might outweigh the risks of him getting shot by said gun.
And he’s right.
I support open carry, always have, always will, because it makes concealed carry a lot easier. However, the reality is, when you or I open carry, we are essentially walking around with an expensive watch on our wrists and money coming out of our pockets. We are advertising to the crooks that we have something they want, and that is a bad, bad thing indeed. When we open carry, we need to be aware that we have made ourselves a much more attractive target to the bad guys, and act accordingly, while still acting overly polite.
I hate dry-fire practice with my strong hand only and weak hand only*, because it shows just how much I suck at such things. But I do it. Not as often as I should, but I do it nevertheless. I’m ok with sucking at something for a while if I know I can get better at it with effort and practice. It’s the sucking at something and not improving that I hate (and I do that far too much for my liking).
Which is why I can’t figure out why you wouldn’t want to do a night shoot. There’s a very good chance you’ll need to defend yourself at night, so why not get good at it now, when the stakes are just 17th place in a match, not your life? Better a bruised ego now than deep penetrating trauma later.
*Go ahead. Tell me there’s no such thing as “weak hand”, just “support hand”. I dare you.
I know trainers who poo-poo the idea of situational awareness, preferring instead to concentrate on dealing with the after-effects of being ambushed. While I understand the idea (they are, after all, firearms trainers, not zen awareness trainers), but the fact is, you win 100% of the fights you don’t get into.
I’ve some more ideas on John Farnam’s classic dictum on avoiding bad things before they happen over at Ricochet.com.