Wednesday, April 14, 2004

The Myth of Survival

We've all heard stories of the things people do to survive. We've heard about the guy who was pinned by a boulder out in the middle of no where, and cut his own arm off with a dull pocket knife to free himself, and walked to the nearest road. Some people just find a way to get out of trouble. Well... That's the myth.

People don't find a way out of trouble, they find a way into it. The key is not finding a way to luck your way out of a dangerous situation, the key is to not get into that situation in the first place. I can hear the girls yawning already. That's not good, because you kids are the ones I'm really talkin' to.

People put themselves in dangerous situations everyday needlessly. The key is to know when you are in a situation with potential danger, and take the necessary precautions. Enough with the mumbo-jumbo. Let's get specific. What should you be thinking and doing differently to avoid conflict and danger?

1) Be aware. Everyone has a built in sense of danger. You get an uneasy feeling in your stomach. Now in society we are taught often to ignore that. For example, a young woman was about to get into an elevator with 5 thug looking guys. She got that sick feeling, but she thought to herself, "Stop being such a racist, they are just people." She assumed that she felt uneasy because the guys were black. Now the specific case I am siting happened in Chicago, and the woman who got in the elevator ended up gangraped. But the important thing is not that she WAS a victim. The important thing is that she's NOT a racist! People, you too girls, when you get that feeling, pay attention to it.

2) Be prepared. This means you need to have some plans. Do you have fire escape ladders in your house? In every room? What's the plan if the house catches fire? Are you just playing it by ear or does everyone have a job? What if there is a public emergency like 9/11? Do you have a plan? Do you know how to contact your spouse or how to get to your kids? Roads will be conjested, people will be everywhere. What do you do? What about a car accident? Do you know what you are supposed to do, or do you panic, or find someone to take control of the situation for you? Storms, Power Outages, Break-ins, muggings and various other nasty things happen every day to people who never thought about them. This doesn't mean you need to be alarmist. It just means you should think about some things.

3) Don't be a volunteer. A wage sage once said, "There are no victims, only volunteers. You volunteer by looking weak and passive, like grass-eaters invariably are." If its a wild animal, or a creepy thug across the street, you show no fear. You walk deliberately. You hold yourself in a confident manner. Predators look for easy prey. Confident prey is rarely easy prey.

Now I'm not saying you should all carry firearms. But we do. And I'm not saying that you should have a bugout bag, and a get outta-dodge code word, but we do. I'm not even saying you should have escape ladders and fire plans. But we do.

All I am saying is, it's a dangerous world, and the best way of getting out of trouble, is not gettin' into it in the first place.

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