Studying Self-Defense: Do Your Homework

posted on April 5, 2019
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Fortunately, many of you have realized that you are responsible for your own safety. You have shopped for a good defensive firearm and signed up for some shooting classes. But you also realize that you have never been involved in a deadly encounter and, in fact, have never even witnessed one. In short, you aren’t really sure how these things go down, and you really don’t know what to expect or what you should be prepared to do.

Well, folks, that is nothing to be ashamed of. What it means is that you have made a lifelong effort to behave yourself and be law-abiding. The fact is that defensive training is more than going to the shooting range and taking classes. Here is a really radical suggestion: Why not become a student againas in buying books and doing some homework?

I would suggest four books that will really help you understand the dynamics of a criminal attack. The first two are by Chris Bird: “Thank God I Had A Gun” and “The Concealed Handgun Manual (7th Edition).” The second two are by Robert A. Waters: “The Best Defense” and “Guns Save Lives.”  All four of these excellent study manuals can be ordered through your local bookstore or from Amazon. 

You will find stories of regular folks who are confronted by deadly criminals, and you will see what happens as a result of different actions taken, with both good and bad endings. These true stories include home invasions, robberies, attempted rapes, car hijackings and even some family feuds.

Instead of reading these books for entertainment, I suggest that you study the numerous shootings that are included. Your focus should be on what each citizen did right and what they did wrong. You’ll find that a lot of defensive techniques were used, although some of them won’t appear to have been such a good idea. You will also see that a broad spectrum of defensive firearms were used, from custom guns right on down to some really cheap guns that shouldn’t have solved the problem but did.

A good addition to your family defense planning would be to sit down as a group and discuss these various incidents. Also, you might form a group of like-minded friends for the same study purposes. Look for what worked and why it worked. Look at what went wrong and how you could improve it. We see lots of videos on social media, but these videos don’t usually tell us the whole story. These books by Bird and Waters will give you a much better knowledge of what really happened.

Bird and Waters’ books will help you develop and expand your combat mindset. Now, go do your homework!


Sheriff Jim Wilson
Sheriff Jim Wilson

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