Category Archive: Tactics

Holding Criminals at Gun Point

Self defense isn’t about punishing criminals, our system is not set up that way. It’s nice if burglars get arrested, tried, and punished but that has very little to do with self defense. The goal of the defender is to protect themselves and their families from harm. That could have been accomplished by ordering the intruder to get out of the house (at gun point) and letting him do so. Click here to read more »

How Close Is Too Close?

The “good guy” with the gun against the “bad guy” with the knife (or machete, axe, club, tire-iron, etc.).  “No contest”, you say. “The man with the gun can’t lose.” Or can he? A great deal depends on his ability with that gun and the proximity of his opponent.

If, for example, our hero shoots his would-be attacker at a distance of 20 yards, he loses. Not the fight, you understand, but most probably his freedom because he will almost certainly be charged with murder. The only thing that justifies your shooting another human being is the immediate need to stop him from trying to kill you (or someone else), remember? Click here to read more »

The Color Codes – Condition Yellow

Since I previously discussed condition white I figured that I would move on to the next one with a little more information that seems to get missed.

Condition Yellow is frequently defined as “relaxed alert” but that doesn’t really explain what an “alert” person is actually doing. Every self defense class on the planet will pay some lip service to awareness with a stock phrase like “be aware of your surroundings”, but no real explanation about how one goes about being aware. Click here to read more »

Aggressors claiming self defense.

There is some discussion over at Sharp as a Marble regarding the link I posted here regarding aggressors claiming self defense.

I think Rob is correct in pointing this out:

… ‘proportionate response’ doesn’t translate into the real world easily …

Using the least amount of force is generally the most legally defensible option. If an aggressor is trying to flee and you are preventing them from doing so it is pretty hard to argue that you couldn’t escape. Self defense isn’t designed to be ‘punishment’, we have courts for that. We must fight until we are sure that we can escape, and then we should do so.

Tactically speaking, if you are spending time on a neutralized threat you are creating an opportunity for another assailant. You have already confirmed that you are in the location where fights happen and we don’t know if the first assailant brought along a (tougher) friend. His friend might have been staying out of it because he didn’t want to get hurt, didn’t want to get in trouble, or thought the first guy could handle it. If the defender starts winning, that equation can change.

Use of force on behalf of a third party.

Some of the most heated debates we have in classes is in regard our doctrine about not getting involved on the behalf of unknown third parties. I figured I would expand upon this a little bit, and better explain our position on this.

First of all InSights, teaches people to defend themselves and the people they care about not just from physical confrontations, but also from the legal penalties involved with the of force. Not getting involved in someone else’s dispute protects the individual from all of the risk of physical injury, criminal charges, and civil damages. Beyond calling the police, this is our default position. Staying out of other people’s problems will not protect the individual from feelings of guilt because they felt that they could have done something to help, or improve the general safety and welfare of larger society.

Frequently there are a lot of unknowns in any third party situation. Can we be sure of who is the aggressor and who is the victim? Can we be sure that the “innocents” are in fact innocent? We are contemplating putting an awful lot at risk (our lives, our freedom, our financial resources and those of our families) for a situation that if we had more information we might not feel compelled to get involved in. If I am sitting in prison for a mistake that I made (with the best of intentions) on be half of a stranger then who is going to protect and take care of the people I care about?

While the default is to call the police and otherwise stay out of it, it is up to the individual to make their choices and decide how much risk they are willing to assume on the behalf of a person unknown to them. Having a wider range of capabilities (in terms of tactics, skill, and equipment) allows one to mitigate some of this risk. I would say that it would I need a pretty clear picture of events before I would consider using deadly force on behalf of someone unknown to me.