Any gun control advocate will argue until his face turns blue about the drop in violent crime. This is a loose thread to basically say, “hey, violent crime seems to be going down. What do you need a gun for?”
Here’s the thing — look at any map of crime in your vicinity and you’ll see that you’re never too far from where it takes place. No matter how safe your travel route, how selective you are about where you go, an opportunity for violent crime is there.
That’s why we hedge our bets by carrying a concealed handgun every single day.
Car Safety And Defensive Driving
Defensive driving means keeping distance from the car behind and in front of you. As much as everyone fantasizes about the day where computers drive the cars for us, there’s something very unique about being able to gauge the road for yourself.
Criminals have the opportunity to strike at red lights, stop signs, and even pull a quick slam of the brakes to get you to stop. Once you get out of the car, you are quite literally on your own.
The point of situational awareness is to hopefully detect these moments before they begin and either break free of the trap or fight your way through it.
You are most vulnerable when you are complacent.
- Entering a vehicle
- Exiting a vehicle
- Driving in mild to heavy traffic
- Idling in a parking lot
These are times when drivers “shut off”. They let their minds go into automatic mode and just assume that things will be normal. However, in all four phases, a driver is extremely vulnerable to attack.
All four phases have another thing in common: your vehicle is easily accessed because the keys are in the ignition.
Violent criminals have to fight a lot less to get the keys in these types of situations. While driving, they have to bring you to a stop to successfully take over the car. If you see a crummy looking car tapping the brakes and jumping in front of your front bumper, this is someone trying to get you to stop. Move past them.
When in doubt, call the police. Give a license description and any other information that’s handy. Any and all help you give may help the person who has to deal with them after you break out of the jam.
Think Like Your Enemy
If you want to guaranteeably get someone’s belongings, wait outside the store. People buying groceries, electronics, and all sorts of high-value merchandise will have to make a walk from the store to their vehicles. That’s an opportunity to strike.
This is why we push situational awareness. Think like your enemy.
- When are you most vulnerable?
- When do you have the least amount of attention directed around your surroundings?
These are all the times a seasoned criminal will look to make his move.
While you are out in your normal course of affairs, ask yourself periodically, “if I was a criminal, what would I be looking for?”
Look around at other people in your vicinity. See their behavior. Watch to see what you can learn from what they do or don’t do. These are lessons we can take and implement into our own situational awareness.