Who Is Your Attacker?
We all have a vision of an attack we may be involved in. It’s natural and healthy for the defensive-minded person to project themselves into certain potential attack scenarios and work through them mentally – the home invasion, the carjacking, the terrorist attack, the co-worker who finally lost it. I think it’s also important to have an open-minded attitude and expand on those rehearsals in case expectation and reality differ.
Your attacker simply may not be anything you’ve ever envisioned. This is horrifying to say, but what if it’s a disturbed 12-year-old girl, strung out on heroin or oxycontin armed with a revolver or a large kitchen knife. Are you ready for that, or will a delay of several seconds to process this cost you your life?
This scenario, while unlikely, is not impossible. I’ve personally seen children afflicted by various conditions such as fetal alcohol syndrome. I’ve experienced children from broken, hopeless homes. They can lack normal mechanisms of reason and self-control. Many simply have never experienced better. The point here is, the situation, place, setting and person you’ve envisioned and rehearsed may not be what really happens. But what is happening is deadly. It is a threat to your life. Do you have the right mindset to respond appropriately?
If you ever are attacked, you will likely have no idea who your attacker is. It could be a hardened criminal armed with a savage mindset so far outside of what you have experienced in your life you can’t really understand them or how they operate. Or, they could be an unremarkable college student with a deadly plan they have been working on for years. They could be a person or people on the run from the law, who just happen to cross your path during your daily activities. It could be something so bizarre and detached from anything anyone has ever conceived that no one will ever understand.
It could be someone in your family. A teenage child, or one of their friends. Are you prepared for that?
Armed encounters are something that are usually completely unpredictable. This is one issue I have with politicians and proponents of further restrictions on the right to keep and bear arms. They haven’t thought outside the box, and don’t care to. Politicians and anti-gun people like to talk about what you need and what you don’t need, as though they had some knowledge on the subject. They have no idea what anyone’s violent encounter might look like. Having spent most of my adult life reading articles from serious self-defense and firearms professionals, I can’t help but be insulted by politicians and anti-gun proponents speaking as if they are experts on violence and what people “need” to keep themselves safe. They know nothing.
It’s important to not plan for an attacker, but for an attack. Like most of you I certainly envision and mentally rehearse the more expected violent attacks, such as carjackings and home invasions. However, don’t stop there. As uncomfortable as it is, try to imagine an encounter far outside of your regular line of thinking, and how you’d deal with that. It may save your life.
Drew Beatty is a 52-year-old lifetime resident of the great state of Colorado. He is a long-time firearms enthusiast as well as a strong advocate for The Second Amendment.