A friend of mine the other day told me he recently caught two guys attempting to steal something very valuable from his property. When we played through the situations and how he could have responded, it reminded me of how many things can go wrong in a potentially defensive encounter.
There are two types of defensive situations. The first and hopefully the one you don’t get involved in usually results in asking for trouble. The defender comes upon two perps rifling through his car in the dead of night. He has no idea if they have guns or if there are others looming in the distance that have already spotted him. But the perps haven’t noticed him yet. What should he do?
If you weigh the potential outcome of attempting to apprehend these losers on the one extreme you could scare them to death with your voice and perhaps your gun, and it’s likely they will run. Or perhaps they will just drop to their knees and beg forgiveness while you hold them at gunpoint until the cops arrive. Likely never to happen.
On the other end of the possibility spectrum, however, you may find the perps actually don’t fear you. Instead of running they square-off at you and present their own pistols. Now you have to kill both of them. Hopefully you have trained sufficiently to get the job done. It is highly likely however you are going to be shot. Even if it were one perp, these losers usually don’t have an exit strategy. It’s either death or prison.
The problem here is the defender gave away his position of strength. Instead of looking for a way to overcome the perps, he catches them in the act, only to find they don’t give a shit about his scare tactics, or maybe even his life. What was at risk? His car? His life? I can tell you most dead guys would gladly trade their property for their life.
The other type of defensive situation involves retaining your position of power, and responding to the threat in a way that does not place you or others under unmanageable risk.
As a protector, it is your duty to first and foremost protect your own life. Unless your life or someone else’s life is being threatened, a non-defensive response should be reconsidered. You are a defender of lives, not property.
Granted if these losers were entering your home, that’s a completely different scenario. Make sure there is only one story to tell the cops, yours. Your power in this situation should be directed at preserving your life and others, not acting like a hero. A lot of hero’s get thrown in jail for defending their property. It’s not an easy case to win, especially against corrupt prosecutors.
And defense in the end of the day is what will carry you through the fight. Let’s play this out further. Say the defender steps back after noticing the perps. Maintains a safe distance. But instead of becoming offensive, he gets the license plate number off their car, records in his mind their features, what they are wearing. Maybe he listens for one of them to say the other’s name. All information you can provide the police and potentially nab these winners. But is this really a defensive strategy? No.
Instead, the defender retreats to his home. Locks all the doors, warns the wife, gets her and the kids to a safe room. Gathers his shotgun or an AR, hopefully equipped with a tactical light. Straps-on his tactical belt with his side arm and begins scanning the windows and doors to ensure the perps don’t enter the home. Now that’s a defense! Guaranteed, if those losers enter his home, they won’t need handcuffs when the cops arrive.
The point here is you have much more strength during a defensive response than an offensive one. There will be zero glory from a gunfight. Even with a single perp. You will be questioned, perhaps arrested or detained, and you may spend many years after fighting civil suits all because you gunned down a man with a criminal record longer than your wife’s credit card statement, and just as he was starting to turn his life around. Court battles are expensive, and just because the perp was armed doesn’t guarantee your innocence.
The cards are simply stacked against you. Your position of strength should always be spent as a defender. You can either choose to John Wick yourself out of a potential gun fight, hopefully you also have a bullet proof suit and a lawyer who works for free, or you can defend what is most important, your life and the lives of others who depend on you for their protection.