1. Don’t stand out, but rather blend in. I can easily spot wolves, but on the other hand I don’t want them to identify me as a sheep dog. While I have a long history of wearing pro-2A t-shirts and hats, I am beginning to rethink this. It is a fact that most of us are average looking; why stand out with some type of “loud” clothing?
2. Don’t overeact – assess first. This is a rule that you can practice every time you go into public. You may hear/observe the following: a car backfiring; a couple arguing in the parking lot; a parent screaming at their child; a display falling over in a store with a loud “crash”. How do you react to these and similar events? Hopefully by not grabbing your pistol!
On one occasion I saw two younger males arguing with a middle-aged white woman over some type of parking dispute. The woman had her elderly mother in the car, and a store employee was there and observing. I could see what was going on but not hear the conversation; I decided to call the police, as did other people in the parking lot, and the police arrived very quickly. By being in ‘condition yellow’, you are constantly observing/scanning the environment. Decide in advance what needs responding to by force!
3. Stay in the best physical condition you can for your age. When I was age 16, I weighed 120 lbs. and participated in track and wrestling. Also, I could ‘clean and jerk’ 100lbs from the floor to over my head. Now at age 72 I weigh 200 lbs., and I doubt if I could ‘clean and jerk’ 40 lbs. However, I am working with a personal trainer, and I am still active in such pursuits as hiking and kayaking. If you do respond to a criminal attack, you may have to run a short distance, or crouch down. Moreover, your heart rate and blood pressure will increase dramatically; thus, it behooves us to continue to exercise within limits set by our physical limitations and doctor’s advice.
4. Have non-lethal alternatives. For longer than I can remember, I have carried a pistol, OC, a keychain baton, and a knife, and I have had instructor-level training with the first three. I don’t plan to engage in a fist fight or wrestling match with anyone; rather, I have alternatives that can be tailored to the threat at hand and can protect myself should one weapon fail.
5. Avoid tunnel vision. Suppose that you see a carjacking in progress. There may also be an off-duty police officer nearby, plus one or more other sheep dogs. How will they know that you are a “good guy”? When will you reveal your presence to the wolf? Rehearse this in your mind. Or perhaps you and some friends could do a “run though” in an isolated place where the police won’t be called.
6. Carry concealed carry insurance. I am a long-time member of USCCA and cannot imagine not having insurance. But there are many other choices as well.
— Warren Lind is a retired licensed clinical social worker and a full-time security officer who writes extensively about crime, survival, and self-defense. He a long-time CCW holder and is a member of too many pro-2A organizations to list.