The Baltimore Police Department has managed to protect the community by causing a great deal of civil unrest. This is the perfect opportunity to discuss the most effective strategies for surviving riots. Being a gun blog you’re probably expecting me to tell people in Baltimore to buy a gun. Buying a gun for self-defense is a good idea but when we’re dealing with riots there is a more effective strategy:
Riots are not good situations to be caught up in. There are no factions with definable goals that can be satisfied to convince everybody to go home. If you’re caught up in a riot you risk being injured or killed by rioters or police officers who aren’t interested in figuring out who is a rioter and who is merely caught up in the mess. Protecting yourself in a riot is a situation you have to treat as yourself (which includes your family and friends) against everybody else. Any honest self-defense instructor will tell you that your odds of survival go down as the number of opponents goes up.
A lot of people will advise you to hole up in your home, which is certainly better than roaming around on the streets. But you really have to ask yourself if your home and the things in it are worth the risk of sticking around. Stuff, in my opinion, isn’t worth the risks of hanging around during a riot (after all, that’s what I have insurance for). I believe the most effective way of protecting yourself during a riot is to run away.
Running away is actually the most effective means of self-defense in most scenarios. Any physical altercation, no matter how great the advantage you think you hold is, can result in serious injury or death. It’s best to avoid a fight if at all possible. In the case of riots this may involved leaving town, getting a hotel, and waiting for things to cool down. True, your house may be a burned out shell when you return but you’ll almost certainly be alive, which is the primary goal of self-defense.
That’s not to say you shouldn’t buy a gun. A gun is a tool you can resort to if avoidance isn’t an option. For example, if you have a small child with you you may not be able to run from an aggressor. In the case of a riot you may encounter an aggressor or several as you’re leaving town. Having a gun is a good idea but it should be treated as your last resort. Avoidance should be your first tactic.